Inside a Modernist Monochromatic Brownstone with a Dog to Match

Carlen Parfums founders have mastered minimalist-chic design.

By: Hannah Baxter
Photography: Ben Ritter

If you’ve never taken a leisurely stroll up and down the streets of tree-lined Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, we *highly* recommend doing so immediately. The stunning brownstones can make even the most cynical New Yorker wax poetic about the city’s colorful history, as well as wonder just who lives behind each set of grandiose double doors. On a particularly picturesque block, there is yet another enviable building, and inside is the perfectly serene and minimalist space that many a city-dweller dreams about (us included!). For Jason Gnewikow and Jeff Madalena, co-founders of Carlen Parfums as well fashion-favorite boutique Oak, their gut-renovated apartment is simply home, albeit an incredibly chic one at that.

We were fortunate enough to garner an invite to come check out their expansive abode and hang out with their adorable dog, Barney. From the crisp white walls and custom light fixture to the touches of black fur and cowhide, every inch of the sunlit space is thoughtfully curated. Jason and Jeff actually own the entire building and rent out the top two floors as studios, while the first and bottom floors are for themselves, Barney, and their edited selection of plants—like the drool-worthy fiddle fig threatening to overtake the kitchen. They have self-professed green thumbs and often travel to their home upstate to cultivate their garden and shop for vintage pottery. If it’s anything like their Brooklyn apartment, we can’t wait to come visit it next!

Click through the photos to hear how they went from living in a 400-square-foot apartment in Greenpoint to finding this diamond in the rough, why they still love New York after a decade-plus, and how Carlen Parfums is giving potpourri a much-needed update.

 

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