Styling by Rosy Fridman

Published on February 27, 2019

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On Doré: Jumpsuit by Mara Hoffman. Custom Integrated Couch Sarah Sherman Samuel; Cushions and Pillows in Newport Fabric Fabricut; Iride Cocktail Table by Alessandro Busana and Raoul Swivel Chair by Shine by S.H.O  Sotheby’s Home; Vintage Waterfall Bench Chairish; Hygge Rug Loloi Rugs; Pure White Paint HGTV Home by Sherwin Williams. Photo by Jason Frank Rothenberg

Garance Doré appears on the cover of Domino’s Spring 2019 issue. Subscribe to see the full home tour and be the first to receive each issue!

Anyone familiar with the musings of Garance Doré, the French photographer, writer, style icon, O.G. influencer, and creative force behind Atelier Doré, knows that she doesn’t make rash decisions. Candid essays filled with introspection about her life are as much a part of her brand as her chic and easy approach to style. When the native Corsican and onetime New Yorker decided to buy a large, modern house in Mar Vista and put down more permanent roots in California, the commitment came with some surprises and serious soul-searching.

“I felt like L.A., as a city, was a woman, and she was holding me in her arms, like that Red Hot Chili Peppers song,” says Doré over a cup of tea and a plate of roasted vegetables at the Superba café, near her two-year-old house, which was in the final stages of a much-deliberated renovation just days before this photo shoot took place.

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Surfboards by Britt Merrick for H Merrick; Bandeau Chair Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg

Doré is explaining how she fell in love with L.A. when she spent a month in town finishing her book, Love Style Life, at the Standard Hotel in 2014: “I woke up every morning and could see the whole city. I’d open the windows and write for a few hours. I was so happy. It’s engraved in my brain.”

After some consideration back in Manhattan, she decided that Los Angeles, specifically the west side, was the right mix of urban and wild for her changing, more relaxed outlook on life. “For me, there is a back-to-my-roots kind of thing with the beach,” she says. “It’s grounding to know I am near the water.”

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Nassa Basket Pendant Lamp $299, Seminyak Large Grey Planter $90, Fuze Ivory White Stone Dining Table $1,099 CB2; Tanner Chair $599 and Fenwick Chair $699 Barnaby Lane; Holly Canisters by Wyatt Speight Rue from $350, Tube Series Ceramic Vase by BZippy & Co. $300, Karui Tray by Skultuna $268, Tray in Bleached Maple and Brass by Vincent Pocsik $1,200 Lawson Fenning; Brass Pin Candleholder by Gentner Design food52.com; Pure White Paint HGTV Home by Sherwin- Williams
Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg

At first, Doré’s vision involved a charming 1940s bungalow or an even older Craftsman with character. But as a first-time homeowner, the repairs and maintenance of an old house felt daunting, and she craved large windows to let in the sunlight and more space for her studio; her dog, Lulu; friends; and family visiting from Europe.

“Once you make this decision—to live in something more modern, built by a developer—the question is how do you add character? How do you soften the edges? They’re often cold and feel like a bachelor pad,” she says. “The house had no charm.”

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Round Chambers Mirror $1,200 Croft House; Sconces Hudson Valley Lighting; Tiles Fireclay Tile; Custom Cabinetry with Daino Real Marble Counter Stoneland USA; Single-Handle Wall-Mount Bathroom Faucet Trim in Champagne Bronze $282 Delta Faucet; Ceramic Sculpture by Melinda Forste from Merchant Gallery; Trays HD Buttercup; Mesa Rug from $450 Blockshop Textiles
Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg

After conversations with various interior designers, most of whom Doré felt were trying to push her into more expensive choices, she found her match with Sarah Sherman Samuel. Doré says that Samuel, who has a cult following of her own, understood her needs completely.

“Sarah was so open to ideas. I don’t want a decorator to shame me. I was like, ‘Dude, I can’t do that.’ They were all freaking me out with the budget. A person who is less secure would fall for it,” she says, comparing decor to personal style, noting “it doesn’t have to be expensive to be good.”

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Hanging Rattan Egg Chair and Burl Wood Cocktail Table by Milo Baughman Chairish; Vintage Chairs by Herman Miller in Bolden Fabric Fabricut; Hygge Rug Loloi Rugs; Custom Integrated Couch Sarah Sherman Samuel; Cushions and Pillows in Newport Fabric Fabricut; Vintage Japanese Wood Sculptures from Merchant Gallery; CSS-8-1 by Jen Garrido Jen Garrido, framed by Simply Framed Simply Framed; Photograph by Maria Del Rio Del Rio Photography, framed by Framebridge; Ceramic O’Dear Bowl by Ben Medansky $1,600 Lawson Fenning; Circle Line Block-Print Pillow $95 Kesslyr Dean. Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg 

The first priority was to remove a wall that was separating the kitchen from the living room, creating an airy, loftlike first floor. Next, they replaced a tiny kitchen window to let in that light she craved. Samuel suggested two built-in sofas to flank the fireplace along one of the long walls. They have curved arms, amping up the Mediterranean beach house vibe, and thick cushions upholstered in buff pink linen. Samuel helped Doré select creamy white Moroccan rugs, a hanging basket chair from Chairish, a vintage velvet chair from Sotheby’s Home, and an impressive collection of hand-thrown ceramics, which all delivered immediate warmth and texture to the space. Two vintage Herman Miller chairs upholstered in cobalt blue bring a jolt of vibrant color.

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Frame TV Samsung; Custom Cushion in Duffield Fabric Fabricut; Palais Royal Table by Anya Sebton and Eva Lilja Löwenhielm StudioTwentySeven; Variegate Fruit Bowl $180 Sin; Short Mug by Workaday Handmade $40 Hawkins New York.
Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg

To break up the big-box feel of the living area, Samuel created a nook for Doré’s favorite time of the day—breakfast—with a built-in banquette upholstered in striped linen and raw natural leather, anticipating that the nicks and scratches will add to its appeal. The adjacent kitchen, including the fixtures, GE Café appliances, and massive marble countertops, is completely devoid of shine.

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Terracotta Pendant Lamps Hand and Eye Studio; Custom Doors for IKEA Cabinets by Sarah Sherman Samuel Semihandmade Signature; Concrete Backsplash and Counter Tiles Concrete Collaborative; Countertops Caesar Stone US; Range Hood Zephyr Online; Energy Star French-Door Refrigerator with Brushed Bronze Hardware Cafe Appliances, Stainless Interior Built-In Dishwasher with Hidden Controls and Brushed Bronze Hardware Cafe Appliances, Built-In Touch Control Induction Cooktop Cafe Appliances; Single-Handle Pull-Down Kitchen Faucet in Champagne Bronze $606 Delta Faucet; Nerd Counter Stools by David Geckeler for Muuto $545 Design Within Reach 
Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg

“There’s a richness to matte finishes, like honed marble,” says Samuel, who drew from her signature palette of colors and materials, using soft white and pale peach paint, blond wood, fireclay subway tile, and loads of muted pink and earthy neutrals. Terracotta accents, such as rugs from Block Shop Textiles and handmade pendant lamps from Hand and Eye, add depth and nuance.

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Midget Farrelly Surfing Shore Break, Makaha,1968, by LeRoy Grannis; Dark Night Paint HGTV Home by Sherwin- Williams; Deva Velvet Platform Bed $1,310 Lulu and Georgia; Organic Mattress Avocado Green Mattress; Custom-Dyed Bedding Flaneur; Dot Dash Pillows $85 Blockshop Textiles; Simple Knit Oversize Throw $295, Simple Mohair Throw $195, Wooden Sphere $65 by Kristina Dam Hawkins New York; Stools Sotheby’s Home, upholstered in Journey Fabric Calico Corners; Horizon Vase $225 A Question of Eagles; Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg

Once you make this decision—to live in something more modern, built by a developer—the question is how do you add character? How do you soften the edges?

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Custom Bed designed by Sarah Sherman Samuel, covered in Graffito Fabric Kelly Wearstler; Shape Shifter Mural Drop It Modern; Rope End Table by Studio A Home $499 Perigold; Alto Wood Arm Sconce $339 Cedar and Moss; Uni Candlestick $48 Sin; Leather Catchall $65 Jenni Kayne; Paint HGTV Home by Sherwin- Williams; Custom-Dyed Bedding Flaneur; Mini Dot Block-Print Pillow $95 Kesslyr Dean; . Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg

A few more pops of pattern and color, like a guest bathroom covered floor to ceiling in Riad El Fenn blue and white tile, and a bed upholstered in a graphic Kelly Wearstler print, create vignettes that are perfect for—you guessed it—social media.“We are natives in this Instagram world. Sarah and I, we’re always like this,” Doré says as she aims her phone’s camera lens at the low cocktail table, which is perfectly styled with books and objects. “One thing we both really understand,” says Samuel, “is that you need to be able to take pictures in your own house.”  

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Woven Malawi Chair $399, Ixtapa Love Seat $389, Braided Jute Pouf $90, Shroom Coffee Table $799, Pool Party White Sofa $1,399 CB2; Swallowtail Rug $450 Blockshop Textiles; Amalfi Pillow Heather Taylor Home; Formas I Pillow $185 Minna .
Photography by Jason Frank Rothenberg

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Tour more homes we love: 

A Massachusetts Farmhouse So Quaint You’ll Want to Move to the Countryside
One Couple, Polar-Opposite Styles, and How They Made It Work
This Museum-Like Home Puts Our Vintage Collections to Shame

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