Step Inside Star Stylist Jamie Mizrahi’s Low-Key Montecito Retreat

Interior designer Mike Moser helped touch up the Tudor-style Southern California house for Mizrahi’s family of four

inside sunlight plants children womanJamie Mizrahi with sons Yale (left) and Cy in their home’s poolside “margarita shack.” Antique Portuguese bowls hang on the wall.

“Too good to be true.” That’s exactly what Jamie and Nico Mizrahi thought when they came across what would eventually become their family’s picture-perfect getaway in Montecito, California. Not surprising given that the six-bedroom, light-filled Tudor-style house features outdoor space off every room, a lush and hospitable pool area, and an upper lawn.

A top-tier stylist, Jamie works with celebrities so famous they are practically mononymous: Adele, Ariana, Suki. You get the idea. So when she’s at home in Los Angeles, she’s likely on call. That’s why Montecito—less than 90 minutes away—felt like just the right spot to look for a weekend retreat. “That was the real draw,” Jamie says. “We thought about Palm Springs, but that’s too far to go for a night. With Montecito, it’s a really nice way for us to escape LA, and I can say, ‘I’m not available to do anything,’ but we can still drive in if something comes up.”

kitchen range wood cabinetry drawers wood floor

The kitchen features a Lacanche range. Custom-made tiles by Aviva Halter.

kitchen nook custom banquette bamboo chairs

A Hal Pauley tapestry hangs above a kitchen nook complete with a custom banquette and bamboo chairs from Brownrigg, all in Le Manach fabrics.

The family had fallen in love with the area slowly over the past few years while visiting friends who lived in the vicinity, beginning to entertain the idea of buying a place of their own. “When COVID hit, we were like, it’s such a bummer we haven’t found anything yet,” Jamie recalls. “But then, two months into the pandemic, a real estate agent sent me this house.” It just happened to be on one of their favorite streets. “Then we went to see it, and it turned out the family who owned it were very similar to our family. Their setup and where they were from. We wrote them a letter and we got it!”

That early attraction was powerful. “Initially, we weren’t going to do much to it,” Jamie says, citing the location as reason enough to be completely satisfied. “We just loved the property. It’s on a flat acre with beautiful mountain views. The neighborhood feels intimate and cozy. We are able to ride our bikes and walk the dogs and walk down to get breakfast. We live in a canyon in LA, so we can’t do any of that.”

children woman chair table

Mizrahi and her sons in the family room. Atelier Vime pendant; Matthias Vriens floor lamp; custom armchair and ottoman in a Claremont fabric.

couches fireplace room rug table

In the living room, a Howe London chandelier hangs above two C&C Milano sofas. The faux- tortoise marble mantel and floral motif on beams were painted by Connor Owens. The plaster shell sconces are by Rose Uniacke.

Still, there were zhuzhes to zhuzh and alterations to be made. And while the preliminary ambition was modest—some tweaks here, some furniture there—it soon turned into more of a full-on renovation. “First, when you walked into the house and went upstairs, there was a balcony overlooking the family room,” Jamie notes. “We were like, well, that’s got to go. We have kids and they could jump over. And then there was this beam in the center of the kitchen, and we were like, we have to remove this…. And like with so many things, we just kind of kept adding as we went along.”

Jamie had tried to go it alone but soon realized she would enjoy the process and the results even more if she had a creative partner. “Even when I’m styling, I work with designers to collaborate on a dress,” she says. “I just love having the conversation.” So she turned to interior designer Mike Moser to help in getting things just right.

guest room chairs table

Armchairs by Adrien Audoux and Frida Minet stand at either end of a Paola Buffa cocktail table in a guest room.

closet chairs table

1950s Swedish stools pull up to a vintage iron table in a guest room closet. Custom Courtney Applebaum terra-cotta light fixture. Walls and millwork in Benjamin Moore’s Swiss Coffee.

Still, that did not preclude her from having a very clear vision of what this house needed. “Jamie has got an insanely wicked sense of taste,” Moser says. “She’s so creative and spontaneous and not afraid to try new things, not afraid to take a risk.” He describes her vision for the haven as “cozy but elevated. She wanted layers. She wanted colors. She wanted patterns.”

“I knew I didn’t have the time or resources to source everything or measure everything,” Jamie admits. “We’d just sit at dinner, and we’d comb through a thousand fabrics and start putting together stories,” Moser adds.

TV room tapestry patterned couch ottoman

In the TV room an 18th-century Aubusson tapestry hangs above a Mike Moser Studio sofa wearing a Claremont print. Custom ottoman with a cushion of Pierre Frey fabric.

While Jamie focused on the look and feel, and the shopping—lots and lots of shopping—Nico, an investor, was primarily taken with elements of comfort, tech, and security. Moser shares, too, that the doting parents were equally obsessed with making sure their two young boys “were seen” and considered in the design.

Because the house was a place the family would visit every so often, it allowed for a more liberal approach when it came to diving into patterns and textures. “Things on the wall—art, tapestries—we were like, ‘Okay, this isn’t our full-time place,’” Jamie says. “Take that floral sofa upstairs—I will like seeing it every weekend, but I don’t know that that would be in a main room of the house I live in all the time.”

As it turns out, Jamie and Nico will soon be making decisions about their primary residence, as they have recently sold their home in Beverly Hills. While renting in the neighborhood, the couple are “on the hunt” for their next house. “We are just being really patient about it,” Jamie says. “And I learned a lot in the process of doing Montecito. The biggest lesson, though, is that I just want to keep doing this, however I can. I love it so much. And I am bummed that it’s over!”

Via Architectural Digest

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