Jessie Webster is a Los Angeles based editorial and commercial photographer specializing in lifestyle and travel who I met years ago and ever since we have met up for the occasional coffee at Intelligentsia in Silver Lake, just minutes from her house. A house best described as the cutest Silver Lake bungalow built in 1913 with a front porch so cute you want to spend all day people watching. I can easily see why Jessie fell in love with the house at first sight back in 2013, all it needed was a lot of white paint and she was good to go. Jessie masters the modern, contemporary, laid-back California meets Scandinavian vibe to perfection – and with her newly installed wooden oak floors just added to that perfection. Keep scrolling for the tour and my interview with Jessie – and remember to follow her on Instagram. Enjoy.
Please introduce yourself?
I’m Jessie. I’m a photographer living in LA. When I’m not out shooting or traveling for work, you can usually find me at home cooking or editing photos.
When and why did you move here?
I bought the house and moved in in 2013. I had been living in West Hollywood and looking for a house on the east side for a few years and was feeling very discouraged by what was out there. The second I saw this house pop up on the MLS I knew it was the one. There was only one photo of the outside, but I just knew. I went to the brokers open (before it was open to the public) and put in an offer that day. In LA you have to move fast. I was one of 7 offers, but somehow I got it.
What is it about Silver Lake you love so much?
There are so many things. I love the incredible community of creatives that call Silver Lake home. I love taking long walks around the hills and the reservoir. I’m around the corner from so many amazing restaurants, shops and the farmer’s market. Some weekends I don’t get in my car once, which is a total luxury in LA.
What changes did you make before moving in?
The house was move in ready so the only thing I did was paint everything white. Every room and moulding was painted a different color when I bought the house and I wanted a clean slate. As years went on I added a deck out back, planted some citrus trees and redid the badly damaged wood floors.
What didn’t you want to change?
I wanted to make sure all the original craftsman details remained. The house was built in 1913 and as the years go by more and more houses in LA get gutted and ripped of their original charm. It was important that I kept the history of the house alive.
What objects hold a special meaning for you?
My collection of vintage cameras, my dad’s photographs, my mom’s paintings, a drawing by one of my favorite artists Beatrice Wood and various rocks and shells I’ve picked up in my travels.
How do you choose which items enter your home?
These days I only buy things that I absolutely love, that have both form and function. Sometimes that means I spend a year searching for the perfect rug or piece of furniture. Right now I have a few things on my list I’d like to replace, but I haven’t found what I’m looking for quite yet. I’m not the most patient person but I’ll know it when I see it.
How has your style evolved over the years?
My style is always evolving in all aspects of my life whether it’s my personal style or my home. As I get older I tend to be drawn to having less. Instead I like to be surrounded by meaningful objects that I’ve picked up in my travels, neutral tones, clean lines, natural textures and fabrics.
Which materials are important to you?
The texture of linen and the warmth of wood.
When are you happy at home?
I’m happiest at home when the fireplace is lit, music is playing and I’m cooking dinner for friends.
What do you think makes a welcoming home?
A welcoming home is a place that feels personal, not perfect. I never want my home to feel too precious. It’s a place to be enjoyed. It should be well lived in and loved.
What’s your favorite oldest interior piece and what’s your favorite latest purchase?
I’ve had the vintage Thonet chairs the longest and I’ll probably have them forever. I purchased the set on Ebay for $150 years ago. They were taken from the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. They even have a faded Mayo Clinic stamp on the bottom which I love.
Recently I’ve held off on any big purchases and instead have been spending all my money on beautiful kitchenware and gadgets. I bought a set of handmade ceramic dinnerware from SHED earlier this year which make me happy every time I eat. I’ve also been trying to perfect clay pot cooking in my new tagine and donabe.
Which interior piece are your dreaming about owning?
I’ve had my eye on a Mads Caprani floor lamp for sometime now.
If you could live anywhere else in the world, where would it be?
Spain. I feel like I leave a piece of my heart there every time I leave.
Next travel destination?
Japan is high on my list.
Favorite travel destination?
Mallorca, Menorca or my hometown of Ojai.
If someone is visiting Silver Lake for the first time, which places would you recommend?
I’d tell them to go to the farmer’s market on Saturday to gather food and have a picnic at the Silver Lake meadow after. MhZh, Bar Stella and Mohawk General Store are some other favorites.
3 favorite Instagrammers?