Same Bones, New Materials—A Double Gable Eichler Gets a Dashing Update

By Paige Alexus / Published by Dwell
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When it comes to remodeling a classic Eichler home, what are the first considerations that pop into your mind? For many, it’s what should be preserved and what should be updated.

For John Klopf of Klopf Architecture, these homes offer an exciting challenge. He explains, "The architects that Eichler worked with were some of California’s greatest masters—so you’re starting off with a great house already. It’s either tear it down and lose a piece of history, or reinvigorate it and bring it to the 21st century. I choose the latter." 

As one of Eichler’s courtyard models, the home's office looks directly through the atrium and into the glass-enclosed living room, providing the ultimate indoor/outdoor feeling. The gray porcelain tile that Klopf Architecture installed in the interior is continued into the atrium.  

As one of Eichler’s courtyard models, the home's office looks directly through the atrium and into the glass-enclosed living room, providing the ultimate indoor/outdoor feeling. The gray porcelain tile that Klopf Architecture installed in the interior is continued into the atrium.  

Photo: Mariko Reed

That’s exactly what him and his team did for this double gable Eichler home located in Mountain View, California. Along with Outer Space Landscape Architecture, Sezen & Moon Structural Engineering, and Flegel's Construction Co., a 1960s four-bedroom, two-bathroom house that was in need of some dire repairs is now refreshed—but with its original characteristic bones still intact. 

Since the original siding was in bad condition, they installed new vertical Western red cedar siding throughout the house, which is reflected on both the interior and exterior. Klopf explained that one of the challenges of the project was finding a low-VOC stain that would match the color of the original siding. 

Since the original siding was in bad condition, they installed new vertical Western red cedar siding throughout the house, which is reflected on both the interior and exterior. Klopf explained that one of the challenges of the project was finding a low-VOC stain that would match the color of the original siding. 

Photo: Mariko Reed

The couple that lives in the home first came to Klopf Architecture because of their extensive experience with renovating other Eichlers. They had even remodeled another similar home in the same neighborhood, which is filled with Eichlers to this day. Along with maximizing the potential for the indoor/outdoor lifestyle that the house was originally set up for, they implemented new materials and created a more open layout while preserving the original character and focusing on functionality. 

Klopf told us how they kept the same materials consistent throughout the home, both inside and out. They ensured that the final result of the 1,953-square-foot home would provide a unified experience for the couple.

To satisfy the couple’s desire to combine the kitchen, living, and dining spaces into one large area, they removed any barriers and installed walnut vanities and cabinets for extra storage. They preserved the original brick fireplace. 

To satisfy the couple’s desire to combine the kitchen, living, and dining spaces into one large area, they removed any barriers and installed walnut vanities and cabinets for extra storage. They preserved the original brick fireplace. 

Photo: Mariko Reed
In order to open up the space, Klopf Architecture took out a few walls that were supporting overhead beams. Klopf explained, "We used the structural trick of putting a supportive cross-beam on the roof, which you don’t see. The ceiling now has an open, more expansive feeling—it's more post-and-beam." 

In order to open up the space, Klopf Architecture took out a few walls that were supporting overhead beams. Klopf explained, "We used the structural trick of putting a supportive cross-beam on the roof, which you don’t see. The ceiling now has an open, more expansive feeling—it's more post-and-beam." 

Photo: Mariko Reed
The new gray porcelain tiles are fit together seamlessly throughout the space and into the courtyard. The more open kitchen now has a wall of built-in storage and an oversized island with walnut and a brightly-colored siding. 

The new gray porcelain tiles are fit together seamlessly throughout the space and into the courtyard. The more open kitchen now has a wall of built-in storage and an oversized island with walnut and a brightly-colored siding. 

Photo: Mariko Reed
Similar to certain Eichlers, the office looks through the courtyard and into the living room. Klopf Architecture made minor necessary adjustments to the windows but preserved the bulk of the clerestory areas.  

Similar to certain Eichlers, the office looks through the courtyard and into the living room. Klopf Architecture made minor necessary adjustments to the windows but preserved the bulk of the clerestory areas.  

Photo: Mariko Reed
To enlarge the bathroom, they combined it with the master bedroom's closet—and thus had to create new storage. So, they designed a custom walnut bed wall that contains built-in wardrobes.  

To enlarge the bathroom, they combined it with the master bedroom's closet—and thus had to create new storage. So, they designed a custom walnut bed wall that contains built-in wardrobes.  

Photo: Mariko Reed
The larger master bathroom was reoriented and updated with new materials—the same ones that have been used throughout the house, including walnut and Western red cedar siding. 

The larger master bathroom was reoriented and updated with new materials—the same ones that have been used throughout the house, including walnut and Western red cedar siding. 

Photo: Mariko Reed
 Outer Space Landscape Architects built a custom fireplace in the backyard, which acts as a backstop for the seating area.  

 Outer Space Landscape Architects built a custom fireplace in the backyard, which acts as a backstop for the seating area.  

Photo: Mariko Reed

Let us know what you think about this remodel in the comments—and make sure to stay in touch with Klopf Architecture by following their profile here.

Paige Alexus

@paigealexus

Content Producer & Blogger at Dwell

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