Decorating for Designer Tommy Hilfiger
High atop NYC’s Plaza Hotel, Eva Lee and Nels Christianson applied their high-end decorative painting skills to the penthouse home of Dee and Tommy Hilfiger, the iconic resort-wear fashion designer. “The views were spectacular,” says Lee, co-owner of Christianson Lee Studios in Ridgefield. Brought in by the lead designer Cindy Rinfret, the fine-finishing duo worked on many rooms in the sprawling, top-floor apartment: dining room, kitchen, butler pantry, master bedroom, son’s bedroom, guest bedroom, daughter’s bedroom, and tea room.
“We applied 23-karat gold leafing to the ceiling in the dining room,” Lee says. “On the walls we applied a glaze inspired by a Chinese lacquer technique.” And in the kitchen, completing the vision of Dee Hilfiger, Christianson and Lee stroked on a trey ceiling with a metallic glaze finish to create a French-bistro look.
“It came together in a way that was really surprising. I love it. It’s my favorite in the house,” Tommy Hilfiger told a video crew from Architectural Digest.
Inside a famous turret on the building, visible from the entrance to Central Park, Lee and Christianson contributed to the tea room, painting windows and brickwork that complement a mural by Hilary Knight, depicting a scene from the famous Eloise series of books that Knight drew. “We usually don’t get to see the finished project,” says Lee, commenting on the AD video tour released in January. “When we are working it’s a job site, so it was great to see how it all came together.”