When we saw the popular online home decor store, One Kings Lane (@OneKingsLane), opened its first-ever brick and mortar store in NYC, we knew just the perfect talent to invite for a special visit to their new showroom. We are talking about Emanuela de Paula (@emanueladepaula), who is not only passionate about interior design but also currently renovating her new home in Tulum, Mexico — no big deal!
Emanuela’s new residency “Amara” is no less than a tropical paradise. She envisions it to be a modern and sleek architecture that harmonizes with its surroundings, which happens to be the secluded beach of Tankah Bay in Tulum. The Brazilian belle and her husband Gaston have the perfect picture painted — ocean breeze, sunrise and white sand all weaved into a relaxing and timeless experience nestled amongst the Mayan palm trees. Did we mention the infinity pool that overlooks the turquoise ocean?
With such a dreamy space, it’s only fitting to have unique furnishings to complement the couple’s new love nest — which is where OKL’s consultation service comes in.
Arriving at OKL’s Tribeca showroom with beautiful renderings saved on her phone, Emanuela is instantly drawn to the cozy and airy environment — especially the “Inner Harbor” section featuring warm beachy elements. She sat down with Alexander Reid, OKL’s in-house designer to talk everything from decorating tips to living:
A = Alexander
E = Emanuela
A: Hi Emanuela! Welcome to One Kings Lane. So tell me, how are you envisioning your place in Tulum to be?
E: I want my home to be cozy and carry a lot of warm elements and beautiful lines. We want people to come into my place and not be scared to touch anything. It’s gorgeous and it’s clean; it’s light and it’s comfortable — it’s a beach house where you can just relax!
A: That sounds absolutely amazing — I think our “Inner Harbor” corner can be great inspirations for your space. For example, adopt colors like indigo blue that’s very comfortable and trendy right now and bring in something like an antique rug, metal accents and something that’s large-scale to bring out the character of your house.
E: I love that! Our new house is built very high, but we don’t want it to be the first thing you see coming from the outside — you will have to discover it as you’re slowly making your way through the garden. Gaston, my husband, and I want to have a launch party in December and invite everyone we know, so they can see for themselves. Which is why I really want to figure out the “style” of my new place — what do you think it is?
A: I think when it comes to style, it’s always evolving. You can have something that you’re attracted to now and it’s constantly changing as you learn and see more throughout time. That’s what’s done in this showroom — it’s not actual “styles” but rather different ways that we interpret stories.
E: That’s so true — I don’t want to be defined as just one specific style either.
A: We take into account how people actually live — and that’s from combining things you found on a great trip somewhere to inheriting pieces from your grandmother. What we do here is to help our customers tell their best personal story and find the way you want to live.
E: I love collecting and gathering things for my space too! I don’t tend to buy everything I see while traveling — only the pieces that I really love and inspire me. Also, when I’m free I love going for furniture shopping around the city or in antique shops in Mexico.
A: Do you have an apartment in the city too?
E: Yes, where I don’t have nearly as much space as my new house in Tulum, haha! Do you have any tips for New Yorkers when it comes to decorating a smaller space?
A: Become an editor. A good decorator is a good editor because there’s so much stuff out there! First and foremost – cut the crap. Think about functionality first and beauty can come second. Look at the space from above and figure out what you’ll be doing in your home, and make each piece of furniture as multi-functional as it can be. As beautiful as this space is, we’re still able to have a comfortable conversation on this couch!
E: Haha, yes. What about lighting, do you have any tips for that? Gaston and I are spending a lot of time designing special lighting for our house in Tulum — we believe it’s one of the most important things for a home.
A: Totally. Lighting really helps to create a romantic setting for any homes. I don’t recommend overhead lighting unless it’s a soft light — use lamps instead but bring down the voltage of the light bulbs, 40 (watts) is good, 60 (watts) is too much even for a big space.
E: That’s great. Are there any trends you’re seeing right now that are worth trying?
A: Caning — like this chair over here — is also making a resurgence and can be done in both modern and traditional ways. It’s the character that makes it so great.
E: I love this! I also really love a nice gallery wall, beautiful frames and art.
A: Absolutely, I always say you can never have too many books and too much art in your place. whenever you travel always try to pick up a piece of art. A gallery wall is almost like a visual memory book.
E: That’s why I love it– it bring so many memories.
A: It’s also classic and will never go out of style. Always buy art — it’s a true reflection of who you are. Plus you just look really smart when you have a lot of books lying on your coffee table.
E: Haha! I always tell my friends I read all the books on my coffee table. Thank you so much Alex!
A: You’re so welcome, and I hope to see you again soon!