Get the Martha vibe without moving to Riverside County

Murphybookcase2Visitors are flocking (at the rate of 70 per week, if that’s a flock) to western Riverside County to check out the new homes built by KB Home and designed by Martha Stewart, as reported by the L.A. Times Real Estate section.

The homes reflect the East Coast vibe of Martha’s homes in New York, Connecticut and Maine.

But you can create some of that same Eastern juju in your own home with paint and moldings. That’s what agent and producer Richard G. Murphy did in his rather charmless North Hollywood bungalow. As an East Coast transplant, Richard pined for the look and feel of his childhood, but finds L.A. best for his career.

MurphywallsRichard added some East Coast to his home thanks to a clever housewarming present from an employer — the services of the employer’s handyman for a week. For several days, Richard and the handyman cut and installed crown and baseboard moldings in the dining room, hallway, and bedrooms.

Every room also got chair rail molding, and boxed “picture frame” moldings on the lower walls. When painted a glossy bone china color from Dunn Edwards, the areas from the chair rail down give the impression of expensive wood paneling (shown in these photos).

However, “It’s all paint and molding,” Richard explains. “I just call it theater.” Though Richard takes his design cues from Ralph Lauren, Martha would still be proud of what he’s done.

(Photos: KPR)