The Insider: Designer Conjures Gracious European Feel for Her Family’s Fort Greene Townhouse

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In 2018, when interior designer Jenna Chused of Dumbo-based Chused & Co. decided her family of four should quit their cramped two-bedroom apartment and look in earnest for a permanent home, an elegant grand dame townhouse with soaring ceilings and a full complement of marble mantels was the first one they saw. “I’d never seen this height of ceiling on both the parlor floor and the one above,” Chused recalled. “I was like, ‘It’s mine! I want this! Let’s do it!’”

There ensued a bidding war with 11 other interested parties. But ultimately Chused and her husband, a composer, prevailed, and she was able to realize her dream of a home with “a grand European feel” in keeping with the antiques, especially the decorative arts of the 1940s, that speak to her most.

Chused, who grew up in a modern house in North Carolina, was introduced to the world of antiques by a grandmother who took her along on jaunts to shops and flea markets. Originally a fashion designer and stylist for Donna Karan and others, Chused made the switch to interior design in 2014. “I hated that everything was so seasonal and temporary,” she said of her time in the fashion business. She wanted to work in a field where her efforts “would last a long time and you don’t have to worry about what’s around the corner.”

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