Curated Nest Embraces Livable, Luxurious Home Design in Westchester

The team behind Curated Nest brings aesthetics pleasing to both the eye and families.

“Livable luxury,” is the way designers Erin Coren and Lina Galvão of Curated Nest describe their style. It’s an aesthetic and approach that appeals to many families in Westchester and Fairfield Counties who are seeking beautiful homes that are equally easy to live in and maintain. The designers and their team blend smart design with materials and furnishings that stand up to the wear-and-tear of pets and kids (yes, even the ones who like to eat yogurt on the couch, as was the case with the homeowner of this family room). “Spills are going to happen. Life is going to happen, and that’s fine,” says Coren, who notes that they carefully think through the ins and outs of how clients will use a space, and then select the best products that hold up over time. This family-friendly point-of-view on design came into focus for Coren and Galvão when they each became moms, which is also the way they first connected.

Erin Coren and Lina Galvão
Erin Coren and Lina Galvão. Photo courtesy of Curated Nest.

When their babies were just five months old, they attended a mommy meet-up in Manhattan and immediately hit it off. They had in common not only their new-mom status but also their love of design. For Coren, interior design was her career goal from a young age. After getting a degree in interior design, she spent 10 years running her namesake interior design studio, EMC2 Interiors. She worked for a range of clients, including some celebrities, magazine editors, and corporate CEOs.

Galvão entered the design world via a more circuitous route. With a background in health and biology, she worked in finance and administration for hospitals, where she often noticed that the spaces were not particularly geared toward promoting the patients’ well-being. “I became really interested in how architecture and design can impact a patient’s experience and their ability to heal,” says Galvão. “I love the idea of marrying creativity and problem solving.” So, adding to her degrees from Yale and Columbia, Galvão attended Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) to study interior design. By the time Galvão met Coren she was already working as a designer and the pair decided to join forces; in 2016 they started Curated Nest.

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Curated Nest
Photo by Jacob Snavely

With Curated Nest, the designers had a vision to be a full-service firm with its own studio and to hire a team that would include other designers as well as a procurement manager, operations manager, and other staff. They wanted something collaborative, different from a lead-designer-with-assistant approach; their staff works as a team handling all the details from beginning to end. Most of their jobs involve renovations, often for young families who have just moved up from the city and bought their first house. Once the partners ensure that they are a good fit for a prospective client (and vice versa), they begin by getting to know the client through an interview about their lifestyle and preferences. They’ll ask, where do you like to travel? What are your hobbies? What’s your routine with your kids? Your daily schedule, Monday to Friday? How do you spend your free time?

“We love the thrill of creating a fresh design for each client,” Coren says. They put together concepts before pulling any specific pieces to make sure everyone is on the same page. “We try to make it a streamlined process with key touch points for the client,” says Galvão. “By the time they see the final presentation, we typically have few revisions because they have seen how it has grown to this point.” From their studio in Greenwich, which is decked out in a Phillip Jeffries rivet-studded wall-covering, they can present plans and let clients touch the fabrics and other samples that are neatly stored in a shelving wall lined with baskets. Once the clients give approval, then it’s on to the “hard hats on” stage, where they work closely with their trades and contractor, staying on top of project management.
home decor
Photo by Jacob Snavely

The end result is something that’s so fulfilling it brings some clients to tears. “We live for the reveal and the excited moments. That’s our Christmas,” says Coren. To ensure that clients will be just as thrilled years from now, they give each one a care packet so they’ll know what to do when “life happens,” to keep furnishings and spaces looking their best. But the ultimate in client satisfaction is having a space that simply works well for them every day.

“People don’t understand how much a formal interior-design process changes your life for the better, for the whole family,” says Galvão. “It’s almost a confidence thing. Not only are you experiencing a beautiful space that’s luxurious and easy to use but then you have people over and you feel so good about it. It’s a great feeling.”

Pro Tips

  • Design with architecture in mind. “You never want to look like you took all of your pieces from a beach house and moved it into a Colonial,” says Coren.
  • Go neutral with case goods and large furnishings. Better to introduce the color you’ve been craving by bringing in pillows or art than splurging on a $15,000 sectional that’s not easy to change out if you get tired of the bold hue.
  • Invest in a framed TV. These modern televisions appear to be art when they’re not in use. You can select the specific painting or photograph to be displayed and change it as you wish — much more aesthetically pleasing than a big black rectangle on the wall.
  • Consider cleanability. If you’re OCD about water marks on a counter, don’t go for marble. Instead use marble in a backsplash and more durable quartz on the counter.
  • Look for multi-function pieces. This could be anything from a coffee table with smart storage to a nightstand that has space for a plug or a built-in USB charger.

Related: A Country Retreat in Katonah Gets an Entertaining Upgrade

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