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Classic Home Filled with Art & Vibrant Color

A Georgian-style home gets a revamp made for a southern California family

Written and produced by Darra Baker
  • Dominique Vorillon

    On the outside it’s classic 1915 Georgian style. But there’s a surprise inside this Hancock Park home. Because when Marnie and Howard Owens, their two soccer-playing girls, and one big Labrador moved in, so did a fresh, youthful attitude—and some new decorating, courtesy of interior designer Jennifer Culp. “While we paid respect to the architecture, we wanted to funk it up a bit,” Culp says.

    Everything heavy and dated was booted to the curb like an old kickball as Culp ditched the darkness and formality of the home’s interiors. She ripped off leather-embossed wallpaper, painted over blood-red and hunter-green walls, and tore out clunky built-ins to make way for Marnie’s relaxed, bohemian style—and the soulful collections of art, photography, and furnishings the couple had gathered over time.

    Photography: Dominique Vorillon

    Interior designer: Jennifer Culp, J/C Studio, 5225 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 420, Los Angeles, CA 90036; 323/930-0441, jcdesignstudios.com. 

     
  • Dominique Vorillon

    Classic Entry

    The home’s classic architectural details such as the large central entry and window-filled rooms create an ideal setting for the impressive art collection that Marnie and Howard have lovingly assembled. Central to the collection are two paintings by Marnie’s great-grandmother, notable portrait artist Marie Danforth Page. The first is a large portrait of a woman playing the cello. That one went over the fireplace “as a good family centerpiece,” says Marnie, who majored in art history and has been collecting since her days as a chef, when she would visit galleries and make payments on pieces she loved. The other Page piece, a portrait of a little girl in a blue dress, hangs atop the staircase.

    A vintage rug from Nicky Rising and a blue runner from Melrose Carpet on the stairway create a colorful welcome.

    Chandelier: original to house.
    Area rug (vintage Pictorial Khotan, similar available): Nicky Rising Ltd., nickyrising.com.
    Carpet on stairs (custom, “Jute Boucle”/Light Teal, with inset “Jute Boucle”/Orange): Melrose Carpet, melrosecarpet.com.
    Painting at top of stairs (by Marie Danforth Page): owner’s collection.  

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Vibrant Living Room

    With just-right shades of whites, pinks, and grays, Culp created a lively gallery-like setting in the living and entertaining areas to highlight the couple’s artwork while layering in surprising furniture, lighting, and fabrics. 

    The couple buys one sizable modern photograph a year to enliven their walls. Of note is the portrait of an African woman in a field by Jackie Nickerson, which contrasts interestingly with the refined cellist painted by Marnie’s great-grandmother.

    Culp chose a magenta-and-yellow Indian silk sari rug and a peacock-blue linen from Osborne & Little to harmonize with the artwork.

    Wall paint (“White Dove” #OC-17): Benjamin Moore, benjaminmoore.com.
    Sofa: custom.
    Sofa fabric (linen, stonewashed, color, Parchment): Pindler & Pindler, pindler.com.
    Blue throw (vintage Kantha quilt): Karma Living, karmaliving.net.
    Pillows on either end of sofa (“Khotan”/Rubia, by Zak + Fox); small quilted red pillow (vintage); terra-cotta pillow (“Luxor”/Pompeii on Cream, by Lisa Fine Textiles ); gray and yellow woven pillow (Indian, vintage): Hollywood at Home, hollywoodathome.com.
    Photograph over sofa: by Jackie Nickerson, jackienickerson.com.
    Art Adviser: Shannon Timms Art Advisory, Los Angeles; 323/633-1972; shannon@shannontimms.com.

    Chandelier: original to house.
    Coffee table (custom, with walnut top): Lawson-Fenning, lawsonfenning.com.
    Pair of blue chairs: vintage.
    Chair fabric (“Brero Lino” #F1723,  by Designers Guild): Osborne & Little, designersguild.com
    Sherpa stool (vintage): Hollywood at Home, hollywoodathome.com.
    Area rug (Indian Sari rug, silk blend): Lawrence of La Brea, lawrenceoflabrea.com.

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Traditional Kitchen

    A Saarinen table gives a modern nod to the more traditional kitchen. Black trim—original to the house—pops against white cabinetry. 

    Paint, cabinetry paint (“Ivory White” #925): Benjamin Moore, benjaminmoore.com.
    Black trim paint; cabinetry; cabinetry hardware; sink; faucet; hanging light: original to house.
    Table (“Saarinen Round Dining Table,” vintage): 1stdibs, 1stdibs.com.
    Counter stool: owner’s collection.
    Round counter bench (vintage): GoodWood, goodwooddc.com

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Breakfast Room

    Light pink chairs circle around the bleached oak dining table in the breakfast room. Overhead, an original chandelier brings the drama.

    Wallpaper: grasscloth.
    Trim and ceiling paint (“Oatmeal” #268): Benjamin Moore, benjaminmoore.com.
    Dining table (custom, bleached oak): John Cortese, 7th & Seventh Designs, seventhdesigns.com.
    Dining chairs (in original fabric): vintage.
    Chandelier; cabinet by window; hardware; sconces: original to house.  

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Wood-Paneled Dining Room

    “We brought in some modern elements and unexpected pieces,” Culp says. One such surprise is the custom brass star light fixture she commissioned, which hangs from a pale-pink ceiling in the wood-paneled dining room. It illuminates a long wood table surrounded by Danish midcentury-modern chairs. Antique rugs brighten the areas. Though the dining room was clearly once a drippingly formal space, the Owenses use it as their everyday eating area and homework center. It’s also the favorite sleeping spot for their 11-year-old black Labrador retriever, Wilson. 

    Ceiling paint (“Pink Ground” 3202): Farrow & Ball, farrow-ball.com.
    Trim paint (“White Dove” #OC-17): Benjamin Moore, benjaminmoore.com.
    Chandelier (custom, “Nautilus Star”): by Jason Koharik, collectedby.com. Through Lawson-Fenning, lawsonfenning.com.
    Dining table (vintage): Paul McCobb, ebay.com.
    Dining chairs (by Hans Wegner): R & Co., r-and-company.com.
    Area rug by dining table (vintage): GoodWood, goodwooddc.com.
    Upholstered sofa (vintage, by Florence Knoll): Rooms and Gardens, roomsandgardens.com.
    Footstool (vintage); wooden chair (vintage, “Thonet Bentwood Chair”): 1st Dibs, 1stdibs.com. For reproduction (“Era Chair,” by Michael Thonet): Design Within Reach, dwr.com.
    Floor lamp (vintage, painted): owner’s collection.   

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Bold Music Room

    Culp chose wild prints to invigorate tame furnishings, such as the pair of formal settees she re-covered in a zigzag pattern of lilac, teal, and orange for the music room. “We found these loveseats at the Pasadena Antique Mall, and Marnie and I both wanted to cover them in something crazy,” Culp says, laughing.

    In the music room, another large-scale art piece—Liza Ryan’s I push a petal from my Gown, the title taken from an Emily Dickinson poem—shows a young woman breathing out towering orange flames, continuing the subtle subject matter of strong women created by female artists. The amazing art mingles with casual flea-market finds in a “don’t-try-to-pinpoint-our-style” kind of look that keeps the house feeling playful and light. Georgian light.

    Wall paint (“Stonington Gray” #HC-170); ceiling and trim paint (“White Dove” #OC-17): Benjamin Moore, benjaminmoore.com.
    Hanging light (“Akari Light Sculpture”): Noguchi, shop.noguchi.org.
    Area rug (“Abetone”/Lilla #1563, wool): Melrose Carpet, melrosecarpet.com.
    Pair of sofas: vintage.
    Sofa fabric (“Adras Ikat Print”/Caravan #174821 by Martin Lawrence Bullard): Schumacher, fschumacher.com.
    Coffee table (vintage Milo Baughman): 1st Dibs, 1stdibs.com.
    Barrel chairs: owner’s collection.
    Chair fabric (“Shabby”/Vermillon #F2484026): Pierre Frey, pierrefrey.com.
    Lounge chairs: custom.
    Lounge-chair fabric (“Klint”/Cayenne #27064.24, colorway discontinued): Kravet, kravet.com.
    Pillows on lounge chair (“Saga” #1010386558): Zimmer + Rohde, zimmer-rohde.com.
    Photograph: by Liza Ryan, lizaryan.com.
    Art Adviser: Shannon Timms Art Advisory, Los Angeles; 323/633-1972; shannon@shannontimms.com.
    Square table by lounge chairs (vintage); reading lamp: owner’s collection.
    Table lamp: GoodWood, goodwooddc.com.
    Brass sconces (attributed to Chapman): The 2nd House Objects Inc., the2ndhouse.com.
    Chest by window (vintage): Rubbish Interiors, rubbishinteriors.com.
    Lamp on chest (vintage): Rewire, rewirela.com
    Art: owner’s collection.

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Upstairs Landing

    One of the home’s surprise elements juxtaposed with a classic Georgian signature is the Vivienne Westwood orange squiggly wallpaper lining the walls atop the very classical central staircase, which was left in its original dark wood stain. 

    Wallpaper (“Squiggle,” colorway discontinued, Vivienne Westwood Collection from Cole & Son): Lee Jofa, leejofa.com.
    Ceiling paint (“White Dove” #OC-17): Benjamin Moore, benjaminmoore.com.
    Chandelier:
    original to house.
    Pair of chairs (vintage): 1st Dibs, 1stdibs.com.
    Fabric on chairs
    (“Jiri-Birch”/Blue #6898): Diamond Foam & Fabric, diamondfoamandfabric.com.
    Pillows
    on chairs: Lulu & Georgia, luluandgeorgia.com

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Master Bedroom

    Culp skillfully combined Marnie’s favorite shades—lilac, green, and pink—in the fabulous master bedroom.  

    Wall paint (“Hampshire Rocks” #1450): Benjamin Moore, benjaminmoore.com.
    Ceiling and trim paint (“Arsenic” #214, high gloss): Farrow & Ball, farrow-ball.com.
    Chandelier: original to house.
    Area rug (“Song Cotton Carpet”/Lilac): Madeline Weinrib, madelineweinrib.com.
    Drapery (“Crillon Linen”/Lilac #2011136.10, by Suzanne Kasler): Lee Jofa, leejofa.com.
    Bed: custom.
    Bed fabric (“Kazak”/Orange, Pink on White #302830C-06W): Quadrille, quadrillefabrics.com.
    Long bolster pillow (“Primrose Bolster Pillow”): John Robshaw Textiles, johnrobshaw.com.
    Orange pillow (“Shabby”/Vermillon #F2484026): Pierre Frey, pierrefrey.com.
    Table light (“Industrial Task Table Lamp”/Polished Nickel): West Elm, westelm.com.

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Dressing Room

    A pair of vintage wing chairs are upholstered in complementary fabrics—a lilac linen from Lee Jofa and an overscale pattern from John Robshaw. 

    Carpet (Moroccan): Lawrence of La Brea, lawrenceoflabrea.com.
    Sheepskin rug: Pacific Hide & Leather, pacifichide.com.
    Wing chairs (vintage, stripped): 1stdibs 1stdibs.com.
    Wing-chair fabric, back (“Kumara Brinjal”/Eggplant #JRL 94-64): John Robshaw Textiles, johnrobshaw.com.
    Wing-chair fabric, front (“Crillon Linen”/Lilac #2011136.10, by Suzanne Kasler): Lee Jofa, leejofa.com.
    Table between wing chairs (vintage): 1stdibs, 1stdibs.com.  

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Guest Bedroom

    Culp accentuated the original green millwork with a patterned wallpaper from Quadrille. 

    Wallpaper (“Persepolis”/Fig, Taupe on Off White #HC1490W-02WP): Quadrille, quadrillefabrics.com.
    Wall paint; sconces: original to house.
    Bedside table (vintage); bedside lamp (vintage): Pasadena Antique Center, pasadenaantiquecenter.com.
    Bed: custom.
    Quilt: Pottery Barn, potterybarn.com.
    Yellow Ikat throw pillows (“Sassari Ikat”/Sun #2007125.40 ): Lee Jofa, leejofa.com.

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Guest Bath

    Culp continued the green pattern from the bedroom on the ceiling of the guest bath. 

    Tile; flooring; sink; faucets; medicine cabinet: original to house.
    Ceiling wallpaper (“Persepolis”/Fig, Taupe on Off White #HC1490W-02WP): Quadrille, quadrillefabrics.com.
    Striped towel (“Fouta Bath Towel”): Scents and Feel, scentsandfeel.com.
    Elephant table (vintage): Circa Who, circawho.com.
    Area rug (vintage): Lawrence of La Brea, lawrenceoflabrea.com.

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Playful Loggia

    An orange daybed from Plain Air mixes playfully with rattan pieces from Harbinger. The hanging pendant is from Design Within Reach. 

    Hanging light  (“Nelson Ball Pendant Lamp”): Design Within Reach, dwr.com.
    Rattan sofas and ottoman (vintage, painted): Harbinger, harbingerla.com.
    Cushion fabric on sofas (“Ravenna Outdoor”/Blue): Christopher Farr/Cloth, christopherfarr-cloth.com.
    Striped throw: owner’s collection.
    Blue pillows on sofa (“Saga”): Zimmer + Rohde, zimmer-rohde.com.
    Yellow garden stool: Circa Who, circawho.com
    Orange daybed (powdercoated stainless steel): Plain Air, plainair.com.
    Orange-patterned pillow on daybed (“Luxor”/Pompeii, Ivory, by Lisa Fina Textiles): Hollywood at Home, hollywoodathome.com.
    Round end table (vintage): Good Wood, goodwooddc.com.

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Backyard Pool

    The 1915 Georgian exterior belies the interior’s bohemian aesthetic. 

  • Dominique Vorillon

    Family

    Marnie and Howard Owens with Riley, 12, and Miller, 8, in the family’s backyard. 

  • Greg Scheidemann
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