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Joy's House

Surprise! My Secret Project Revealed…

I have a surprise for you! I’m revealing a secret project that is on the COVER of the newest issue of Domino Magazine. Take a peek…

After sharing my home reveal with you, you might have been secretly sad the reveals were finished when I had no more to share with you. Well, I have a surprise for you! While I was building my house over 6 years, we were also building another project right near by that is on the COVER of the newest issue of Domino Magazine. Here’s the scoop of how it all happened, and why I’ve kept it from you until now…

A look back
When we found land back in 2014, there was a smaller area of land available right next door. It was listed for very cheap (for Los Angeles standards), and so I decided to buy it and build a future office. I wanted to put that office rent money towards our own property vs. someone else’s. It was an ideal situation to have my office separate from home yet very close by. So from the start, we designed, developed, permitted, and built these two properties at the same time to make use of all the resources that were already going to be involved in my home project.

Why didn’t you tell us?!
So back in 2014, when we designed this new studio space, I then had my very first Oh Joy 1.0 office with my first few employees. That office was about 1100 sq. ft., so we designed this new one to be an increase to about 1400 sq. ft. of office space on the top floor. Then we added two bedrooms on the bottom floor so that my parents and in-laws could eventually live there if they wanted or come out for extended stays to visit from Philly. However, in the time it took us to design, get permits, and build, my business grew bigger than I expected. We moved into the Oh Joy 2.0 office in 2017 to accommodate a team of 7 and our growing needs with a new warehouse style office of 4200 sq. ft. so that we could have an area for crafting, shipping, photography, and more. At that time, I knew that the design for my “home” office wasn’t going to serve the needs of our work then, and I wasn’t sure when it could again. So I had backup plans in mind such as: selling it (to make back what was spent in the build) or renting it out for either AirBnBs or for photoshoot rentals (to cover the future mortgage). It didn’t make sense to share the process with you then while that was happening because I really didn’t know what we would end up doing with it. Meanwhile, we pivoted the top “office” floor to more of an open living concept so that it would be more flexible as a rental or to possibly sell to another owner.

Then what happened?
Well, then 2020 happened. And, right before the pandemic hit, I had decided to scale back and operate my business on a smaller scale than I had been. This wasn’t a decision I had in my big plan for my life or my business. It was something I had to do because my business and mental health wasn’t viable the way I was running it. Then, the pandemic hit. While I was already transitioning my business, I also ended up moving into my completed home around this time, too. To say things were emotional would be an understatement. During early pandemic days, I was focused on getting my family settled into our home and so grateful we were able to move out of our apartment and into our house while our kids would need to be home for school and we would all spend a year mostly at home together. Soon after, we moved out of our last office and into this new one. The crazy thing was that up until last year, I didn’t think I would be using this office as I had originally planned. But the life-changing year that was 2020 brought it all full circle again. Now, there are two of us full-time at Oh Joy! who work out of the office daily, and we have freelancers who come to join us from time-to-time. The guest rooms house our friends and family who come to visit (which wasn’t possible for the first year of the pandemic), but it’s been so nice to be able to start to have visitors again post-vaccine!

Ok, so let us see it!!!
This all leads up to this reveal! I’m so honored that my new work-from-home studio is in the new issue of Domino Magazine…and on the COVER! I’ve read Domino since it first launched in 2005 and have always loved how they feature real people (not just celebrities) on their cover. I am honored to be representing Asian Americans on the cover as it’s so rare to see, and I hope we’ll keep seeing more and more diversity for all publications and features. This issue will arrive to subscribers soon, and will be on newsstands in a couple weeks! Next month, I’ll begin sharing a breakdown of all the rooms here including process, materials, and all sources as I did with my home reveal.

Thanks so much for following along on this journey…I can’t wait for you guys to see it all! See a peek at the space here and some more behind-the-scenes on my Instagram today!

Credits
Cover Photo: Yoshiro Makino
Photo Asst: Sam Cornwall
Progress Photo: Lily Glass
Interior Photos: Bethany Nauert
Architecture: Project M Plus
Construction: Boswell Construction
Design: Cleo Murnane of Project M Plus
Interior Prop Styling: Scott Horne
Wardrobe Styling: Anna Su
Hair and Makeup: Danielle Walch
Jumpsuit: Atelier Delphine
Executive Creative Director of Domino: Kate Berry

32 comments

  1. Wow, Joy, I couldn’t be happier for you and your family! All your and Bob’s years of hard work are paying off big time! You deserve every ounce of ease you’ve earned. I love that you can stroll back and forth from home to office and that you’ve factored in your aging parents in the mix. I don’t usually buy magazines but I’ll look for your lovely face on this one and pick it up! Congratulations to all!

  2. JOY!! Holy guacamole, what a frigging DREAM… I just love it so much … everything feels so fresh and vibrant and colourful and modern! I can’t wait to go back and look more thoroughly and absorb all the beauty. Absolutely gorgeous and I literally gasped scrolling to each new picture. The wall colours, the wallpaper, the fixtures, the TILE!? Oh my goodness. I am so happy for you, so great to be able to just… walk seconds to work!! And Ruby and Coco can come knocking to tell you to “come home from work!” Hehe. Sending lots of love, thank you for being a continued inspiration in every way. xo Lyndsay

  3. OMG what a beautiful space/house/office. Absolutely gorgeous. I immediately looked up your friend photographer Jimmy Marble and ordered his book. Thank you so much for sharing!!

  4. What a smart decision it was to but that neighboring property! I’m sure it was not the easiest decision knowing how expensive your house project would be. I love the idea of building a work space that could also be a home for your parents someday. Genius! Very excited for future reveals!

    1. Yes, I had to take out separate loans for the build so it was financially very hard but the pain has been worth it! :p

      1. Joy! I keep looking at the studio for inspiration.
        I’m looking forward to the posts about each area.
        I’m super keen to know about the process of deciding on the dining booth – to booth or not to booth, and then what style of booth 😀
        And also the decision to split the flooring from tile to timber on the upper floor. Seems so smart and simple.
        Cheers, B

  5. You continue to amaze me in all the years I’ve been seeing you and your brand grow! You keep it real and I appreciate you keep in’ it 💯! I always say that you’re truly like the modern-day Martha Stewart! Look forward to seeing your posts everyday and all the collaborations you do…you’re an inspiration not only to me, but to this new generation of kids, small business owners, etc. Thank you for all you do!!!! Congrats on this cover of Domino….well deserved, indeed!!!

  6. It’s wonderful, Joy! I’m so glad you could share this with us–I feel really inspired by all your design choices. Here’s hoping your dream of your folks and your in-laws moving to LA comes true!

  7. Hi! I am equally in love with the slides you’re wearing in the shoot as I am with the office space! I know this is a long shot, but could you share a link to them? I looked up the brand’s website, m.gemi, but I couldn’t find the pair you’re wearing. Thanks!

  8. Joy, you’ve always been a source of style and design inspo to me, and this space is no exception! It’s gorgeous and I can totally see your personality in each space!

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