25 Most Stylish Bostonians of 2010 -- Nikki Dalrymple
Occupation: This TV-producer-turned-interior designer fills her North End boutique Acquire with a quirky, crave-worthy mix of old and new furniture and housewares
How would you describe Acquire? It’s a mix of modern and vintage with a definite trend toward sophistication. I look to show clean lines and a little bit of quirkiness . . . sophisticated quirkiness.
What’s your approach to thrifting and antique shopping? I’m always looking for things no matter where I am. My husband probably hates me because on the rare occasion that we get to take a vacation, I’m tracking down antique stores while we’re away. I’m a collector by nature. That said, I might look at 100 things and take home one or two.
Has the North End arrived as a style destination? We now have 20-odd boutiques here. I’ve always seen the potential in the North End, but I didn’t know it would turn into a retail enclave so quickly. There’s such a cool mix here. When I was looking at neighborhoods for Acquire, the North End was at the top of my list. I’m an ex-New Yorker and it reminds me of New York. There’s not just one strip of shopping — there are little side streets with boutiques. There’s a European, old-world feel to it, which is why I love it here.
Any tips for mixing vintage pieces with modern pieces in the home? Pick fabrics or materials that are in the same realm. If you are buying antique and vintage upholstered furniture, make sure the fabric is rich and that it jibes with the colors that you already have in the space. In my own home, I have pieces from all different eras that share common lines or look. I look for streamlined legs. I might put a Deco table with turn-of-the-century chairs. Make sure that the lines of the pieces speak to each other.
How would you spend a free day in the city? I never get that opportunity anymore. I’d sleep in and probably have a decadent brunch somewhere, maybe the North Street Grille. They have a Nutella French toast that is amazing. Then I’d check out the new exhibit at the ICA and definitely try a restaurant I’ve been meaning to get to. I still haven’t been to Coppa or Noche . . . I’d get a drink at Drink — I love that place. Actually, I’d probably do some shopping. All I do is online shopping these days because I have no time to browse other stores.