Magazine article Sunset

Modernizing a Craftsman: Contemporary Solutions for a Historic (Read: Slightly Problematic) House

Magazine article Sunset

Modernizing a Craftsman: Contemporary Solutions for a Historic (Read: Slightly Problematic) House

Article excerpt

MARYJANE AND BOB PAULEY had always lived in older houses--the sort that had more charm than modern conveniences. So in 1996, when they were looking to buy in Berkeley, they put "garbage disposal, a dishwasher, and a garage" on their wish list. But the early-1900s Craftsman they ended up with had none of these. "We fell in love with this incredible view," says Bob, a Pixar production designer, pointing to the Golden Gate Bridge with an orange wake of sun setting behind it. "And we were used to not having a fancy kitchen, so we knew we could make it work."

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But 10 years and 2 kids later, the Pauleys were in desperate need of more storage, more room to move, and, most of all, a revamped kitchen. Coincidentally, "at work, we were updating Andy's house for Toy Story 3," Bob says. "Of course, adjusting walls and paint colors in a virtual home is much easier--and less expensive--than in a real one."

Given the house's historic style, all design decisions fell back on What would the builders have done with today's materials? "We want to stay true to the house," says MaryJane, who worked closely with architect Alex Bergtraun on the plans. "We felt a responsibility to do our part, to keep it going for the next century."

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Custom art

Adding the sideboard yielded four square niches. The Pauleys hired Chehalis, Washington, painter Robert Flanary (holtonframes.com)to fill those slots.

Repurposed cabinets

Originally location on another wait, these glass-door cabinets now bookend a madrone topped sideboard. New glass knobs from Omega Too (omegatoo.com) match the originals.

Reworking the dining room

PROBLEMS Limited storage space and no buffet area; narrow doorways made entertainingdifficult

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SOLUTIONS A built-in sideboard and wider, open doorways; moving old cabinets and constructing new ones

Natural hues

The palette links the indoors with the outdoors. …

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