Designer Kerry Vasquez tackles a tight timeline and budget to create a quintessential California vibes for this classic, 2,000-square-foot bungalow.
Photos by Sara Tramp
Tell us a little bit about your client. Why did they come to Homepolish?
This was not the client’s primary residence, and, as a result, they wanted to honor the architecture and spirit of the home while having everything designed and installed as quickly as possible. The client came to Homepolish in May and the goal was to have the home completely ready by the holidays. Game on.
You also had on a pretty tight budget for this space. How did you make it work?
Because this is not their primary residence and because they were on such a strict timeline, we chose almost exclusively in-stock items from larger retailers, which helped with reigning in the budget.
This home feels quintessential Californian. How did you harness the signature style into this space?
The home is quintessentially Californian—a classic Spanish bungalow is so specific to Los Angeles. I knew from the minute I walked in that I wanted to really capture the light, breezy, laid-back style that defines California.
The main way we achieved this is keeping the palette light and neutral as well as using natural materials that one would find in this style home when it was built or today, like linen, wrought iron, bronze, leather, etc. The way to ensure that these materials felt updated was to choose more modern silhouettes. Another way we captured the California aesthetic was by choosing local vendors whenever possible.
Why do you think the all-white palette is still resonating with so many people? What can you do to keep the look fresh?
It’s true, the all-white look has been very popular of late. However, I would argue that it’s also a classic look. Trends come and go, but classics always work. When an aesthetic works with the style of the home (regardless of trend), it’s always the right move and will work today and well into the future. To keep the look fresh, I recommend infusing aspects of your personality, say with artwork.
You mentioned that the outdoors influenced this space. How did you help this home work cohesively between rooms and to the lounge spaces outside?
The gorgeous, lush garden that surrounds the entire property was definitely the inspiration for the overall design. The living room gets so much light, so I wanted to capture that feeling you get as soon as you step foot on the property. The dining room was inspired by the land with terra cotta as the driving hue. We really wanted the master bedroom to feel of the garden, so we kept things light and chose a simple and modern floral fabric for the remote-controlled, blackout Roman Shades. The media room echoes the ivy-covered walls that are higher than the house itself with gorgeous “Green Smoke” walls from Farrow & Ball. This was my first time using that paint color, and I am obsessed. I’m only painting walls extremely rich and moody colors from now on…In the back of the house, the client wanted to get more playful with color so they planted cheerful flowers throughout the backyard. We chose to reflect this in the guest room (which is primarily intended for grandkids) as well as the backyard decor.
We love the brighter, but still serene vibe of the media room. Tell us about this space.
The client had the idea to make the black and white photo wall as a design-forward way to display family photographs. The large-scale repetition became such a strong graphic pattern we decided to echo it with the strong repetitive graphic pattern of the rug. There was a strong push and pull between myself and the client. I was constantly recommending a more neutral palette and the client wanted color, color, and more color. It ended up being a super successful synergy of both. I always tell clients that the places to go bold are in artwork and textiles and to stay more neutral with the larger furniture pieces. That way you can switch out the smaller items when you’re ready for a change, and you don’t need to replace the big-ticket pieces.
What’s your favorite part of the redesign?
The living room. I just want to live there forever. It feels like what I hope heaven looks like.