Kirsten Dunst's 'Spanifornia' living room blends Californian cool with European charm

Effortless California style and the endlessly chic European aesthetic are an interior design pairing that's always going to work – Kirsten Dunst's home is proof

Kirsten Dunst
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The coming together of styles in interior design is an art. It can be tricky to execute, but when it's done right the result is spaces that are filled with depth and character and interest. Kristen Dunst's Los Angeles home is a lesson in the rising Spanifornia style and how to mix these two timeless aesthetics. 

With its exposed wooden beams, soothing white walls, and multiple fireplaces, the old Ranch House in the San Fernando Valley architecturally taps into the rustic Spanish style needed to nail this design trend. However, Kirsten's SoCal cool decorating decisions, led by designer Jane Hallworth, give the more traditional style a modern and laid-back twist. 

Spanifornia, the blend of Spanish and Californian design, has influenced design decisions for years, but the official term only emerged early last year. As the name suggests, Spanifornia involves drawing from the best of the two locations to create a contemporary space rooted in Mediterranean charm, and the actress' white living room exhibits this perfectly. 

'Spanifornia integrates architectural elements of Spain, such as high cathedral-style ceilings topped with natural, rough-hewn reclaimed beams, and walls of quiet plaster or lime wash to add movement and older authenticity to the surfaces,' comments Sacramento-based designer Kristen Fiore

This is the case with Kirsten Dunst's living space, which exhibits striking wooden beams and a soothing neutral color scheme that serves as the perfect base for her bolder textiles and sweeping indoor plants.  

'To master the look, concentrate on luxury and comfort as synonymous. Select highly textured luxurious materials for your furnishings in neutrals and select fabrics like coarse and nubbly linens, wools, or other naturals,' Kristen comments. 

'Wood furnishings also play a central role in accenting and bringing warmth to the room.'

Interior Designer
Designer Kristen Fiore of Kristen Elizabeth Design
Interior Designer
Kristen Fiore

Kristen Fiore is the founder of Kristen Elizabeth Design, located in Sacramento, California. Her firm creates beautifully livable interiors that achieve a deep sense of harmony, balance, and inner happiness. The process is authentic and original, rooted in classic design principles balanced with fresh contemporary ideas.

Beige living room with white walls, wood shelving and brown soft furnishings

(Image credit: Jake Arnold / Michael P.H Clifford)

As Kristen explains, we can all replicate the Spanifornia look, whether we have a home as suitable as Kristen's or not. In many cases, it's about emphasizing any kind of architectural asset we may have in our homes – starting with our windows and doors. 

'Frame the interior of doors with a stained walnut around a steel-enclosed window or door. Or, if your home has a fireplace, consider an ivory stacked stone with a natural hand cut and wide grout, and avoid grays,' Kristen says. 

When it comes to Spanifornia living room colors, the designer recommends sticking to an earthy palette of browns, beiges, creams, and soft greens. 'Focus the furnishings on comfort and avoid a lot of patterns in the furnishings,' she comments. 

'Plus, tile is one area - either bright, patterned, or terracotta that is a common design integration in Spanifornia living. Having some fun with hand-painted tiles in traditional yellows and greens can bring a lot of life into the smaller spaces of your home.'

As the Spanish influence is so much a part of California history, the impact of Mediterranean design on the interiors of the West Coast makes so much sense, and it's why these two varied styles in fact work so effortlessly together. It's such a timeless aesthetic too, and really easy to implement no matter what the style of your home. 

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.