Making a space your own is something everyone aspires to—even our favorite stars. In our series, The Spruce Up, we chat with celebs to bring you behind the scenes of their design glow-ups. Whether they re-decorated a whole room or added a clever update to their tour bus, these spruce-ups prove any space can feel like home with smart design.
Kate Walsh, the actress renowned for her work in massive hits like Emily in Paris, Private Practice, and of course, Grey's Anatomy, found herself house-hunting in Australia a few years ago. While visiting the country she lived every vacationer's dream, meeting "her person" and deciding to stay, calling that choice a "no-brainer" for her.
When she began her home search, the Arizona native was looking for a place close to the beach with ocean views, and she found it nine months into her stay. The recently-flipped home had a clean and modern aesthetic, vastly different from Walsh's place in New York, which was "more regency and very eclectic and intentionally cluttered."
"I really wanted to let nature dictate everything and have it be this calm, peaceful place so that the ocean and outdoors are really the star of the show," Walsh explains. "I wanted to do something I'd never done before, which was more modern and neutral and Danish. It's still collected, but much simpler and calmer."
Walsh started collecting homewares here and there as she began to get settled in, but it wasn't until she visited a home store called Empire with a friend that it all began to come together.
"It's one of those places you walk into and you're like, 'I want to live here,'" Walsh says.
I really wanted to let nature dictate everything and have it be this calm, peaceful place so that the ocean and outdoors are really the star of the show.
Working with Empire's Elissa Coleman, Walsh developed a vision for her space which included a nod to her roots in Arizona with an outdoor cactus garden, minimalist furniture, and a touch of fun and whimsy with disco balls hanging in her home office, the room that feels most like her, she says.
"It's just so inspiring for me to collaborate, whether it's with a costume designer or an interior designer," Walsh says of working with Coleman. "It's just the most exciting thing for me."
Though the house was recently renovated, it still needed some love to make it feel like home. One of the things she focused on was softening up the space, as the modernity of the home led to lots of "hard right angles." To combat that and make it more inviting, Coleman and Walsh brought in a rounded bouclé furniture set, including a curved sofa and two matching chairs to the living area.
For Walsh, a home has to be both functional and inviting without losing its chic factor.
"I can't stand a room that's not used," she explains. "I also like to lie around a lot, so it has to be relaxed. That's just the vibe of Australia too. One of the things that I love about Western Australia is that it's relaxed and nature is the queen there. I wanted that to really dictate and have the house be sort of a piece of that and flowing into that."
Though her job includes a lot of travel, including a recent trip to Paris to promote the next season of Emily in Paris (hitting Netflix on December 21), Walsh is grateful to have a balance with her home base in Australia and busy days at work.
"I'm really lucky to have a great rounded life right now," Walsh explains. "I feel like that's one of the things living in Australia has given me is a great life, I met the love of my life, and I've got my little old cat and little old dog down there. It's been great to be there and have that be a place of rest and comfort, and then also just have that this just massive abundance of work and so I feel very, really lucky."