Combining influences from New York and California style, designer Kerry Vasquez creates a vibrant, color-centric bungalow in Los Angeles that pays tribute to the original Spanish-style details.
Photos by Sara Tramp
When you’re a diehard color enthusiast, stepping foot inside an all-beige home can be an instant deal-breaker. But for one new Los Angeles transplant, a neutral space was just the blank slate her large-scale transformation required. Her first step? Enlisting the help of Homepolish designerto take her three-bedroom Spanish bungalow from bland to irresistibly bold.
“The moment I met [my client] Johanna, I knew we had to capture her vibrant personality in the design of her new home,” Kerry shares. “She is originally from the Dominican Republic and just moved to Los Angeles from New York City. She was looking to turn her new house into a home, and that’s where I came in!”
Kerry transformed the lackluster space into a home that reflected her client’s infectious personality by blending elements from both Los Angeles and New York City styles.
“In the Dining Room, we honored my client’s New York City past with a collection of New York-inspired artwork—first an oversized Brooklyn Bridge print, which she already had,” Kerry says. “We then we added a Max Wanger New York Photograph for some additional color.”
And to pay tribute to her client’s new home base, Kerry embraced the laid-back, quintessentially Los Angeles spirit of the Spanish bungalow.
“I wanted to lean into this [laid-back] feeling and make the space somewhere Johanna could really relax after a hard day of work or celebrate with friends on the weekend around her gorgeous pool,” Kerry reveals.
This meant preserving the pre-existing Spanish-style details, like the striking vintage stained glass window in the living room. To accentuate the room’s height, Kerry hung natural iron rod and crisp white linen curtains as close to the vaulted ceiling beams as possible. She also chose to embrace pieces that feel at home in this style house.
“I used natural materials you would find in a Spanish-style home, like wrought iron, linens, plants and ceramics, to capture the home’s spirit without being too on the nose in any way,” Kerry explains. “I wanted the space to feel like a colorful yet elegant tropical paradise, honoring her roots and celebrating the warmth and sunshine of her new city.
In the master bedroom, Kerry temporarily eschewed bold design in lieu of a serene vibe, creating a sanctuary for her client to rest and restore. She coated the walls in a calming bluish-grey paint color and chose furnishings with clean lines, including a cast metal night stand and console. To imbue the guest room with a similarly relaxed, welcoming feel, Kerry and her client chose a neutral palette of soft greens and brown to mingle alongside natural fibers, organic linens, and wooden pieces, like a rustic Mid-Century nightstand and wood-based lamp with striking geometric lines.
Kerry dialed up the vibrancy once again in the pool house. One of the first things her client requested was using “Flamingo Feather” by Behr—a paint color the designer had been equally eager to use, and the entryway from the main house to the pool house felt like a natural place to add some light and personality through color.
Because the remainder of the pool house functions primarily as a space for entertaining, Kerry wanted to set the right tone with a multi-colored palette that harks back to Palm Springs in the 70’s. After her client have her full permission to “go nuts,” she selected a slew of lively pieces in Mid-Century colors and silhouettes, from a vivid rug of geometric shapes to a cheerful yellow chair.
“I wanted this space to feel like a place to have a swinging 70’s party—sophisticated yet vivacious, just like my client,” Kerry shares.
The result is the kind of party sophisticated pad you wait impatiently for an invite to.
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