Actress, former resident now designing homes
By Raiza Giorgi
The beauty and rural atmosphere of the Santa Ynez Valley’s sprawling hills dotted with oak trees, coupled with a Spanish and Italian architectural aesthetic, inspired actress, former Santa Ynez Valley resident and now home designer Cheryl Ladd to create her own line of homes in Texas.
“I have traveled all around the world and there really is no place like the valley. I miss my friends tremendously, but I wanted to be close to my family in Texas, and this project has kept me close to the valley by designing it around my home there,” Ladd said in a telephone interview.
Ladd lived in the valley for more than 20 years as she spent her time acting in a variety of notable film and stage roles.
Her time in Hollywood began in 1970 when she started a career in music, singing for the popular animated Hanna-Barbera series “Josie and the Pussycats.” She also appeared on popular television shows at the time such as “Happy Days” and “The Partridge Family.”
“I moved to the valley because it’s such an easy commute to Los Angeles or near the airport to get to a set location,” she said.
Ladd is most famous for her role on the television series “Charlie’s Angels,” which ended in 1981. Most recently she appeared in “Las Vegas,” “The People vs. O.J. Simpson, An American Crime Story” (which also included valley native Angie Patterson) and in the recently released movie “Unforgettable” with Katherine Heigel.
“All during my career, my passion has been designing homes. I designed my house in Los Angeles and … I love going to open houses and seeing other people’s designs,” she said with a laugh.
When Ladd moved about four years ago to San Antonio, where her daughter and granddaughter live, she built and designed her home just north of the Texas community. She loved the experience so much that she decided to team up with her builder, Trey Garner of Garner Homes.
Garner graduated in construction science from Texas A&M University and started his company in 1998, first in Austin and then in San Antonio with his wife and two children. He and Ladd have spent the last year or so designing a series of models for the Cordillera Ranch project, which have influences from Santa Barbara and the Santa Ynez Valley.
“I loved working with Trey because he has taken my vision and turned it into a reality. I am helping with every aspect of the design — color, lighting, layout — and I even helped with construction on the homes. I want them to all have a personal touch,” Ladd said.
Texas is exploding with new home construction, she noted.
“People love the Texas countryside because everyone is so friendly and there is just views for days. It reminds me of Santa Ynez and Los Olivos when I first moved to the valley, that small country charm,” she said.
For more information about Ladd’s homes and designs, visit www.cherylladdsignaturehomes.com.