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Featured Designers | A Garden Oasis in Urban Hoboken

Written by: Dena Landon

Photography by: Robert Socha

Nicole and Kyle Schneider were pregnant with their second child when they realized that their Jersey City apartment was, in Nicole’s words, “an absolute death trap.” They looked around a bit in Jersey City but weren’t able to find what they wanted. Then someone told them about new apartments being built in Hoboken by luxury builder Red Bridge.

Neither of them had lived in Hoboken before, but they jumped at the chance to have a home built to meet their exact needs. And now that they’ve moved in, they can’t imagine living anywhere else.

The highlight of their new home is the private, connected yard which has become their garden oasis in the city. The Schneider’s tweaked the original plan to make it safer for their two small kids, removing ramps and moving the fire pit, and worked with designers Marisa and Brian of D&G Interiors + Design to create a welcoming vibe.

In one corner, they tucked a bright red sandbox where the couple’s two children could play as mom made dinner in the full outdoor kitchen. The parents didn’t want to have to go in and out of the house while the kids were outside. Stainless steel appliances match the slate built-ins and granite countertops, with a grill, sink, and dishwasher the perfect set-up for outdoor meals.

Orange, yellow, and plaid pillows on the solid navy couches in front of the TV and fire pit tie into the fabulous graffiti mural that winds along the back wall and garage. The graffiti spirals up from a bird shape and swirls along the wall to bubbles and wild swoops along the garage. They hired local street artist Mr. Mustart and gave him free reign, then watched as the mural took shape from a single circle.

In the home, the palette becomes more muted. Soothing grays and soft textures on throws and pillows invite the owners to relax in the living room, while rounded edges on the couches and armchairs keep it kid-friendly.

Nicole was heavily pregnant during the design process. She says that she had a hard time not making decisions focused on having a newborn and a two-year-old but, “Marisa and Brian were great putting up with my fickle, forgetful brain, and helping me make decisions that weren’t so short-term.”

Strategically-placed end tables with brass tops add warmth, while the round tray on the leather coffee table contains a whimsical faux skull next to books; a housewarming gift from D&G. Plate glass from floor to ceiling in the wall on one side invites the outdoors into the living room.

The interior features an open floor plan, with similar design elements in each living area bringing the rooms together. The abstract paint on the dining room wall echoes the marled effect on the living room chairs and the black and white splashes and cowhide-print on the kitchen stools.

People can move between the rooms with ease, which is perfect for entertaining

When the family first moved to Hoboken, Nicole struggled to make friends as a stay-at-home-mom. But once her oldest started school she plugged into the community and has even hosted school events in their dining room. It can easily be reconfigured to fit more guests.

D&G positioned six black leather and brass chairs around the dining room table but placed two extra chairs against the wall behind it to accommodate more people. A glass and metal console table continues the metal theme but its openness prevents the small space from feeling confined. People can move between the rooms with ease, which is perfect for entertaining.

Not a fan of clutter, Nicole asked for lots of storage in the kitchen. She loves the long island and the smart storage that means all the utensils and knife sets can be tucked away safe. They added a pantry which extends below the stairs for even more storage. An avid cook, she makes all her kid’s meals from scratch.

The nightingale wallpaper in the half-bath is the only similarity to their old home; a huge fan of the print Nicole wanted to bring it with them. They left one weekend and came back to find it done, an amazing and colorful surprise. The birds really pop against the black tile, providing a splash of color.

While they initially had their doubts about moving to a new city where they didn’t know anyone, the Schneider’s are thrilled with their decision. Nicole loves that she can walk to the grocery store, meet a friend for lunch, and buy a cute outfit in a ten-block radius. The community has welcomed them, and now they couldn’t imagine living anywhere else.

Love this D&G Interiors + Designs home? Check out more about these amazing designers here