Art Deco Meets Old-Fashioned in Fairmount
Name/Occupation: Kevin Clerkin, founder of Walk On Socks, and fashion writer/editor Laura Camerlengo, who works with the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s Costume and Textiles collection
Neighborhood: Fairmount/Art Museum
Why did you choose to call this neighborhood home?
Kevin: “We love this neighborhood because it’s laid back and walkable, and it has a lot of great restaurants. Plus, it’s close to Laura’s job, and to Center City.”
How would you describe your home’s style?
Laura: “It’s probably best described as ‘bringing the past into the present.’ Our building dates to 1940, and some of the things that attracted us to this apartment were the original details, like the built-in cabinets in the kitchen and the parquet floors throughout. When we were decorating, we tried to find items from that same period, like the Art Deco ceiling panels from Provenance in our dining room. We mixed these items with new purchases, hand-me-downs from our friends and family, and a few DIY pieces.”
Tell us about some of the favorite items in your home and where you got them.
Laura: “The 1930s parking meter lamp in our living room and the nightstands in our bedroom are among my favorites. The lamp was made by our good friend Maggie Adler. It still accepts coins, which is really entertaining. The bedside tables were wedding presents from Kevin’s grandma. They were part of her bedroom set, which was a wedding gift from her mother-in-law. I also love the mural on our bedroom wall by Philadelphia-based multimedia artist Candy Coated. It’s dramatic yet whimsical. It really sets the tone for that space.”
Kevin: “Our DIY and refurbished items are my favorites. I worked on a lot of the items in our apartment, like the animal head in our entryway. When Laura found it — in the clearance aisle of a discount store — it was in rough shape. I fixed it up, creating new buttons to replace missing and damaged ones, and overhauled a salvaged frame to pair with it. It’s silly and fun, and it makes a big statement when you enter our home.
“Laura isn’t immune to DIY projects either. She sewed a lot of our linens, like the pillow cases in the living room and the quilt in our bedroom. I have to admit, there’s something nice about cozying up with something that your wife made just for you.”
Kevin and Laura
Photos: Conrad Benner