The Georgian-style home that CeCe Colhoun shares with her husband Trevor, their young sons Trevor Jr. and Blaise, and Leia, their goldendoodle, is all about personal style, sentimental furnishings, and the stunning aesthetic of Audubon Park. Just about every space in the house opens up to the park—patios and gardens on the first floor and dreamy balconies and soaring porches on the second floor. With a palette of swampy colors and lots of family heirlooms, CeCe brings her own sophisticated philosophy to chic living under moss-laden oaks. "Everything in our house has meaning to us whether inherited or picked up during travels or acquired from local shops and galleries," she explains. "I like so many styles and it all comes together organically. My home tells the story of who I am." She's right. Each room oozes with that elusive New Orleans magic that's hard to nail down, but you feel it in your bones. Crusty and modern, formal and casual, soulful and spirited, it's a look that's confident in its mix and steeped in family history.
The entrance foyer, painted Benjamin Moore's stormy Dark Olive, sets the mood as it opens up to a gracious entrance hall covered in classical graphite-hued grisaille wallpaper. The formality of the etched Arcadia scenic wallcovering, a nod to the expansive park, paired with laid-back bleached Caribbean pine floors and a Saarinen tulip table, deliver immediate drama and personality. "We wanted the room to have a moment," CeCe explains. "It's big and airy and it needs its own statement. I think this is a great way to feel the scale of the house when you enter." An 18th century gold-leafed settee and a crystal chandelier from her mother mixed with her grandmother's antique console and a Oushak rug from Nola Rugs provide strong doses of patina and bling. And I love how the large-scale contemporary artwork (painted by CeCe) brings a bit of edge to the overall look. When the couple entertains on a larger scale such as for the fundraiser they hosted last Fall to benefit Son of a Saint, this hall becomes glamorous party central.
For the kitchen and great room, CeCe chose a clean hue with a subtle glow, Slipper Satin by Farrow and Ball, and went with undressed windows, allowing the spectacular outdoors to truly shine. The entire space opens to their lush backyard that features several dining and sitting areas. "We fling the doors open as much as possible to let the fresh air in and we set the table outside—china, silver, and all—as much as we can," says CeCe. She loves to cook and does so almost every weeknight, while Trevor watches the news of the day and the boys help in the kitchen. "It's so nice to be all together each evening. Nothing warms my heart more than when they exclaim how delicious the meal is, which I'm not sure isn't simply a gesture of gratitude for my efforts, but nonetheless it brings us together for a meal. Some of the most important moments of rearing a family happen around a dinner table; it's the heartbeat of our daily routine."
A hard-working leather sectional from Design Within Reach, cowhide rug over sisal, and inherited English armchairs all withstand the family action just fine. I laughed when CeCe showed me everyone's well-loved hangout spots and how the boys climb and tumble over everything. "It might look clean and cool," she told me. "But don't look too close. It's dirty, but it's more important to me that we live comfortably in every inch of the house. Every now and then I hit it with 409, and it cleans right up. Same for my dining chairs," she says with a big smile. She fondly pointed out sentimental pieces like the painted armoire, "That's the first piece I bought on my own from Mac Maison when I moved to New York. I felt like such a grown up!"; the stunning photograph of wild horses on Sable Island by Roberto Dutesco, "That's the first piece of art that Trevor and I bought together. It plays off the horses that we see on the park trail so often."; and a festive hand embroidered blue and white tablecloth, "We found it at a flea market in Mexico while on a birthday trip one year."
Her personal favorite room for family time is the trellised garden room coated in Farrow and Ball's Archive. "I really wanted that easy indoor/outdoor flow that celebrates living on the park in a casually elegant way," she explains. With the French doors open to a stylish pool, a side patio complete with lounge areas, and a pebble garden and potted citrus trees, the lines are blurred in the best of ways. A banana leaf plant, the wicker lighting fixture, and tortoise bamboo shades bring the outside in, while inherited pieces such as a handsome chest of drawers and game table, and a carved mirror found at Dop Antiques are decidedly front-parlor chic. "We listen to birds chirping, watch for swallowtail and monarch butterflies or play records. It's a TV-free space and we love it."
The upstairs rooms are just as sunny and wonderful. CeCe's office is tucked into one of the guest rooms and from this perch, she manages her popular Magazine Street cafe, Drink Beauty. The on-trend shop features delicious (and beautiful) coffee and matcha drinks as well as "of the moment" pop-up shops that reflect her many years in the fashion industry. Her work space is definitely her own: a Craig McDean photograph of Kate "the Boss" Moss, CeCe's favorite model; a little neon sign from Urban Outfitters that says "slay" — "to me, from me, to remind me what to do," she says — and a framed photo of her favorite band, Fleetwood Mac.
Her son's room sports some of the coolest art in the house. CeCe commissioned the Venice Beach tag artist Jules Muck to spray paint the Colhoun family crest in pop-art fashion on his bedroom wall. "I love the modern interpretation of an old school idea," she says. "And the boys think it's super rad." Built-in cabinets and custom shelving keeps the look neat in more ways than one, and a balcony overlooking the park is perfect for an art easel and play area that gets a ton of use.
The pièce de résistance is the master bedroom suite, a sultry sanctuary that includes a sitting room with a balcony and a starpower second-story porch. "I feel as though I'm resting amongst the oak canopies in a dreamy tree house," CeCe tells me. And she is. The combination of the deep paint color Yorktowne Green from Benjamin Moore and a moody wallpaper CeCe found at Spruce are evocative of steamy Southern nights. If I could spend my life on that porch swing, I would. A little neon sign "wink", Trevor's nickname for CeCe, is the perfect finishing touch for a home filled with so much soul and spirit.
This article appeared in the October 2020 Issue of Adore Magazine.