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Laura Day has one of the most interesting stories in design. She grew up in rural Arkansas, travelled the world at a young age and held down a myriad of odd jobs to keep herself going. All of these experiences made her the cutting-edge, yet accessible designer she is today. In her Park Avenue one-bedroom, a Ross Bleckner canvas and pedigreed 1stDibs.com treasures mingle with kitschy flea market bargains. Decadent fabrics bedeck inexpensive furnishings. Affordable indulgences like off-the-rack silk drapes and grasscloth wallcovering make a major impact without breaking the bank. Read on to see how Day brought her personal style to her New York space.

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Everyone told me not to do an open kitchen in a Park Avenue apartment, but it made the space. It’s important to push the envelope, keep it interesting and follow your own tune.

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I am not a fan of busy, crowded bathrooms. Graphic wallpaper is a dramatic way to fill a small space without using furniture. For the powder room, I found this funky, bold metallic chinoiserie in my favorite color: gold.

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My living room is all vintage: a Steven Chase onyx table, Milo Baughman chairs and a Dunbar sofa. I love using pieces with a sense of history —  more like curating than decorating. I’m always on 1stDibs.com, which is such a great educational tool. It’s made shopping for vintage a much more sophisticated proposition.

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To create a shimmering effect for the foyer ceiling, I used a metallic-gold marine varnish from Eagle Paint & Wallpaper in New Jersey. I’ve been working with them forever and they mix all of my custom colors. They’ll match any sample and ship it anywhere in the U.S.

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Every home I’ve designed for myself has been quite different stylistically, but I have one constant. I always use white-marble countertops and tiles in bathrooms. Here, I paired it with crystal fixtures by Shelton Mindel that are unobtrusive, but still have a bit of sparkle — a tough mix to find.

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