Stacy London's Apartment Is Perfection

Within moments of stepping into Stacy London's Brooklyn apartment, we felt completely at ease. It was airy, fluid, and filled with objects that seemed carefully considered, not staged by a decorator. It's common wisdom that a space's energy reveals much about its owner, and in this case, it couldn't be more true. We were totally smitten with London's easygoing nature — "Feel free to move anything around!" — and the way she talks about her home not just as a crash pad, but as a memory-filled sanctuary she's created in the 10 years she's lived there.

Fresh after the premiere of her new show Love, Lust or Run (where she makes over women with extreme style), she was ready to spend some time in repose in her sacred space. She kindly chatted with us about style transformation, trying new things (swimming!), and her intense obsession with Etsy. 

And, when her darling 18-year-old feline, Al, threw up on the couch, we watched with admiration as she handled it with the greatest aplomb. Three and a half hours later, we had enough transcripts and photos to write our biography. But, we didn't want to leave. Not so secretly, we're hoping to get invited back for one of her famed Game of Thrones viewing parties. She makes a mean muddled gin cocktail. 

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Photographed by Winnie Au.
You've been in this space for 10 years now. What is your relationship like with it?
"The big thing about this renovation is how much I’ve changed. I wanted everything to be shiny and sparkly in the beginning, and I was thinking all sorts of details and trim on the walls... But, I've changed so much since I was on What Not to Wear and left and started all these other projects. I feel so much softer. My house didn’t reflect that; it didn’t feel homey — it felt kind of like a museum.

"Recently, a lot of [making it different] was just moving things that I already owned around to different places. The leopard ottomans that are now in the dressing room were upstairs. I had a huge orange rug that had a giant pink flower on it. If you Google, you can see the old apartment, and you’ll be like, what happened?"
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
London arranged her art-gallery style within cubbyholes, making her TV fit in seamlessly and unnoticed.

Tell us about your dinosaur and dragon collection.
"I love inserting humor into a space. I can’t stand when you go into someone’s house and it feels like a mausoleum. If you don’t have tchotchkes, I don’t trust you."
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
Your space has a such a mix of pieces from different eras that it's hard to put a finger on it.
"I don’t like one style only. It’s weird if you’re going to do Italian modern with French country — that’s a little tough to pull off sometimes. But, what I have here is the result of being in this space for 10 years. It was my first apartment buy, and I had no idea what I was doing. It’s taken 10 years of moving through this space to understand what I wanted it to feel like. That’s why I have such huge respect for architects and interior designers. The way you understand space is key. I haven’t completely figured it out, but I'm getting there."
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Photographed by Winnie Au.Your text to link..
Her love of Darth Vader can be seen throughout the apartment, from nesting dolls on her bookshelves to this artwork from 20x200 by photographer Alex Brown.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
The women on your new show have pretty extreme dressing choices, and a lot of it stems from self-image issues. What was it like working on such deep issues?
"I wanted to let them take me to some place... I think it took one season to figure what works. For example, Tanika is a pool shooter, so I had her take me to shoot pool because I suck at it. And, it wasn’t in the episode, but you see how she’s empowered [that] I’m thrown off. So, a couple of the episodes later, you have me doing things where I'm making a total fool of myself."

Also, these jeans!
"When I bought these in 1999, everyone was like, what the f*** are you doing? Back to the future. I don’t even think Diesel would think of making them now, it’s funny."

Stacy's jacket is from Haute Hippie.

Love, Lust or Run airs on TLC, Friday nights at 9/8c.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
A voracious reader, London has shelves filled with books on everything from philosophy (she graduated from Vassar with a double major in 20th-century philosophy and German literature) to fiction to health. The third row down is a shelf devoted to books her friends have written.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
An apartment is never done. Stacy is in the process of having these chairs reupholstered. Farrow & Ball paint and her own framed target-practice sheets make a subtle vignette.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
So much of Love, Lust or Run is about bonding with the women. How do you decompress after filming?
"It’s a little hard on me, I will admit. I have trouble with the concept that someone has come to trust me so much from watching me on television that they will confess a lot to me. Most of the time, [those conversations] are too heavy to film. I have a problem internalizing all that and taking it home with me.

"It’s one thing for me to be like, 'That pant looks great on you.' It’s another to be like, 'Wow, let me help you with your self-esteem issues.' I can’t say I’m an expert in psychology, but I’m an expert in empathy and what it feels like to feel shitty about yourself. And, that’s the only way I can approach it.

"So, when I come home, I have to cuddle with Owl [her adorable cat]. I have to watch something I’m obsessed with on Netflix. If you haven’t seen The Fall, season two, get on it!"
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
The artwork "I Love You but I've Chosen Darkness" was a commissioned piece from one of Stacy's favorite Etsy artists, NayArts.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
Stacy took out the wall that separated the dining room and the living room (formerly a master bathroom) and created this stairwell with nooks. Walking down the steps makes you feel like you're entering another world.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
We're in love with the strong reflection on this piece, as well as the black-and-white pairings.

The glass vases are by GlassByNate on Etsy and the photograph by Alex Prager.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
What's something energizing you right now?
"I started swimming in saltwater pools. I have a Russian teacher named Tatiana. She is amazing, and the person teaching me it’s okay to fail. It’s very much a physical and metaphysical exercise. I hate it because it’s cold, you get wet, it takes forever. And, there is not a truly waterproof [head] covering out there... I own every Olivia Pope cap. Synchronized swimming? That’ll be my next show."

The artwork is from NayArts.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
A bright bedspread balances sweetly against the pale, pinky-peach wall that separates her bedroom from the stairwell.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
In the bedroom, there's a mix of modern (the word art Stacy made herself) and vintage (the bust with jewels).
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
What’s your purging philosophy?
"I have a sale every year. Everything is $40, and whatever I make I match and then donate to the animal-rescue center."
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
How has your own style changed?
"On What Not to Wear, [my style] became a persona. The pencil skirt and the top. Or, the sheath dress. And, that was it. Now, on Love, Lust or Run I mostly wear jumpsuits. Things that are much baggier, less formfitting. I wouldn’t say trendy, but much more modern. One of the criticisms of What Not to Wear was that we were turning everyone into this Midwest mom, and I couldn’t do that to these girls.

"I wanted to be a mentor and role model, and show them how to walk the line by doing it myself. So, I wear leather pants in [the show], and lots of things I would never have done. I feel much softer with interior design and fashion. And, I'm having this funny thing about vintage again, which I haven’t had since college. I still believe there are rules, but more importantly you have to learn them to forget them. There is a way to be creative, to be free-spirited while flattering your body."
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
Of course, we talked beauty, too. And, no, the wrinkle-free thing is not just on TV. She's that flawless.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
Darth Vader and Lulu Frost never got along so well.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
What are you still uncomfortable about?
"I will confess, I don’t know how to pose, [even after] all the years I’ve been doing television. What are my good angles?! It’s so funny, because in video I can move around, I have my personality, I can make jokes." (We thought she was quite a pro, though.)
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
What's your entertaining style?
"I don’t like to cook, but if other people do the cooking, I love making cocktails. My go-to is a gin and jam muddle. There’s a fantastic jam maker [in Brooklyn] who would make these mixtures, and so I started playing around with gin and blackberry jam and cut in jalapeño and cucumber. Raspberry and limes together — all sorts of things. And, it’s good over crushed ice."

Stacy's vintage dress is from NoirOhio on Etsy and necklace from Nathan & Moe.
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Photographed by Winnie Au.
Can you tell us about your saints?
"I go through phases with different objects. Here's Mary, and that was my grandmother's name. This is black tourmaline I got on Etsy. A friend of mine who is a spiritual life coach said that if you need protection and strength, black tourmaline is good for that. And, then, Saint Jude, the patron saint of impossible and difficult cases. Because, you got to have some of that. I have two huge Saint Michaels downstairs, and that's to vanquish your enemies."