Step into Olivia Culpo’s enviable Los Angeles home

Olivia Culpo doesn’t make rash decisions, and her journey toward a new home in Los Angeles was no different. The former Miss Universe, the actress and entrepreneur who lived in a very pink, 1,300-square-foot loft—half of which was an inviting room and closet—looked at the estate for a long time before landing on Encino. “I lived in Hollywood in the depths of it, in the midst of all the noise, and realized I really wanted something that felt more calm, almost like a haven,” she says. “A respite from the city.”

But finding the perfect home, a new five-bedroom home with backyard view and a pool to welcome her big, tight-knit family, was only the first step. The interior design part will take much longer. “For a lot of my friends and family, when I turned year one into year two and I still barely had any furniture, everyone was freaking out, like, ‘Why are you taking so long?'” But, Culpo says, “I’m a very slow decision maker, and I’m very careful and methodical.” She adds, “I just couldn’t make up my mind!”

Culpo enlisted the help of a trusted and patient collaborator: Jess Diab. (Home construction handled by iBuild in Los Angeles) Diab designed her aforementioned “Little Glamour of a Loft” in 2017, at the time working with Orlando Soria and Heindel. The two were making progress, but then “the pandemic hit, and Olivia went home to Rhode Island and watched Kelly Wearstler’s MasterClass — as we all did,” Diab says. “Having known her before, this was remarkable [a shift]. We started talking about design in a different way. She was the perfect melting pot of these factors… and she understood the power of home in a way we couldn’t before. That changed the course of everything.”

Fully invested, the couple completely scrapped their design plans and began furnishing the house piece by piece, literally, with a mix of new and old items found in showrooms, on shopping trips, and through Chairish and 1stDibs. Periodically, Diab met up with her client laying the plane down on a 37-inch desktop computer as she dropped the sofas, chairs, or tables they were thinking of designs for. “Each piece lived in different rooms,” says Diab. The designer and Culpo moved the furniture from one place to another in order to find its most harmonious location.

This cautious and attentive pace may be slow, but Diab feels responsible for Culpo’s truly valuing everything in her home. “All the designers can flip your home in 24 hours, and the shoot would look great, but you wouldn’t have any connection to these pieces,” she says. Culpo admits that suffering from each component “wasn’t the easiest way, but I think it was the most helpful.”

For the fashion influencer, the process was also a real education. Culpo realized she’s a sucker for symmetry, and has a strong affinity for combining textures. “I learned the importance of using different textures to make the room feel full,” she says of developing an “eye, because I was so meticulous with every aspect.” On her downtime, she pondered French architecture and the work of several French interior designers, as well as Instagram and Pinterest, in pursuit of a calming, upscale aesthetic that would showcase unique textures and neutral hues. Subconsciously, the painting appears to be edging out the coat of Oliver Sprinkles’ Culpo dog. “It wasn’t intentional,” she says and then laughs. “I just really love my dog, so maybe this was inspiring me to make my own decision without my knowledge.”

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