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Monday, March 31, 2014

An Elegant English Country House in the Hollywood hills

country english exterior

While I was perusing Los Angeles real estate for fun over the weekend, I came across this charming English Country style house just above Sunset in the Hollywood Hills. The black and white awnings, Tudor-style architecture, and high-gloss black trim are so chic. The great thing is that both the exterior and interior are equally fabulous! While Tudor architecture isn’t really my favorite, I cannot help but be charmed by this gorgeous house. According to the listing, the house has had multiple celebrity owners over the years and was also featured in ELLE DECOR, but I can’t seem to find any other information about it online. Do any of you know who might have lived here or who designed this stylish abode?

country english living

{The house has loads of charm thanks to original architectural features such as this fabulous beamed ceiling. I dream of restoring a beautiful older home one day and marrying original charm with modern comfort and amenities.}


{An Alternate View of the Living Room | Image via Zillow}


{What could be better than saddle leather, square-back Louis chairs paired with a chic Lucite desk and classic lamp? | Image via Zillow

country english library

{How lovely is the library? It looks so inviting. I can envision working, reading, relaxing, and even entertaining in this space.}

country english kitchen   {The kitchen was obviously gutted and completely remodeled in a very tasteful way that suits the owner’s modern needs but complements the original style of the house.}

Snip20140330_6{The dining room features a beautiful navy velvet, tufted dining banquette paired with an antique table and chairs. | Image via Zillow}

country english den

{I am not really sure what this room is. It could be a den, guest bedroom, or possibly a sitting room off of the master, though the ceiling beams are a different color. I love the easy mix of furniture and textiles—ticking stripes, zebra hide, a bold ethnic rug mixed with striking photography and an antique chest and rustic antler chandelier.}

country english master

{I adore the overall simplicity of this house. The palette is generally pared down and nothing feels fussy or overly “done”. The house is effortlessly elegant and comfortable. I adore the master bedroom. Check out the ceiling and that AMAZING view!}

country english bath

{The master bathroom, like the kitchen has been very tastefully remodeled. While I prefer to limit pedestal sinks to powder rooms because of their lack of storage (I like my fair share of beauty products!), they are a good fit aesthetically within this particular bathroom.}

country english

{The terrace has sweeping views over the whole of Los Angeles. Notice the cabana stripes, Greek key, and boxwoods—it’s as if they were trying to appeal directly to me! Ha ha! All I need now is $2.795 million dollars.}

country english pool     {A View of the Pool}

If any of you know more about this house, I’d love to hear the details! It’s so lovely—chic without an ounce of pretense. To see the house in its full glory, check out the fullscreen images on Sotheby’s website.


{Images via Sotheby’s unless otherwise noted.}

This Week's Quote

{Image via Life in a Venti Cup}

Friday, March 28, 2014

Fabulous Room Friday 03.28.14

My goodness, has it been a crazy week! We have been going non-stop between meetings, design presentations, and wrapping up some projects at my house for a big photo shoot today. Needless to say, I am ready for the weekend. I have spent the last few weekends working, but I think I may need to actually unplug and recharge my batteries this weekend. 

Lately, I've been really gravitating towards canopy beds as opposed to upholstered headboards and I think a high shine, polished chrome version such as this one in a bedroom by Ruthie Sommers is so chic, especially because it is paired with warmer, much more traditional pieces. The juxtaposition is so stylish. In my opinion, the bed is the star of the room, but everything else works so nicely together. The room is subtle, collected, and doesn't feel overly "designed". It looks like the perfect place to rest over the weekend!

{Image via Ruthie Sommers}

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Chic Combinations: Grey and Yellow

Hello everyone! Arianna here, back with some more color inspiration. Today I'm featuring the combination of grey and yellow, which though not too long ago was considered "trendy", I still love. The two colors are a perfect complement to each other and can help create sophisticated decor. While grey is a very elegant neutral, on it's own it can be a little boring, so accenting it with cheery yellow, adds a happy balancing energy. The spaces below are beautiful examples:
Chic Combo: Grey & Yellow // Arianna Belle for LDV Bring these colors into your own home with these pieces:

image sources: 1 - design by will wick, 2 - design by steven gambrel, 3 - abby larson's dining room as featured in domino, 4 - design by mary mcdonald, 5 - design by steven gambrel

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Art in 5: James Turrell

“His work is not about light, or a record of light; it is light — the physical presence of light made manifest in sensory form.” New Yorker critic Calvin Tompkins on James Turrell

Hi, it's Erika Brechtel with a third installment of "Art in 5!" Thus far, I have focused on a painter (Ellsworth Kelly), a sculptor (Auguste Rodin), and a photographer (Julius Shulman), so today I thought I would highlight an installation artist, James Turrell. I have been fortunate enough to see his work at an art gallery in Chelsea, at a museum in Scottsdale, at the ARIA hotel in Las Vegas, and at a small gallery in Wynwood, Miami this past December during Art Basel. What fascinates me about his work is that it seems so simple -- flooding light into a controlled environment. But what you don't expect is that you completely lose your sense of depth perception to the point where you are not certain of where the walls are, where the floor and ceiling is, if the illusion of an object you see is real or projected. In some of his spaces, your mood can even change depending on the color of the light. It is precisely this human interaction and perception of reality that defines Turrell's groundbreaking work. The gist:
Here are some examples of his work:
PROJECTION PIECES A Turrell Projection is created by projecting a single, controlled beam of light from the opposing corner of the room. The projected light appears as a three dimensional form.
Alta Blue 1968, London
Afrum Pale Pink 1968
Pullen White 1967
WEDGEWORKS In a Turrell Wedgework, the precise use of projected light creates the illusion of walls or barriers where none exist.
Wedgework 3 1974, Holland
Milk Run, 1996
Raemar Pink White 1969, LACMA
GANZFELD “Ganzfeld”: a German word to describe the phenomenon of the total loss of depth perception as in the experience of a white-out. Turrell artificially creates a similar experience through the controlled use of light, coved corners and an inclined floor.
Armta 2011
Double Vision 2013, Oslo
SKYSPACES A Turrell Skyspace is a specifically proportioned chamber with an aperture in the ceiling open to the sky. Skyspaces can be autonomous structures or integrated into existing architecture. The aperture can be round, ovular or square.
Open Sky 2004 Chichu Art Museum, Japan
The Color Beneath 2013, Oslo
TALL GLASS / WIDE GLASS A Turrell Tall Glass or Wide Glass piece is an aperture with frosted glass. LEDs are positioned behind the glass and programmed to change slowly over the course of several hours. A glass can also be curved. Each Tall Glass or Wide Glass light program is unique.
Coconino 2007
Mohl Ip 2008, Phoenix Art Museum
I personally love the ones that remind me of Rothko paintings. (Read my past "Design Under the Influence" column on Rothko here...)
If you're in LA, definitely catch the retrospective on James Turrell at LACMA until next Sunday, 4/6/14. I've got my tickets!
Images and descriptions from
Top image: Akhob 2013, Louis Vuitton, Las Vegas

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Los Angeles Dream House

DISC INTERIORS {This house had me at hello. How chic is this entrance?}

If you’ve been reading La Dolce Vita long enough, chances are you know how much I love Los Angeles. Over the years, it has become my home away from home; my veritable happy place which is funny because the first time I was there I hated it. Over time, the city seduced me and I became besotted with its unique light, beautiful homes, laidback yet chic sensibility, and the fact that it is an epicenter for design and creativity. I dream of living in L.A. someday and when that day comes, I’d love to live in a beautiful home such as this magical 1940s colonial bungalow. Most people associate Spanish, mid-century modern, and craftsman-style architecture with Los Angeles and while it is a Mecca for those types of architecture, my favorite is the classic neoclassical meets Georgian architecture that can be found throughout the city from Los Feliz all the way west to Brentwood.

This particular home is a classic colonial bungalow built in the 1940s in central L.A.’s Miracle Mile neighborhood. Designed by DISC Interiors, the design honors the original architecture of the house, but plays into a masculine, mid-century-inspired vibe. The juxtaposition in such a traditional house works quite well. I love that the palette is fairly neutral with a few pops of color by way of upholstery and textiles as well as saturated paint colors in the dining room and master bedroom. I’d love to know two things. First, who owns this gorgeous house and second, is it for sale?

DISC INTERIORS2 {The handsome living room faces out to the garden.}


{I am mad about the mix of traditional elements and art with the sculptural brass sconces.}


{This vignette in the living room peeks out onto the dream worthy entrance.}


{I adore the juxtaposition of the glamorous crystal chandelier with the more modern, masculine elements of the Saarinen Tulip Table and leather dining chairs. The room is perfectly framed by the French doors. I have a similar brown paint in my house and just bought a Tulip Table for my breakfast room, so this is totally resonating with me.}


{The breakfast nook is a bit more relaxed, but no less stylish.}


{I’m curious as to how many bedrooms there are in this stunning house since only the master bedroom was photographed. Have you noticed the great art throughout the home? The flat black walls offer maximum visual impact against the colorful textiles within the room and the beautiful garden just beyond the windows.}


{The hardware on this dresser is fantastic. The rope-wrapped table lamp is by Thomas O’Brien available through Circa Lighting.}


{The house is just as fabulous outside! I love the trees, hedges, and this dining area featuring white Bertoia chairs.}

Snip20140320_113        {Since this is my dream house, I’d love to assume that this door leads to a separate guest house that I could use as my design studio. What could be better than a poolside office in beautiful, temperate L.A.?}

Where is your happy place? Where do you dream of living some day?


{Images via DISC Interiors}

Monday, March 24, 2014

Stylish Savings at J.Crew

Over the weekend, I felt the gravitational pull towards J.Crew and it seems my shopping intuition was right on. Not only did I bring home a couple of dresses, several great tops, a pretty new statement necklace, and a Panama hat—it was all 25% off! Just about everything is on sale until Thursday, March 27th, so be sure to take advantage of the savings now that Spring is officially here and it’s time to break out the warmer weather clothes. This round-up features most of the items I purchased as well as several other must-haves that I still have my eye on. Happy shopping!



This Week’s Quote

dive in



{Image Source}