This article was originally published August 2013.
We feature Shelby Girard’s beautiful apartment, full of style and elegance. Originally from St. Louis, she has lived in Chicago 6 years and is now an interior designer on the rise.
Moving to Chicago after spending time in NY and graduating from NYU, Shelby attended Harrington College for her masters in Interior design and is happy to make Chicago home.
‘Chicago has an amazing design community and resources. I don’t see it as second best to anything. I’ve lived in New York, and although I loved it, I’ve always been more at ease in the Midwest, and Chicago definitely feels like home now. If I move, I’d probably go West, just to try something new, but I have no problem staying here for a while’, she shares. ‘It is full of great design and creative people. It’s obviously an incredible city architecturally, but there are always exciting things happening in the larger creative community as well. Also, the restaurants, the bars, the neighborhoods, and the summer are just the best.’
Chicago’s up and coming neighborhood for the older free-thinkers, sophisticated & trendy foodies and those who like artisan cocktails. If you keep traveling up Milwaukee Avenue (or the Blue Line, or the highway) past northwest of Bucktown/Wicker Park, you will find the fantastic neighborhood of Logan Square. Artsy and charming, this area is constantly sprouting new cafes, bars and restaurants along its quiet, tree-lined blocks. Favorite neighborhood spots include The Owl, Revolution Brewing, Longman & Eagle and Wasabi.
How to achieve modern with a rustic twist
Shelby’s simple white walls, high ceilings and dark-stained hardwood floors provide a clean backdrop for the muted designer details that give the home its unique perspective.
- Texture is the true star here – from the cow-hide rugs, to the sculptural wall hangings to the green plants that breathe in fresh air (literally!).
- The use of beautiful gilt frames throughout the home is a trick – they are a little bit traditional and contrast with the mostly modernist aesthetic.
- Old and new, shiny and matte, dark and light all mix together to create a very unique atmosphere.
Shelby’s background in interior design: ‘I got by BA from NYU and my Master’s from Harrington College of Design. I’ve always been interested in design and style, in one sense or another, and one day it literally dawned on me that I could make this a career. I am the Design Director for Havenly, a start-up that offers affordable interior design services, so I am in a very exciting, non-traditional segment of the industry that is really expanding the idea of interior design and making services that usually cost a ton of money accessible to a larger group of people.’
Devil in the Details
There are a number of ways to personalize one’s home. Shelby’s Logan Square pad uses architectural details, a muted palette and unexpected details to create a cozy but austere atmosphere. A scattering of original art is seen around the apartment, ‘Most of the artwork in my home is by my grandfather Frank Girard who was an artist. A lot of the work we have was produced in the 60s.’
Shelby’s tips for chic, small spaces:
- A big tip would be to use Havenly – that’s what we do! For a designer, the least favorite spaces are those clearly purchased in one transaction, at one store.
- Don’t go for the furniture set, and don’t be afraid to mix & match materials, finishes and styles to create spaces that are personal and aesthetically layered. It gives depth to a space and allows you to collect pieces you love over time.
- I also think you can’t underestimate the power of artwork and good lighting.
Photos of the Apartment are by Joshua Clark