Home tour: this real life Barbie Dream House is so extra and we love it

This Barbie Dream House is so unashamedly over the top that we can't help but love it. See how one homeowner has created a memorable home that is every bit as cool and creative as her

LA Barbie Dream House
(Image credit: Future)

Many of us played with a Barbie Dream House as a child, but few of us ever thought we would actually end up living in one. But that is just what fashion photographer Jamie Nelson has done with the transformation of her 60s home in California.

Where do we even start with this house? It's like Barbie, meets Playboy, meets Marie Antoinette, meets a set from some 70s movie, and it is such a vibe! We love it! Yes, it's totally extra and probably not very practical, but it's also fabulous and we couldn't wait to check out this tour. 

When Jamie moved from New York, she bought this 60s pink pillared mansion in the San Fernando Valley, and turned it into her dream home. She has actually kept a lot of the original features of the home which work really well with her retro style. In Jamie's home each room has a color, the pink room, the yellow room, the blue room and the most out there of them all, the red room (there are fur walls...).

Take a tour of each room in the video below and for more inspiring spaces, head over to our completed projects hub page.  

She says one of her inspirations is the Madonna Inn, a hotel just outside LA, in which every room has a theme – you can check them all out on the website and we highly recommend you do, you'll see the similarities instantly. Follow Jamie on Instagram, too where fabulousness meets the surreal.

Decorating with color

Being bold with color does take some bravery, but not everyone has to go to Jamie's color extremes – fabulous as her home is. Pastels and muted versions of your favorite colors are a good place to start, and can be worked with neutrals for a sedate look.

If you don't want the permanence of colored walls, choose accessories and textiles in bold colors to get the vibe without the commitment. This allows for transient decorating and can even mean you may change the space with the seasons. 

Think about the light in the room when you choose your colors. Cool tones are fine in sunny south facing rooms but north facing spaces benefit from a bit of warmth – yellows, blush pinks and pastel oranges are safe bets. Paint just one wall and see how you feel before taking the plunge with more.

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Hebe Hatton

Hebe joined the Real Homes team in early 2018 as Staff Writer before moving to the Livingetc team in 2021 where she took on a role as Digital Editor. She loves boho and 70's style and is a big fan of Instagram as a source of interiors inspiration. When she isn't writing about interiors, she is renovating her own spaces – be it wallpapering a hallway, painting kitchen cupboards or converting a van.