A woodland site is so precious – it seems a tragedy to fell oak trees so to have a house there. So thought the owners of a Monte Sereno lot with a wreckage of a house that had been ravaged by a fire. After a tough planning process, a craftsman style house now graces the lot still surrounded by oak trees, preserving pretty much the existing contours and, as I like to put it, happiness ensued. I revisited the project as the owners are preparing to celebrate Christmas. Some of the deciduous tree leaves have started to turn bright orange and yellows. I was induced to a state of merriment even before I stepped foot in the door.
The entrance porch took a visitor to a two story foyer which showed a hint of the library beyond the second floor balcony. The foyer sported a paneled look that breaks up the tall wall. The right doorway led to the family room while the left doorway opened up to the sitting and dining rooms.
The living room was reduced to a sitting room size as nowadays, most entertainment is really done in the family room with a less formal setting. A delicate fireplace anchored the room with a settee and two gracious chairs. The color scheme was coordinated from the paint color and choice of rug to the upholstery fabric and sheer drapes.
The dining room embraced a stronger presence with a strikingly bold wallpaper pattern. The Murano glass chandelier pulled our eyes toward the cathedral ceiling.
The powder room took on a theme similar to the dining room with the vibrant red colors on the wall. The oriental floral motif in the small room surged unexpectedly as guests enter. The ceiling was gold painted for added depth.
The kitchen was generously designed with a long island and a curved row of windows facing the rear yard. The microwave, freezer and refrigerator were awarded their own alcove. The island was darks stained walnut with a warm red granite countertop. The cooktop splash got an Artistic Tile panel that was slightly reminiscent of an Art Nouveau swirl pattern. The pattern was repeated in bands throughout the other backsplashes.
The library ceiling soared in a dome shaped recess. The furniture pieces were chosen for comfort with colors to complement the red dome. The balcony guardrail looks down onto the entry foyer.
The master bath received quite an elaborate Pratt and Larson relief tiles to compose the shower mural. A very cute chandelier hovered over the tub and the shower floor tiles are large Calacata Oro hex tiles.
The house tour culminated in the master bedroom with an oval ceiling recess. The color scheme aimed to soothe. The furniture fabric and rug complemented the softness of the fireplace design and promised serenity at the end of a long day.
This project represented one of the most satisfying experiences I have ever had. The owners were quite gracious and gave me the utmost confidence to carry through their vision and taste. Besides the architectural shell, every interior detail of the project, from the custom cabinets, finish hardware, lighting, and paint colors to the furniture, draperies and rug, was thought over so a seamless feeling could be achieved thoughout the spaces.
Aaaah… What I would do for another project such as this one!