“You know when someone dates people that are a variation of the same person? They have a type. Well, I have a house-type,” How I Met Your Mother star Josh Radnor says with a laugh. “I’m not into modern or super trendy with glass everywhere,” he says of his interior design style. “I like [a home] to feel old, sturdy, and stylish.”
His 1920s Spanish-style house in Los Angeles is a testament to his own taste. As a lover of books, travel, and rooms filled with historic objects, Radnor shies away from things that appear too manicured or too perfect. “Classic” is how he describes his style. “I also don’t like anything that looks crisp or brand new. Unless it’s a suit. I really like things to feel lived in, like an old friend.”
He found his designer in Kishani Perera, who was recommended to him via a friend, just before the pandemic. Radnor purchased the home in 2019 and moved in in January 2020, after delays by some extensive remodeling and decorating—in the primary bathroom in particular. “Pretty much everything is new, like the tile,” Perera says of that space. “But we kept some of the vintage fixtures like the tub.”
Perera was a perfect partner for Radnor, in that she shared his vision for a “global, well-traveled” home, as she puts it. “He never wanted us to buy something that looked new. He wanted vintage, patina, some character, some chipping,” she says. To achieve that effect, Perera scoured a variety of sources and eschewed buying too many items from any one store. “She understood what I was asking and, at the same time, she elevated my vision,” Radnor explains.
Though Perera and Radnor left some elements, like the original entryway ceiling, intact, Perera infused the home with a distinctive, layered sense of decor, particularly when it came to the living and family rooms. Perera also pushed Radnor to go outside his comfort zone. One example was the particular paint tone used in the kitchen. “We went back and forth on the color, and she had to say, ‘Trust me on this,’” says Radnor of the Benjamin Moore Narragansett Green paint, which was used on the cabinets. “And I’m so glad I did, because I love it.” Beneath them, the durable Caesarstone concrete countertops are meant to be used.
There’s an element of spirituality, too, that can be traced throughout the home. When the home was completed, Perera’s housewarming gift to Radnor was to bring Buddhist monks in to bless the house. It couldn’t have been more fitting. “I want my home to feel like a sanctuary. I want it to feel meditative,” Radnor said. “I want it to feel reflective of places I’ve been.” That it is.