TWO LUCKY BRAND EXECUTIVES' STYLISH L.A. HOME
Longtime collaborators and power couple Dave DeMattei and Patrick Wade, compose a stylish, highly personal haven in Beverly Hills.
While all houses can be seen as autobiographical exercises that offer insight into the spirit and aspirations of the people who created them, certain homes communicate with a particular eloquence and clarity. The Beverly Hills, California, residence of Dave DeMattei and Patrick Wade, two retail executives with long résumés in the arenas of fashion and home furnishings, is just such a place. It represents three decades of an extraordinary personal and professional partnership, with a wide-ranging array of furnishings, objects, and artworks culled from the couple’s travels around the world and the various homes they have made for themselves along the way.
“The house is really a summary statement of who we are, where we’ve been, and what we love,” DeMattei says. “It tells the story of our life together.”
Following extensive collaborations at Williams-Sonoma, West Elm, Coach, J.Crew, and other high-profile retailers, the enterprising duo relocated from San Francisco to Los Angeles three years ago to focus their creative energies on the premium denim company Lucky Brand, where DeMattei took over as CEO and Wade as executive vice president and creative director. “Our goal was to take this great American brand, dust it off, push it forward, and help it reach its full potential,” Wade says.
Upon alighting in Southern California, the men initially settled into a quintessentially L.A. Mediterranean-style dwelling in West Hollywood. But despite the home’s ample sun-kissed charms, DeMattei and Wade soon decided to sink their roots into more substantial ground. In 2011, after a six-month search, they found their ideal spot in the flats of Beverly Hills, where they acquired a five-bedroom, 5,000-square-foot Italianate residence that was built in the 1920s.
“We were drawn to the scale of the rooms and the potential we saw to renovate and make it our own,” DeMattei says. “The house was in good shape, but it was basically a vanilla box.”
Prior to moving in, the pair spent six months refinishing every wall and floor, as well as converting a dark garage into a seductive, light-filled poolhouse and guest cottage. But that was the easy part.
More challenging was figuring out which works from the couple’s 1,000-piece collection of paintings, photographs, sculptures, furnishings, and decorative objects would make the cut. After committing to building a new life in L.A., DeMattei and Wade sold the San Francisco home they had owned for 20 years, as well their Napa Valley country estate and vineyard.
Added to the bounty from those houses were the contents of their residence in West Hollywood, and the sheer volume of belongings at their disposal was staggering. “We shipped a lot of boxes to our families,” Wade says with a laugh, recalling the herculean scope of Operation Deaccession.
“We edited things based on the idea of making a casual, inviting showcase for our collections—nothing too fussy or too granny but still elegant.”
That tone is established the moment one steps into the couple’s dramatic entry hall, where an antique marble-top wrought-iron table holds court on a wood floor painted in a crisp diamond pattern, with a robust lantern from Charles Edwards hanging overhead.
The assemblage of black-and-white photography and other artworks—a large figure study by Ralph Gibson on one wall, a picture of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor by Slim Aarons opposite, and a series of ghostly images by the duo McDermott & McGough, to name a few—hints at the treasures that are to come.
Matching sets of double doors off the entry hall lead to the living and dining rooms, where the mood is warm, masculine, and surprisingly subdued given the cornucopia of objects on display. The living room mix perhaps best typifies the character of DeMattei and Wade’s globe-spanning, time-traveling interiors. In addition to a Chinese console, a Foo dog lamp, and other touches of Eastern exotica, there are vintage Italian glass-top cocktail tables, pillows in vibrantly patterned Indian fabrics from John Robshaw (one of the favored designers the couple has brought into the Lucky Brand family as a collaborator), figurative plaster and bronze sculptures, and a host of bewitching flea-market finds and travel mementos. Anchoring the carefully balanced composition is a graphic brown-and-white-striped Madeline Weinrib dhurrie set on a field of sea-grass carpeting.
Once the house itself was in good order, DeMattei and Wade turned their attention to the gardens and landscaping, enlisting the services of their friend Sean McGowan of L.A.’s Modern Floristry.
McGowan reinvented the entrance courtyard as a SoCal variation on a formal Italianate garden, with white roses mingling amicably with miniature kumquat trees, cypresses, succulents, and other warm-weather species—all planted around twin fountains made in England.
He also cultivated a lush landscape of giant birds-of-paradise and small fruit trees for the area surrounding the narrow bluestone-edged pool. On weekends the couple often retreats to the chic poolhouse, and they take advantage of a fully equipped outdoor kitchen for leisurely alfresco meals.
Both DeMattei and Wade confess that the process of making the home has been incredibly satisfying but also exhausting. Asked about the possibility of future renovations, Wade demurs. “It’s nice to be done and just enjoy it all for a while,” he says. With a slightly raised eyebrow, DeMattei adds, “Patrick is never done. He’s on a constant quest to make it better.”
Text by Mayer Rus |Photography by William Waldron |Produced by Stephen Pappas