What do Kimye, Chrissy Teigen, and Ivanka Trump have in common? When faced with a decor dilemma, they’ve all turned to home designer Cheryl Eisen.
Eisen—whose past clientele also includes Daniel Craig, Bethenny Frankel, and Paris Hilton—is the founder of Interior Marketing Group, the largest real estate design and marketing firm in New York City. Whether the rich and famous are trying to sell their luxury homes for top dollar or get some help blinging out their abodes, Eisen helps them pinpoint the exact mix of furnishings that deliver.
Best of all? Eisen was not shy about sharing her advice on realtor.com®! So if you dream of decorating like an A-lister, check out her top tips—plus pics of some of the famous homes she’s made over.
Chrissy Teigen and John Legend
Insider celebrity design tip: Texture adds the perfect touch
Ubiquitous celebrity couple Chrissy Teigen and John Legend are so darn adorable, you just know that their home must be, too. Eisen redesigned their entire penthouse in the Nolita neighborhood in Manhattan, but found particular inspiration in the master bedroom, which featured a unique exposed brick wall.
“In order to soften the brick, we created a custom oversized upholstered headboard,” says Eisen. “The fabric headboard makes the bedroom feel more luxurious and cozy without taking away from the architectural detail.”
An easy way to add softness in your own home is to add a faux fur throw at the end of the bed, as Eisen has done in the photo (below) of their bedroom.
“Layering soft textures is a signature design choice, because it’s luxurious, sleek, and dramatic,” she notes. “Texture, texture, texture! It’s one of my design rules to live by. I like to work in neutrals mostly, so in place of layering colors, I often layer textures. I think it is one of the best ways to create luxury in a home, whether it’s in the master bedroom or the living space.”
Insider celebrity design tip: It’s all about you!
Every home should reflect the personality of its owner, according to Eisen. In the case of Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards, that meant infusing his Greenwich Village penthouse with some rock star vibes.
“Whether it’s a quirky piece like a purple sofa or motorcycle graphic, ensure your home tells a story and reflects what inspires you,” Eisen says. And she advises that you let your personal theme carry throughout the home. Why limit it to just one room?
Insider celebrity design tip: Low-profile furniture makes a room feel bigger
After dealing with extreme bad guys all day on NBC’s “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit,” lead actress Mariska Hargitay must enjoy coming home and relaxing in a spacious room in the Upper West Side townhouse she shares with her husband, actor Peter Hermann.
Eisen says maximizing their narrow living room area was a top priority, and to do this she used opposing, flanking sofas.
“Using backless seating helps to maintain an open and spacious feeling, instead of closing off the space with a visual barrier,” she says. To complete the room, she anchored it with an oversize coffee table in the center and a statement piece of art.
Take-home lesson: When faced with a narrow or cramped room, go low.
“Furniture that is too tall takes away from the rest of the room,” she explains. “Low-profile furniture opens up the room and makes it feel more spacious and livable.”
Insider celebrity design tip: Think multifunctionality
Bethenny Frankel soared to fame on “The Real Housewives of New York City,” then created her own “Skinny Girl” lifestyle brand, which made her a millionaire in her own right. She can afford to decorate any way she pleases, and Eisen says her SoHo home is one of her favorite projects, because “the transformation there was so profound; we completely redesigned the home down to every last detail.”
Part of that makeover involved multifunctionality. “If you have an extra room or space in your home, you want to create something that can serve many purposes,” says Eisen.
She demonstrates this by what they did with Frankel’s home office. “Here we created a home office that can also function as a den or guest room by pairing a built-in desk with floating shelves and a click-back couch that can double as a bed,” she elaborates.
Furthermore, “a dark-colored wall helps to make a small space feel larger—we used a dark cork wallpaper to make the room feel more spacious, while adding texture and drama. We finished the room with a sign that reads ‘I Know It All,’ a signature quote of Bethenny’s, to add a personal touch,” Eisen explains.