October 2, 2023
Describing her clients’ goals for this bathroom remodel – part of a whole-house update – designer Jessica Risko Smith ASID, LEED AP, NCIDQ cites the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi, which focuses on appreciating beauty that is imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete in nature. An atmosphere of eclectic, evolving glamour, one might say.
Smith, the founder of the Jessica Risko Smith Interior Design studio in Santa Barbara, Calif., recognized that the bones of the 1953 residence would be supportive of the aesthetic shift the homeowners wanted.
The designer took a fresh approach to storage in the 9-ft. 3-in. x 14-ft 9-in. space, saying, “We wanted to create ample but interesting storage, rather than just load the room up with cabinetry.” There are three sets of drawers in the vanity, as well as two sink base cabinets for larger items. Risko Smith configured the vanity to include more shallow storage and space for organized display on the counter surface. On the other side of the room, a freestanding apothecary cabinet with opaque glass doors provides added storage for oils, lotions and other bath necessities. Near the tub, a repurposed table was topped with the same stone on the vanity.
This project was the first time the designer utilized living finishes in a bathroom. “We were all on board for the patina,” she said, noting that the way the finishes evolve over time helps keep the space vital and dynamic. The brass tones of the sink and shower fittings and the white marble will age naturally, ensuring the room will have a long-lasting elegant and authentic character.
Asked about her work style, Risko Smith said, “Collaboration with a trusting client is the only way to go. In this project, we enjoyed visioning together, but they absolutely trusted us with getting to the end result they asked for.”
—By Leslie Clagett, KBB managing editor
Designer: Jessica Risko Smith ASID, LEED AP, NCIDQ, Jessica Risko Smith Interior Design
Photography: Leela Cyd
Cabinets: Custom, Sergio Leyva & Restoration Hardware (pharmacy cabinet, table vanity)
Cabinet Hardware: Rejuvenation
Countertop: White Rhino Marble
Faucets & Shower Fittings: Newport Brass
Lighting: Visual Comfort & Restoration Hardware
Tub: Hydro Systems
Tile: Akdo Luminous Beam (floor)