Open House: Michael and Jill’s Wicker Park duplex

Jill Birnbaum’s friends were perplexed when they first spotted her Merchandise Mart sample sale splurge – a Barbara Barry blue powder slipper chair that didn’t match a single thing in her apartment. She ignored the naysayers. “All part of the master plan,” explains Jill. “Next came the rug, then the brown velvet sofa, the Asian armoire and the Noguchi coffee table.” Jill had cut her teeth in hospitality design working on projects like the Opryland Hotel and the Palmer House Hilton, so she knew what she was doing. Of course, the plan changed a bit to accommodate life’s circumstances. Model airplanes weren’t on Jill’s radar, for example, but she took it in stride when she fell in love with Michael Maremont, a real estate agent with Premier Relocation who collects them, and the planes looks good high displayed high atop the kitchen cabinets in the couple’s three bedroom Wicker Park condo. “Design is always changing,” says Jill (now Birnbaum-Maremont). “Through innovation, great spaces are achieved.”

Click here for past Open House posts.

As an agent with Premier Relocation, Michael sees some pretty spectacular homes. Please check out Dennis Rodkin’s recent interview with Michael to discuss one of his company’s hottest real estate listings, a David Adler designed home in Lincoln Park.

Jill’s favorite shops: Primitive. Kara Mann. Pavilion. Lenny & Me Home. Modlife. 360See. Gift shop at the Art Institute’s new Modern Wing. The Ark. ABC Carpet & Home. Modern Anthology.

The image of the Burmese fisherman hanging above the sofa was a wedding gift from Shonna Valeska who studied photography under Richard Avadon.

The art was a wedding gift. “It’s not napkins, its paper towels” by Stacy Searcy.

Michael’s planes (which are self-explanatory).

This room looks fantastic. I’m now solidly pro sectionals.

Jill and I first met when she entered her outdoor roof in the My Favorite Room contest. My photos don’t do it justice, so check out Chicago Home + Garden’s story for a better look of their fantastic urban oasis.

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6 Responses to “Open House: Michael and Jill’s Wicker Park duplex”

  1. Great home and a very nice style. Love the roof top

  2. ryan D. Jones 07. Nov, 2010 at 5:12 pm

    Lovely home. I love the texture of the rugs and the tile work on the fireplace. I don’t object to the airplane models, they give the house a personal touch, and a conversation piece. The artwork is really great.

  3. Beautiful job Jill!!! You have made such a gorgeous living space for both you and Michael!! Your taste & style is just Amazing!!

  4. Best house in Wicker Park!

  5. WOW!!!! I love your home. It is so warm and cozy. I need your help back in your old stomping grounds.