Designer Kerry Vasquez helped a Los Angeles funny man create a whimsical apartment that feels full of personality and perfectly grown up.
Photos by Lauren Pressey
The term “adulting” gets thrown around a lot. Plenty of people are “adulting” without making too big a deal of it—paying bills, going to work, functioning in society, etc. However, there are certain hallmarks that seem to push one over the threshold into true professional person land. Perhaps none like owning a house.
For’s client, purchasing his own pad meant it was truly time to decorate like someone who could wear the mantle of “adult” proudly.
“Steve is a hilarious and successful Hollywood comedy writer,” Kerry says. “He lived in his previous home for seven years, but this was his first home that he’s owned. As a result he wanted to start fresh, so the home was a total blank slate (except for the guest room bed and nightstands). Steve was looking to create a sophisticated adult oasis for himself that still reflected his taste and personality.”
For Kerry that meant channeling the comedian’s personality into a design that wouldn’t leave people laughing for the wrong reasons.
“It is always my goal to work with the client to figure out what their style is, which is the aesthetic manifestation of their personality,” Kerry explains. “He was adamant about this not feeling like a bachelor pad in anyway. He really wanted it to reflect him—a very funny and cool guy.”
Funny and cool guy isn’t known design aesthetic. Thankfully Kerry was able to extract what style could suit him and his 1,800-square-foot townhouse perfectly.
“I’ve been calling this Hollywood Eclectic, aka stylish and whimsical,” Kerry said. “California cool and very livable were the essential parameters. An updated Mid-Century vibe is woven throughout the space with blue as the unifying hue. The colors, textures, and silhouettes all read masculine without being on the nose.”
The Mid-Century feeling shines with classic design pieces, like an Eames recliner, woven into the mix. The selections help the entire space feel appropriately elevated, and the iconic era also lends to the home’s overall manliness.
“I think choosing Mid-Century and Mid-Century-inspired pieces creates a subtle sense of masculinity,” Kerry said. “The silhouettes are angular and strong without being bulky or overpowering.
Blue also provides a masculine undercurrent to the space. From the wallpaper in the dining room to the accents and accessories to the uber-moody library, the full spectrum of the shade punctuates the design.
“I wanted to add a little drama to contrast the light bright California cool,” Kery explains. “In particular the man cave is probably my favorite room in the house. I really wanted to create a moody, updated-vintage vibe that still reflected him. I wanted this room to feel like Don Draper in the ‘70s would hang out here.”
The secret to creatine a manly space that even ladies love is balance (and avoiding one key piece).
“No black leather sectionals of any kind,” Kerry says. “Just kidding. I think the key is to keep the palette light and add plenty of warmth. There is a misconception that a masculine aesthetic has to be dark and cold.”
Playful artwork adds bouncy to the space.
“The whimsy is all him,” Kerry said. “He either already had or chose all the artwork and this is where his personality really comes through. He had a lot of artwork, which we edited and spent a lot of time figuring out what spoke to him.”
That selective spirit is crucial to ensuring your space feels full of personality and not just full.
“Editing is a huge part of my job,” Kerry stresses. “I really want someone’s home to feel like them and reflect their heart and soul but it also has to be aesthetically pleasing. I always help people choose pieces they absolutely love or have personal significance. I always want spaces to feel classic and of the client, this way they are personal and not easily dated.”
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You can also read more about this space’s makeover on Brit + Co.