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January 2008


FEATURES

Match Point
By Anne Crovo
Photographs by ChiChi Ubiña

INTERIOR DESIGNER JOSEPH LEMBO CREATES COLOR HARMONY FOR A GREENWICH COUPLE'S DUTCH COLONIAL

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Good design often boils down to that magical moment known as synergy, when seemingly disparate factors merge together to form a precise, unified whole. Those factors might include colors, textures, furnishings and all manner of objets d'art. Or they could be more ethereal qualities such as livability, or simply that feeling of home. According to interior designer Joseph Lembo, for him there is a method to achieving this design magic.

"It's a formula, really," Lembo explains. "First, we look at the plans and the architecture, from the exterior to the interior. Then we get into the programming with the client and that leads into the color and furniture selection." Along with his colleagues—project manager Laurence Waltman and assistant designer Dawn Montgomery—Lembo took this straightforward approach with a Manhattan couple who decided their Park Avenue apartment, though beautiful, wasn't quite right.

"We wanted something more like us," says the wife. "I wanted something a bit more offbeat and cleaner. And it had to be family friendly. We have a dog and three kids." In Greenwich, they had discovered a five-bedroom, seven-bathroom Dutch Colonial. Though the home was in disrepair, the couple decided to renovate and build an addition within the same footprint. In the meantime, they found Lembo, who had recently renovated a farmhouse in Roxbury. To show them his work, he took the homeowners there to see it. They were impressed and, later that day, they closed the deal at the nearby Mayflower Inn.

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