John Barman

Meet the lauded New York decorator with a flair for color and contemporary design


Photo by Eric Laignel

John Barman’s mother was an interior designer, so he grew up surrounded by fabric swatches and paint chips. It was practically fated, then, that he would follow in the family footsteps. Today, his namesake studio continually tops Best Of lists.

“I’m perhaps best known for color,” he muses. Which is what he brought to the remodel of a 19th-century Connecticut barn—with a funky retro twist. Wanting a strong element to juxtapose the dark wood, he opted for zesty orange and green, in midcentury designs. “Sometimes neutrals expand a space,” he admits, “but this was so large we needed to make it more inviting.” In the kitchen and bathrooms, he chose Cambria countertops. “I love it—it looks fabulous and the design choices are unlimited. Plus, you have the durability,” he says. Taken together these elements make this centuries-old farmhouse feel entirely modern. Call it the Barman touch.


Get the look

  1. Mid-century media console, $999, by West Elm,
  2. Caldas table lamp, $199, and Papa Bear chair by Modernica, $2,995,