January 30, 2017
The community of Loomis, Calif., claims to be the ‘Best Little Town in California.’ Established in 1850, the town has rural charm inspired by an old-fashioned downtown and natural woodlands. One ranch-style home remodel needed to expand on this appeal with several additions and updates – all of which hint subtly at the pastoral surroundings.
“Being mindful and working around beautifully aged existing trees was our biggest challenge,” said San Diego-based designer Jules Wilson, explaining that the clients wanted the renovations to complement the original landscaping. “The concept begins with farmhouse casual, yet we used a sophisticated and elegant palette throughout.”
The homeowners had a large family and wanted the house to work both for cozy nights in and for when all the children and grandchildren are over. To cater to large groups, the design team created spaces – like a big great room and a guestroom with multiple beds – that were open and flexible.
In the kitchen, the existing, exposed vaulted ceiling already emphasized this airy and versatile feel. The original ceiling had thick wood beams, which the design team agreed worked well with the design. To update it, however, Wilson added and shifted lighting so that only can lights softly illuminate the space. The main wooden beams retained their natural finish, but the tongue-and-groove boards were painted white for a fresh look.
The team had three other goals for the kitchen: to design with durable finishes, provide storage and display for the client’s china and include a functional butler’s kitchen.
“We wanted the space to have ample room for entertaining and gathering but with the convenience of a butler’s kitchen for quick clean up,” explained the designer.
The storage was expanded with white cabinetry topped with small glass windows. The china is display in the open cabinetry on the left side. Made with quartz for durability, the countertops – both on the perimeters and on the island – have a unique leather finish for a more rustic appeal.
While making the space feel airy, it was also important to create designated areas. One of the main parts was the island, which was designed as a gathering place. Both because of its gray color and the attached buffet, the island feels like a furniture piece. Topped with a butcher-block countertop, the buffet section of the island has thick, carved legs and two drawers to increase the storage and functionality of the island.
“The island is used even more than the formal dining room – people are constantly eating and hanging out there,” said Wilson. “It’s the heart of their home, really.”
A Rich Bath
No matter the amount of people in the house, the master bathroom was meant to be the homeowners’ sanctuary. Using CAD software for planning and elevations and Photoshop for rendering and concepts, Wilson created a symmetrical layout with his-and-hers vanities across from each other. Backed by a window and neatly aligned behind a hanging chandelier, a simple tub at the end of the long bath is the focal point.
“We wanted to create a space that put the spotlight on the gorgeous freestanding tub,” added Wilson.
The white tub stands out in a bath filled with warm, rich tones. The vanities have chocolate brown cabinetry and brown marble countertops, which contrast with the lighter wall finishes. Dark wood frames the mirrors, which are illuminated by sconces on either side. A chandelier with the same dark edging hangs above for a rustic luxe touch that complements the wood flooring below.
“The flooring is a very welcoming finish. We loved that you can see the knots in it and feel the texture. It’s not too slick, and it has a lot of character,” said Wilson, who added that the same flooring was used throughout the home. “The whole idea for the house is to retain a natural feeling.”
Designer: Jules Wilson
Photographer: Donald Satterlee
Backsplash: Ann Sacks
Countertops: Walker Zanger
Farmhouse Sink: Herbeau
Undermount Sink: Kohler
Wine Refrigerator: Sub-Zero
Freestanding Bathtub: Barclay
Hardware: Restoration Hardware
Lighting: Circa Lighting