Tour the Perfectly Pink L.A. Home of Flour Shop Founder Amirah Kassem

Of course Amirah Kassem lives in a pink house. The creative and culinary force behind Flour Shop, the baking company best known for its rainbow-tier explosion cakes, embraces color in every corner of her personal and professional universe. But the cotton candy–colored exterior of the Los Angeles home she shares with her husband Ross Harrow and daughter Coco wasn’t always a sure thing.

“I wanted it to be this Old Hollywood, light pink vibe,” Kassem recalls. “My husband was like, ‘I don’t want to live in a pink house.’” The couple, who are also business partners, ended up agreeing that Benjamin Moore’s Ballet Slippers felt close enough to a neutral to be acceptable, but she notes that Harrow happens to be color-blind. “I’m not sure if he realizes that he lives in a fully pink house,” she laughs.

Inspired by the Beverly Hills Hotel and other favorite vacation destinations that scream “pink and palm trees,” Kassem and Harrow finally got their ideal West Coast home base after relocating from New York in late 2019. “It was this little dark house; all the floors were different,” Kassem says of the existing dwelling. “[Ross] kept saying, close your eyes, delete the house, and look at how amazing this land is—your entire backyard is a mountain. It just feels wild and free.” The unique configuration of the property means that their front lawn contains the pool, a cabana, and an outdoor dining deck, all of which sets the tone for the entertaining-friendly environment they had hoped to build. “It sort of feels like being in a resort,” she says. “[We felt] we could really live here, we could entertain here, and we don’t feel like we have to escape on weekends. This is the escape.”

Working with a design and construction team that included designer Elizabeth Backup, a close friend, and Arte Construction and Development, Kassem and Harrow oversaw the renovation of the midcentury house. That effort involved stripping the structure down to the studs and extending it in multiple directions in order to increase its footprint and create a more unified, modern layout.

The house is painted in Benjamin Moore’s Ballet Slippers, which the team selected after testing multiple hues. “We had pieces of the house painted in different pinks—I wanted to see it in the sun, in the night, in the shade, and it really did make a huge difference,” Amirah Kassem says. The sectional sofa is from Horchow, and the rattan coffee table is Serena & Lily.

“It had gone through several previous remodels that were really lacking cohesion,” Backup says. “It needed a lot of work. It hadn’t been touched in a meaningful way in a long time.”

Kassem was deeply involved in every design decision, only spending extended time away from the job site to shoot Foodtastic, a food competition show that launches this fall on Disney+. She had a clear concept in mind for rooms like the kitchen, which naturally gets a lot of use. The entire space revolves around the showstopping pink La Cornue range, but the dolomite-top island was equally important to Kassem, who wanted a countertop material that would stand up to her frequent cooking and baking. “To find a stone that’s a single slab this big was pretty much impossible,” she recalls. “Unless you have six months to go hang out in the stone yards in the heat of the Valley, which I definitely did while pregnant.”

Another critical conversation revolved around getting the right colors in each and every room. “I have such a specific vision of what the rainbow color palette is for me,” Kassem says. Anything too muted or pastel was off limits, which required some negotiations with Backup.

“Amirah going outside her comfort zone is designing something not rainbow,” Backup jokes. The primary bedroom is one departure from the normal color scheme, with a custom emerald green Modshop bed and geometric Momeni rug featuring dusty pinks, greens, and blues. “I felt like I was really going outside the box with the jewel tones,” Kassem says. “This is me pushing my boundaries.”

Kassem at her beloved La Cornue range, with one of her famous Flour Shop cakes in the foreground. “This is what I cook on every day,” she says.

Coco’s playroom may be the truest interpretation of Kassem’s aesthetic, thanks to a saturated mural that Kassem designed and painted herself. So far, it’s been a hit. After the family returned from a vacation, “Coco ran to her playroom and was screaming from excitement,” Kassem says. “I’m so glad that I spent the time to paint this room for her.”

All in all, both designer and client feel satisfied with the energy they were able to bring into the place. “Amirah has this amazing rainbow approach to life. I was very excited to have a chance to do something a bit wild and out there and super colorful, which is not something that people usually ask for,” Backup says. “We got to push each other in different ways.”

Adds Kassem: “I was scared that it was going to be too whimsical, but it turned out to be just the right amount.”

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