Ever been to a mid-century Moroccan bazaar? That’s the feeling we created for an underutilized San Francisco loft. To see how we transformed an empty space into a sumptuous home by mixing global style with midcentury modern flair, read on!
When you compare the after at top with this before photo, the change is quite dramatic. We removed the clunky metal vertical blinds and replaced them with light-filtering soft draperies, and got rid of the loud air conditioner, unnecessary in San Francisco’s temperate climate.
After our redesign, we lightened the space by replacing a solid wall with retracting opaque ones. You can just see a convertible bed closed on the left wall, allowing for more living space. In front, a Moroccan metal table and a pair of patterned slipper chairs provide additional seating. The guest bedroom wall now separates the open-plan dining space, featuring midcentury modern dining table and chairs in coordinating colors. Combining the Moroccan influence with midcentury style creates a fun atmosphere!
In this before image, you’re seeing a temporary wall used to create a storage area tucked underneath the loft’s upstairs master bedroom, which we opened up by replacing them with the opaque retracting walls, and creating an open plan dining space. The entire area was veiled in shadow, before that change.
In this after
view from above, authentic Moroccan brass teardrop pendants fill the high space
above the custom-designed curved fireplace, and dramatic 18-foot-high golden
draperies emphasize the room height and capture sunlight with a backlit glow.
Hanging the hand-pierced brass pendants down to the top of the fireplace lowers
the visual focus and adds a stunning design element.
To create a more intimate space in the
living area, long white glass pendants visually lower the ceiling directly over
the seating. The global-patterned living room rug was custom-cut at an angle to
echo the lines of the sofa, creating room for the adjacent pivoting bookcase on
floor casters. By customizing the shape and size of the rug, we’ve defined the
living area zone and created an inviting and intimate space. We juxtaposed the midcentury
elements with stylish global pieces like the Chinese-inspired red lacquer
sideboard, used as a media unit below the TV.
Before, overlooking the living area from the loft, showing the fireplace and bare bones of the space. You can really see what a difference zoning makes!
With a change in color for the modern staircase rails and a high-gloss shelving interior, the addition of global textures and patterns, and coordination with a pop of color in the nearby wall niche, now the stairs are a fascinating journey to a higher plane of relaxation. The authentic teardrop pendant lamps display our Moroccan influence, while the modern lines and finishes neatly tie in with midcentury style.
To get up to the loft’s master bedroom, you navigate a circular staircase. It already had this cool pivoting bookcase wall that curls neatly around the stairs, but it was stark and office-y looking.
After, built-in storage leads you toward a sumptuous, relaxing bedroom. The lines of the built-in follow the stranded bamboo flooring into the sleeping area, featuring a beloved vintage rug I can picture arriving on the back of a camel. Pairing a vintage rug with midcentury modern tables and lamps gives this bedroom a cool aesthetic.
In this before photo of the loft master bedroom, you’ll agree the wall colors and red shag carpet weren’t doing it any favors.
Here’s the corner that became a lovely secretaire and home office desk, as you can see in the After photo below. What a difference the right shade of paint makes, along with a beautiful piece of furniture, paired with a vintage chair in coordinating color. I love it, and the owner loves it too!
If YOU want to transform your living space, get in touch! Kimball Starr offers complimentary consultations to explore your horizons.
You just cannot beat the WOW of a great before-and-after story. My client wanted a modern kitchen with a cool masculine aesthetic for his San Francisco condo that would remain in style for years to come. Looking at the photo above, do you agree we delivered the “wow”?
Here’s what the space looked like before: Almost office-y with its basic cabinetry, standard handles, plenty of electrical outlets but nothing dressing the counters.
After, what a difference! I brought in off-white quartz countertops to brighten up the space, two-toned gray cabinetry for some color dimension, and handmade stained glass subway tiles in soft, watered-down tones of grays, blues, and greens. Now it’s contemporary, smart, and welcoming, and will be a kitchen that feels timeless, the heart of the home.
Previously, the old finishes were dated and discolored, and the lighting gave off this eerie cast.
After our makeover, you’d actually want to spend time doing the washing up in this lovely, calming kitchen! I love that the owner’s artwork and sculpture are given space to breathe, and natural light pours in from the dining area.
Now the kitchen is light, fresh, and ready to welcome chefs and guests alike!
Need a kitchen that sizzles while looking cool? Kimball Starr Interior specializes in contemporary residential kitchens loved by cooks! Contact us today for a complimentary consultation.
We’re entering the summer travel season, with Memorial Day coming up quickly. For fun, here are five interior design images and ideas inspired by wanderlust!
There’s nothing quite like swinging lazily, napping in a hammock. Bring that peaceful feeling to your home, in an attic, basement, or guest bedroom for a delightful surprise.
An ingenious way to recall family vacations, by using the ends of vintage suitcases as open shelving. Inexpensive to create – find suitcases at yard sales and simply saw them off, then mount on the wall for instant conversation starters.
Does this tiled sink make you long for Morocco? Washing your hands becomes trés cool.
Passport stamps applied via wall decals make a great feature wall and inspiration for destinations!
My Dad has the wanderlust bug, and also thousands of these slides from his many journeys. Finally! The perfect way to display his old slides and holiday snaps – or yours!
Want a unique home that shows YOUR personality? Kimball Starr Interior Design specializes in contemporary residential spaces presented with style! Contact us today for a complimentary consultation.
Do you struggle to use a spare bedroom as your home office? Books, computer gear, and paper piled everywhere? Difficult to make space for your guests when they arrive last-minute? I have just the solution for you! Take a look at this San Francisco home office and bedroom before-and-after for inspiration.
In a contemporary urban condo, this workhorse office converts into a serene guest bedroom. Blue custom-designed cabinetry hides a convertible Murphy bed for a calm and welcoming space.
‘Before’ photo above, showing how even the guest bed gets piled high with paperwork.
‘After’ view of the home office, showing
the navy blue custom cabinetry that hides a convertible wall-bed, with the wood
and metal desk folded down, providing additional space for laying out papers,
drawing, reading, or computing.
In another ‘before’ view, you can see the challenge of organizing and hiding all the paperwork and equipment needed for a home office. The stark walls could use some love as well.
Now you see the neatly organized built-in storage, and artwork that provides a beautiful place for the eye to land. The guest bed is so easy to pull down, you can do it with one hand.
Even the closet overflows with spare bedding in this ‘before’ photo, and the bed itself is surrounded by visible storage that looks busy and cramped.
After, storage is neat and tidy while still being accessible. The fold-down bedside table is a thoughtful touch for guests, as are the pull-down blackout window shades.
Do you have a guest bedroom that needs to double as a home office, but isn’t doing the business? Kimball Starr Interior Design is an award-winning designer who creates contemporary residential spaces that both guests and owners love! Contact us today for a complimentary consultation.
designer Kimball Starr is featured as the interior design expert in a guest
appearance on the nationally televised series of PBS “Creative Living with
Sheryl Borden”. Kimball shows how to mix patterns, color, and texture to enrich
the look of your home’s interiors.
In this third and final 5-minute video segment, Kimball shares expert tips on how to mix fabric patterns in a contemporary bedroom. She creates a romantic space, and balances the masculine and feminine styles of a married couple through a curated selection of materials, fabric patterns, texture, and color.
In case you missed the first two installments, here are video 1 and video 2.
[Announcer] – With your host Sheryl Borden.
[Kimball] – So now we have a dini- a bedroom area, I should say.
[Sheryl] – Bedroom, okay.
– So this was a
newlywed couple and they’re very young and they wanted something really fun and
– Uh huh.
– So, we still wanted
to keep it romantic but not too feminine that, as you were saying,
– the husband feels
alienated and feels like he’s living in girly-land.
– So we started with
this rug that has a really geometric print, so it’s a little bit of a
masculine feel but popped it with some fun color. And I– on this I have
a grass cloth. Let me show you the other. So that’s our bed. And this is
to the right of the bed. And you can see there’s a grass cloth here.
– Oh, on the wall.
– If you were feeling
a little adventurous you could do something like this and really add a lot
of pattern and texture.
– This, this is the
– This is, this is
the– yeah. This is—
– It’s so, so much
like the– I can’t believe it. – [laughs]
– How you found that!
– It’s not the same
– Uh huh. – Yeah.
– That’s amazing!
– And so the drapes
were done in this fabric and this is a blackout drape so it doesn’t let
any light through and because it was so dark I really wanted to bring a splash
of color and some brightness into—
– the room. So by
– a border or—
– Mm hmm, by using
this really fun—
– an accent.
– accent, this yellow accent, and our side tables are done in a lacquer, and we actually had them custom painted in this really bright yellow on the sides of the bed. Then our lamps that we purchased were just simple white lampshades, but you can take any sort of fabric and cover. And so this is the floral fabric that we took to cover the lampshades that sit on top of the nightstand.
And then that leaves us with our wall color. So, I picked kind of this mauve-y tone and then for the ceiling we just lightened it up a little. And then all that’s left– Oh, there’s also some sitting chairs to the right of that, which are white leather.
– Oh, okay.
– And all that’s left
is the bed. So we have a headboard, which we used a really luxurious kind
of sexy velvet, which is great for honeymooners and newlyweds. And here I have
a floral print for the bedspread, but if you’re going use this sort of
grasscloth for the space I think that would just start to be too much—
– Too much.
– pattern. So
assuming you use something like that, then you tone it down and use a
solid color like this, really thin wool, and then you can accent with
pillows. And you can do some little small—
– That’s what really
pulls things together–
– It seems like, when
you do the accent pillows.
– Absolutely, and
then this pulls in the colors. It’s a fun little pattern, and if you wanna
do something a little bolder, you can use something like this also as a–
– Yeah, that’s pretty
with it too.
– accent for the
pillows on the bed, and the white brings in the white leather chairs and
most of the white of the lamp shade, so you have a balance of light, medium,
and dark tones.
– And that’s
– Yeah, and then if
you want to really make it kinda more moody, then you could also bring in
something like this, which is a darker accent pillow.
– But if you want—
– Oh, for the pillow.
– Mm hmm.
– Uh huh.
– Oh I love the
colors you work with. What do you do when someone wants colors you don’t
like? Is that hard to work with?
– You know what?
There’s no colors I don’t like.
– Oh okay. – So—
– So that never
– Well it’s a good thing. Well, you do a wonderful job. I’ve enjoyed seeing–
– Thank you.
– what all you pulled
and put together.
– Thank you so much.
– Thank you so much, Sheryl, it was fun!
Kimball Starr is Principal of a San Francisco
award-winning interior design firm, whose residential interiors have been
featured on national television, and globally published in a series of
hardcover books. To work with her on YOUR home or project, contact
Kimball today for a complimentary consultation!
Did you know Kimball Starr is the featured interior design expert on a nationally televised series of PBS Creative Living? For this series, the San Francisco interior designer teaches how to combine color, patterns, and texture to liven up your home’s interior.
In this second video, Kimball shares how to mix fabric patterns in a traditional living and dining room by using nature as the color inspiration. She chooses mahogany dining chairs upholstered in a traditional silk pattern, and adds a burlap tablecloth for an unexpected twist of casual elegance. The traditional living room showcases leather, velvet, and linens for a timeless look.
In case you missed the first one, here is Video 1.
– [Kimball] So I have some more examples here, and this is a living area, which it’s a more traditional feel.
– [Sheryl] Uh huh.
– And I’m gonna pull some of these examples up for you. So I like to start with the rug first.
– Because that really…
– The bottom.
– Sets, sets the foundation. Thank you. So here our main colors are dark reds, rust colors, and greens. And the underlying concept or theme for this space was a botanical feel.
– Oh ok.
– So the homeowner really likes leaves and flowers and that outdoor nature feel. And he has skylights.
– It brings it inside.
– That’s right, and you also want to think about the, the actual light. So in this space there’s a lot of natural light.
– A lot of light.
– So you don’t want to really, want to do heavy dark colors ’cause it feels counter-intuitive to the natural architecture of the space.
– Oh okay.
– So we’d like to treat… keep things light, but still add a little punch of color here and there. So we have next to them, here’s some close-up shots. So here’s the dining area, to the right.
– Uh huh.
– And I’m going to show you a little more close-up of that.
– Oh, uh huh.
– So you can see, so we have our–
– It’s the chair cushion.
– …Beautiful dining chair fabric, and now there’s no draperies in this particular situation because the homeowner really loved the view and didn’t want to cover anything; but if you wanted to do something you could use something like a really thin linen sheer that has a really subtle…
– And it’s got that botanical look, it’s got the leaves.
– That’s right.
– You’ll be carrying that out.
– And when the sun shines through this, it’s really going to wash it out so it’s going to be a subtle, floaty color.
– And the wall color that’s there on the window…
– Oh, how gorgeous.
– …Is this color right there, so you could do that, or if you’re not really a ‘sheer’ person you could use something like a woven grass shade. Notice the nice texture it gives.
– Uh huh.
– Again it gives, again it really adds a beautiful natural outdoorsy feel.
– And sometimes it nice to use this, I would think, so something doesn’t become so feminine.
– If there’s a couple living there you want to bring in some elements so that he sort of feels like he supposed to be there…[laugh].
– That’s right, that’s right you’re not gonna make it all pink…[laugh].
– So, then we have our table that I put with the burlap covering because it’s mahogany and I felt with all that dark mahogany that the chairs and the dining table was a little too heavy for the space.
– Lightened it up, uh huh.
– Right, ’cause we had talked about how it was a lighter space, and then moving over to our sofa… We have a close-up of the sofa area.
– Oh is that a leather or….
– …Suede or something.
– So the sofa is actually wrapped in leather.
– And then there’s…
– Oh it’s got the green. I just now see the cushions, uh huh.
– Yeah and then the actual cushions here.
– Uh huh.
– It’s done in a linen velvet and a linen velvet is a really durable fabric. It’s gonna wear…
– Wears well.
– Yes and it still has a really elegant feel to it.
– Uh huh, all these colors are just looking wonderful together.
– Oh thanks. Green is my favorite color.
– Well I kinda like it too. [laugh] So you’re starting with the floor and you’re building up from there.
– That’s right.
– Uh huh.
– So we have this color and then the color behind on the wall there is here, so we have this soft green with a creme color and then we have the sofa with the leather. And then we have our drapery with our…
– Uh huh.
– …Dining chair fabric, the burlap and then now all that’s left is to add some fun accents.
– And we also have our swivel chair here, which is–
– Oh there it is.
– Right here.
– Uh huh.
– This kind of tan color, and I like to bring in again… we have kinda a more light, airy feel with botanicals and it’s a linen.
– Now what would you use these for?
– These you could do for your throw pillows.
– Oh okay I was thinking, how is this going… I see now.
– Yeah, so this would accent on top of the swivel chair. These would be your throw pillows and then for your sofa, because it’s a bigger, bulkier sofa, you can afford to do fabric that feels a little heavier. And you can either choose to go more in this tone for an accent which picks up the red…
– Uh huh, I like that one.
– Or there is a little bit of blue in there or you could even do both.
– Yeah, it really pulls the blue out. I didn’t see any blue in there, but I do…
– Yeah, it’s really subtle…
– Now that you put that with it, uh huh.
– And if you like little tassels and fringe this could go on the burlap tablecloth.
– Which it also softens that up a little bit.
– It does it adds a little interest to in movement, instead of it just being a sharp edge.
– And then for one last item in the space, something most people don’t think about for texture, which is not necessarily a fabric, is using plants.
– Oh yeah, uh huh. I just think that every room almost needs a plant.
– It just, it just maybe it is because it brings the outdoors in.
– Yeah it really does.
– It just looks nice.
– And they’re wall mounted and you never have to take it off and they just grow right on the wall.
– I see, very good.
– So then we have, so that’s our living area.
Kimball Starr is Principal of a San Francisco award-winning interior design firm, whose residential interiors have been featured on national television, and globally published in a series of hardcover books. To work with her on YOUR home or project, contact Kimball today for a complimentary consultation!