We are thrilled to share Elle Decor’s House Tour of one of our recent projects – a mid-century ranch remodel in the East Bay! Niche Interiors was tasked with reviving a classic 1950’s ranch home which fell victim to poor remodeling choices, including Doric columns in the living room (gasp)! Our goal was to create a modern take on a California ranch, infused with our client’s swanky ‘Mad Men’ aesthetic.
Since we all love the satisfaction in seeing major transformations we wanted to share the ‘Before’ photos of this special project! Looking at these photos we can almost forget the months of planning and construction details, or the hundreds of decisions made to get to the ‘After’.
The living room was in dire need of help – dated wall paneling, decorative columns, and a gaudy fireplace clashed with the clean-lined 1950’s architecture. We added custom walnut built-ins to flank the dramatic new slate fireplace.
The library received a dose of drama with black trim and crisp white paint. We removed the existing built-in bookcases which crowded the window and made the room feel smaller, instead opting for contemporary custom built-ins along the left wall. A pair of mustard velvet armchairs are grounded by a round navy rug.
We’re excited to kick off our new Showroom Spotlight series – highlighting the personalities and inspiration behind some of our favorite trade showrooms in the San Francisco Design Center! First up, Jeff Holt and Peter West, the savvy, stylish and gracious owners of HEWN in the Galleria. Let’s jump right in with our Q & A!
How do you decide to carry a certain brand/designer at your showroom?
Is it fresh and exciting? Something our customers will like and/or need? Can they deliver as promised? We generally feature small, family owned and operated manufacturers. Dealing directly with the creators is very important to us.
What design trends have you seen on repeat that you’d love to leave behind?
Bamboo silk rugs do not wear well! Don’t do it. Soulless gray interiors that look like 3D renderings in photographs. Reclaimed wood used as wall covering.
What are you hoping to see more of in 2018?
Mixing styles – modern and traditional. More individuality, less Restoration Hardware and more Chairish…and great wallpapers.
Which HEWN furniture lines and products are you most excited about right now?
Ted Boerner’s Hedge Series of casegoods and his Regatta sectional. Ted’s designs are so thoughtfully considered and all the details are expressed perfectly.
Woven Rugs. They are the next big thing in rug brands – super fresh and innovative designs and a commitment to customer service. We love all their great textures especially the “Noah” rug (named for the owners young son) and their collection of limited edition artist-designed rugs, especially the Legacies rug by Gregory Siff.
Stacklab’s square cut burl table tops feature wood that is thousands of years old – they are breathtaking. It takes many weeks of pouring layers of resin in a vacuum chamber to achieve the final product.
Give us your top tip for spotting quality in a furniture piece.
If quality is the most important factor in the piece of furniture you are seeking, don’t try to find it online. You can only see the depth of the finish, the quality of the joinery or the feel of the proportion by viewing the piece in real time in a showroom or store.
What do you love about the design community in San Francisco?
It really is The Best. It is filled with wonderful and creative people of all ages and backgrounds – our clients and customers often become friends. There is a feeling that we are all in this together, it is collaborative and so creative. Just like this blog!
A huge thank you to Jeff and Peter for sharing their insights. Be sure to stop by the HEWN showroom at 101 Henry Adams, Suite 480 to see their full range of collections.
We’re thrilled to see our Principal Designer Jennifer Jones’ eco-friendly home featured in the February issue of Modern Luxury Interiors magazine! Take a sneak peek at the highlights below…
While a formal design would have made sense with the home’s traditional style, Jones chose a more family-friendly approach. “I wanted it to feel sophisticated, not stuffy,” she says. So she mixed in vintage furniture and pieces with classic details—like the Cisco Home tufted sofa in the living room—and kept the look modern with new light fixtures, updated window treatments and graphic wallpaper.
Jones brought in layers of texture to punch up the muted tones throughout the house. She added drama in the dining room with a striking hand-painted, banded-stripe Cole & Son wallpaper and vintage Moller chairs reupholstered in mossy green velvet by Romo Fabrics. The 10-foot custom, midcentury-inspired walnut table, a collaboration between Niche Interiors and Varian Design, is made from FSC-certified (Forest Stewardship Council) wood with a nontoxic finish.
A color palette of cool neutrals, with pops of blues and greens, has a calming effect and achieves the cohesive (not “matchy”) look that Jones was after. Vibrant sea-green walls in the guest bedroom are toned down with ivory, gray and black accents.
We’re excited to give you an inside look at Porter Teleo – a beautiful, graphic collection of handmade textiles and wall coverings. Porter Teleo is the brain child of abstract artist Kelly Porter and interior designer Bridgett Cochran, who blend fine art processes, such as wood blocking and painting with a refined design aesthetic.
Above: Tangled Pattern in a Dining Room designed by Elms Interior Design
Founded in 2004 and based in Kansas City, all wallpapers and fabrics are created locally by a team of artists who are classically trained in the fine arts field. Porter, an award winning painter whose artwork hangs in galleries and celebrity homes, and Cochran, a designer with an eye for detail, quickly found a common bond; they were looking to capture and create something totally new for the design world.
Above: Porter Teleo artist hand painting a napkin
Their collaboration has resulted in an innovative way of making wallpaper and fabric, relying on an intuitive creative process. We love that all of their creations are completely customizable, from the non-toxic, water-based ink color to the scale and orientation of their patterns.
Above: Kintsugi Pattern Wallpaper in a bedroom designed by Kelly Behun
Their Japanese papers have been made by the same family in a small mountain village for over 1300 years. The main source of water for the paper making process is a fresh water river that flows through the town providing abundant plant life for the pulp material.
Above: Ink Blot Pattern in a playroom designed by Renschler & Co.
What better way to kick off the New Year than with some inspiring new creations from local Bay Area designers! We curated a few of our favorite recent discoveries for handmade goods for the home – the perfect way to add style to your life and to support local designers. Win, win!
Totem Ceramics // Berkeley
Totem is a local pottery studio selling handcrafted ceramic dishware inspired by natural forms, simplicity, and traditional craft. We especially love the beautiful matte blue thistle mug and the crackle oatmeal bowl shown above. You can order from their online shop or through select San Francisco boutiques such as The Podolls and The Perish Trust.
Jenny Pennywood // San Francisco
Jenny Pennywood is a home textile line focused on created small batch, locally made, everyday products. Napkins, tea towels, and pillows are screen-printed in whimsical, painterly patterns using water-based inks in her Bayview studio. Shown above: See Sun for Jenny Pennywood Napkins in Midnight/Pebble + Dashes & Moons Tea Towel in Charcoal.
West Perro // Oakland
West Perro is a collection of American Southwest-inspired hats, wall hangings, and jewelry. All pieces are handmade by artisan Jimmy Brower at his Oakland studio using cotton threads, leather cords, maple wood, and polymer clay. The simple graphic shapes and fresh color palettes of blush and black are very on trend. The Sonoran sunset wall hanging and Sabino Canyon Necklace (shown above) are two of our top picks.
Zelma Rose // Marin
Zelma rose specializes in unique jewelry pieces made from natural fibers. She weaves every piece with hand-dyed cotton and hemp fibers at her studio in West Marin. Her designs can be found in partnerships with West Elm and Anthropologie and on her website. Our favorites are the Saguaro Fringe Necklaces and the Estero Handwoven Necklace in indigo.
Melanie Abrantes Designs // Oakland
Melanie Abrantes Designs sells handcrafted goods made from natural cork and wood. She also offers woodworking kits and carving workshops at her Oakland studio. We love her geometric, Bauhaus-inspired coasters and trivets and her petite cork and wood candleholders (shown above).
We were recently invited to Pinterest to meet the legendary Diane Keaton and hear all about the inspiration behind her new book, The House That Pinterest Built! What an incredible opportunity to meet such a force of nature – she was even more charismatic and hilarious in person than I’d imagined. Diane’s new book chronicles the journey of designing her entire 8,000 square foot home using ideas she discovered on Pinterest. We thought it was such a perfect gift that we rounded up more of our favorite interior design books for the home decor lover on your holiday shopping list!
THE HOUSE THAT PINTEREST BUILT by Diane Keaton
This book is filled with stunning interior design photos from Pinterest that inspired Diane’s incredible custom home in Brentwood, as well as images showing the finished product. The end result is an expansive home chock-full of exposed brick, rustic beams, industrial accents and classic black and white. Part photo essay and part diary about the necessities of a home, this is a beautiful visual read that the industrial-chic lover on your list will get lost in.
JEAN-LOUIS DENIOT INTERIORS by Diane Dorrans Saeks
Jean-Louis Deniot is known for his refined, classic interiors which effortlessly combine eras and styles. Highly regarded in his home country of France, he also has a gorgeous new furniture collection with Baker Furniture in the United States. This is a perfect book for the traditionalist on your list who appreciates classic architecture and luxe details!
MAISON CHRISTIAN LIAIGRE by Herbert Ypma
An oldie but a goodie! This collection of French designer Christian Liaigre’s best work (including photos of his own home) is a fabulous choice for the modern minimalist on your list. The gorgeous, detailed photographs of his international projects showcase his signature blend of natural materials, modern forms, and impeccable proportion and scale. Liaigre’s spaces are calm and refined with a deep connection to the tradition of each location.
HOMEFRONT: DESIGN FOR MODERN LIVING by Windsor Smith
With a bonus forward written by Gwyneth Paltrow, this book is an ode to the beautiful work of Los Angeles designer Windsor Smith. Smith has a wide range of styles in her projects, but consistently integrates elegance and glamour in her client’s homes, often with a whimsical, unexpected twist.
ART HOUSE by Alisa Carroll
Art House provides a look into the five houses that collector Chara Schreyer and her long time designer Gary Hutton have created to showcase six hundred priceless contemporary art pieces from Schreyer’s personal collection. An exploration of a life devoted to living with art and to designing homes that honor it, this book is an inspiration for art and design lovers alike.
Indoor plants are enjoying a major design moment right now, but did you know they can also drastically improve your indoor air quality? In the late 1980’s NASA conducted a Clean Air Study to find the most effective indoor plants for filtering harmful toxins and pollutants from their space stations.
The study found that certain plants are effective at removing benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, xylene, and ammonia from the air — chemicals that have been linked to health effects such as headaches, nausea and eye irritation. Read on for 5 houseplants that will clean the air and add a dose of style to your healthy home!
Dracaena are common foliage plants that come in over 40 varieties. Known to filter benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene and xylene. Perfect for modern spaces with filtered sunlight. (May be harmful to pets if eaten).
Ferns are a great way to add softness and greenery to your small space – we especially love grouping a few together on a bookshelf or console. They prefer indirect sunlight and regular waterings. Known to remove formaldehyde and xylene from the air.
Variegated Snake Plant
This sculptural, hardy plant is low maintenance and easy to care for. Known to remove benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene and xylene from the air.
This plant takes the prize for biggest workhorse – the Peace Lily has been proven to filter out all 5 harmful chemicals from the air! Place peace lilies in a shady spot and keep the soil moist without overwatering.
One of the easiest houseplants to grow, the spider plant loves bright, indirect sunlight. Known to filter formaldehyde and xylene.
It’s hard to believe that ten years have passed since our first client project – turning a dated North Beach condo into a modern bachelor pad. We’ve grown from a solo operation to a small but mighty team of four and expanded from serving San Francisco proper to include the Peninsula, Wine Country, and the East Bay. A huge thank you to our wonderful clients, past and present, who have trusted us with their homes throughout the years. We couldn’t be more grateful to do what we love every day!
Niche’s First Official Project from 2007 (Above)
Industry friends joined us to celebrate at the Anchor Distillery Penthouse last week! Craft cocktails, city views, and a caricature artist turned out to be a winning combination. Take a peek at the photo highlights from the festivities below…
Lynn, Anna, and Jen from team Niche (Left) // City Views from the Anchor Penthouse (Right)
We’re excited to share our first video testimonial from happy San Francisco homeowners Coreen and Luis! We are so fortunate to work with such amazing clients everyday. Thanks Coreen and Luis for sharing your design journey!
We recently headed to Los Angeles to visit some of our favorite furniture showrooms and to discover new sources for our projects. As usual, the City of Angels did not disappoint! We left with lots of amazing new finds and plenty of inspiration. Read on for our top picks from Ralph Pucci, Lawson Fenning, and Garde…
Our first stop was Ralph Pucci – a long-time favorite for avante-garde, global furnishings and mid-century classics. Their expansive new white washed gallery is the perfect backdrop to showcase pieces from their prestigious list of designers, which includes Elizabeth Garouste and Eric Schmitt (shown above).
I especially loved the sculptural Plato console by Patrick Naggar and the bold, geometric light fixture by Herve Van der Straeten (shown above).
Lawson Fenning was our next visit – known for their vintage-inspired furniture and accessory line, they also carry gorgeous handmade ceramics by local talents Heather Rosenman and Natan Moss (below right), as well as a fantastic new furniture collaboration with Seattle’s Brian Paquette.
We were finally able to stop by a “must-visit” shop that’s been on our list for awhile now: Garde. This petite space is packed with a beautifully curated mix of artisan home accessories, lighting, and textiles from all over the world. I definitely had multiple “kid in a candy store” moments here! Decorative objects by Apparatus and Michael Verheyden and eye-catching pendant lights from Nika Zupanc (shown below) were stand outs.
We hope you enjoyed our mini-tour! Did we miss one of your favorite shops? Share it with us in the comments!