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Two Brooklyn designers reinterpret their own rural history—with a little help from Sears Roebuck, circa 1900.


Lyndsay Caleo and Fitzhugh Karol flip properties, but only after they have made them more appealing. Three years back, Caleo, a jewelry designer, and Karol, who has a master’s in ceramics and designs furniture, partnered with Lyndsay’s brother Bill to form the Brooklyn Home Company—which renovates (or builds) properties for sale. “We design the projects as if they were our own home,” they explain, “searching all over for salvaged architectural elements.” The Park Slope brownstone here, however, they kept for themselves. It “just felt right”—despite rotted floors and a fire-damaged ceiling. And their goal was to make it hark back to their past. “We both grew up in the country,” says Caleo, “and we designed the house to be an escape from the city.”

1,250-square-foot brownstone apartment. Park Slope.  

Lyndsay Caleo on their apartment’s influences:

Our design philosophy involves playing with the balance between new and old. We mix architectural elements that were created a hundred years ago with furniture we make.

We tend to look at the late 1800s through the thirties. We’re constantly inspired by how objects from this era seem so well considered, so thoughtfully designed, and how the materials could never go out of style.

The fireplaces were from a Sears catalogue that dated from the early 1900s. They were practically the only things we could save in the house. There were drop ceilings from a seventies renovation that were horrendous.


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