In 2017, when Claire Mazur and Chris Roan moved into a historic brownstone on a tree-lined street in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood (talk about #lifegoals), the couple wasn’t planning any major projects. “I wasn’t in a place in my life where I had the space to take on anything really big,” says Claire, cofounder of Of a Kind and coauthor of Work Wife.
Despite the brownstone’s three floors (three!), the narrow layout of the first floor posed some challenges. Claire and Chris wanted a spot to hang out and entertain, but every furniture arrangement they tried interrupted the flow from the living room through the dining area to the kitchen. And then there was the “coffee bed” conundrum...
“Every morning, I wake up, make myself a cup of coffee, and lie on the couch with my head on the armrest for a half hour—reading the internet and drinking my coffee,” says Claire. “I need my feet up. I need to be horizontal in order to have this coffee ritual that is an instrumental part of my morning routine.” No couch fit the space, and no daybed or settee was comfy enough. The solution, it turned out was one of those pesky projects that the homeowners were avoiding in the first place.
Luckily, Claire’s friend Whitney Parris-Lamb of design firm Jesse Parris-Lamb knew exactly what to do: install a built-in sofa along the front window. “We weren’t planning on working with a designer,” Claire admits. “When you move into a home you have all the stuff you want to do and that you’re budgeting for, but finally we just said we need to do this the right way because we’re not enjoying our home right now. The built-in couch that we affectionately refer to as the “coffee bed” is now my favorite thing on the first floor.” It was designed by the Jesse Parris-Lamb team and built by Ben Erickson of Erickson Aesthetics.
Curated by Claire
The Of a Kind cofounder shares a few of her favorite places to shop and find inspiration.
Dream buys: I fantasize about owning one of Mimi Jung’s woven pieces to hang in our living room. They are stunning and unique and so ridiculously impressive.
Last thing you had delivered: A bunch of baby bibs from Scandiborn. Our son just started eating solids, and I had, like, four really cute baby spoons that I bought while pregnant, but was woefully unprepared otherwise.
Favorite Sunday activity at home: This is cheesy and a little embarrassing, but I still have new-mom hormones coursing through my veins so I’ll share: My husband and I got engaged on a Sunday. So now every Sunday he asks me to marry him again. Sometimes I have to remind him to do it by handing him my engagement ring. Sometimes we are both half asleep by the time we remember. And sometimes we forget entirely. But it happens most Sundays, and it’s a sweet affirmation of our choice to be with one another.
Originally Appeared on Architectural Digest