Rising interiors star Stephan Jones does not want a view of the Chicago skyline. Not that it wouldn’t be nice, it’s just that it’s on the wrong side of his building. Jones, a 42-year-old designer from Iowa, once lived in a sunlightflooded artist’s studio that spoiled him forever.
Now he can’t live without the consistent light and purity of color that come hand-in-hand with north-facing windows.
And that’s just a glimpse at Jones’ commitment to detail. He’s the first to admit he developed some pretty exacting personal standards during his years spent working for Chicago design legend Bruce Gregga. “It was like going to grad school,” he says. That experience also left Jones with a deep respect for materials and craftsmanship. “Honest and sturdy were two words Bruce used a lot,” says Jones, whose own projects range from a traditional, timeless townhouse in Lincoln Park to rustic interiors for Napa’s Round Pond Winery. “I try to bring that into my work. You can see it here in my home—there’s nothing fussy.”
Home is a two-bedroom, glass-walled, north-facing (of course) aerie in a modernist high-rise on the far northern reaches of Lake Shore Drive. Jones—who struck out on his own when he launched Stephan Jones Interiors last year—shares this place with his partner, an academic on staff at a local university. The pair have actually lived here for the last eight years, but it was only recently that they decided to tackle a massive redo. “I was finally ready to borrow from all the things I’ve been exposed to,” explains Jones,