Designed In-House

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photos by:
September 7, 2010
Originally published in Ten Years Of Dwell
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  • 
  By carving away some of the hillside, the Deams effectively added an outdoor room to their renovated home.

    By carving away some of the hillside, the Deams effectively added an outdoor room to their renovated home.

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  Deam also designed all of the built-in furniture, including this bedside console that features an Arne Jacobsen sconce.

    Deam also designed all of the built-in furniture, including this bedside console that features an Arne Jacobsen sconce.

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  A path created with Stepstone's narrow concrete pavers meanders through the garden past the master bedroom.

    A path created with Stepstone's narrow concrete pavers meanders through the garden past the master bedroom.

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  The curving glass and steel wall, designed by Deam and executed by Sand Studios, is a tour de force of engineering and design.

    The curving glass and steel wall, designed by Deam and executed by Sand Studios, is a tour de force of engineering and design.

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  As the house is situated on a steep slope, visitors enter only to be whisked upstairs to the main living space. The facade was designed by Bob Hatfield in 1996. A new glass and steel door, designed by Chris Deam and fabricated by Sand Studios, was added in the renovation.

    As the house is situated on a steep slope, visitors enter only to be whisked upstairs to the main living space. The facade was designed by Bob Hatfield in 1996. A new glass and steel door, designed by Chris Deam and fabricated by Sand Studios, was added in the renovation.

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  In the master bedroom, Chris designed all of the built-in furniture. The painting is by Mike Monteiro.

    In the master bedroom, Chris designed all of the built-in furniture. The painting is by Mike Monteiro.

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  A pair of Slow chairs by the Bouroullec brothers for Vitra frame a new Brionvega RR226 stereo by Achille Castiglioni in the living room. The photograph by Michael Wolf of a Hong Kong apartment building is from a series that ran in the March 2004 issue of Dwell.

    A pair of Slow chairs by the Bouroullec brothers for Vitra frame a new Brionvega RR226 stereo by Achille Castiglioni in the living room. The photograph by Michael Wolf of a Hong Kong apartment building is from a series that ran in the March 2004 issue of Dwell.

  • 
  In the den, Lara and Cal read a Hardy Boys mystery on the Flexform Groundpiece sofa by Antonio Citterio while Chris works in his "office." The cozy room where the family spends much of their time once housed the kitchen.

    In the den, Lara and Cal read a Hardy Boys mystery on the Flexform Groundpiece sofa by Antonio Citterio while Chris works in his "office." The cozy room where the family spends much of their time once housed the kitchen.

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  In addition to a swing, Cal's room features Maija & Kristina Isola's Sola bedding for Marimekko.

    In addition to a swing, Cal's room features Maija & Kristina Isola's Sola bedding for Marimekko.

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  The sauna is a decidedly Scandinavian touch.

    The sauna is a decidedly Scandinavian touch.

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  In the master bathroom, Chris clad the tub and walls in Carrara marble. An AJ Wall sconce by Arne Jacobsen for Louis Poulsen sheds some light on bathtub reading.

    In the master bathroom, Chris clad the tub and walls in Carrara marble. An AJ Wall sconce by Arne Jacobsen for Louis Poulsen sheds some light on bathtub reading.

  • 
  Cal and Macy enjoy a snack from Mom at the almost 14-foot-long walnut slab table sourced from Arborica in Marshall, California. The wood came from a tree that fell into a Palo Alto, California, street. A trio of Tom Dixon Beat Lamps provide the perfect counterpoint to a slew of black plastic Eames shell chairs from Herman Miller.

    Cal and Macy enjoy a snack from Mom at the almost 14-foot-long walnut slab table sourced from Arborica in Marshall, California. The wood came from a tree that fell into a Palo Alto, California, street. A trio of Tom Dixon Beat Lamps provide the perfect counterpoint to a slew of black plastic Eames shell chairs from Herman Miller.

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  Unable to alter the footprint of the building, the Deams created a backyard living area that nearly doubled the home's living space.

    Unable to alter the footprint of the building, the Deams created a backyard living area that nearly doubled the home's living space.

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  Thanks to clever engineering by Sand Studios, seven-year-old Macy can operate the 2,000-pound door.

    Thanks to clever engineering by Sand Studios, seven-year-old Macy can operate the 2,000-pound door.

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  A raised dining nook furnished with Konstantin Grcic Ones for Magis makes outdoor dining a breeze.

    A raised dining nook furnished with Konstantin Grcic Ones for Magis makes outdoor dining a breeze.

  • 
  With the doors flung wide open, the Deams' outdoor space truly functions as an adjunct living room at the core of the home. The feeling of an outdoor room is reinforced by the linearity and evenness of the concrete patio surface, which was constructed with Stepstone's Narrow Modular Pavers. "I actually discovered them at Dwell on Design in 2006," Lara says. The three-inch-wide pavers are available in multiple lengths and in 12 different shades.

    With the doors flung wide open, the Deams' outdoor space truly functions as an adjunct living room at the core of the home. The feeling of an outdoor room is reinforced by the linearity and evenness of the concrete patio surface, which was constructed with Stepstone's Narrow Modular Pavers. "I actually discovered them at Dwell on Design in 2006," Lara says. The three-inch-wide pavers are available in multiple lengths and in 12 different shades.

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  It might not make you popular with your contractor, but for a more streamlined look, Chris recommends forgoing trim. "It lends a clean look with less visual clutter," the architect says. In their house, the doors, lights, cabinetry, and even wall sockets (all 22 by Bocci) are installed without trim. This allows the planar surfaces to recede and do their jobs without unnecessarily distracting the eye.

    It might not make you popular with your contractor, but for a more streamlined look, Chris recommends forgoing trim. "It lends a clean look with less visual clutter," the architect says. In their house, the doors, lights, cabinetry, and even wall sockets (all 22 by Bocci) are installed without trim. This allows the planar surfaces to recede and do their jobs without unnecessarily distracting the eye.

  • 
  When it came to paint the 40-foot-long curving steel-and-glass window wall designed by Chris and fabricated by Sand Studios, the Deams turned to Steve Bauer of Baumar, who specializes in custom paint finishes, to get the job done. Metallic automotive paint stands up well to the elements—from blaring sunlight to heavy rain—and comes in an almost infinite array of colors.

    When it came to paint the 40-foot-long curving steel-and-glass window wall designed by Chris and fabricated by Sand Studios, the Deams turned to Steve Bauer of Baumar, who specializes in custom paint finishes, to get the job done. Metallic automotive paint stands up well to the elements—from blaring sunlight to heavy rain—and comes in an almost infinite array of colors.

  • 
  Can't find the right table for your space? Another option is to have a custom top cut for a recycled base, which is what the Deams did for their outdoor dining area. They had an existing Scissor table base by Bay Area designer John Randolph sitting unused, so Chris had a piece of hardy soapstone (it stands up to high temperatures) cut to match by Fox Marble. A subtle facet at each corner plays off the base's design and lends a more intimate feel to the long table. For a fraction of the cost of a full piece, the bases of design classics are often available on Craigslist and eBay.

    Can't find the right table for your space? Another option is to have a custom top cut for a recycled base, which is what the Deams did for their outdoor dining area. They had an existing Scissor table base by Bay Area designer John Randolph sitting unused, so Chris had a piece of hardy soapstone (it stands up to high temperatures) cut to match by Fox Marble. A subtle facet at each corner plays off the base's design and lends a more intimate feel to the long table. For a fraction of the cost of a full piece, the bases of design classics are often available on Craigslist and eBay.

  • 
  The materials palette is similarly restrained, making the only natural piece of wood in the house—the almost 14-foot-long walnut slab in the kitchen—really stand out. "If there was wood everywhere it would lose its gravitas," notes Chris.

    The materials palette is similarly restrained, making the only natural piece of wood in the house—the almost 14-foot-long walnut slab in the kitchen—really stand out. "If there was wood everywhere it would lose its gravitas," notes Chris.

  • 
  In paring back the home's aesthetic, Chris kept the color palette as simple as possible. Limiting the surfaces to either painted white or stained black allows colorful art, objects, furniture, and people to really pop.

    In paring back the home's aesthetic, Chris kept the color palette as simple as possible. Limiting the surfaces to either painted white or stained black allows colorful art, objects, furniture, and people to really pop.

  • 
  Cal and Macy jump rope with mom and dad.

    Cal and Macy jump rope with mom and dad.

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  The twins' ephemera gathers on the patio outside.

    The twins' ephemera gathers on the patio outside.

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  Stepstone's narrow concrete pavers add a graphic touch to the garden in the Mill Valley home of Dwell founder Lara Hedberg Deam and architect Chris Deam. Photo by Dustin Aksland.

    Stepstone's narrow concrete pavers add a graphic touch to the garden in the Mill Valley home of Dwell founder Lara Hedberg Deam and architect Chris Deam. Photo by Dustin Aksland.

  • 
  Stepstone's narrow concrete pavers add a graphic touch to the garden.

    Stepstone's narrow concrete pavers add a graphic touch to the garden.

  • 
  A selection of pieces from the Maia outdoor collection by Patricia Urquiola for Kettal make up the seating area outside.

    A selection of pieces from the Maia outdoor collection by Patricia Urquiola for Kettal make up the seating area outside.

  • 
  Chris stained all the interior wood black, including this wall by the entry stairs.

    Chris stained all the interior wood black, including this wall by the entry stairs.

  • 
  Sitting on the Recycled Blanket Rug by Tejo Remy and Rene VeenHuizen, Chris digs through his records looking for something to play on the new Brionvega RR226 by Achille Castiglioni.

    Sitting on the Recycled Blanket Rug by Tejo Remy and Rene VeenHuizen, Chris digs through his records looking for something to play on the new Brionvega RR226 by Achille Castiglioni.

  • 
  The living room is home to two Bouroullec Brothers designs: the Facett sofa for Ligne Roset, and the Slow chair for Vitra.

    The living room is home to two Bouroullec Brothers designs: the Facett sofa for Ligne Roset, and the Slow chair for Vitra.

  • 
  Lara's home office consists of a MacBook Air and Ferruccio Laviani Abat-Jour lamp for Kartell.

    Lara's home office consists of a MacBook Air and Ferruccio Laviani Abat-Jour lamp for Kartell.

  • 
  "It feels like this design unlocked what the house wanted to be," says Lara. The Cord Chair, by Jacques Guillon, is in production again for the first time in over fifty years. It's available from Avenue Road

    "It feels like this design unlocked what the house wanted to be," says Lara. The Cord Chair, by Jacques Guillon, is in production again for the first time in over fifty years. It's available from Avenue Road

  • 
  Open a tidily tucked away pocket in the wall, and you'll find a screened aperture with louvers.

    Open a tidily tucked away pocket in the wall, and you'll find a screened aperture with louvers.

  • 
  A wall of built-ins in the kitchen houses a raft of Miele appliances including a refrigerator, microwave, and espresso machine.

    A wall of built-ins in the kitchen houses a raft of Miele appliances including a refrigerator, microwave, and espresso machine.

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