Hayneedle teamed up with design service Homepolish to give fashion blogger and former Miss Universe Olivia Culpo the home of her dreams: a sleek, chic, white-and-gold loft in Los Angeles.
In this Ask a Stylist post, designer, and author of “Get It Together! An Interior Designer’s Guide to Creating Your Best Life” Orlando Soria gives us some behind-the-scenes insight into the project, from the space’s biggest design challenges to his favorite styling tips and tricks.
What was your biggest design challenge in this space?
The biggest challenge with Olivia’s home was defining different spaces in a relatively open home. It’s a very beautiful loft apartment in a historic Hollywood building, but the layout is so open it was hard to figure out how to define the different spaces (dining, bedroom, kitchen, TV/lounge area).
We tackled this issue with furnishings, using a rug to define the living room area, a dining table to define the dining area, and lighting and decor to give the spaces a distinct and comfortable look.
What was the inspiration behind this particular project?
The inspiration came from Olivia’s personality. She’s young, but she has kind of an old lady soul. Like she’s preppy and old school in the best way. So I wanted to create a space that was befitting of her classic style. She’s very Audrey Hepburn, just a classic girl. So I wanted her taste to reflect her sophistication. She’s got a tremendous fashion sense, so I wanted her to also have a home that felt stylish and beautiful.
How did you land on the gold and white color scheme?
Olivia loves light and airy spaces and has a definite preppy east coast vibe about her. So I basically wanted to make it look like she lives in a Nancy Meyers movie. I selected a variety of light grays and ivories to provide a neutral, relaxing palette.
Olivia travels ALL the time, so I wanted her space to feel like a relaxing sanctuary so her time at home was a rejuvenating as possible. But just because something is neutral doesn’t mean it has to be boring. We added visual interest by keeping the materials varied and adding in a variety of finishes. Linens, faux fur, leather, brass, lacquer, and marble all played a role in making the space feel eclectic and warm.
The gold finishes play a big role in this space – do you have any tips for mixing metals, or mixing different metallic finishes?
My main tip is DON’T MAKE EVERYTHING MATCH. I always have clients ask me if it’s OK to bring brass into a kitchen with chrome or nickel faucets. The answer is YES. Metals like being friends with each other so it’s fine to mix them.
Also, when everything is the same color it looks suspiciously “designed.” Like it’s trying too hard. Mixing metals helps the space feel more eclectic, layered, and most importantly, REAL. So you shouldn’t be scared to mix.
One thing to be aware of is that metals all have a color and a temperature, so keeping them in the same family (i.e. cool or warm) can help them feel more cohesive, but isn’t necessarily required (sometimes a little contrast is great).
What are some of your favorite quick and easy ways to update a space?
Paint is the biggest bang-for-your-buck way to update a space. It can completely transform the way a room feels, make it warmer, more romantic, more bold. So I always recommend a good coat of paint.
Another great one is rugs. A lot of people who need rugs don’t have them because they think they’re not necessary. Rugs help define a space and make it feel more cohesive and cozy. Finally, art is a great way to completely change the look of a room. You can really heighten the look of a space with a great piece of art.
CALLING ALL DESIGNERS!
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