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accent wall


Choy Residence in San Francisco

choy_151209_01 Design is really in the details.  Completed almost ten years ago, this private residence designed by Cary Bernstein is no exception.  Featured on the Contemporist, I was drawn in by the timeless and clever architectural details.  Bernstein's team added a third story to this 1908 cottage in San Francisco.  The stairwell is the focal point in the design, transitioning open risers until the landing where the stairs becomes solid spilling into the supple dark chocolate wood floors.

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The steel clad fireplace is a bold statement and I love the use of simple upholstered ottomans in front - makes for a cozy evening by the fire.

choy_151209_08 I am inspired by the railing at the bedroom serving as a banquet which becomes the headboard.  This kind of continuity and seamless transition between spaces makes this home so cohesive and efficient.

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I always struggle with people being timid about having windows in bathrooms.   This light filled bathroom has to be incredibly energizing when beginning the day.  I also love the elegance and functionality of this space - the mosaic tile is nicely warmed up by the wooden elements.  For more images and information, check out the Contemporist.  Also check out Cary Bernstein online for more exciting projects. Images from Contemporist


Small Space, Big Style



1.  Build Up! In a small space, it is important to think vertically to maximize storage space by adding shelving above and concealed storage below.   I used pieces of walnut veneered plywood as shelving above the bed and added white shelving in the closet.

2. Accent wall Many people think that light walls will always make a space feel larger; this is a common misconception, try an accent wall in a deeper tone, like the silver color I used – this dark color recedes and makes the room look larger.

3. Don’t be afraid of drapery The largest challenge in this space is the door leading to the deck.  The drapes allow privacy when needed and adds drama to the space.  I love the grommet style but others work just as well.  Drapery looks best when there is volume, so I always grab additional sets (in this case 3) but that is up to you.  These curtains were $40 for a set of two from IKEA.

Previously there were sliding doors on the closet, which can drive one crazy when one needs to reach something quickly.  The solution: the same curtains used on the other wall in an off-white that matches the wall for a clean look. [more...]