Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Rooms on Film: Covert Affairs

all the comforts of home: a studio apartment with eclectic global decor, and a motherly big sister who remembers your birthday
For some time now I've wanted to do some posts about the home sets of spy chicks. They just do it better.  From the made-over La Femme Nikita to Covert Affairs's earnest Annie, there has been quite a range of cool homes. The various versions of Nikita have had slick pads that correspond to their respective eras (early '90s, late '90s, recent years) and to the amount of actual control each had over life.

The other spy girls, however, have had homes that were more clearly camouflages for their dangerous lives. Alias' Sydney Bristow had a middle-American apartment that she shared with a fiancee and later her best friend. And my current favorite, Annie's on Covert Affairs, is actually a guest house in her sister's family home. But Annie's global style is by far the nearest to my heart. So that's where we'll start. 

In the pilot episode, we find Annie is living above her older sister's garage in a sort of A-frame studio apartment. She takes meals in the family kitchen. 

love the bamboo shaped lamp and global vibe
spicy mix of pillows, global accents and loads of books within arms reach
swap that duvet for something in a light purple and i'm moving in
big sis' kitchen is all good things: spacious, airy, light

A few episodes later, Annie's studio was remodeled into something a bit less to my liking (although certainly still in the ballpark):

love the avocado walls, hate the 'headboard' and new pillows and bedspread - i don't even get what they're supposed to add up to
love the window seat and general collection of accents, not a fan of the madras curtains though - somehow this feels a bit loose for a field agent
the wall art feels at odds with that lamp: youth vs. sophistication - also, the sister is partial to gorgeous, bright printed clothes that rock

this whole side is drifting toward cottage style; that round stain glass window will move up several feet in Season 2
We get a brief view of the bathroom. It doesn't seem to have a window and the lighting seems pretty dim. But this lady's lifestyle is always on the go, so...

Then along came Season 2 and Annie's little nest was fully revamped (except for the avocado walls). My hat is off the set designers because it is pretty close to perfect. Simple, eclectic, relaxing and harmonious:

everything except the shag rug owns my heart, that doesn't fit
instead of that green velvet settee, the bed is pushed against the window seat (which no longer has steps)
patterned shoji covers the entrance and bathroom doors; annie still keeps a combination safe in the windowseat for her fake credentials
love the office to death. that red shelf, the desk... amazing
closet also has shoji doors and shoes are stored out as decor
We don't get much of a look at the other side of the apartment, but here are some glimpses: 

that skylight is fantastic and the art above the fireplace

Then comes the day when our heroine's double-life is discovered by her sister... who recognizes the danger to her own family and tosses Annie the fuck out. In a loving-but-firm way:

even the stairwell landing is decorated to flow with the studio

This leaves spy girl on her own for maybe the first time. Which has to be lonely. When I first moved to New York, I missed my family like a physical pain. 

the new place has great bones and lots of vintage character
I cannot wait to see how they deck out Chez Annie next season! Here's hoping the traveled global vibe stays in the picture.

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