We are the luckiest designers we know. Every project we take on is different from the last, which means boundless creative exploration. We like to work with antiques, or are equally happy to create rooms where everything is from the present. It all depends on the client and the kind of house they want for themselves. People are individuals and to us it’s pretty obvious that their houses should reflect that.
Besides taking inspiration from our diverse clients, we take major cues from the architecture of their homes and understand that they chose that home for a reason. Over the years, we have been fortunate to work in some very beautiful, Spanish-revival houses. And what could be more perfect than a house inspired by sunny Spain surrounded by palm and citrus trees?
The foyer above is in a classic, Spanish-style house built around 1930. It didn’t need much fussing with because it was already pretty fantastic. The staircase risers are covered in Malibu tiles, which create the perfect complement to the cool terracotta floor and simple iron railing. We simply added a 17th century, carved wood saint and sat him on a custom pedestal. If only every room were this simple!
At the Pasadena Showcase House a few years back, we were given an enormous living room in which to create a little magic. We let the architecture of this incredible 1920’s Spanish-style villa lead our way. Rather than weighing the room down with heavy velvets or deep-dark furnishings, we chose to lighten it up without denying the history that inspired the architecture. All the fabrics were made of 100% linen (by Schumacher). And thanks to the simple backgrounds, each and every piece stood out with great clarity. Even though the room is dotted with some rather serious antiques, it doesn’t feel ponderous or unapproachable.
In this breakfast room, we again kept it simple (notice a theme developing here?). Grounding the room with relatively sedate finishes, like plaster walls and a beamed ceiling, we added a tile floor for a touch of color and pattern. Together, these elements contributed to an uncomplicated but sophisticated ambience. We found a vintage Monterey table that we paired with a set of 1930’s Spanish-revival chairs. Then we designed the hanging light and found a collection of 19th century Mexican plates that we assembled on the wall in a relaxed, random way. Adjoining this space is the greenhouse, making it the perfect spot to enjoy summertime every month of the year.