In L.A.’s Beachwood Canyon, Delilah Parillo has crafted a space for renewal.
“Architects and furniture designers, anywhere from the 20s to the 80s, are a huge inspiration … A piece of furniture really speaks for itself.”
Delilah Parillo is often out of town. The Californian model with a look and energy that’s summertime embodied is required, of course, to travel for work. Not that she minds. “To be perfectly honest when I am travelling everything feels interesting and new. I forget my home sometimes,” she admits. “It feels like a resting place for me.”
But the place she comes back to, it’s by no means an afterthought. It took her eight months to find her 60s-built “box on a hill with big windows” in Beachwood Canyon, L.A., after flirting with a move to Beverly Hills. “Then I found my house online with no photos and only a short description – yet it sounded perfect to me. I called them immediately. When I went to look at my place I knew I would take it. It was old and run-down in a good way. Spacious and yet not too big … I was meant to stay in my little canyon.”
Parillo grew up a couple of hours from here in a town called Idyllwild – southwest of Palm Springs – but has called Beachwood home for years now. “My friends all live here. It has a sense of community I think people don’t understand [is] possible in L.A. We can meet each other in the morning or evening or even catch each other running errands. I actually think my house can be a bit of a hub for my friends.”
On the days she’s home, she invites them over to talk, or create. “The art room is really inspiring and gets me working. If I’m sitting with my girlfriends in there I usually start to draw or paint absentmindedly, or we flip through books together.”
After golden hour hits, the mood tends to shift. “Usually things are quiet in my house during the day and maybe will pick up in the evenings for drinks or dinner … Smoke a joint on the balcony during sunset … make a big dinner – usually some sort of very Californian salad and something roasted. Sometimes we meet to get dressed before going out, put on makeup and pick out outfits in the bathroom. I usually listen to relaxing or hymnal music in the house but that doesn’t always suit a social setting, so when the mood calls for a party ambience I let my friends DJ!”
It seems logical that tranquillity would take precedence here, amid natural surrounds, sunlit spaces and mindfully gathered interiors. Of these, Parillo explains, “the house itself gave me a blueprint for decorating … it has some Japanese elements and is mid-century. A good combo for minimalism and a calm colour palette.”
“The front outside looks a bit Mondrian to me. The road has lots of mid-century houses on it so I guess it was a good spot at the time.”
Parillo has a natural eye for aesthetics, and it comes as no surprise that her references are archival. “I collect old Vogues and they’re like bibles for overall good taste. Elsa Peretti undeniably drew from the Chinois in her jewellery collections as well as many other designers in the 70s. She’s one of my favourites. So elements I found I liked in fashion, I could translate to a home as well.”
“I first started learning about furniture and design movements from my boyfriend, Henrik. We love to shop together and talk about what we like,” she explains. “… I’m also in the development phase of a new interior project, but I can’t say more than that at the moment … Modelling takes up most of my time, but I’m trying to do more creative work in my free time.”
Her own collection of furniture, Parillo puts down to good research. And her sources? “Sometimes vintage, friends, importing from online, furniture stores. Flea markets. Muji! My coffee table is my favourite piece of furniture. My bean bags hold the most memories and friends in them. My jade tree was the first thing I bought for my house. It was wildly impractical but it made me happy.
“When I finally am home, I enjoy it a lot,” she muses. But it’s only one dimension of her reality. “I feel comfort at home because it is my own surroundings – but I don’t feel discomfort without them,” Parillo explains. “I really believe that no matter what environment, your happiness is with yourself.”