Jeff Andrews Remodels Fabulous LA Home of Choreographer to the StarsAuthor:Lindsey Shook
Interior designer Jeff Andrews and his celebrity client stage a glam remodel.
LEFT: The illuminated Hebrew letters are from a set that Jamie King designed for a Madonna concert tour. The pop star and King share a love of art, and many of the photographs hanging in his home are gifts from her. RIGHT: A tired entry gets a mod makeover.
|By day, choreographer Jamie King directs concert spectaculars for the likes of Madonna, Britney Spears and Rihanna. When he comes home in the evening, he doesn’t want the glamour to end. He hired Jeff Andrews, his longtime friend and one-time employer, to create a home loosely inspired by some of his favorite hotels and clubs around the world. “My home is a place to recharge and get inspired,” says King. “It is creative and comfortable, but also sexy and fun.”|
Before Andrews launched his interior design firm, he was a choreographer. He hired a young King to dance in some of his productions. Says Andrews: “After Jamie had become an amazing choreographer and director and I had segued into interior design, he hired me to work on his apartment. When he decided to buy a house, he asked me to help him find it.”
The place Andrews discovered for King was anything but glam. “It was a generic, run-of-the-mill house that had been built sometime in the 1940s. There was nothing exciting about it architecturally,” says Andrews. “However, it did have a pool, which Jamie wanted, and it was a blank slate. I had my contractor in tow, and we could tell that the ceilings could be raised and walls could be removed to make the space very different.”
“Different” was an important design directive for the project. “When Jamie described what he wanted, he said he’d like something that was clean, modern, sexy and original,” says Andrews. “He was looking for something that was unlike anything he’d ever seen in a home before.”
|An example of Andrews’ unique design is the kitchen, which is meant to look like a nightclub while still functioning in the traditional sense of the space. The backsplash is made of Bisazza mosaics, customized by Andrews with stripes of 24-karat gold-plated tiles. The new kitchen has no upper cabinets—there’s a storage wall hidden around the corner instead—which allows the tile to extend upwards where it curves at the ceiling. “We didn’t want anything showing that would reveal this as a kitchen. When Jamie entertains, and he entertains a lot, this area acts as the bar,” says Andrews. “Running the tile to the top of the room makes it appear higher, and curving the end of the tile wall makes the room seem a little less boxy.” The light fixture is also designed by Andrews, and it hangs in a newly added skylight. By day, the sun filters through the crystal drops, making the piece look like sculpture and throwing rainbows around the room. At night, the fixture twinkles and casts a gentle ambient light. In true nightclub fashion, the barstools are upholstered in gold metallic leather. “It picks up the gold in the tile and adds a touch of fun here,” says Andrews.|
LEFT: New sliders open the living area completely to the pool and hidden doors on either side of the painting lead to the bedroom wing. RIGHT: The bright white walls in the small dining nook off the kitchen create a gallery-like background for King’s modern art collection.
That sense of playfulness is also evidentin the nearby dining room, where the traditional central light fixture is replaced by a series of mirror-ball pendant lights by Tom Dixon that hang in contrast to the rustic wood table and chairs. “I love mixing materials, like the shiny glass of the lights with the oiled wood of the table,” says Andrews. “For me, it makes a certain kind of harmony.” Instead of curtains or blinds, the designer and his client elected to hang a row of ball chains in front of the windows. “This bronze ‘curtain’ filters the light and creates an amazing shadow pattern,” says Andrews. “It’s also an example of what’s fun about working with Jamie. Instead of just picking out fabric window coverings, we asked why windows should be covered in fabric. What else could we use?”
|In the living room, the answer to that question is a series of mesh panels that act as light-filtering curtains for the new, large glass sliders that open the room completely to the pool area. It’s adjacent to another wall that is covered in laminated glass, designed in the same olive hue as the rest of the room, concealing the doors that lead to a wing of bedrooms. “The glass wall adds a cool reflective quality in this room,” says Andrews.|
In the pool area outside, the designer created a series of built-in seating around the water. “Jamie has some huge parties out here—for New Year’s Eve, he had the area tented and the pool covered in a Lucite dance floor—and having the seating built in keeps the area open,” says Andrews.
The pool may be a public party space, but the master bedroom was created to be a private, sexy retreat. “It’s my
favorite room in the house,” says King. The design was inspired by a skunk-pelt coverlet King owned; the Dolce & Gabbana accessory plays with perception by taking something many people find repulsive and using its natural pattern to create an object of beauty. The black and white colors set the tone for the room, which has an oversize headboard upholstered in black woven leather. The headboard is framed in walnut, the same material used for the built-in bed, bench and side tables. “This is a small room, so the built-ins are efficient. It also allowed us to create storage under the bed,” says Andrews. “To add some drama, we traded the low ceiling for a vaulted ceiling.”
Such tricks are the trade of both choreographers and interior designers. “In this house, we used light, glass
and interesting materials to make a space that is actually quite compact seem voluminous,” says Andrews. “Whether you are designing a set or designing a house, you have to take the space you are given and wrest the maximum amount of drama out of it that you can.”
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