Niche Interiors

Designed in the Bay Area: The Benefits of Custom Furniture

Over the last 15 years our Bay Area interior designers have worked on a range of projects in the San Francisco Bay Area and Napa Valley, from ground-up construction to remodeling and furnishings projects. One part of the interior design process that we always relish is designing custom furniture for our residential clients. Certain spaces require bespoke solutions that are customized to the inch, while some homeowners opt for a bespoke piece of furniture due to environmental and health reasons. We are passionate about sustainability and indoor air quality. Our design team takes pride in the expertise we have developed over the years working with and learning from talented craftspeople throughout the Bay Area and California. All of the furniture pieces that our interior designers create are made locally in San Francisco using eco-conscious, non-toxic materials.

Upholstered pieces are of the highest quality and made to last many years, manufactured with solid hardwood frames, recycled metal springs, ethical down fill cushions (or down alternative) and high quality poly foam with no flame retardants or natural latex foam. There is no comparison between bespoke upholstery and retail sofas from big box stores (RH we are looking at you) that are poorly made (typically in China and Vietnam – hello carbon footprint!) and start to break down after a couple years of use. Typically, the seat cushions are the first to start sagging since many models are not made with inner coil springs, just foam and/or down fill, and often the fabric will start to pill or look worn out very quickly. Unfortunately, this causes furniture pieces to end up at landfills much faster than necessary, making them even more unsustainable. One benefit to high quality, benchmade upholstery is that it can be re-upholstered if the fabric starts to show wear years down the line, extending the lifecycle of the piece even further.

Modern custom sectional sofa by Bay Area interior designers Niche Interiors
Custom modular sectional in Menlo Park, California home

Designing sectional sofas is one of our specialities! This modern modular sectional was designed for a young family in Menlo Park, California who wanted maximum flexibility for their family room. It can be configured as an L-shaped sectional when entertaining larger groups or for everyday use, or made into a square for fort making or serious napping! The design for this sectional features a plinth base and clean lines, upholstered in a durable woven fabric. We specified the most eco-friendly, non-toxic options for this sofa – our San Francisco upholstery workroom used natural latex wrapped in organic wool and an FSC certified wood frame. Check out more photos of the interiors of this Menlo Park home.

California Interior design office of Niche Interiors, Bay Area interior designers
Oak + brass table in our San Francisco Interior Design Studio

When it came time to design our new interior design studio in San Francisco’s South of Market neighborhood, the conference table was one of the first furniture pieces that we designed (in collaboration with Brian Fansler of General Ideas). We knew it needed to have pedestal legs that allowed for 8-10 chairs to tuck in easily and we wanted something timeless and modern with subtle design details. The sustainably harvested white oak tabletop is beautifully carved and adds soft lines to the space, while the half moon shape on each pedestal is clad in a brushed brass. The length is as long as the elevator would allow, with a slightly more narrow width to allow ample room for circulation and laying out rug samples on the floor during meetings with our Bay Area interior design clients. We paired the custom table with mid-century modern dining chairs and vintage pendants from 1st Dibs.

Luxury interior design with custom banquette and custom bar in San Francisco victorian home by Bay Area interior design firm
Dining banquette + built-in bar in Hayes Valley, San Francisco home

The basement level in our client’s Hayes Valley home was formerly unused when he purchased the property. He had a vision of transforming this space into a speakeasy style lounge and game room. After installing new cork flooring and painting the walls, our interior designers pulled inspiration images and created CAD drawings for a custom built-in wet bar that would become the focal point of the room. Walnut cabinetry features inset metal mesh doors and notched pulls, paired with a leathered granite countertop. Antique mirrors were fabricated to fill the space above, with a floating shelf for displaying bottles and glassware. No speakeasy is complete without swanky seating! Niche’s team of interior designers created a custom dining banquette to utilize dead space under the staircase, providing a seating area to enjoy cocktails or play a game of cards. From what we’ve heard, this might be one of the most popular spots in the house!

Custom Modern walnut and upholstered bed designed for San Francisco home by Niche Interiors, interior designer San Francisco
Custom bed + nightstands in Noe Valley, San Francisco home

The primary bedroom in our Noe Valley project was one of the most challenging rooms in the house due to its petite size and configuration. There was only one possible location for the bed which looks out over an incredible view of downtown San Francisco. In order to accommodate a king sized bed and maintain a clean-lined, modern design we enlisted our local woodworker to fabricate a walnut bed that maximizes every available inch. Upholstered panels are inset to serve as a headboard, adding softness and texture to the room. In lieu of table lamps that take up valuable space, we installed modern pendant lights over each nightstand. A pair of mid-century inspired eco-friendly ottomans sit at the foot of the bed for additional seating and a landing spot for extra pillows or blankets. For more custom furniture inspiration take a look at more of our San Francisco Bay Area interior design projects.

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