Gilding the Design Lily in Beverly Hills

People / Places / October 3, 2016

The tiny home trend notwithstanding, this miniscule home office in Beverly Hills gilds the lily.

It measures eight feet six inches by 13 feet six inches. And interior designer Christopher Grubb pulled out all the stops for his client, a single mother seeking quality and a classic design.

“She wanted a kind of a library effect, but much richer – with a wood stain on the ceiling,” he says. “She didn’t want it to look too much like a home office.”

There’s a credenza for a shredder and printer – and no clutter. And bookshelves for displaying favorite items, along with an armoire, mirrored to make the room feel larger. The desk was designed to look more like a piece of furniture, attached to a return in the credenza.

“It highlights the richness of the wood, with a stain that’s not quite an ebony and more walnut,” he says. “There’s hand-painted gold on the foot of the table and desk and back of the credenza.

He selected a chair that’s hardly the typical seating for a desk – yielding a space that feels more like a living area than office. And stools, for visitors.

“We went to stools because they’re easier to move,” he says. “He daughters can come in and sit down – and they make the space feel bigger – they’re functional and they feel restrained.”

And he selected damask for the draperies – for just a touch of drama. And then there’s the unexpected gesture of detailing the drawer knobs in rock crystal. “They’re almost like jewelry,” he says. “She wanted to make a necklace of it, she liked it so much.”

Finally, there’s the vaulted ceiling to give dimension to the room, with its view to nature outside.

It may or may not qualify as a home office, but surely it’s a comfortable place to enjoy paying the bills and researching another recipe.


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Michael Welton
I write about architecture, art, and design for national and international publications. I am the author of "Drawing from Practice: Architects and the Meaning of Freehand" (Routledge, 2015), and the former architecture critic for the News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C.




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