Whether it's the dress she's wearing, the serum she's using, or the lipstick she's trying, I admit, I'm heavily influenced by Chriselle Lim. But it's not just her cool, polished style that has me following her every move, it's her devotion as a mother of two, her business savvy as the founder of Cinc Studios, and her creative genius at the helm of Chriselle Factor and the sell-out Chriselle Lim Collection. Not to mention that this is all accompanied by a down-to-earth, filter-free realness that is both relatable and inspiring.
But I'm not alone in my crush. I'm joined by over a million other fans (she has 1.1 million on Instagram alone) who are also in love with all of the above. And now you can add home to your list of Lim things to be obsessed with. Just like her personal style, Lim's home in Palos Verdes, California is polished and cool with a hint of glam. Built in 1965, the 2654-square-foot house was in need of a modern facelift so Lim worked closely with the interior designer, Erick Garcia of Maison Trouvaille to make some contemporary upgrades that reflected Lim's style but also accommodated for their growing family.
Because it dates back to the 60s, the architecture was more traditional in style and Lim says really influenced the design process. "I wanted the house to feel modern and new since our budget was pretty limited (they had $250,000)," she says. "We worked with strong clean lines and simple and modern finishes and really didn’t touch the architecture of the house too much. We just added some walls here and there. I would say the general style of the architecture is still pretty traditional."
We wanted it to feel modern and warm at the same time.
Overall, Lim and Garcia aimed to keep the design fairly minimal and modern. Step inside and see how they transformed the space.
The kitchen is very clean and minimal. Before the renovation, Lim tells me she had a tiny kitchen with "random unused space" in between the kitchen and the dining area. So they used that space to expand the kitchen, doubling it in size. "We have this giant island which has become so useful for hosting parties," she explains. "We lay out all of our food and snacks on there for the guests. We also have a little wooden extension from the huge island which is our breakfast table. We have a family that loves to eat which means we have a lot of food and snacks laying around."
During the kitchen design process, Lim emphasized the importance of having a lot of storage space. "I really dislike a cluttered kitchen and I wanted everything to have a place and cabinet of their own," she says. "Our island has cabinets and drawers from the front to the back and a lot of hidden cabinets in the kitchens."
Lim decided to go with a light colored timber in the kitchen for more of an airy/zen feel. All of their appliances are from Samsung including the fridge, stove, and the microwave.
Lim didn’t make any renovation changes to the dining room, just furniture updates. "We wanted it to feel modern and warm at the same time," she says.
They filled the empty space near the fireplace with logs which gave the modern minimal space some much-needed warmth and an earthy rustic element. "The fireplace was initially a plain white color but we painted it in this gray cement color because I wanted it to look like cement without having to actually replace it with cement," says Lim. "I love the dramatic wall here in a dining room."
The fireplace adds a stylish seguay from the dining room into the living room.
The neutral yet warm palette of earthy hues and soft grays follows through into the living room. Each of the colors are layered to create a textural and cozy space.
One design element that is prominent throughout every room in the house is the abundance of natural light. The living room bathes in the glow of the L.A. light coming from the far window wall. Such a special design element that really lifts the space.
The warm, light-colored timber from the kitchen continues into the master bedroom with the headboard and side tables. This is relatively simple by design but so incredibly calm and dreamy. This peaceful sentiment—almost spa-like in feel—was really important to Lim in the design planning stages. "I knew I wanted to go with an all neutral theme with no color at all," she explains. "I wanted it to feel light, airy, and zen-like I think we achieved that."
Originally, this space was the playroom on the bottom floor but Lim decided to give Chloe their master bedroom—which she tells me was way too small for them anyway—and turn the playroom into the master instead. "The downfall though is that we lost our playroom and I’m definitely seeing the challenges with that decision," admits Lim. "Now Chloe's toys end up everywhere in the house but this space is so tucked away downstairs from the rest of the house that it almost feels like a hidden oasis and I love that.
One of her favorite pieces in the bedroom is the rug. "I bought this huge woven rug from Loloi which pretty much covers the entire room and I love it," she says. "It ties all the pieces together."
The headboard was custom-made for the bed and designed to run the breadth of the wall.
Lim fell in love with the Sierra statement chairs from Crofthouse the minute she saw them but then realized how oversized they are. She struggled to find a proper space for them. "I couldn’t really figure out where to place them until we got this rug," she says. "It’s amazing how a rug can tie everything together."
These chairs really do finish off the space and add a unique polished look to the bedroom that you don't normally see.
Finding the right pieces was a process but the round mirror was an easy purchase from Restoration Hardware.
Despite the color-averse palette request, the natural texture of the pieces used throughout really add that warmth and "color."
The master bathroom was the biggest change in the house. It was originally a family room/play area for Lim's kids, but because of the new addition to their family (baby Collette), they needed an extra room. "We decided to build out a tiny hallway down the stairs and add a door to an open space to make it into the master," says Lim. "I actually loved how it turned out."
With such a busy schedule running her own business and taking care of two children, Lim needs a place to unwind and take care of herself. This is the perfect respite. In fact, that was Lim's personal goal for the entire house. "Our day-to-day is so hectic and crazy that I wanted a place where I felt inspired but could also unwind and relax," she says.
The brief before they began planning was "simple, modern with a touch of glam." We think she nailed it with this bathroom.
Since the rest of the house is so simple and minimal Lim really wanted the powder room to be a bit more glam and make a statement. "We decided to go with a dark vibe so we found this wallpaper from Juju Papers which I fell in love with," exclaims Lim.
If there's one place you can really experiment and let loose design-wise, it's the powder room. And Lim didn't hold back. "I really played it up with the black and gold accents with this amazing statement mirror and brass hardware," she says. "It’s the smallest room in the house but also the loudest."
Who can resist that marble basin? It's a total dream.
As we mentioned earlier, Chloe’s room used to be Lim's old master bedroom. They knocked down a wall to add a bit more space and made it "super girly and playful." Since they lost the playroom in this renovation, they used the extra space in Chloe's bedroom to bring in some of her toys.
Chloe's giant pink velvet bed from Jonathan Louis is a real showstopper.
It's always an art hiding all the toys in a kid's bedroom but Lim nailed it with these chic storage bins from IKEA.
This gorgeous kitchen set from Milton & Goose sits in the corner where an abundance of natural light pours in. The perfect set up to make a cup of imaginary tea.
Lim added a large chalkboard that is the shape of a house so Chloe can draw whenever she wants. Such a smart idea to keep them from drawing on the walls.
Lim was pregnant during this renovation which presented a challenge and meant they only had two months to finish everything before baby Colette arrived. "We did not meet the deadline but we came very close to it," she says. Regardless, they still managed to make Colette’s nursery look super magical and whimsical. All the furniture is from Serena & Lily and the wallpaper is from Juju Papers.