Aya Sumika, who played FBI agent Liz Warner on "Numb3rs," and Trevor John, an illustrator, moved into a just-built, two-bedroom condo in West Hollywood as newlyweds in 2007. "There was nothing interesting about it architecturally," Sumika said of the home. "We wanted a blank canvas." Her goal was to transform it into a "chic urban space with French touches." It's home to a pit bull rescue and two cats, and in 2010 the couple purchased Midori Ribbon, the luxury gift wrap firm Sumika's mother founded. Soon the condo began to reflect the new venture.
"I watched my mother start Midori on her kitchen table," says Sumika, who uses her Big Sur table from Crate & Barrel for dining, work and folding laundry for her 8-month-old daughter, Misa. For seating, Sumika has a matching Crate & Barrel bench and custom upholstered chairs. Above the table: a Murano glass chandelier. On the wall behind her is an oversized French-style bulletin board that DIY types could easily replicate with fabric and a latticework of ribbon.
"It's our inspiration wall, art you can change whenever you want," says Sumika, who painted the walls in a Dunn-Edwards paint called Nomadic Taupe. "Although there is a lot of color just beyond here in the living room, we kept this space light, neutral and airy, which allows for the dash of wild," she says, referring to the inspiration board.
Similarly, she amped up the small galley kitchen with a turquoise retro-style refrigerator by Northstar and a beaded chandelier from the Horchow catalog in a similar shade of blue.
When decorating, Sumika filled a 3-inch-thick binder with hundreds of images from magazines and worked with a neighbor, interior designer Elizabeth Knapp, to source lighting fixtures, wallpaper, fabrics and furniture.
"Liz was such a sport because she is modern and clean, and I like to draw outside of the lines," Sumika says. "She would pull me back from being too ornate. I'm a Leo, so I can get a little gaudy."
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