Harlem-based interior designer making strides in Harlem

TRUDY TOMLINSON | 1/21/2016, 10:50 a.m.
Nicole Gibbons Contributed

Nicole Gibbons, an African-American interior designer and TV personality, is the interior designer for Enclave at the Cathedral, the new 15-story, 430-unit rental complex in Harlem, N.Y.

Gibbons, who is based in Harlem, will be providing the furnishing and designing the leasing office, some of the staff offices and five model apartments.

“Someone from the team reached out and said, ‘We are working on this development and we are looking for an interior designer who has a connection to Harlem. We love your work and wanted to know if you would be interested in the project,’” stated Gibbons.

“It was an opportunity to work on a really big and long-term project. Something like this that is associated with such a landmark building like the cathedral and the architecture of the new building was very interesting. It’s definitely an appealing project, and it gives me an opportunity to showcase my design aesthetics so I am excited to be a part of it.”

Gibbons is best known for her fashion-forward point of view for the home. Her distinctive blend of classic with modern, old with new, high with low and mixing together rich colors in a unique way will both excite and evoke certain feelings deep within you.

“The Enclave team wanted the spaces to have different personalities. Something fresh and modern. Something all appealing but with a younger edge,” added Gibbons. “There are a lot of young families in this neighborhood, and it is also a university population, so they wanted it to appeal to that.

“I came up with little personalities for each apartment. When you don’t have a specific person you’re designing for … in one regard it’s great because you have a lot more creative freedom, but on the hand, sometimes it can be challenging because it kind of mires down your ideas if you don’t have anyone giving you directions. Each apartment has a story behind it that helped me design the apartment for the kind of person who would be living in the building.”

Enclave at the Cathedral is located at 400 W. 113th St. and is adjacent to the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in West Harlem. The luxury Morningside Heights property will officially start accepting residents later this month.

Gibbons is also the host of OWN’s TV series “Home Made Simple,” on which she helps deserving families re-imagine their living spaces.

“Each week a family that is very deserving receives a one-room makeover,” stated Gibbons. “The team and I on the show teach the homeowners how to execute various projects in their own home, and ultimately we reveal a room that includes all the projects that they’ve made. The families always have backstories that’s very heartwarming. They all are very deserving, and this is a way we help celebrate those people.”

Market-rate apartments at Enclave at the Cathedral will begin at about $2,400 a month for a 400-square-foot studio, and run up to a starting price of about $4,720 for a 1,100-square-foot two-bedroom.

To learn more about Gibbons and to view pricing and availability at the Enclave, visit www.nicolegibbons.com and www.enclavenyc.com.