Santa Monica home of denim executive Jerome Dahan fuses style, art, toys
Citizens of Humanity founder Jerome Dahan may be one of the kings of luxury denim, but at home in Santa Monica, he cultivates his polychromatic side that’s influenced by his travels, regular flea-market visits and his love of 1960s and ‘70s design.
When Dahan purchased the 1913 house from Blythe Danner and Bruce Paltrow in 2006, the home had a pronounced Shabby Chic vibe. Today, the nearly 5,300-square-foot home exudes elegance and exoticism. Dahan has redecorated twice since then, furnishing the four-bedroom home with a mix of contemporary and vintage furnishings from 1st Dibs, international flea markets, Fat Chance and Modern One, among other sources.
Dahan designs clothing for men and women, but many of his grown-up toys speak to his masculine side — he has dedicated two spaces in his home to the many motorcycles he races, not to mention a rare 1956 Mercedes-Benz 300SL Gullwing.
But the interiors of the Santa Monica house are eye-catching — even feminine — as color, pattern and texture fuse with notable artworks by Jean-Michel Basquiat, graffiti artist Barry McGee, limited-edition toy designer Kaws, Los Angeles artist Sterling Ruby and photographer Douglas Kirkland. “Fashion and interior design go hand in hand,” Dahan says, “because they share color, texture and fabric.”
All of these elements come together in the living room, where Dahan incorporates brick red walls with warm gold wallpaper, an antique Chinese Deco rug from the ‘20s and whimsical accessories from his travels. Curved armchairs by Milo Baughman from the 1970s and a modern couch from Diva Furniture in Los Angeles are arranged in front of an ornate fireplace. A vintage glass pendant that Dahan found at the Clignancourt flea market in Paris adds a delicate touch to a room dominated by Basquiat’s monumental drawing “Ribs Ribs.”
The kitchen, Dahan says, is where he spends most of his time. The sunny space is enhanced by the indigo Galileo Glass wallpaper from Brooklyn, N.Y., design studio Eskayel. Eschewing a formal dining room, Dahan dines at an oversized custom banquette that seats up to eight and offers a delightful blast of color with seats made from bright orange hides. The tabletop is glass, which sits atop bases from two 1970s Pierre Cardin brass tables.
“It’s a good mix,” Dahan says.
The artworks are museum quality, yet they don’t overpower the interiors because of the strong graphic elements throughout the house. In the master bedroom, Dahan has mounted a colorful abstract painting by Frank Stella against a gray-and-white patterned wallpaper. In the second-floor foyer, red-and-white polka-dot wallpaper on one wall complements Basquiat’s “Lead Plate With Hole,” which, in turn, is reflected in a wall of mirrors — another 1970s touch. Other dramatic elements include vividly patterned rugs that add warmth and a slight hippie vibe to the interiors.
Asked what draws him to Basquiat — three of his works are prominently on display — Dahan’s response hints at what makes the fanciful elements in his home work so well. “He’s like a child,” he says.
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