Inside the Living Room Makeover of Emily Henderson's Editorial Director

Sacha Strebe

Decorating can be a tricky task. From planning the look you want to finding the furniture to match, the process can be lengthy and labored (especially when you're on a shoestring budget). But for Los Angeles–based designer Brady Tolbert (he's also editorial director for Emily Henderson), this is what he loves most. So when he stumbled on this 1920s Spanish-style home in West Hollywood, it was love at first sight. (Who could resist those original hardwood floors and beamed ceilings?)

Tolbert set about designing a casual, comfy, masculine space that he "really wanted to live in." He told MyDomaine: "I love a room to feel collected, curated, and thoughtful. Too much old and it looks like a thrift store, and too much new and it looks like you just ripped a page out of a catalog. My style seems to be a combo of the old and the new, with a casual comfort that still makes you feel like you can crash on the couch and throw your feet up on the coffee table."

The challenge he says was in "pulling triggers." It seems the old adage still rings true: An artist's work is never done. And in this case, Tolbert was his own worst critic. "Ask anyone in the EHD office and they will let you know that I change my mind as quick as a toddler loses his attention span," he said. "Designing a real room for myself for the first time was a learning experience for me. I made a lot of mistakes, and I learned a lot too, but overall I love the way it turned out."

Ahead, Tolbert talks us through each design element, from the color scheme to his greatest find. 

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