Celebrity cribs: A peek into the homes of stars amid the Covid-19 outbreak

PHOTO: Jaime Teo

It is not easy being a celebrity in the time of coronavirus.

“Out of sight, out of mind” is now a real occupational hazard with the suspension of see-and-be-seen events like red carpets, movie premieres and talk shows filmed on studio sets.

To minimise the risk, celebrities are engaging with fans from their own homes.

In the process, they have also offered the world a peek into their abodes and their decor style, you never know, you just might learn a few things to liven up your own home.

1. Jade Seah

Local model, host and actress, 37-year-old Jade Seah has a home to die for.

Fully decked out with vintage pieces and thrifted items, it’s cosy and cool all at the same time. Jade often posts #fitspo pictures on her Instagram with her beautiful house as her backdrop, so here’s a closer look at her crib.

Her whole house is vintage-themed, and prove the pre-loved items could be as good as new ones as long as you think out of the box. 

PHOTO: Home & Decor

She makes use of a repurposed baby crib as a chair and her old gate as a new wall display, creating a warm and rustic feel.

Jade is obsessed with lights, confessing that “Every single light is painstakingly chosen by me,” she even ships home lights she finds in her travels!

This results in creating a unique setting for your own home and no doubt gives you the satisfaction of having curated your own space.

Home & Decor

Tip: Jade thinks electronics like the television, dishwasher and dryer are eyesores so you can hide them behind pretty doors or shelves that’ll really add a new look to your home and make it look more spacious too.

You can see a house tour here.

2. Andrea Chong

Fashion icon and influencer, Andrea Chong is no stranger to us when it comes to being stylish and in-trend. How can we expect any less from her own home?

On the website she founded, The DC Edit, she shared her process on transforming her kitchen into one that’ll fit right in on a magazine.

Originally planning for a cream coloured cooker, she realised that a black one “anchors the decor and is a conversation piece for those who enter the kitchen”.

While it’s good to have a theme, be flexible and open-minded to other colours or designs, they just might be a better match than what you have in mind.

Andrea also tells us that when it comes to a kitchen, the cutlery and appliances really make a difference in how the whole place looks.

Her tip: Don’t be afraid to start collecting pottery or pieces that you like, you might never have the chance to find them again. Plus, they’re a pretty way to spruce up your home with.

3. Jaime Teo

She started off her career as Miss Universe Singapore 2001, Jaime Teo has endless talents and pursuits.

Not only has she become a Mediacorp artiste since then, but she’s also the co-founder The Twelve Cupcake brand, an artist that sells her paintings, an Instagram #fitspo and baker – all while being a full-time single mum.

Oh, did I mention that she could also be an interior designer? She renovated her house without seeking professional advice. From doorknobs to tiles, Jaime self-sourced everything.

Head over to her Instagram and you’ll see her endless videos of her working out baking, dancing, painting and recording music. With each of them having a designated zone in her house to use!

Tip: You can decorate your place with an artwork of your own! It’s original, unique and will be cute to talk about when you have guests over.

4. Allan Wu

Mainly known for being the face of the iconic show The Amazing Race Asia for all five seasons and his rugged good looks, Allan Wu is well-known to us all.

Throughout circuit breaker, Allan challenged himself and his followers with the #Plus10 challenge. A workout regime that adds ten pushups everyday, on the final day of circuit breaker, he did a total of 550 pushups. Wow.

These videos no doubt have also given us a sneak peek into his home. His sophisticated themes of black and white can be seen through how he’s chosen to paint his walls and his furniture.

The intricate wall feature adds an extra flair to the room without ruining the theme as well. Perfect for a bachelor or anyone wanting to class it up.

5. Desmond Tan

Desmond Tan, one of the eight dukes of Mediacorp has been all over our screens being one of the most prominent local actors.

Now that everyone’s staying home, there’s more pictures of his two adorable dogs and him having fun around the house. 

While most pictures are close-ups of him (we’re not complaining), you can still catch a glimpse into his home and how he’s decorated it.

Take for example this photo, it only shows that interior design doesn’t just lie with furniture or the colour of the walls. Floorwork and tiles can be an easy way to liven up your own home.

His mixture of elegant, modern tiles and traditionally-patterned tiles are a refreshing take and can be an easy way to separate the different rooms of the house.

6. Zoe Tay

The Queen of Caldecott Hill, Zoe Tay, no doubt is a big player in the game of beautiful cribs.

Wife to Singapore Air Force pilot Philip Chionh and a mother to three, her feed is filled with homely pictures of her time spent together while carefully making sure to leave their faces out for their privacy.

In her posts, you can only catch glimpses of her stairway, porch and living room but that’s enough to have some takeaways on home decor tips.

Just like Zoe, you can make any room more spirited and fun with just some colourful cushions or throws.

Find rugs, carpets, drapes or pillows with colours that compliment your interior decor. A little goes a long way and it definitely applies to your home decor.

7. Ella Chen

Singer Ella Chen, 38, of the Taiwanese girl group S.H.E, showed off her cosy crib in Taipei when she posted pictures of herself binge-watching the recent South Korea drama Itaewon Class.

Interior designer to the stars Peter Tay, who has designed the homes of celebrities like actresses Zoe Tay and Zhang Ziyi and singers Stefanie Sun and Wang Leehom, says of Chen’s style: “This is a very Scandinavian look – a lot of light wood and a very relaxed setting and space.

"It’s also very practical as there’s a lot of storage space. Those interested in this style can look into using different combinations of wood as she does here.”

Interior design studio Free Space Intent’s principal designer, Mr Raymond Seow, says Chen’s space is one that would appeal to many Singaporeans.

“This design aesthetic is popular with Singaporeans: the use of indoor plants (here are “9 Easy-To-Care-For Plants In Singapore“), the pops of pastel colours in the room and the accessories on her shelves and walls that show her personality.”

8. Pierre Png and Andrea De Cruz

Closer to home, local celebrity couple Pierre Png, 46, and Andrea De Cruz, 45, have a home that shows off what both designers call the “eclectic” taste of the couple.

De Cruz, who is active on social media, has posted photos of their digs with features including hanging lights framed in birdcages, Peranakan tiles in a large bathroom and a small outdoor space filled with plants – the couple reportedly have mango and frangipani trees.

Mr Seow says their home – a terrace house in the eastern part of Singapore – has a “resort” vibe.

Mr Tay, a friend of the couple, says: “Andrea is someone who has accumulated a collection of things along the way.

"She checks out second-hand furniture stores for pieces she likes and takes them home.”

9. Aimee Song

In the United States, American fashion blogger-turned-designer Aimee Song, 32, is also on lockdown at home.

An Instagram video shows her in her living room where an African table and a designer couch sit atop a patterned rug. Another Instagram post shows off what looks to be her kitchen, complete with a marble countertop and slabs of marble meant to be racks.

Mr Tay says those who have a strong understanding of what they want can design their home to focus solely on pieces of furniture they love, like what Ms Song does.

He says: “You can tell that, at least looking at her living room, the walls are quite bare. She doesn’t have many accessories, just a plant and a mirror.

"She wants all the focus to be on the statement pieces of furniture she has – the couch, the table.”

But Mr Seow cautions against imitating the bare look of Ms Song’s kitchen, which in photos does not appear to have cabinets on the walls, the way many kitchens here do. Instead, there are racks with ornaments and books.

“Some of my clients want this look, they don’t want the kitchen to be all covered up with cabinets. But in a normal flat, taking away those cabinets means you’re taking away a lot of storage.”

“Generally, kitchen storage should be covered because when you’re cooking, oil or other grime might dirty items that are left in the open.”

10. Drake

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For unadulterated luxury, though, Canadian rapper Drake’s eye-popping Toronto manor takes the cake.

The 33-year-old’s extravagant home, which he calls The Embassy, was recently featured in a spread in the lifestyle magazine Architectural Digest. It is also where Drake has been staying to ride out the coronavirus pandemic.

Mr Seow says with a laugh: “It all looks very high-end and luxurious, with a lot of marble, but it doesn’t look too comfortable and definitely does not look kid-friendly.”

Drake has a son, who turns two in October, with former girlfriend artist Sophie Brussaux.

Still, his home does offer some lessons in home styling.

On Drake’s kitchen, which has a wide marble kitchen island, blue chairs and a dark blue finishing on his kitchen counters, Mr Tay says: “The contrast of the white of the marble and dark kitchen finishing is very nice.

And he also saved the marble for the big kitchen island. It is not a bad idea to use your favourite material on the most prominent part of your home.”

11. Stefanie Sun

The home-grown singer has a small but intimate and well-lit area which she shows off on social media.

Decorated simply with a patterned rattan chair and table, the walls have two rows of shelves – holding books, artwork, small house plants and a Jo Malone candle.

In a separate Instagram video posted recently, Sun even had articles cut out from The Straits Times pinned to her wall.

The Singaporean influencer showed off her home in many recent Instagram posts.

A dark brown leather couch and a gold lamp lend a masculine energy to her living room, one tempered by the soft finishings such as the cushions on the couch.

12. John Legend and Chrissy Teigen

The world had a peek into the the A-list Hollywood couple’s home when Legend performed with singer Sam Smith for the One World: Together At Home online concert in one of his rooms.

The artistic lamp in the background, an L-shaped couch, floor-to-ceiling windows and a dark wood floor showed off the couple’s taste.

Legend’s piano is placed near a wall filled with accessories that money cannot buy: the singer’s many Grammy awards which accented the white walls with splashes of gold.

13. Michelle Obama

The Former First Lady of the United States read a story to children from what looks to be her study.

The large white bookshelf in the background is very tasteful, filled with books and ornaments, contrasted with a black tabletop.

14. Jimmy Fallon

Perhaps no one’s home has received as much attention as talk show host Jimmy Fallon, who is hosting The Tonight Show from home with his two young daughters.

He has a quirky decor style, with a penchant for wood, colourful furniture, ornaments and paintings.

The slide that goes through the house seems built for his children to have as much fun as possible.

15. Ellen DeGeneres

The daytime talk show host’s sprawling home with actress wife Portia De Rossi has been the backdrop of her show since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in America.

It is clear her home has a lot of space and seems to be surrounded by greenery on all sides, with large potted plants indoors too.

Pieces of artisanal furniture are scattered across her home as well.

This article was first published in The Straits Times, with additional text from Her World OnlinePermission required for reproduction.