Who: CC Boom
Where: Downtown Los Angeles, California
Style: Cozy kitsch
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When you step into CC Bursell's (aka CC Boom) downtown LA loft, you immediately get the sense that you already know her, "I feel like this apartment reflects exactly who I am. This is a nice, creative, feel-good space. When you come in, you want to breathe it into your life."
Originally from Sweden, Bursell traveled to New York to study graphic design, and then relocated to LA almost three years ago. Living in New York inspired her to seek a similar vibe when she came west, so the only choice for her was to live downtown. "It feels more mixed. I like that I can walk anywhere. Even though it's a city, it's a neighborhood and I love that part of it."
But when setting out to find the right loft for her and French bulldog Piggy Smallz (complete with lots of bling around his neck), there was one deal breaker: "The thing I really wanted was to create an oasis with an outdoor space. I had to have a balcony."
So, one fateful night while walking to a music festival on Main Street, she happened upon this building. "I went in to see an apartment. It didn't have a balcony, but there was another loft (that already had a bid on it) that had one. I asked to see it. When I saw that balcony, I thought, you could literally fit 50 people out here and wanted to move in right away." As fate would have it, the other perspective tenants had a change of heart, so Bursell did, in fact, move in right away.
Walking through the original glass panel walnut door leading into her loft, you get a sense of eras colliding. "I love old American movies and I just want it to say something like 'Detective Boom' on the door. I love that they preserved the old architecture of this building," she says.
When describing her style, Bursell calls it "totally fxcking normal," which is a wink to her sense of irony. Mixing her self-admitted Swedish sense of order with her love of objects and art, the cozy space is chock-full of color and kitsch, yet everything has its place. There are pops of humor everywhere in color choices and in the placement of objects.
The nearly 725-square-foot loft is mostly an open floor plan with a wall that separates the bedroom from the rest of the living space.
The modern kitchen, concrete floors, and high ceilings are surrounded by large windows that flood the space with natural light, giving Bursell the "white canvas" she was seeking to fill with her design sensibility.
Another standout is all of the unexpected gold details throughout the apartment. "I'm obsessed with gold," she says. "I love to have gold accents everywhere, I wear gold all the time." In particular a life-sized gold muscle man that stands guard in her living room, a prop from her days as a creative director at Nickelodeon. "He is like my Oscar. Having him in the apartment picks up all the other pieces of gold."
There's a large leg lamp on her cocktail bar, a Wonder bread loaf and a container of Spam made entirely of felt on her kitchen counter, and countless other one-of-a-kind pieces she's collected along the way.
But what's most interesting about all of this is she's not exactly a flea market or vintage store junkie. "I do not need to see anything in person. Most of the stuff I find online, but the trick is, I know what I want before I search for it. For example, the other day I wanted to find a fruit bowl that was made of gold bananas. That's just how my mind works."
Bursell knows exactly what she wants before she goes to find it, which differs from most people when they go about decorating their homes or shopping in general. "There are so many things that I search for my apartment that don't exist. Like snow leopard towels. They don't exist. So, I think I should just make them ... which sometimes happens."
And now back to the balcony, or really, the terrace. When Bursell lived in Harlem, she called her then small outdoor space the "Boom Boom Balcony," so the name traveled with her.
The over 300-square-foot outdoor space is all about entertaining and hanging out. And she loves to entertain. "I have always set up my space to have people over, even since high school there was a small area with a couch and chairs in my bedroom to just hang out with people." And you can tell. She often holds movie nights under the stars and projects films onto the wall of her building. It's really one big comfy open-air living room decorated with all the color and fun you'd expect from CC Boom.
When it comes to decor, she hopes people take a cue or two from her. "It's so nice to be an inspiration to people who I think would never get inspiration from me, especially when it comes to decorating. I feel like I can make them feel like they can do it and they should go for it," says Bursell. The first word that comes to mind after spending time in her home is: optimistic. "I have to look at something and think, that makes me smile, that makes me happy. I don't want anything in here that makes me sad. I also like to keep things around that I don't mind looking at a thousand times." Maybe she's onto something.
Locals Know Best: CC Boom’s Downtown LA Faves
— I like the rooftop at the Freehand Hotel for drinks. It's a happy atmosphere.
— I also love Preux & Proper for food and drinks. The staff is so nice.
— For coffee, ilCaffe at the Eastern Building. The owner is Swedish, what more can I say?
— I still love the Downtown Artwalk. It's not so much about the art anymore for me, but it's fun and people are out having a good time. It's uplifting and you see all kinds of people.