This design story began when my beloved client reached out to me and told me that she had been following me for quite a while, and really wanted me to design her next home which she was still in the process of looking for. That’s what I call dedication! During this first phone call, we clicked instantly. I was drawn to her fun personality just like she was drawn to my designs. Working with her was going to be delightful. But first she had to find the right home.
Time flew by and eventually I forgot all about this phone call. A couple of months later she phoned with the news that she had finally bought a house. The problem was that it was in Danville, which is an area I don’t usually get to because it’s far from where I live. Yet there was something about her spunky personality that was irresistible. I couldn’t say no. After she sent me a link to see photos of her house on a real estate website, I was awed by the fantastic bones of the house. It was then I knew that Danville was definitely in the books for me. The bones of the house were perfect and the layout was great. All it really needed was a facelift… or that’s what I thought at the time. What I discovered later is that she also wanted to upgrade the kitchen, two and a half bathrooms, and get help acquiring all new furniture and decor.
Main house and entryway:
The first floor entryway already had travertine flooring, which worked so well in that space - it was certainly a keeper. It blended well with the wide entrance and the ceiling panels in the nearby kitchen. The remaining floors of the first floor of the house were of high quality hardwood, however the look was outdated. With great sorrow we bid it farewell and had it replaced with wide-plank engineered flooring. The combination of the travertine and the new engineered floors is beautiful. We used the same flooring for the second floor and stairs as well. We changed the stair rail to something more modern. I love the shape of the black railing. The brass chandelier also adds interest to this space.
Here is what this stair rail used to look like:
This is one of my favorite rooms in the house. It originally had built-in cabinets wrapped around the walls, which we wanted to keep but upgrade. To give the office a moody but modern uplift we painted the entire room a deep teal color. I love the way this works with the travertine floor.
A large oak desk, with black metal trims, has both warm and modern tones. The thin colorful rug under it keeps all the elements grounded.
When you look out the office window you can see the lush green landscaping outside. The trees and plants look like framed art. The leather sofa works wonderfully against the teal backdrop of the walls.
Living room and dining room:
When you step into the house, from the front entrance, the living room is on your left. It continues to the dining room, which continues to the kitchen. All these spaces have to work harmoniously together because you see them all in one swoop.
The dining room has beautiful classic wainscotting on its walls. When I was thinking about how to upgrade the fireplace in the living room, I knew that I wanted to continue this look into this space, to create visual continuity. The tiles around the fireplace are small calacatta mosaic pieces that reflect the warm tones of the wood floors and the white tones from the walls. Matching modern gray strightlined sofas make this room look bright, and the two round coffee in the middle soften the look. I think that we succeeded in creating a quiet and bright space that my client asked for.
Here is what this room used to look like:
Back to the lovely dining room wainscotting - these walls are painted white, which meant that pops of color could be added by using interesting pieces of furniture. I found a wood-topped table, with black legs. This, together with upholstered chairs, brings the room up to date. Charlton Large Triple Arm Chandelier, above the table, contrasts perfectly with the traditional bones of the room. A marble-topped black oak console gives an edgy touch, and the bright modern abstract art on the wall ties everything together deliciously.
The kitchen layout was functional and looked great, so it stayed. The cabinets got an update, and the island changed completely.
My clients wanted white cabinets and a blue island. The brass fixtures and hardware add a warm touch. The pendant lights are my favorite feature in this room. They’re made from rusted iron, and the color ties in well with the stair rail. Gray woven rope stools are a great modern touch and work well with the other materials in the room.
We left the primary bathroom mainly as is, only replacing hardware and light fixtures, so let’s take a look at the powder room that underwent the biggest transformation. The existing room had a pedestal sink and a dark band of tile around the floor. It was very traditional. We refreshed the room with a modern carrera vanity and searched the Bay Area, high and low, for bright mosaic tiles the same scale as the existing dark band, which would enable us to swap out only the band and keep the rest of the travertine flooring. We added fun wallpaper from Hygee & West, and hung a new light fixture and hardware with a black matte fixture.
The last room I wanted to share with you is a bedroom that features a bay window. This window was originally used as a cozy reading nook with an upholstered bench. Now that it functions as a teenage girl’s bedroom we changed the upholstery for a fresher look. Our choice of gray linen fabric, with white piping along the edges, keeps this space calm, neutral, and very classy. Light pink and cream colored pillows add a soft feminine touch. It’s beautiful and simple, and doesn’t upstage the glorious green nature that is visible from the window.