Home design: Living in La La Land

February 25, 2017
Mismatched vintage

After seeing the Oscar-nominated “La La Land,” some viewers understandably are in the mood to break out in song and dance. But the movie may inspire you in another way — to redecorate.

From the boho-chic apartment of Emma Stone’s character Mia to the Technicolor settings in the fantasy numbers, the world of “La La Land” is bursting with design inspiration. And here’s how you can relive the magic of the movie in your own home.

Mismatched vintage

Mia’s apartment features a collection of flea market finds, none of which really go with one another — yet it definitely has that Anthropologie store vibe.

Primary colors


People are reluctant to decorate with primary colors, but in the saturated world of “La La Land,” bright colors leap off the screen. If you’re afraid of going primary, try it in small doses, like with these red pillows available at Pier One, which complement the surrounding patterns. (Emma Stone not included.)

Pattern on pattern


The movie’s set design does not shy away from patterns, unabashedly mixing stripes, florals and ethnic prints. These chevron curtain panels from West Elm are identical to the ones in Mia’s apartment.

Old movie nostalgia

Classic movies are a recurring motif throughout the movie, and Mia even has a huge “Casablanca” poster like this behind her bed. Get the same look with posters of your favorite classic movies, which are readily available at sites such as eBay and allposters.com. (I knew I shouldn’t have given away my old “Xanadu” poster.)

Dancing with the stars


One of the dazzling highlights in the movie is the dance among the stars at the Griffith Observatory. Re-create your own shower of stars with a laser star projector that shines onto your walls and ceilings. It’s available from Hammacher Schlemmer.

Walking into a Van Gogh


In the movie’s final musical number, Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling step into a fantasy vision of Paris that resembles a living Van Gogh painting. You can feel like you’re living in a Van Gogh with this wall-sized “The Starry Night” from muralsyourway.com.

Jonathan Fong is the author of “Walls That Wow,” “Flowers That Wow” and “Parties That Wow,” and host of “Style With a Smile” on YouTube. You can see more of his do-it-yourself  projects at jonathanfongstyle.com.

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