Our ongoing series “My sqft” checks out the homes of 6sqft’s friends, family and fellow New Yorkers across all the boroughs. Our latest interior adventure brings us to a fitness studio COO’s Yorkville one-bedroom, infused with mid-century-modern furniture and contemporary decor. Want to see your home featured here? Get in touch!
Ashley Davis moved to New York City after graduating from college in 2004. She thought it would just be for a couple years, but, like so many of us, she never left. She’s been living on the Upper East Side since 2007 and has been in her current Yorkville apartment for three-and-a-half years. After making a career shift from the advertising/tech world to joining her friend and former colleague Helaine Knapp at CITYROW (Ashley is the fitness studio’s chief operating officer), as well as very recently welcoming her boyfriend into her apartment, Ashley has created an inviting home that’s a mix of mid-century-modern furniture, contemporary decor, lots of textures, and a sophisticated color palette.
The painting above the club chairs, which are from Dwell, is from Ashely’s boyfriend’s childhood apartment in Tribeca
What brought you to the Upper East Side?
It’s beautiful, clean and quiet, but still in the heart of the city. It’s not the trendiest neighborhood, but you get good space for your money, awesome restaurants and it’s great to be this close to both Central Park to the west and Carl Schurz Park on the East River.
What are some of your favorite spots in the neighborhood?
I love to try new things, but left to my own devices will go to the same places over and over again. The places I go back to time and again are Kaia Wine Bar on 3rd and 91st. It’s South African, and they have great wine, amazing food and an awesome staff. Cascabel Taqueria on 2nd Avenue between 80th and 81st -has the BEST margaritas made with yummy, fresh ingredients and good tacos. Libertador on 2nd and 89th – great steak and sangria! Love the Writing Room on 2nd Avenue (in the old Elaine’s space) – delicious food and cocktails. We love to go eat at the bar there – it’s the perfect way to draw out a Sunday afternoon. One thing I love about this neighborhood is that you get great food without ridiculous lines or waits.
Technically you live in Yorkville, which has been getting a lot of hype with the Second Avenue Subway opening soon. Have you noticed any changes?
Right now we’re just dealing with a bit of a mess! But people are excited about it, and I think it’s going to be a great boost for the eastern part of the neighborhood.
Ashley loves entertaining and has a Halloween party every year
CITYROW opened its second location on 3rd Avenue and 80th Street not too long ago. What made you choose this spot to expand?
Helaine, the CEO and Founder of CITYROW, and I both live up here, and both felt that this was the right place. There is a great combination of families and young singles who live up here. There’s a huge demand for health and wellness, and we knew that we fit perfectly within the lifestyle of this community.
How would you describe your interior design aesthetic?
I go for clean and simple, but I like to use color and patterns and bring in lots of different textures. I pick things that I think are beautiful, but I’m super practical, so my stuff has to be low maintenance, wear well and look good with dog hair on it. I love window treatments – I think they’re a really great way to add something to a room without creating clutter. This apartment has gorgeous windows so I spent a lot time figuring out what I wanted and invested in beautiful, custom shades and curtains. I still get happy when I look at them.
What are some of your favorite places to shop for mid-century-modern piece?
I love DwellStudio, Room & Board, Crate and Barrel, Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams. I like to hunt around One Kings Lane as well – they have great stuff! Custommade.com is a cool way to find smaller designers who can do custom work. I found a designer – James Devlin – who made the coffee table just the way I wanted it.
Romy is a Boykin Spaniel
How did having a four-legged friend factor into your design of the space?
I can’t have anything white! I stick with neutrals and patterns, and more durable/washable fabrics. She’s a lady though – for the most part she just lounges on the furniture, but, of course, she’ll always pick the nicest piece for herself!
Your boyfriend recently moved in with you. How did you go about incorporating his things with yours?
Well, he would say I didn’t incorporate much! He was mostly attached to some art, so that’s up on the walls now. I’ve added in pictures of him/us throughout, and – most importantly – I completely cleaned out the closet and dressers to make room for him.
The dining room photos were done by Inkdot, a service that lets you print digital photos on wood or metal. These are from Ashely’s Instagram. They also used the service for the press wall at CITYROW.
What’s your favorite thing about this apartment?
The pre-war details that you just don’t get in new apartments – the detailing in the floors, the doorway arches, the molding, the casement windows. It was beautiful before I did anything to it.
The tete a tete is also from Dwell
Do you have a favorite item?
The tete a tete! It’s definitely a conversation piece because it’s an unusual piece of furniture, but it’s also really functional and comfortable. It’s a great place to sit and have a chat over a glass of wine. Or if I’m alone to curl up and watch TV.
The prints above the bed are from Etsy
You mentioned being inspired by Marie Kondo. Tell us a bit more about this.
I deplore clutter, but would purge, clean, organize and then have to do the same thing a few months later. Her method of going through everything you have by category and keeping only what you absolutely need and love resonated with me. I created so much more space and have been able to keep things organized. It really made life a little easier. It’s also made me more thoughtful about acquiring new stuff, which I think is probably the best part. The worst part was being the person at a party who only wanted to talk about a book on tidying
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All photos taken by Erin Kestenbaum exclusively for 6sqft. Photos are not to be reproduced without written permission from 6sqft
My 860sqft: Ashley Davis of CITYROW opens up her mid century-meets-contemporary Yorkville pad : 6sqft