My Houzz: Olivia Munn’s Surprise Renovation for Her Mom

Home, to me, is a lot of noise, and people, and food, and laughter, somewhere you can shut all the.


Home, to me, is a lot of
noise, and people, and food, and laughter, somewhere
you can shut all the blinds and feel really cozy,
somewhere that you can celebrate life with your friends. I’m Oliva Munn, and this is My Houzz. My family is definitely not the perfect, magazine cover family at all. We’re very blunt and sarcastic. We tell each other what we
think, we joke around a lot. At my house, there’s a
lot of screaming going on and my mom just goes,
“we’re not screaming, it’s how we talk.” I mean, that’s my mom. She’s gonna be her no
matter where you are, and I think that’s
what’s made us so close. My mom was born and raised in Vietnam, and in 1975, in the final days of Saigon, my family was lucky enough to escape and make their way to Oklahoma. My mother and all of her uniqueness has definitely shaped who I am today. I think the thing that I
learned the most from my mother is how to be strong, how
to stand up for myself, and how to stand up for
the people that I love. So looking back now, I
just think, thank god my mom always instilled this
feeling of self worth in me and that I knew that my dreams mattered, even if they were close to impossible. Without that, I never would’ve
tried it in Hollywood. The things that my mom and I have really bonded over is cooking. She’ll say, oh, it’s this much salt, and this much flour, and this much pepper, and you’re like, what is this much? So I literally have sheets of
paper with her recipes on it with a picture of a hand
going like, this much. It’d be like, this much
pepper, and I have to remember what that looked like
in her tiny Asian hands. Those memories of learning
how to cook with her and how obnoxious she
was at her measurements, those are the memories that
I really love with my mother. My mom thinks that cooking
is the most important thing, has everybody at the
house for every holiday. There’s just always this
open-door policy for dinner. I wanna give this renovation to my mother because if there’s anybody in the world that I think deserves it, it’s her. She lives in this house that
means so much to all of us. That’s basically where we kinda grew up. The dining room, TV room, and
kitchen, it’s all one room. She’s making it work, but
it’s just not optimal. She’s really short, so she
can’t reach the high shelves, and there’s not enough storage for all the pots and pans that she needs. Right now they have this great island, but no one really sits at it,
and then the dining room area, it’s small and they have to eat in shifts. It’s next to this fireplace
that they never use. Things just kind of end up there and it just becomes a catch-all. So I wanna try to turn this
whole space into a place where everybody can come and hang out. I live in LA, but my mother
lives in Oklahoma City, so I went onto Houzz and
I looked for designers and contractors in the Oklahoma City area. I found Travis’ profile and
he had a lot of really great reviews, and I loved his whole portfolio, so I just gave him a call. – So good to meet you–
– I know, so nice to– – –in real life!
– –meet you in person! I know, we’ve been on the phone so much. This is so exciting! – It’s exciting for me too! So tell me a little bit
about what your vision is for what you’d like to do for your mom. – My mom’s ridiculously short. She is a hobbit. A hobbit that cooks. She’s a hobbit that loves to cook. So functionality is super
important because I’m really wanting to just give her
somewhere that she can just cook as much as she loves to cook and make it really easy for her. – I think we could make it work for her. – Okay, awesome. – Tell me a little bit
about your mom’s style. – As long as it’s comfortable and working, she’s not very particular,
and that’s what I think would be so great is to do
things that help keep things looking organized and clean, but that are still really easy to access. So even though there’s three living spaces in this one room, it is pretty small. Is there anything that we can do just make it feel more open? – So one of the things that we can do is to raise the ceiling. I think that that eight
foot ceiling height is making that whole space
feel a little bit closed in. – It’s eight feet? – It’s eight foot. Maybe utilizing some of the attic space that is right above there. – We have an attic? – Well, not for long. By giving it volume and
allowing your eye to look up, we can really make the space feel huge. So on our ideabook, I’ve actually selected different looks. – Ideabooks are great,
because as I’m on Houzz and I’m finding different
things that inspire me or elements that I like, I
can add it to the ideabook, and Travis is doing the same thing. – [Travis] These are
similar spaces to yours and they have cathedral ceilings. What would you say about
something like that? – I think it just might
be a little too modern. – [Travis] Yeah, I understand. This is a little bit of
a different direction. It’s a little bit more rustic. We’ve got that warmth and visual element to bring your eye up.
– Right. – [Travis] But it also
keeps it clean and open. – That, I love. – Okay. So one thing that I noticed, she is in major need of more storage. – She needs massive containers
to hold rice and pasta. – We can make sure that she’s prepared to cook for the whole neighborhood. – Awesome. There is this TV room that’s
right next to the kitchen and there’s this one kind of dead space. I just don’t know what
you think that may be. – I think it would be a
really good opportunity to have a walk-in pantry. – That’s a great idea,
because there’s the really organized, clean Asians, and then there’s the messy ones and loud ones. That’s my family. So that would just help keep things organized and clean, right? – Yeah. I noticed how many appliances
there are on the countertops, and it would be great if we
could get those out of sight, but still really usable,
so this is one idea. – Oh, that’s a really cool thing. So they could be plugged in there? – Yes, so they can–
– Well, that’s nice. – [Travis] –stay back there. They’re plugged in,
they’re easily accessible. Whenever this is down,
they’re out of sight. – Yay! I love this. Right now we have this big rice cooker that sits on top of the
counter, so if we can find a way of doing the
rice cooker built in… Is that easy to do? – It’s a little bit of a challenge, but we’re totally up for a challenge. I love that idea and I think
that could be really exciting. – Okay, yay. I love that, she’s gonna love that. – So one of the things
that I wanted to show you was some incredible
different light features that I think could make a
statement above the island. – I love that, and I love that they would be at different heights. – [Travis] Yeah. – So before we move on, I should tell you that there is a dining room table that is a family heirloom of my stepfather’s and that’s really important
to keep in the house. – Okay. So normally we would try to embellish the fireplace and make that a focal point. Based on the location
that it is in the space, and unfortunately, because
it’s been capped off, it doesn’t really work,
it’s not functional. I think that it’s just visual
weight that we don’t need. I think we should take
it and reclaim that space for something interesting and different and a focal point for the dining room. – I mean, that’s a great
idea because nobody’s sitting with the fire behind their
back, even if it worked, which it doesn’t work. – Yeah. One of the things that I
noticed whenever I visited the house, there are a lot
of really cool accessories, ancient artifacts, whatever
you wanna call them, but I think it would be
really neat to incorporate a bookcase, but that way they don’t end up just scattered everywhere. – How are you going to stop
my mom from cluttering it up? Are you gonna be coming over? – Okay, I’m gonna have to do inspections. – Are you gonna take us on for life? – I wanna go over some
potential seating options for the living room. I love this for the space,
because it does have those clean lines, but it’s comfortable. I think it would stand up really well to a lot of family members. – I love it, and in gray, too. – So what do you think
about a piece like that? – I think it looks interesting and unique. I like it, but just not for them, yeah. – Let’s look at one more option. – [Oliva] I love this. – [Travis] Visual Match tool actually gives you a lot of
different potential matches. – It looks like it can take a lot of people putting drinks on
it and stuff like that. I would wanna get that now. – [Travis] Okay. – [Olivia] Add to cart. We’re gonna buy it. – [Travis] There you go. – I should tell you, the
person who’s helping me with the surprise is going
to be my stepfather, Sam. This is a very, very,
very important renovation for me and my family
because if my mom isn’t cooking for all of us,
we’ll all go hungry. – Don’t worry, you will
not go hungry with me. – Okay, I appreciate that. – Got it.
– Thank you so much. I’m so excited!
– Thank you! – Today, Travis and Sam are
meeting up to walk through the space and go over
the renovation plans. – [Sam] Travis. – Hi, Sam.
– Come in here. – Good to meet you.
– Nice to meet you, welcome. – [Travis] I’m so excited
to get started on this. – Well, welcome. I have the most difficult job here, trying to keep both
Olivia and Ms. Kim happy. – Tell me a little bit about the space as you guys currently use it. – The countertops are a
little bit tall for my wife. – Okay. – She’s about this tall. – Everything was built
at a standard height. They make a cabinet lift
system where all of the shelves in the cabinet actually come down to countertop level where
you can use that storage, push it back up, and it’s
out of sight, out of mind. – Wow. – So obviously, this
island size isn’t working for you guys right now. This ends up being about six chairs. If we could get a new,
larger island to seat six, do you think that that would work? Maybe all in one level? – Absolutely. – Okay. Are there any other
things about the kitchen that just aren’t working? – [Sam] I think it’s dark. – Because of the eight
foot ceiling height, it’s really keeping it from
that light, open feeling, so what we’ll do is give you an extra three, four feet of height. – I think that’s a great idea. – Let’s take a look at the living room. How do you currently use this space? – Right now, if you’re over there, you’re watching people watch TV. It couldn’t be more face-to-face. – Makes perfect sense. I think opening this up will just make the space feel bigger. – I like it. I’m super excited about
this whole project. I can’t wait to see it. – I think that this is gonna be an incredible transformation. – And if Kim doesn’t like
it, she’s gonna blame you. – That’s what I’m worried about. – [Olivia] Today is demo
day, but I can’t be there, so I am leaving everything
up to Sam and Travis. – Looks like you’re a professional. Okay, you ready? – I was thinking that
it’d be really interesting to see some ceiling come down. – Interesting is a good word. Messy is the better one,
but I say we tear into it. Oh! – [Sam] That’s what I wanted to see! – There you go. Okay, I think we need to
leave some for my guys. – [Olivia] It’s been three
weeks since renovations have started on my mom’s house. And right now, Sam is going
to meet up with Travis to see how it’s all going on. – Hi Travis! How you doing? – Hey, great to see you.
– Oh, wow. This is something. – Yeah. So this kinda gives
you a full view of what that new ceiling height is gonna be. – [Sam] I love it. – Yeah, major improvement. This is gonna be a much, much bigger and better kitchen for Kim. – [Sam] How exciting. – Since we removed the
carpet, we’re gonna put new flooring in this entire great room, but I think we’re gonna
need an awesome rug. I wanna show you this one
that I found on Houzz. With the View in My Room
3D tool in the Houzz app, you can preview an item before we buy it to see if it really fits in
the room and looks great. So you can place the rug here and turn it so it’s in the right spot. – Wow, I really like that. – Awesome, let’s buy it. All we do is we press list, add to cart. Okay, and it’s on its way. – [Sam] Wow. – I think we should call. Hi Olivia!
– Hi! – Hi! – How are you? – I’m doing good, how are you, Travis? – [Travis] Great! This is the new area
that was your kitchen. Now we’re ready to start fresh. – Oh my gosh, it looks so good. Can I see the pantry area? – [Travis] Yeah, of course. This right here is your
new walk-in pantry area. – [Olivia] That’s really big. – Yeah, I doubt that it’ll
take Kim long to fill it, but we’ve got plenty of space for her now. – That’s awesome. – [Travis] And this is the
new spot for the refrigerator. – My mom cooks so much, there’s
always so many leftovers, and if you open up our
fridge at any moment, there will be 17 old butter containers filled with Vietnamese food. – [Sam] Surprises. – With surprises. So we’re gonna get the biggest
one we can possibly find, and actually, over here, this is all of your new living room space. – Oh, wow. – [Travis] This is the TV space there. It’s right in the middle
of that pantry wall. – And so then all the furniture will be facing that direction? – [Travis] Yes. The sectional kind of makes an L this way. – Oh, that’s nice. Is there the wood floor
on the ground I can see? – Yeah, all of it is a wood-look tile, so you get the warmth of
wood, but you actually still have the durability
of the porcelain tile. – Yeah, we wanted to do
real wood, but my family, they’re animals and they don’t
know how to wipe their feet. – [Travis] And then this right
here is the new fireplace. – Oh, wow. – So we’ve taken out the
hearth and the surround and actually gained quite a few inches. I was really hoping for
you to consider maybe a wallpaper as an accent
there, or a cool paint color? – I don’t know how I feel when people just do that one wall. You know what I think would be great? Is do some kind of built-in
there, a built-in shelf for all my mom’s
knickknacks and tchotchkes. – That way we would
actually regain the depth that we have to build out
around that fireplace. – Sam, do you love that? – [Sam] I love it. – We’ve got a lot of work to get done. – Yeah, thank you so much
for all of the hard work. It looks amazing, you guys. I’m so excited to see it in person. – Thank you so much. We’ll talk to you soon. – Thank you.
– Alright, bye, guys. – Bye. The ideas that Olivia has
had have been awesome, and so we’re really gonna create
something special for Kim. – [Olivia] I’m back in Oklahoma today. Right now, I’m on my way to
go meet up with Sam and Travis to do the finishing
touches so everything is exactly perfect for her. – [Travis] Perfect. – Just like that? – [Travis] Yeah. – [Olivia] Hello? – [Travis] Hey! – Oh my god! – [Travis] What do you think? – This looks unreal, oh my god. Walking and seeing how
amazing everything looked… I mean, it doesn’t look anything like the way the house used to be. It’s just so crazy that it
came together so perfectly. Sam, what do you think? – [Sam] I love it. – [Olivia] Oh my gosh. – [Travis] Do you think
your mom will like it? – I think she’s gonna be floored. I mean, Sam, you’re tearing up. Isn’t it amazing? Aw. – We’re not done yet. There’s still a ton to put together. – [Olivia] Let me help you. Okay. – Yes, put this right here for now. – Okay. Travis, is this the coffee
table that we saw on Houzz? – Yes! Isn’t it beautiful in real life? – It is amazing. It literally looks exactly
how it looked online, which is really exciting. – [Sam] Beautiful. – [Travis] Yeah, it’s perfect. – And it’s so durable, right? – [Travis] Yes. I thought this was really
cool, a little pop of white. – [Olivia] Elephants are good luck. – [Travis] That’s awesome. – [Olivia] Oh my gosh! I grew up looking at these needlepoints that my mom would do. – We had them reframed. It’s a pop of color, it’s
a little gallery feeling, so it’s really her art. – This is the fanciest
her art has ever looked. – [Travis] Let me get this. – That looks great. This is so pretty, Travis. – [Travis] We’ve got some great color. – [Olivia] Okay, I think we’re done. – Yeah. – Sam, can you do me a favor? Can you go get mom for me? – Okay.
– I’m so excited! – Good luck! – Alright. I’m a little nervous because, with my mom, you can never predict
what she’s gonna say, but we added a lot of things that were her own personal touches that I think she’s really gonna love.
(knocking) Hi! Okay, don’t look, don’t
look, don’t look, don’t look. Hold on, okay. Hi! Are you excited? – Yes, I am! – I have a big, big surprise for you. There’s nobody else I know
that works as hard as you do. This is my gift to you, and
I hope that you love it. – Thank you so much. – Just so you know, that’s the first time you’ve ever thanked me for anything. I’ll be right… Hold on, okay? So wait, ready? – Yeah.
– Are you ready? Okay. – [Kim] So beautiful, my goodness! Different than before! – [Olivia] Doesn’t it feel big and open? – Yes.
– Look how high the ceilings are. Remember how low they were before? – [Kim] Oh, I love it. Thank you so much. – [Olivia] You’re so welcome. – Big hug. – Oh, you hit hard when you hug. – Big hug. – I know, your big hugger. – [Kim] It’s so beautiful. – Do you see those, those lights? How pretty are those? – [Kim] I love them. – [Olivia] You do? – Yes!
– Travis and I picked that out on Houzz. – I love this table. – [Olivia] Do you? – [Kim] I like the elephant too. – [Olivia] I know! You wanna sit on the couch? – Yeah. It’s a good cushion. Oh, this rug! – [Olivia] I know, isn’t it nice? – [Kim] It’s a beautiful rug. – It looks kinda like mine
in California, remember? – Yeah, that one. I always wanted one like that. I love them. Oh, I love over there. – I know, did you see? We took out the fireplace and you have so much stuff that I wanted
to display some of it. – Oh, I love it.
– It can sit here without… – I love so much. It’s beautiful. I like floor. – [Olivia] I know, isn’t that pretty? – [Kim] They look like wood, but they not. – [Olivia] Look at the chairs. Travis and I picked these out on Houzz. Do you like them? – I love them. – This is the kitchen, right? And it’s really, really special to me because I wanted it to work for you, so all the functionality is custom-made to fit your tiny height, but also, it’s all commercial-grade. – All my height. – [Olivia] Yeah, it’s all your height. – I don’t gotta tip-toe. – No. Wait, mom, how tall are you? – 5’2″. – Ish. – 5’1″ now. – Do you keep shrinking? So it’s always been hard for
you to reach the cabinets. These are specially made
for you, so you get to use way up there and not
have to worry about it. And then pull it down and
it’ll go all the way down, and it makes it– – Oh, wow, I don’t have to
climb or stand on the stool. – And it goes up. – I cannot believe it.
– Isn’t that cool? – Yeah! – [Olivia] I put a rice
cooker into your counter. You know, you always– – That’s a rice cooker? – Yeah. – [Kim] Oh, what? – And you can steam other things in here. It’s not just a rice cooker but… – Oh, man, I didn’t
know that rice cooker… – Isn’t that cool? So now you have this whole
thing of just rice all the time. – [Kim] And it’ll be warm! – Here, open that door. – Can I open it? – Yeah. We decided to give you
a full walk-in pantry. – Oh, man! Oh, that’s beautiful, I needed– – I know, isn’t it? – I like it all.
– I know, you can put everything– – [Kim] I like it, a walk-in pantry. – [Olivia] I know! – [Kim] Oh, man, that’s good. I can keep everything in here. – Yeah, and you can live here. We can put–
– I can live here. – –a bed in here for you. – I can put a futon here. – You can live here forever. – Oh, I love the pantry. I’m very happy and I cannot wait to cook and I want to invite a lot of people to come by to see my new house. I never think white it
before, but now I love them. – I know, it’s so pretty. Well, white with the wood
makes it really warm. (knocking) There’s actually somebody
I want you to meet who helped me out a lot with this. – [Kim] Oh? – Hey guys. Sam. – [Kim] It’s beautiful. – Come. Mom, this is Travis. He’s the interior designer. – Hi! Good to meet you!
– Nice to meet you! Oh my goodness. – He made this whole thing happen for you, and you should say thank you– – Thank you!
– –to Sam too, ’cause he worked really hard. – [Kim] He did? – He worked really hard,
give him a hug too. – Oh, thank you! This is my husband. – I’m deeply appreciative to Olivia for doing this for her mother and for me. – How did like to work
with my husband Sam? – He was great and tore up the ceiling! – He is showoff. – He’s a showoff – Hi!
– Hi! – [Olivia] Hi guys! – I’m so excited. – [Olivia] Andy, I didn’t
know you were coming. – [Kim] Did you see the table? – [Olivia] You have a lot of dolls for a grown woman, just so you know. – [Kim] Yes. – But it’s nice, ’cause
you don’t have to have all the mess right there
on top of the fireplace. – Sam’s mess. – [Olivia] It’s your mess too. You can’t blame Sam for everything. You’re pretty messy yourself. – [Kim] Come see this one. – At her height so she can… – [Olivia] And it’s already plugged in. – [Kim] It’s my size. I like it a lot. – Built-in rice cooker? – Yeah.
– And a steamer too. You know, I’m very, very grateful and I know she love me a lot. – We made a walk-in pantry. – Oh, yeah.
– That’s a walk-in? Alright, kinda keep going in. Try to keep going in, keep going in. Alright, the whole Asian
family fits in here. – [Male] There’s a guest room. – I’m just ecstatic that
it all came together exactly how we had talked about it. Thanks for letting us come in and completely redo your place. We hope you guys love it. Thank you so much, cheers. Everything is at her height. She’s not gonna have
to get on a stepstool. Everything has a place. I think it’s obviously
going to make her life so much better, and I’m really excited that she loves it so much. Now you have to start cooking for us. – [Kim] I’m retired. – [Olivia] Now you’re retied?

100 thoughts on “My Houzz: Olivia Munn’s Surprise Renovation for Her Mom”

  1. Warmth of Kim & stepdad, kind heart and gesture of Olivia, then the great designer – rooting for everyone 😀😍. And googling now for built in rice cooker.

  2. So great to see that celebrities grew up the way we did, cluttered house, but filled with love. Right down to the butter containers!

  3. What an awesome series of home renovations, I love how the stars help to do special surprises for their families.

  4. Your mom Olivia was the best part about this video, her reaction and how much she loved it, she seems like the nicest woman ever.

  5. These renovations by Houzz are INSANE!!!!!! Ive watched 3 or 4 now and each time I'm like noooo waaaayyyyy how did they do that it looks sooooo good!!!!!

  6. That house looks awesome now! I"m Asian, and can relate to the messy and crowded gatherings, especially when all the kids come over. =)

  7. I love watching Houzz but I always wonder why they don't renovate the whole house. Isn't it awkward to have one area new and the rest of the house not?

  8. I usually cry during the other videos of Houzz but I laughed my butt off with this one!!! Olivia’s mom was sooo funny!! I love how the walk-in pantry became “the guest bedroom”. LOL Sam is definitely an amazing man. I LOVE LOVE LOVE how the designer took Olivia’s mom’s height into consideration. I LOVE THE ENTIRE RENO!!!

  9. I love the parents. So cute and Sam is a gemstone!! Mom is a character in her own right. Beautiful sense of humor in this family.

  10. This got to be the best and the more heart touching episode, I wish it was done years before so she could enjoy longer . Love the mom

  11. It's so amazing to see how many of my favorite movie stars have great step-parents. Built in rice cooker/Steamer every foreigners parents best gift.
    Love my queen munn

  12. i love these my houzz episodes, but especially the ones for those hard to please people, even they are happy with results!
    so cute when they all went in the walk in pantry lol

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