COTE DE TEXAS

TOO FACED: SIX DEGREES OF SEPARATION!!!

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This was going to be a quickie, no big deal post.  Sure, sure, sure – I can hear you saying!!


Go get that coffee…I’ll wait.


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Last week, the new season of Bravo’s Million Dollar Listing - Los Angeles started and as usual, it’s a blast to watch these young realtors – making millions selling high priced houses all the while acting like little ill-behaved children, dressed to the nines and driving the most expensive of cars.   Did I mention I love this show?


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You can dress them up, drive them there in a Rolls Royce, put them at a private dinner party in the most expensive house in Beverly Hills, and these realtors will still have a screaming match about whose house is overpriced.

I kid you not.

Last week while I was watching a segment on an open house, I sat upright and screamed, “WAIT!!!!!” 

Ben’s response is, “Huh?”  

“Is that Mary McDonald’s bedroom??!?!?!  What?!?!?”

AS IF, Ben would even know who Mary McDonald was, much less her bedroom.

“Wait, did she move?!?!   What?!!   Wait, that’s not her kitchen.  No, that’s not her house, or is it?”

This went on and on as I frantically googled McDonald to see if she had indeed moved and no, she’s still ensconced in her beautiful house that those on the design blogs love.


In fact Mary just posted her Christmas Paper Whites showing that she is indeed in her same house.

 

Mary and her dogs and house were recently featured in Susanna Salk’s and Stacey Bewkes’ new book “At Home with Dogs and their Designers.” click book, below, to order.




SO….if Mary McDonald hadn’t moved, why did this bedroom make me think it was hers?


The bedroom at the open house that at first made me think this was Mary McDonald's house.  The room has the same dimensions as Mary’s, long and skinny, with a four poster bed and hand painted wallpaper.   But on a second look at Mary's actual bedroom, it's just a resemblance, that's all.


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No great photos of Mary’s bedroom - a lone screenshot from her own Bravo show.  But here, you can see how I might, at first glance, think they were the same.  After all, Mary was a big Bravo star of her own for several seasons. 

The house's owners were quickly mentioned by the realtor Tracy and while the house remained vaguely familiar, I actually quite liked it.  It was so different than the usual white box contemporary mega mansions the realtors usually sell on the L.A version of “Million Dollar Listing.”  

Later, the house did sell and Tracy goes to give the owners the good news!

Their office really threw me for a loop.  If I was channeling Mary McDonald before, now I was at a full blown séance with a thumping Ouija board!!


The meeting with the owners took place in their office - my eyes were going from one element to the next:   the handpainted wallpaper, the Dorothy Draper chests, the tulipiere pagodas, the lamps, the blue and white - it was all so Mary!!!  But, although the office made me think of Mary – she did not design it.

As it turns out, the owners of the small house (tiny, 2200 sq. ft, as the realtor called it) are Jerrod Blandino and his husband Jeremy Johnson  (they are known as J & J.)


The pair (Jerrod on the left with Jeremy and Clover) have been together since their very early 20s when they both worked at Estee Lauder's makeup counter.  A few year later in 1998, they developed the cosmetic line "Too Faced" which they sold two years ago to - get this - Estee Lauder for 1.65 billion!!! 

Full circle.

Billion. 

Too Faced is known for being a fun, colorful makeup line that attracts the younger and celebrity sets.  Too Faced endorses cruelty-free and animal free testing.   J & J were able to marry during the first window when gay marriage was legal in California, back in 2006.


Too Faced is found all over the world.  Here is their first store they just opened in London.  The bright colorful shop best illustrates their brand.  Their "Better Than Sex" is one of the best selling mascaras in the industry and Too Faced was the first to introduce glitter eye shadow.

In 2013, for Christmas, Too Faced teamed up with Mary McDonald who helped design their gifts boxes.  Mary’s iconic chevron was seen in pink and green on the gifts.  As you can see above, the company gives instructions on how to apply makeup in all their packaging - another first.  

One more?   Lip plumper lipstick.  


A few years ago Too Faced moved their corporate headquarters to an old DMV building in Irvine, California.   The reception area sets the tone - pink is J & J’s favorite color, no doubt!  Well, it’s Jerrod’s favorite color.  

This building would have been my Elisabeth's idea of heaven!!! 


  This hall is decorated in wallpaper where the trees have mascara growing on them and birds nests are filled with makeup bottles.


The secretaries area is more pink and sparkles.   Notice the tiny ceramic of J & J's dog, Clover, who is seen in all their ads and PR material – stressing their cruelty free and animal testing free principle.


Their conference room is painted the same mint shade as found in their house seen on Bravo.


The corporate office has a cafeteria with outside picnic areas set around fire pits.  Must be nice!


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In an aerial view of Too Faced Headquarters, I love how you can see how PINK it all is, probably even from space!!!


The dogs are kept happy in the office's kennel run.  Clover has his own monogramed bed.  Too cute.


Better Than Sex Mascara,
                        Main,
                        color, BLACK

Too Faced "Better Than Sex" mascara.  Order HERE

Besides his Better Than Sex mascara, Jerrod's other favorite product is their Chocolate Brownie Eyebrow Pencil which is infused with cocoa powder. 

Chocolate Brow-nie Cocoa Powder Brow Pencil,
                        Main,
                        color, AUBURN

Chocolate Brownie Eyebrow pencil.  Order HERE.

Here is one of my favorites of Jerrod's makeup tips: 

As women age, they tend to lose their eyebrow hair at the outermost end, leaving them with most of their eyebrow hair left in a tuft, right at the middle of the eye.  To look younger, elongate your brow by drawing it in.  The longer the brow, the younger you look!   Thanks Jerrod, I'm going try that tip.

 

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While Mary McDonald did not design the corporate Two Faced building, or Jerrod's office – is there a connection?  A bit of research revealed that J&J have a habit of buying and selling houses.  Today, they have just built their forever house on the Californian coast at Newport Beach, where McDonald did the interior design.    Jerrod gives Mary credit for his evolving taste, but he maintains his essence is still the same - fun pops of color inspired by Too Faced.

Their apartment in Manhattan, which was sold a few years ago, shows Jerrod taste.

The NYC apartment was used as a Pied a Terre to stay during buying trips and fun vacations.  With their new Forever Home, J & J would use the NYC less and less – so they sold it.

 

Pink and gold with touches of blue - Too Faced colors along with a touch of inspiration from Paris' famous Ladurée bakery.  Old Louis Vuitton trunk bought in Paris doubles as coffee table.  The pink antique sofa was also purchased in Paris.

The apartment was bought for $1.75 million in 2010 and the couple spent over a $1 million renovating it.  It has 950 sq ft and one bedroom.  Jerrod says he removed all the walls to make it a "jewel box."   They liked this particular unit because the terrace has a view of Barneys, of course!!


 

The NYC powder room is Jerrod all the way.


The couple were asking $3 million for the one bedroom apartment they no longer used very often.    At the time of the sale, they were knee deep in building their Versailles on the Beach House - a process that had already taken four years with more to go.

Which brings us to the house that Tracy was selling on the Bravo show “Million Dollar Listing – Los Angeles:”


Located on N. Beverly Drive on a hilly lot, the house looks like it belongs more on the East Coast than in Beverly Hills.  It could not be more charming with its leaded glass bay window, ivy covered façade and brick walkways. 

Jerrod had bought the Beverly Hills house as a surprise for Jeremy on their 20th anniversary.   Before Too Faced was for over 1 1/2 Billion dollars, Jerrod says this buying this house was the most money he had every spent without Jeremy's knowledge and it made him very nervous. 



While the couple's main house is south of L.A. in the Newport Beach area, their friends live in the city and they had planned on entertaining in this small, 2 bedroom house.  Built in 1937, the house is a true original in Beverly Hills, compared to all the mega mansions being built there now. 

The house was beautifully decorated when Jerrod bought it.  It just wasn't his Too Faced style – so, he completely redid both the interiors and the backyard.    The house was bought from the popular blogger/business woman Who What Wear cofounder Katherine Power for $2.44 million.  

Robin Strickler with Design Works Home did the designs for Jerrod.

This iconic house has changed hands a few times.  Before Power bought it, it looked like this.


A very early photo of the house when it was painted yellow.  Missing, are the beautiful brick walkways and beds put in by Power and later, Blandino.


Later, the house was sold again, this time to Power.   When she bought the house, the brick was painted white and covered with ivy.  Trees, plants and bushes hid the house from the street.


When Power bought the house – the décor was 1990s, mostly boring in red and gold.


The back yard was a wasteland - brick and with deck.



Much of the backyard is hilly - think Mark Sikes backyard.  Needs help!



Another early view of the backyard pre Kathryn Power - taken from atop the hill.  Later, this backyard will become a real selling point.


Which brings us to the version of the house that Jerrod bought from Katherine Power.   Now, I love the house as decorated by Power.  I can see why Jerrod bought it and think you will too.   Power decorated the house in a warm, cozy but very chic style with layers of texture.  The décor matches the East Coast vibe of the exterior.


Power tamed the landscaping, adding brick beds and plants and a pretty walkway up to the house.




The main living room with accent chairs.  Through the opening is the sitting room which was added onto the house decades ago.  The shelves are beautifully decorated - someone knew what they were doing.


 

Against the front wall - a gorgeous Oriental box on legs.  Beautiful!!!!  Antique rug.  At the window are pretty drapes with gathered tops.   All the hardwoods were painted a creamy white.


Charming sitting room with mix of furniture styles.   Love the leaded windows and the lighting fixture which fits in with the different textures found in the room.  Love!


The dining room is a star.  Paneled, with stained glass windows, the fireplace adds to the atmosphere on cool nights.  Oil painting - nice touch for California.  New light fixture above the marble table.  Notice the juxtaposition of the contemporary table with the Americana chairs. 

The old terracotta tiled fireplace surround was replaced with a more luxe stone.

Love this room!



Power completely remodeled the kitchen with new backsplash and appliances and cabinets with black countertops.  Love the island.


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The powder room has the iconic Beverly Hills Hotel wallpaper with a door to the new pool out back.


The master carries the same vibe upstairs using textures and the same colors as are downstairs.  Mid century mixes with antiques and Americana.   Beautiful iron bed.   Very East Coast feeling. 


The other side of the master bedroom has a fireplace which was updated with new stone.  Additionally the brown hardwoods were painted a creamy white.  Again, love the large chest and mirror.


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The master bath was updated with marble and new mirrors and a shower.



The second bedroom has cute striped curtains and a nostalgic photograph of the nearby Beverly Hills Hotel.    This room originally was paneled in a dark wood stain.  Today, it's painted creamy white. 


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TWO OWNERS BEFORE POWER BOUGHT THE HOUSE:  The bedroom originally, before it was painted white.  I think it would look great with the paneling painted dark and the walls and crown molding painted white.


POWER:  The biggest change is the new backyard.  There's a swimming pool set in brick which matches the East Coast vibe of the house.  The deck was removed and replaced with gravel.



A new outdoor grill was also added.

It’s easy to see why Jerrod was so attracted to the house, despite the décor and muted color palette used by Kathryn Power.


The new façade, under Jerrod Blandino and Jeremy Johnson. 



The house got a new garage door, new lights, new landscaping. 


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Here Jerrod announces to his Instagram readers that the new house is almost finished!



Jerrod’s designer was Robin Strickler with DesignWorks HERE.  The black front door opens to the animal print runner up the stairs.




The view to the left is the dining room and past, the kitchen.




         To the right is the living room and then the study.   When I first saw the foyer and that gorgeous wallpaper, I was hooked on this house!  The paper is Nalina by Harlequin – and it comes in other beautiful colors like green and orange and gray.  But this blush pink is my favorite.    Notice that tall vintage wicker chair in the corner!



The living room with the sitting room at the left.  New marble fireplace.  The chairs are Dorothy Draper by Henredon.



The blush pink sofa.  I love the paper in this room too – very trendy.


The view towards the front yard. 


Touches of hot pink in the mostly gray living room.


  An antique oriental chest on legs with an extra modern lamp atop it.


Close up of contemporary sconce and wallpaper!



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Kate Spade bow table matches sconces and mirror.



Through the newly replaced pair of French doors is the sitting room.  Katherine Power left a few things in the house that Jerrod kept – like this fixture.




The view from the sitting room into the living room.



Back through the foyer to the dining room and kitchen.




Jerrod thinks the starbust fixture is mid century modern, but to me it’s 2010s all the way.  Through the door on the right is the foyer and on the left is a hall that leads back to the powder room and the living room.


Looking the opposite way to the kitchen.   The leaded glass bay window faces the street.   The paint color is Benjamin Moore Woodlawn Blue. 

The marble and brass table was custom made for Jerrod  - it weighed so much that the floor needed to be reinforced to securely hold it. 


The fireplace has a new white marble hearth and surroundings. 

The two stained glass windows are original.  The first owner put in a special love letter to his wife in the center section.

The same photo of the Beverly Hills Hotel that Katherine had, but this one seems bigger, right?



Jerrod placed a pair of gilt chairs with leopard fabric underneath the windows.



Close up of love letter.


If one is good enough why not two?  


Into the kitchen, a movable island separates the dining room from the kitchen.


Compare the two versions of the dining room – Katherine Power vs Jerrod Blandino.  Which do you prefer?


Jerrod’s dining room.  Is the mint green paint another element that Jerrod kept?   It must be.

What’s your vote on décor:   Power vs J & J?


Here is a view from the kitchen to the dining room where you can see the portrait of Madonna.


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Look closely at Madonna – this is actually people playing in the snow.


Cute bar stools and love the island with its marble top.  Look!  A Dutch door leads to the back yard!!!!


Jerrod kept the polished nickel faucet but added brass hardware.  Otherwise the kitchen is much the same as it was under Power.



Jerrod also kept the iconic Beverly Hill Hotel wallpaper that Power installed, but he put in a prettier marble vanity.  There are new light fixtures too.


Beautiful vanity!


Too cheeky!


Let’s go upstairs.


The bedroom that I confused with Mary McDonald’s at first.  This fireplace also got the new white marble treatment.


Look how gorgeous the wallpaper looks – its the F. Schumacher – Chinois Palais in Grisalle, designed by?   Mary McDonald, of course.   I’ve always wanted to see it hanging in a large room and here it is, just beautiful!


View across the bed.   The black and mirror chest looks a little harsh to me against the soft wallpaper, no?


And if we are critiquing, I wonder why they used such a creamy painted bed in this gray and white room?  Just asking. 


With the lights on.  Pretty!


Bachelorette party: The 43-year-old reality star hosted a bachelorette party to show off at two-bedroom home in Beverly Hills

The Bravo show realtor, Tracy.


The only major change in the bathroom is that the bathtub on the right was closed off – I assume to make closet space instead?



The second bedroom with the fireplace.  This is the room that originally had brown wainscot around the walls which is now painted white.

How romantic is a fireplace in a bedroom?!!!



One other view.


And its bathroom, renovated.


Jerrod said the backyard renovation was a huge expense.  First, the gravel is now gone, replaced by beautiful brick.  You can see the kitchen’s Dutch door at the far right and the two stained glass windows in the dining room that flank the fireplace.  What is obviously an add on at one time is the one-storied sitting room next to the living room.   Power’s new roof and awnings add much punch to this area.


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Jerrod says the backyard was his biggest challenge because it was built three ft. above the ground.  There were structural issues involved so it had to be redone and replanted – all the while not damaging the house in the process. 


The high hill with its new brick stairs.


A view from the hill – with its line of lemon trees!!!


BEFORE:  The house as it looked when Katherine Power bought it.  A deck covered the backyard and there was no pool and no awnings.  There was an old shingle roof, along with a dated screened door at the kitchen.

And today, with Power’s awnings, new roof and pool and the brick yard that Jerrod added.

It’s amazing how one little house built in the 1930s goes from its 1980s and 1990s blandness to the East Coast Chic of Katherine Power to the Candyliscious cosmetic shades of the Too Faced J & J.

I would LOVE to see photos of the house from the 1930s, 1940s, and on.  

 

Jerrod and Jeremy owned the house for just 2.5 years before they sold it for around $2.6 million.   They had bought the house was bought as a place to stay in Los Angeles where they could entertain their friends. Instead, they rarely did that.  In fact, the house had been barely used and it had been months since they had even gone there.

Would it be easy to sell?

Bravo realtor Tracy thought the sale would be a big challenge because the house only had two bedrooms.  Her quote about their home is this:   “This house is like me if I was a house.  It’s chic, it’s expensive, and it’s tiny. It’s just really cozy and special and it requires a certain sophistication for people to walk in and get it.”    OH KAY!!!!   Someone really loves themselves.


This house sold and now the big push is to just enjoy their Versailles on the Beach House on the coast in Newport – think Bravo’s Real Housewives of Orange County.

 

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In fact, Bravo’s Beverly Hills Housewife Erika Girardi has teamed up with Too Faced on an ad campaign.  Love Jerrod’s work coveralls!


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Versailles on the Beach House started out as this house that the couple bought was near to where they were living.  The new house was torn down and plans were drawn up for their forever home – now six years in the making.  They hired an architect and a designer, this time Mary McDonald, finally.

The plans for the house began in 2011.


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Instagram:  2014, they break ground.


AND – I’ve been asked to not show any photos of the new house that are on Jerrod’s Instagram.  Fair Game.  Done!  We’ll just patiently wait until the house will hopefully be in a magazine.  Please, pretty please?!!!



Now that J & J are in their forever  house and the NYC apartment is sold and the Beverly Hills house is also sold, the house they lived in prior to moving to the forever house is also now for sale.  They sold their business to Estee Lauder – what else could possibly be sold?

Well…have no fear.

Remember who Jerrod Blandino bought the Beverly Hills house from?  Yes, Katherine Power – that famous fashion blogger, who with Hilary Kerr started one of the most successful fashion lifestyle blogs – Who What Wear which was parlayed into Clique Brands.

After Power sold her Beverly Hills house to Jerrold Blandino, where did she move to?


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Katherine Power and Hilary Kerr

The answer is found in a recent Architectural Digest issue – that features the media power couple Katherine Power and her husband, fashion photographer Justin Coit.  The couple and their son Sebastian now live in Little Holmby in a fabulous 1928 Spanish Colonial styled house that they completely renovated.   Architectural Digest?  No wonder that little house in Beverly Hills looked so good with its East Coast Vibe.  Their new house had been poorly renovated before and Power wanted to give the house more of a European feel or the vibe of a Montecito home.  Power hired Jake Arnold of 4C Design Group to help with the décor. 


Katherine Power’s new house, shown renovated – newly painted all white.  I adore the gravel courtyard accented with rose bushes trained in tree shapes.   Powers loves the approach to the house – a long walk on the path through the courtyard, until you then you reach the front door.    The house is located  on more flat area than the Beverly Hills house was – but there is a knoll  in the back which allows for views of Century City.


BEFORE:  The house was cream with a green lanai.  The courtyard had grass, not gravel.


 

BEFORE:   The walk up to the front door.



 

BEFORE:   At the back of the house there was a large brick patio and pool with a pergola.


TODAY:  The pool was made smaller so that the eating area by the kitchen could be enlarged.  New landscaping with olive trees.  Just beautiful!!!


At night!


Under the pergola.   Oh…this is so beautiful!!!!


The fire pit is a new addition to the backyard along with the olive trees.


BEFORE:   Outside the kitchen.


TODAY:  the side of the house where the portion of the pool was removed – there is now room for the fire pit and the table with chairs and banquette.   One of the olive trees that was planted here – aren’t these just the prettiest accent trees?


BEFORE:  Unfortunately there is no photo of the newly renovated entry hall.  The living room is off to the left.


BEFORE:   The living room.  I know this was all changed but I do like it here.

BEFORE:   The other view.  


TODAY:  The living room – with the new fireplace, white walls, and a host of textures.  In the corner – you will notice the oriental chest on stand that was in the Two Faced Beverly Hills House when Power lived there.  Also notice the portrait over the fireplace – this was in the mint green dining room.  GORGEOUS pot in the corner!  Love!!


The other side of the living room.   The terra cotta floors were replaced with French oak as were the hardwoods originally in this room.  Black shelves and doors are reworked from what was there before.  Brass library lights over the shelves.   Also, you can see how the beams were redone.

Power said that when they moved here – they planned to use all their old furniture from the Blandino home, but today most of the furniture from the Two Faced house is in stored in their garage, except for the antiques and rugs.  Like I always say – buy antiques and you will use them forever!!!


BEFORE:   The dining room.



TODAY:  Here you can see how the staircase was reworked and completely simplified.  Much better.   New furniture for the house was purchased from powerhouse shops such as JF Chen, Galerie Half, Lief – and online at1st Dibs.


Before:   The kitchen that overlooks the side of the house with the outdoor eating area.


Today:   The same footprints – show a total change with the beautiful new hardwood floors and walls now covered in the white subway tile.  LOVE WALLS of tile!  New doors open to the outdoor eating area.  Instead of a breakfast room, there is now a family room – below:


The family room that overlooks the pool area – love the rug.  Slipcover furniture is perfect for dogs and kids and it doesn’t have to look like a slip!


BEFORE:   The master bedroom.


BEFORE:  Its master bath.


Today:  the same room.  New French doors open to the balcony that overlooks the back yard.  More textures, more leather, more linen, more wool.


The same feel with the hardwoods and antique rugs and textiles and baskets and linens carries into the master bathroom.



The baby’s room  repeats the masculine feel of the rest of the house.  Now, really – why didn’t they use the antique chest in here that was seen in the Two Faced house?  Remember?



THE TWO FACED HOUSE:    I guess it is too tall to use as a changing table.  I would have gotten a small changing table and used this somewhere in the baby’s room.   I love this piece of furniture.  And this leather sofa?  Why should this also be consigned to the depths of the garage?   I suppose you call this a NONYA.   None of  your business!!!   

Notice this is the rug that is now in the master bathroom.  

 

Which brings us to this point in this story – this Spanish Colonial house was completely redone, renovated -- an immense amount of  time was put into it.  It was shown in Architectural Digest a few months ago.  It is now FOR SALE.   Of course!  I am beginning to wonder if people just put their houses in AD in order to sell them???!!?  NONYA, you say????

Well this was a fun story – from an apartment in New York City to a small house  (by L.A. standards) in Beverly Hills, to a bigger house in Little Holmby to Versailles on the Beach House - each owned by the same two couples.   Two Faced – Six Degrees of Separation.



Finally - Besides the “Better Than Sex” Mascara and “Chocolate Brownie” Eyebrow Pencil – two of the best selling Too Faced products – here are a few more best sellers from Jerrod and Jeremy’s company.


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Visit Two Faced’s web site HERE.