You can feel the beachy California vibes in the air when entering Danielle and Bryan's little Craftsman in Berkeley. Maybe it's the open-space layout of the living area and the hanging macrame planters combined with soft colors. Or maybe it's just Danielle and Bryan's laid-back nature on a Saturday morning, while they walk around barefoot, sip coffee, play some music, and get ready to kick off the weekend with a farmer's market stroll and a drive to the beach. Danielle, an art director, and Bryan, an architect, have been living in their house for only a year, but due to their nature of getting projects done on time, the house is already picture-perfect.
But don't let the effortless atmosphere fool you, it took some serious effort (and sweat and tears) to get the formerly imperfect house where it is today. Walls have been moved and a completely new kitchen and bathroom were installed.
"Bryan is an architect, so that was a huge benefit when we saw the house for the first time," says Danielle. "He immediately could tell what we could and couldn't do." And while the end result is a blend of both their styles, Danielle laughs and admits that it's not always easy when two people have strong opinions on design. "It's been a fun process, but when you have two designers under one roof, it also can be challenging, like choosing the perfect shade of white."
The furniture is a mix of vintage mid-century finds and modern pieces. Like the Original Royal System shelving from 1948 by Poul Cadovius, which Bryan scored after carefully observing Craigslist for months. He drove all the way to Ventura to get it.
The couple also wasn't afraid to go custom: They're both huge music fans and have an impressive vinyl collection, which they wanted visible and easily accessible without overloading the space. They had a low storage unit custom built, and it also doubles as a window seat for their dog Freddie and console for TV and decorations.
The couple is also very proud of their new kitchen, which underwent a complete remodel. They splurged on beautiful tiles from Heath Ceramics, but stayed within their budget by going for IKEA cabinets, jazzing them up with fronts by Semihandmade (a company that makes fancy fronts for IKEA kitchens).
"The kitchen has now way more countertop space, and we can comfortably cook together," says Bryan.
The overall bright and calm feel of the house also continues in the bedroom, where they keep clean lines with a mid-century inspired Room & Board bed, a vintage wall unit and a beautiful rattan rocker (that you might not believe is from IKEA.)
"We are very happy how everything turned out," says Danielle. "Next project: the backyard."
Apartment Therapy Survey:
Our Style: Danielle - Modern & Feminine — Bryan - Minimalist & Star Wars
Inspiration: California Modern
Favorite Element: The window seat — it's also Freddie's favorite!
Biggest Challenge: Choosing a paint color — too many shades of white for two designers.
What Friends Say: It's bigger on the inside!
Biggest Embarrassment: We still don't have baseboards in the bedrooms — and we each could elaborate on an embarrassment, but let's choose not to ;)
Proudest DIY: A lot! We installed the kitchen, medicine cabinet, trim work, deck…we had a hand in everything
Biggest Indulgence: Vaulting the ceiling
Best Advice: Do as much as you can (especially before you move in), but remember there is always more to do once you own a house.
Dream Sources: The Future Perfect, TRNK NYC, R & Company, Apparatus
PAINT & COLORS
Living room and kitchen walls — Benjamin Moore Aura, color is Farrow and Ball Wevet
Kitchen Cabinet — pre-cat lacquer Benjamin Moore Timber Wolf
Bedroom Walls — Benjamin Moore Ben
Wall Unit — Original Cadovious Royal system, reproductions available at DWR
Turn Table — Pro-Ject
Coffee Table — West Elm
Sofa — Vintage
Side Table — Eric Trine
Terra Cotta Planter — West Elm x Commune (not in production)
Concrete Tray — Concrete Geometric
Remote Tray — School House electric
Ceiling Fan — Haiku fans
Throw — Roar + Rabbit
Lounge Chair — Blu Dot
Print — Luchador Library by El Jefe Design
Star Wars Glasses — Vintage Burger King (Bryan's prize collection of originals that he pieced together)
Boob Vase — Gravel & Gold/Group Partner (Danielle's favorite vase, she's obsessed with boobs)
Leash — Found My Animal
Bike Hanger — Bike Valet
Bike — Makino Super Record
Dining table — Vintage Danish
Dining Chairs — Wishbone chair
Secretary Desk — vintage
Trays — Finn Juhl turning trays
Vase — Spin Ceramics
Pendant light — Ikea
Yellow pot — Brian Giniewski
Banjo — Deering Banjos (The best Christmas present from Danielle)
Cabinets — Ikea
Cabinet fronts — Semihandmade
Shelves — Semihandmade
Range & Hood — Bertazzoni
Refrigerator — Fisher & Paykel
Kettle — Fellow
Pour Over — Manual Goods
Bread box — William Sonoma
Tiles — Heath Ceramics
Dishwasher — Bosch
Faucet — Franke
Rug — CB2
Bed — Room and Board
Night stands — West Elm
Bedside light — CB2 with Rejuvenation Bulbs and repurposed IKEA curtain rods for the brackets
Wall unit — Vintage
Rocker — Ikea
Rug — Iilano Design
Print — Kyler Martz
Terra Cotta Planter — Commune x West Elm
Sheets — School House Electric
Throw pillows — Matteo
Toilet, sink, vanity — Duravit
Shower fixtures and faucet — Waterworks
Tiles — thebuilderdepot.com
Ceiling Light — Made by Bryan
Wall sconce, hooks, tp holder — Onefortythree
Walnut Medicine cabinet — Made by Bryan
Hanging vases — Spin Ceramics