When actress Patina Miller and her husband, David Mars, were looking for a new home in New York City, she was clear about the type of space she wanted. “I love the idea of loft living,” says the actor, singer, and two-time Tony Award winner, who most recently won the best-actress award for her role in the revival of Pippin and is currently starring in Power Book III: Raising Kanan on Starz. “I love big open spaces. I need to have light, big windows, and a view, because it really makes a difference in my mood and my well-being.”
Little did the couple know that “the gem” they found—a 3,500-square-foot loft complete with a 500-square-foot terrace in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan—would also need to serve as a soothing, color-saturated, and sun-drenched refuge during the COVID-19 pandemic. The apartment was furnished, decorated, and completed by the interior and architectural firm Evan Edward right before 2020’s lockdown began.
“It saved us—my family, my husband, and our daughter,” Miller says of their newly appointed abode. “Unfortunately, at the height of the pandemic, we all caught COVID. My husband was sick a few days before me, and then our daughter was sick.… Because we had this big open space, we didn’t feel suffocated at a time where it was very [heavy] and you could get suffocated just in the emotion of it all.” The Madam Secretary actress adds: “We really [have] a safe space, a fun space, and a space filled with so much love.”
Inside, the airy loft is filled with modern pieces, curated furnishings, and meaningful objects. “We wanted a specific look and style to the place,” Miller explains. “The biggest thing for us was making sure everything sort of meant something to us. I asked our designers to help us come up with a place that really reflected who we were as a couple, as a family.”
Designers Josh Evan and Michael Edward began the project by creating a primary-bedroom vanity from a steamer trunk that opens into a glam station with a pouf. “Then we started working with her and her husband on the overall loft, and we just were off to the races,” Evan recalls. “We were at our first design meeting, and we showed them a really cool vintage Sputnik chandelier found in Germany. Michael and I behind the scenes kind of went back and forth before the meeting. We were like, ‘Should we show this to them? Should we not?’ And Michael’s like, ‘We’re showing it.’ [They] ended up loving it.”