A Studio DB home might be defined by a judicious sense of drama – for proof, look no further than their Bergen Street residence, owned by a family of five – the parents have worked in finance and as a VP at Vera Wang, but have since decamped to Bali. Their Brooklyn residence is sleek and sure, filled with dynamic elements – family heirlooms and artwork alongside contemporary furniture (curated by Studio DB) and 1stDibs picks. Another home, this one in the East Village, channels the same spirit: urban modernism with healthy dollops of personality and charm.
It’s all in day’s work for the husband-and-wife team of Damian and Britt Zunino, principals of the New York City architecture and interiors firm Studio DB. In this week’s Milkshake, the pair share some of their secrets to creating a beautiful home – from establishing the flow from room to room to their favorite sources for unique lighting, furniture, wallcoverings, and more. The first thing they notice about a room, they say, is its flow: “We really spend a lot of time designing a very sequential order of things – a great sense of entry, the flow from room to room, everything being really considered and thoughtful,” says Britt. “When there’s no sense of arrival, I think that that’s [emblematic of] a badly designed space.” Lighting matters, too: “If the lighting is really cool and not very flattering and just not very cozy, that can be problematic,” she says. One of their favorite sources for unique lighting: Etsy. “There’s amazing lighting on Etsy that you can find it from small companies,” she says.
We also asked them how to warm up a sad space – like your typical empty corporate Airbnb rental: “Paint,” Damian says. “If you wanna spend a little bit more money, doing an interesting or fun wallpaper adds a lot more texture and character to space.”
We also quizzed the pair on their favorite visually inspirational books, secret favorite website, and the thing most clients leave out when embarking on a big project. For their answers – tune in!
Diana Ostrom, who has written for Wallpaper, Interior Design, ID, The Wall Street Journal, and other outlets, is also the author of Faraway Places, a newsletter about travel.
Milkshake, DMTV (Design Milk TV)’s first regular series, shakes up the traditional interview format by asking designers, creatives, educators and industry professionals to select interview questions at random from their favorite bowl or vessel. During their candid discussions, you’ll not only gain a peek into their personal homeware collections, but also valuable insights into their work, life and passions.