Capitol Hill House

Project Info

Project Year

2021

Location

Capitol Hill

Contractor

Gaspar's Construction

Details

To restore this 1920s craftsman to its original charm after a dated 90's remodel, the interior designer pulled in a construction firm and lighting designer to execute design ideas.

Situated near Broadway, the neighborhood is in flux, with original single-family homes turning into multi-story condos. This home and its twin next door were holdouts. An update was needed, along with improved functionality and furnishings expressing the clients' personalities.

Design challenges: A functional living room for TV viewing that also accommodates gatherings, with a period-appropriate fireplace mantel and built-ins for storage, a usable fireplace, better lighting, book storage, task lighting over the dining table, window treatments, an operable window in the drop zone, and durable, cheerful soft furnishings that support an art collection.

The owners had one requirement: to keep their iconic Noguchi coffee table. We designed a gas fireplace retrofit to the original, shallow coal fireplace, with the addition of graceful built-in shelves and a mantel. The fine finish carpenter worked hard to accommodate this old home's lack of right angles. The TV was incorporated at an ergonomic viewing height, and the speakers below were hidden behind acoustical fabric. Before this project, the entry featured a lot of baskets and clutter. Inadequate lighting in the dining room obscured art by Deborah Bell and lacked dimmable task lighting for puzzles and games. The team overcame technical challenges with a problematic angled skylight to hang a suitable chandelier.

A Bold Saturated Color Palette: Textiles were chosen in Currey Yellow, Cobalt Blue, and Ruby Red that supported art. Two hand-woven Afghani wool rugs were selected to withstand dirty dog paws in high-traffic areas. The backdrop paint color of soft greige allowed the furnishings to pop. A Sea Pearl quartzite Fireplace Surround and Countertop were selected; the owners delighted in its colors changing tones with the setting sun. The slab remainders were utilized for the built-in surface around the mantel and drop zone. The Drop Zone in the entry became more functional with a bench to put shoes on and side storage to hide dog accouterments. Cafe curtains were the window treatment solution with a translucent textile to highlight the luminosity of the quartzite but maintain evening privacy while allowing daylight through the charming leaded glass—the result: a happy, bright place and a functional showplace.

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