Drew Barrymore may have risen from child stardom to a high-powered, grown-up career as an actress, director and producer, but her Montecito home remains down-to-earth. Built in 1937, it's spacious but not cavernous, stylish but not ostentatious. And when you consider that past and current Montecito residents include Julia Child, bestselling author Sue Grafton and mega-stars like Oprah and Tom Cruise, the $7.7 million asking price seems relatively reasonable.
The house is set well back from the road on two acres of land. According to the listing, it boasts "ample parking," which is perhaps part of the reason Barrymore hosted her wedding here in 2012. There's also a four-car garage and, in addition to the main house's six bedrooms, a separate, private guesthouse.
The cheery (or is it garish?) kitchen might convince you to add some colour to your own home. Speaking of colour, I can never decide what shade of vintage-style refrigerator I want. Cherry red? Mint green? Macaron pink? Turns out the solution is to just get two.
These chartreuse walls may clash with the greenery outdoors, but the dining room has a beautiful view regardless. Unfortunately, this space also suffers from too-small rugs: the sheepskin puffs remind me of tiny, fallen clouds.
A wood-panelled living room has plenty of space for a grand piano, built-in bookshelves, several seating areas and a working fireplace. Printed red sofas show decorating moxie, even if they look a little marooned on that skinny rug. For more intimate entertaining, there's a similarly panelled library; if you need to do work more serious than reading, the principal suite has an office nook.
A glassed-in veranda runs along the back of the house, looking out to the brick patio and lawn beyond. Sadly, it is just a big backyard, but you could probably dig up a few of the avocado and citrus trees to make room for a pool, gazebo or a bigger patio.
Would you be willing to take this charmer off Barrymore's hands?
For more California style with a Hollywood connection, check out Gwen McAuley's blog post on Marilyn Monroe's Brentwood home.
1-5. Suzanne Perkins