Home Tour: A Designer's Own Soft Midcentury Home
Designer Carolyn Miller hit the jackpot, and we really mean jackpot, when the owners of her 1926 Hollywood bungalow wanted to work with her on the renovation of the home. “I have lived here for eight years, from multiple roommates all the way to a husband, when the exterior was painted Pepto pink, the walls were taupe, the floors were carpeted, we had glass fuses, suffered with temperamental outlets, and pipes burst on a regular basis,” the up-and-coming designer tells us.
After moving out for six months while the 3,000-square-foot space underwent a total revamp, the designer and her husband returned to a perfectly crisp space that Miller designed with midcentury aesthetics in mind while also honouring the home’s Mediterranean architectural style. Keep scrolling to see the newly revamped space.
Miller describes the renovated space as a medley of styles and influences. “The home has become a brilliant mixture of traditional prewar elements, such as the plaster walls, crown moldings, and arched doors, with hyper modern additions, highlighted by crisp white walls, stained floors, and a walnut and white lacquer kitchen with stainless appliances,” she tells us.
When it came to the decoration of the space, Miller wanted to keep the overall palette neutral with bright white walls punctuated with saturated artwork. “Having lived in a drab, under-lit apartment, I know neutral can go horribly wrong and look stale,” the designers says. “But since our home transformed into a spacious aerie, it is a pleasure to revel in white.”
Many of the pillows in the home are made from vintage textile remnants from “far flung regions of the globe.”
“I think lighting is the jewellery of a room, the finishing touch that brings sparkle to a space,” says the designer. “I love expressive, unique lighting, both vintage or contemporary, because it truly reflects the personality of the owner.”
As an avid collector of midcentury modern pieces and a self-described “auction hound” Miller has amassed a collection of seating and the home’s new plan allows for all of her finds to be on view. “This way I can display them like art,” she says.
Leaving the windows bare is a surprising choice for a designer, but Miller has her reasons. “If the windows are beautiful enough, I prefer not to use treatments in public areas,” she tells us. “To get away with such simplicity means all finishes and trims must be done right because there is nowhere to hide.”
The home’s open floor plan is enhanced by Miller’s restrained design. “We went with clean and open rooms, few rugs or window treatments, and dark floors because it provides a wonderful backdrop, like a gallery,” the designer says.
Miller’s passion for midcentury modern pieces goes beyond simply shapes and forms, the designer likes to celebrate the history of the furniture. “I like to hunt for older pieces, restore them, and infuse them with new life,” she says. “It is my small way of celebrating the legacy of great design, especially in wood.”
“Even if my budget cannot afford the finest auction pieces, there are icons at every price range,” Miller tells us. “If you are willing to dust something off, you will be amazed at the beauty you can bring out.”
What’s your favourite element in this stunning space? Share with us in the comments!