• April 6, 2015

    Hope you had a great Easter weekend!

    I was lucky enough to have been invited to Palm Springs for the weekend with a bunch of moms and teenage boys to stay at La Quinta Resort in Palm Springs. The hotel is a gigantic but incredibly charming golf resort built in the 1920′s surrounded by a beautiful mountain range. The entire site was so pretty it felt like a movie backdrop. And to make it even more interesting, I stumbled on one of the most magical houses I’ve ever seen….

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    While wandering the area I happened to stumble upon a wedding being set up in a courtyard of  a house in a quiet corner of the hotel property.

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    Something with the house really intrigued me and I had to take a closer look.

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    Turns out the house once belonged to Swedish silent film star Greta Garbo.


    The entire house was left the way it was when she lived in it.

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    The simple yet grand Spanish 1920′s kitchen.

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    The kitchen led out to a lowered sunken living room…

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    Where time seemed to have stood still.

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    The house consisted of three separate wings divided  by the courtyard.

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    The living room was very Scandinavian.

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    I can only imagine what it looked like at one time.

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    A grand soaring living room.

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    And amazingly old/modern bathrooms.

    How cool!

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    I bet the lone seeking movie star enjoyed some real peace and quiet here.



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  • April 1, 2015

    As you read this blog post you’ll realize I’m certifiably nuts.

    I’m moving in to a new home in 15 days that we’ve been gut renovating for three months.  Or let me correct myself, we’re moving in to the one bedroom we can sleep in. The home doesn’t even have floors yet!

    Yet I’ve decided to participate in the 6 week internet makeover obsession the ONE ROOM CHALLENGE.  I meant to makeover a powder room or something simple, but tonight I had a change of heart and decided to select one of the  biggest rooms in the house – OUR KITCHEN.  We’ve come a bit on the way, but it’s FAR, FAR from being done. And because there is no client pushing me to finish, I want thank Linda for inviting me again so I’ll be forced to complete it quickly!!!

    Scroll down and you’ll see why I’m certifiably nuts.

    But first have a look at all the cool people participating this time.



    For you new to my blog, hi and welcome!!  I’m an interior designer/blogger with a lifestyle label selling mostly bedding and carpets that will expand in the coming months (www.jillsorensenlifetyle.com)

    In December we bought an old 60′s house with a killer view up on Mulholland drive in Los Angeles that needed a gut renovation.   I finally realized my childhood dream of moving to California a year and a half ago when I packed up my family and business in Virginia and moved across the country. Renovating this home has been a heartwarming but challenging process.

    I will get you up to speed where we’re at with the kitchen renovation next week, but first I need to show you were we started.


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    This little kitchen with low ceilings….

    dining prior

    …and this dark dining room…


    …and this entry way that blocked the pretty view, was about to become ONE BIG KITCHEN.

    It was demolished.


    Wall removed….


    Three rooms became one.

    6kitchen opened up copy

    This is what’s to become our new kitchen.

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    (Looking the other way)  Our new big eat in kitchen and hangout space.



    Image via Novogratz

    A big open kitchen that serves as the heart of the home.


    (Image Unknown)

    With a waterfall island.


    Black details, I’m obsessed with black details.


    Black accents and dark floors.


    This plan is not finalized yet but I’m going for something along this vibe….( at least today)

    A muted backdrop, with some tropical accents, brass, gold, natural wood, black, white, stone and yellow.

    I love yellow in kitchens.

    JillSorensen Kitchen ideas

    The whole feeling will be a bit “Frank Sinatraish.”

    Because just outside the kitchen window is this.


    A pool and terrace with a 60′s pergola.


    It will inspire the kitchen design as your rooms extend outdoors in Cali.

    I want a kitchen where friends can hang out, swim in the pool…


    ..and with martini in hand enjoy this view.

    I’ll get you up to speed next week where we’re at and the INSANE amount of work that is left. But my contractor Javier Gonzalez promised me we can have it done in 6 weeks. I really hope he is right…(Javier I hope you’re reading this)

    You can also follow along on INSTAGRAM@JILLSORENSEN

    Hop on over and see what the talented designers/bloggers area making over.




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  • March 29, 2015

    A few days ago we started painting, not all of the house, but enough so we at least can move in.

    One of the things I’m kind of obsessing over in design lately is black moldings and windows. This house has low ceilings and sunny California outside so I have to be careful not to be too heavy handed.  Since I have the luxury of living there first and seeing what the light does to the walls, I can wait to decide just how heavy I can go with the use of black moldings.

    We’re going to move in to the guest room for the first couple of weeks until the floor goes down. The plan for that room is to be a Beverly Hills hotel inspired suite with my own twist, so it was painted coral.


    However the way the light hits the room at certain hours of the day it gives it a different peach than anticipated.

    I’m waiting to see if the black crown and base mold that’s going in, and the white accents will tone it down. The inside of the closet will be mint green.

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    This was an inspiration picture.

    05-hbx-black-sofa-drake-1213-lgn-54328096 photo via House Beautiful

    LOVE how peach looks with black and grey.

    In the master bath I painted the drywall beams semi gloss ONYX, by Benjamin Moore to make them look like real beams.


    I was a little worried it would be too heavy, but I ended of loving it.

    So I’m going to do the same in the closets that also have drywall beams.


    Javier met with Jose in master to see how the quarzite stone slab will be cut. I’m waiting for those to go in before I finalize wallpaper.


    I dared to paint the shutters black.

    (Onyx again.)


    Base and crown mold and floor is not in yet, but I still decided to paint the rest of the shutters in the hallway black as well.

    Luke picked his own very simple, but chic color scheme, or perhaps I should say a non color scheme.


    His bedroom has White dove by Benjamin Moore on the walls with Gibraltar Cliff on all the moldings.

    A new closet door goes in tomorrow.

    Jill Sorensen-Lukesroom

    It’s super simple but with the gray terrace and turquoise swimming pool he right outside his window he might have made a great choice!

    See you later in the week!


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  • March 22, 2015

    The renovations are going at full speed and we have only three weeks left to the move in date.  I apologize for the intermittent blog posts, but sometimes things get overwhelming and I’m working late in to the night and the blog falls behind. (If you read Swedish follow my daily renovation blog for Swedish design magazine Skona Hem here.)

    The time has come to go in to full design mode.

    Here’s an update of what has been going on…

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    I’m picking a paint color scheme ahead of finalizing wallpaper selections which is a challenge. I had planned to do it after we move in, but we are now instead getting some areas painted before.

    I’m forced to use restraint with the colors this time.

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    While there are a lot of vibrant hues I want to use, they have to be used the right way so I can create that California indoor/outdoor vibe.

    photo 3(4) IInstead Invite all the beauty of the California landscape in to the house.

    The house is facing a pretty, sunny view from a mountain perch, but it has a hill behind it making the lighting perhaps the trickiest I’ve ever worked with.  A major color picking challenge that I will share more about later!

    You might remember the kitchen looking like this…


    It’s now in the process of being installed.

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    It’s a calm white backdrop, but here is my color inspiration for kitchen.

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    Image via instagram/kellywearstler

    Yellow and graphite…used sparsely.

    The living room used to look like this….

    6a copy

    And here it was last week…

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    A new room has formed and a new fireplace has been built. Drywall is up and doors have plastic on them ready for a paint job.

    I want a seventies fireplace in the middle with stacked quartz stone.

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    Kind of like this…



    The living room looked like this from the other direction after taking down the walls.


    Yesterday it looked like this….

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    Still along way to go.

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    The brick veneer is going on the double sided fireplace so we can hang a TV on it.

    And this is the new room in the living room, the den…

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    Built in bookcases are going in here.

    The pool is right outside the taped up window so here is some color inspiration.

    photo 4

    image via instagram@kellywearstler

    There’s a lot more to share which I will later in the week. I’m also getting ready to sell some furniture on Chairish so stay tuned!


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