Finally FinishedAuthor:Lindsey Shook
Many designers say their homes are never done, however, Melissa Warner Rothblum, co-founder and principal designer of Massuco Warner, proves in her Hancock Park home that is not always the case. “I love infusing personality in spaces and of course a little spunk,” she says. “To me, no project is complete without dressmaker details like carefully placed tape trims, tailored draperies, upholstery with multiple fabrics. These are the luxuries of being able to work with local craftsman to get each piece exactly how you like it, so I like to live it up with special details.”
After countless open houses, Warner Rothblum and her husband purchased the 3,000-square-foot Spanish-style home built in 1921 that had both formal and informal entertaining areas—a must on their list—as well as comfortable, private spaces. “Like any newly married couple dreaming of their first home, my husband and I wanted to find a house that could reflect our lifestyle and personalities and held room for the future,” she recalls. The house came equipped with a remodeled white tile and Calcutta marble kitchen, wood finishes, cabinetry and paint throughout that could remain. While the original plaster moldings, soaring ceilings, and French doors served as a beautiful architectural backdrop for the designer to add her magic touch.
“The house really evolved as our family grew, and I had collected pieces that I loved over time,” she notes. “My goal was for each space to feel pulled together and also functional and livable.” With two young children, she knew fabrics and finishes had to be durable, therefore decisions were made to create child-friendly spaces that still had precious details. “Although we have a formal dining room, the rug is an outdoor rug (custom fit to the room) and the chairs are a wipeable faux leather so I can have a fancier family dinner without having to worry about spills,” she remarks.
Signature to the Massuco Warner style, each room is covered in color, texture and print, creating warm rooms filled with personality. Even the newly built guest house interior features a playroom doused in a dreamy emerald green paint, and the exterior is wrapped in a bold-striped drape that creates and intimate seating area outside. “Building the guest house was a game changer in how we used our home,” Warner Rothblum says. “Being a designer and a mom, I love the idea of my kids having all of their favorite toys at their fingertips, but being able to keep things looking neat and tidy is also a must. Adding the outdoor cabana let us use our outdoor space in a whole new way. With the cabana I never need to cover the furniture, and in LA that means we can use it any day of the year, rain or shine, and the furniture stays nice and clean.”
Being the is her own home, there was no big reveal—rather Warner Rothblum and her team would install room by room when the family was out of the house. “My kids reactions were the best,” she recalls. “The more spins and twirls they’d do in the new space, the more I knew they loved it!” She also had a lot of leeway when it came to the design decision making. “My husband trusted me along the way so I didn’t show him most of the selections,” she laughs. “He stopped home unexpectedly when the family room wallpaper (a bold, full-scale photograph of a palm tree) was being installed,” she notes. “He called and said ‘I just saw the wallpaper’ and my heart started to sink before he said ‘and I really love it’.”