A Rustic & Refined California Ranch House

updated Feb 20, 2019
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(Image credit: www.saritarelis.com)

Name: Jennifer Maxcy and her husband, son, and their dogs, Doug and Daisy
Location: Newbury Park — Ventura County, California
Size: 1,143 square feet
Years lived in: 7 months; Owned

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Stylist and maker Jennifer Maxcy of The Ranch Uncommon employs the same vision and design ethos in her home goods collection as she does in styling her personal abode. Her approach celebrates unique finds, pairs vintage with new, and favors the handcrafted and repurposed. Jennifer and her husband purchased their Newbury Park home with a view just six months before we shot their House Tour. They made quick time with a number of renovations, nearly gutting the interior and sacrificing a third bedroom to expand the great room—the crown jewel of their rustic and refined home in the hills of Ventura County.

(Image credit: www.saritarelis.com)

Though not far from the busy 101 corridor, the property is situated in a hilly enclave of older homes with acreage and a distinctly ranch-like feel, where neighbors keep pigeons and goats along with their backyard chickens. It was exactly what the couple had been looking for, having previously lived in a Simi Valley tract house. They both feel at home in nature, and Jennifer’s husband is a falconer, so they knew they wanted a bigger lot for an aviary—and they were willing to put the work in on an older home. They found what they were looking for in their current property, where the main structure—now a two-bedroom, one-bath post-and-beam house—sits on bountiful, terraced land, while a separate barn holds an extra bathroom, laundry area, and room for guests.

Inside, the 1959 California ranch house is graced with abundant natural light and a striking exposed-beam ceiling. Opting for the simple beauty of white and wood, they coated the walls and ceiling in fresh paint and added wide plank wood floors to warm the space. In the kitchen, the reclaimed wood cabinetry, clean lines, modern hardware, and bright white penny round tile evoke a rustic modern feel— a feel that is carried throughout her home, with hints of new traditional rounding out the decor. Jennifer’s style and eye for design detail have taken the great room above and beyond.

What belies the extremely pulled-together, print publication-worthy look of her home, however, is the fact that much of her decor and furnishings were found, DIY-ed, or thrifted. Many items were also transformed by Jennifer herself. Indeed, sourcing much of what you see in her home requires looking no further than Jennifer herself. Wondering about the eye-catching pendants over the hearty antique workbench-turned-kitchen island? A DIY she fashioned from Indonesian chicken-catching baskets. Elsewhere in the kitchen, Jennifer employed a former bridle rack as a pot holder. Mounted against the backdrop of countertop-to-ceiling white penny round tile, the choice perfectly exemplifies Jennifer’s taste for marrying the rough with the refined and her knack for finding utility in the unexpected.

Next up, the couple has plans to tackle the main bathroom in the house and update the barn, which currently holds a laundry area and a bathroom, making it into a more usable guest space.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Found, Natural, Minimal

Inspiration: The great outdoors paints the perfect palette of color, texture, and surfaces that I like to mimic in our home.

Favorite Element: Openness, post-and-beam ceilings

Biggest Challenge: Openness, post-and-beam ceilings. Properly lighting open beam ceilings has proven difficult with no ceiling space to hide wiring.

What Friends Say: Wow this location, house, view. What a score!

Biggest Embarrassment: Trying to attempt to do a matte and gloss penny-round tile striped wall behind the stove. Overall it made no impact, as there was not enough contrast. I was so excited to try it since I have a hard time committing to a permanent tile situation and color. I love the tiled wall overall, but my brilliant concept was a dud!

Proudest DIY: The kitchen remodel

Biggest Indulgence: Textiles, rugs

Best Advice: Bring in what you love, add dimension and texture to your walls. Decorate as an individual and not to please your neighbor or the masses. Trends are fun but I love elements of timeless interiors. Include things from any/every decade as well as mixing styles. I’m convinced it’s the hardest way to decorate without looking like you are living in a flea market stall. Scale, color, texture, and contrast are what I focus on. For me it takes some toying around, and I always consider how one item affects the next. Consider space and let things stand out by limiting what surrounds them.

Dream Sources: Loving Chairish, Hollywood at Home, and Rooms & Gardens… but also really just dream of my own secret resources.



  • Walls and ceilings: Glidden DUO Base White No Color Added Semi-Gloss—it was the whitest, purest white out there!
  • Hallway: Ralph Lauren River Rock Suede Series
  • Bedroom: Ralph Lauren River Rock Suede Series


  • Vintage Moroccan rug: eBay
  • Custom pillows: The Ranch Uncommon
  • Mid-century sofa: scored from a friend-of-a-friend
  • Antique cabinet: The Ranch Uncommon
  • Vintage Turkish pot lamp: The Ranch Uncommon
  • Huge California map: Goodwill
  • Whale rib: an antique shop in Northern California
  • Navy ottoman pair: on clearance at Target


  • Vintage dining table: Aubergine Emporium
  • Custom banquette: made of excess kitchen cabinetry
  • Seat cushions: Sunbrella via Home Decorators
  • Stool: HD Buttercup
  • Striped swivel chairs: The Ranch Uncommon
  • Mid-century lamp: thrift store
  • Crate table: The Ranch Uncommon


  • Chicken basket pendants over island: custom by Jennifer Maxcy
  • Basket pendant over sink: custom by Jennifer Maxcy
  • Slim vintage shelf: Aubergine Emporium
  • Hand-glazed stoneware plates: j clay pottery
  • Reclaimed barn doors: The Ranch Uncommon
  • Vintage workbench island: The Ranch Uncommon
  • Vintage canisters: The Ranch Uncommon
  • Bridle rack used as pot rack: Aubergine Emporium
  • Aluminum stools: Crate & Barrel
  • Rugs: Indigo/Brown Baluch from AE Rugs
  • Handcrafted shibori bowls: Waxing Gibbous Pottery
  • Wood taxidermy form: antique shop
  • Cabinetry: Crystal Cabinet Works
  • Countertops: Torquay by Cambria


  • Vintage textile pillows: The Ranch Uncommon
  • Mid-century lamp: estate sale
  • TV cabinet: reused kitchen cabinets
  • Rug: Belgium


  • Stacked vintage kitchen cabinets: Long Beach Flea Market
  • Barn wood towel rack: custom-made with wood from Roundtop
  • Apothecary jars: The Ranch Uncommon
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The sofa placement perfectly divides the great room into two distinct spaces. (Image credit: Sarita Relis Photography)

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Thanks, Jennifer!