In this project, named ‘Optimism’, designer Jake Arnold showcases his design take on a one-story, mid-century Californian ranch by architect Gerard Colcord. ‘Colcord’s projects became synonymous in the 1950s with the fulfillment of the American dream – homes that balanced the importance of work and family. In turn, this project has become a cornerstone of my work, using optimism and hopefulness as a central foundation for design,' says Jake.
Keen to find a home ‘with soul’, he was entrusted by his clients to help them find this property. He was drawn to Colcord’s classic architectural design features: colonnaded porches, vast paneled windows and lofty pitched roofs.
The house is in Beverly Hills and has expansive canyon views, and Jake stripped the recent, unsympathetic interior back to its bare bones, refurbishing original wooden floors, reinstating paneling and slowly rebuilding the decorative layers. His approach to color was driven by the clients’ love of decorating with neutrals, whilst encouraging bolder, tonal hues that reference the surrounding landscape.
In 2020, aged 30, Jake Arnold launched his interior design firm – mastering in tactile, atmospheric interiors that will stand the test of time. He has since gone on to design homes for the most fashionable figures in Los Angeles, including Chrissy Teigen and Sophia Bush. In 2021 he also co-founded The Expert – an industry-first platform that creates connections for one-to-one online consultations with over 130 respected designers.
The use of historical prints on furnishings, from the likes of Fortuny, Liberty, Ralph Lauren and Schumacher, adds a timeless gravitas, balanced with textural plains from de Le Cuona, Holland & Sherry and Pierre Frey. Throughout, old, new, and custom-made is thoughtfully curated. ‘It’s what sets a project apart – and taking the time to explore and unearth new European and international treasures is high on my future agenda,’ says Jake.
The living room space encourages relaxed conversation and intimacy while providing a sense of impact through scale, materiality, and form.
Rooms are zoned creatively to optimize flow, and to amplify opportunities for entertaining and comfort. The use of curved, bespoke furniture creates a gentle fluidity and intimacy, and offsets more linear edges on paneling, bookcases, and angular roof lines.
In this capacious home office, a bespoke curved sofa upholstered in a de Le Cuona velvet adds a relaxed edge to the room, with the blue-gray hue echoing the Farrow & Ball De Nimes shade used throughout.
Natural materials add soul and a quiet luxury to the home – think a custom-made bar in brass and suede, antique rugs, vintage oak and sheepskin chairs, primitive wooden tables, Audoux Minet vintage lights, and Brèche de Vendôme stone flooring.
‘For me, great design is about staying grounded and expressing your creativity,’ says Jake. 'No matter how large or small, it should always be a place that makes you feel good. Physical beauty can be bought, but living well is a choice.’
This refined home library is painted edge to edge in mauve for a wonderful, enveloping feel.
In the kitchen diner, a vintage trestle table is paired with mid-century rattan and wood chairs by Charlotte Perriand.
With a stunning view of the outside space, the dining room features new wall panels that were made to match the home’s original wainscoting. The organically shaped dining table is complemented by cocooning round chairs.
Set amongst the treetops, the guest bedroom suite feels at one with the surrounding vernacular. The guest bathroom's tactile rattan mirror and curtaining on the vanity are thoroughly charming; bringing warmth and softness to the space.
Jake Arnold’s new book, Redefining Comfort, is the culmination of his symbiotic journey into interior design – pursuing his dream, reimagining industry norms, losing his fear, building client trust and feeling validated.
$43.49 at Amazon
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Ali Heath is a UK-based interiors journalist, stylist, creative consultant, interior designer, and author and has over 17 years freelance experience, working with prestigious interior magazines, newspapers, and private clients. Her work is featured regularly in many leading interior titles, and she is represented internationally by Living Inside agency, in Milan. Ali is the author of interiors book Create, publishing June 2023. Her first bestselling book, Curate, was published in 2020 and Ali is Contributing Editor and Creative Consultant for the new book from The White Company, The Art of Living with White, published in September 2022.
- Zara StaceyContent Editor
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