Inspired by the bright and luxurious street where this Paris apartment is located, Marika Dru, the founder of Atelier MKD, gave this home a modern makeover while preserving its authentic French spirit. Dru says she was inspired by the oversized scale—the large doors, grand windows, and high ceilings—to make a space that’s both unique and timeless.
Dru wanted to restore the apartment’s smaller, closed spaces to take advantage of the greater intimacy that they offer compared to open-plan living areas. With this goal in mind, she used pivot doors, which have the advantage of lying flush against walls when they are open, offering a bright living space where circulation is fluid. “I wanted to keep the hallways narrow, so we used a number of pivot doors that disappear completely when you open them, but create intimate spaces when closed,” she says. As well as acting as partitions, these pivot doors are the dominant organizational element of this architectural project. When the space is completely open, the apartment takes on a theatrical and spacious feel, thanks largely to the glowing light that fills the home.
The apartment’s style draws inspiration from Art Deco and minimalism. Some of the details, notably the woodwork, are a deliberate nod to the 1930s while remaining in dialogue with the contemporary furnishings. The choice of materials, from fluted oak in the kitchen to concrete in the bathroom, adds rigidity and solidity to the interior. To bring a softer touch to the apartment, Dru chose to insert alcoves with appealing curves and to play with the delicacy and muted look of fabrics. “I tried to bring roundness to rigor. It was a real challenge for this project,” she explains.
While some of Dru’s choices were intended to add character and give a certain edge to the interior, the overall result is timeless—or perhaps, better put, removed from time. “I try to make sure that the interiors I create can last over time and exist beyond passing trends,” she explains. By choosing enduring materials and opting for a natural color palette, Dru has made this 4,300-square-foot space adaptable and glamorous at once. She has created an interior that is contemporary and decidedly unique with accessories like cushions and curtains that can easily be replaced. This allows the apartment to respond to today’s lifestyle and design preferences, while moving, apparently effortlessly, through time.