Driver knew she wanted to enlist a designer to help with her new home. “I simply didn’t have the time to do it myself,” she says. “But I had a clear idea of what I wanted.” Her mother, English interior designer Gaynor Churchward, suggested she look through decorating books and magazines in search of ideas.
“It turned out that every drawing room or bedroom or chair that I loved was by Peter Dunham,” says Driver. “I thought, there’s no way he’s going to be American — he must be European.” Her hunch was correct: Dunham, like Driver, was born in England and moved to Los Angeles in the 1990s.
The actress and the designer share an eclectic aesthetic, Dunham says, because “we’re English gypsies.” Driver was raised by well-traveled parents and spent much of her childhood in Barbados; her mother, who recently turned 80, is now a consultant for a Turkish textile firm. Dunham was brought up in Spain and France and returned to England for boarding school, where many of his friends had parents and grandparents who had been colonial officials during the last days of the Raj.