Studio DIY: Making Life a Party in Palm Springs
04/05/2023 | Sara McLean |
Nestled in the incredibly popular city of Palm Springs, California, sits a Southwestern-style abode recently renovated by Jeff and Kelly Mindell. Kelly, the creator of Studio DIY, exudes a passion for color and home life, and this passion permeated every part of the design work as they set out to create a dream vacation hub for family, friends and guests to gather and enjoy time together. We recently caught up with Kelly to talk about this colorful escape and walk us through the design process:
Please describe your design business and how you got started.
I started my blog, Studio DIY, in 2011 as a way of sharing my love for color and celebrating everyday life through projects and inspiration. My business has evolved so much over the last decade as I started a family, bought my first house and began to focus on sharing how we made that space—and now this Palm Springs project—into homes that feel intentional, vibrant and lived in.
What made you choose Palm Springs for purchasing and redesigning a home?
Palm Springs has a special place in our hearts—it’s one of the first trips we took together after moving to LA and we immediately fell in love with it. In 2014, we got married there and knew that someday we’d love to own a little slice of paradise, too!
Palm Springs is notable for mid-century homes, but this property is different. What was it about this property that spoke to you?
I was immediately intrigued by the large wood doors on the front of the house and what might lie behind them. There’s something magical about them and the courtyard they open in to. And when I finally saw that those dark, rich wood tones carried right on through to the incredible wood ceilings of the home, I was sold. It is such a unique property for the area, so almost everyone who lives in Palm Springs and finds out we own this home says, “we always wonder what’s behind those doors!” And it’s always exciting to get to show them!
Your mood board is not shy of color. How did you go about choosing colors for the home?
I wanted this home to feel cozy, warm and welcoming. Because Palm Springs is so bright and sunny almost 365 days a year, it’s common to decorate in a similar aesthetic, but I wanted this home to feel like an escape from the heat, where you could be wrapped in these deep, rich tones you’d never expect to see in the desert!
What is your favorite Dunn-Edwards color you used on the home?
We painted the main bedroom and bathroom Deep in the Jungle (DE5720), a green that looks equally as good in both the skylight-lit bathroom and the dark and moody bedroom.
The exterior of the home was painted in Musk (DE6088). How do you like this the Dunn-Edwards color on the home?
Because we’re in the desert, we wanted the exterior to be in a desert hue that still complemented the bolder and brighter tones inside the home. Musk is a subtle pink. It’s not too bright and still has so much depth. It completely transformed the property and gave it such striking curb appeal!
What is your favorite room in the house and why?
Our guest bathroom. We painted it Wine Stain (DEA145)—a dramatic, deep-purple hue that I’d never used before and just fell head over heels in love with. We paired it with an antique wood and marble buffet that we converted into a vanity, and a vintage crystal swag pendant light hanging down from the ceiling. I pulled in pinks and reds for unexpected accent colors and the whole space feels so storied and striking now. Sometimes the smallest spaces are the most fun to play with color!
From where did you draw inspiration when designing the home?
The home had Southwest-style architecture, so I poured through books about both California and Mexican interior design and architecture. The home felt like it had such a history, so I sought out vintage and antique pieces from all over the world as my jumping-off point for each room to ensure I was staying true to, and restoring, the life I imagined it once had!
What challenges, if any, did you face during the design process?
Because this home gets all its natural light from one side, the light in the house changes dramatically throughout the day. I had maybe 100 paint swatches on the wall as I sat and watched how each one transformed as the sun rose and set. Ultimately, we landed on the perfect shades for each room that look gorgeous when cast with light and just as cozy when the sun dips behind the mountains.
How would you describe your design aesthetic?
I’d say my style is sentimental, layered and unexpected. I like to adapt my style to fit the home I’m designing and stay true to its story while adding my signature elements of both color and texture.
How does this project differ from other projects you have done?
In our last home, we wanted to create a blank slate to layer color and texture on top of, so we painted the entire home Warm White (DEW380). It’s bright and beautiful. But in this home, we didn’t want a single wall to be white! Because it’s a vacation home, we knew we could take more risks.
What’s next for you and your future projects?
Now that I’ve tested the waters with deeper, darker colors on the walls, I’m ready to layer in more of that in some of the rooms in my LA home!
All Images Photo Credits: Jeff Mindell