House Tour: Catherine and Robin’s Earthy Modern Airie

(Welcome again to Leah, one of the finalists in our Blogger search. She’s writing from Oakland. Comment away!)

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Names: Catherine Bailey and Robin Petravic
Location: Sausalito
Size: 1,800 square feet
Years lived in: 5

The Victorian cottage that Catherine Bailey and Robin Petravic share with their young son Jasper was built over 100 years ago. But the couple, who own Sausalito�s Heath Ceramics, have infused the home overlooking Richardson Bay with a clean, organic sensibility that marries old with new in great style.

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Our style: We like good stuff — and to us that means good design, good construction (or manufacturing), and good quality, whether something is old or new. We try to buy things that we believe are classic enough that we will have them forever. There�s really no style label to attach to that, except maybe �eclectic.� We believe that if you find really wonderful objects, they�ll work together no matter what their style. For instance, we think the Womb chair, vintage fireplace, Jasper Morrison cork stools, and contemporary-patterned window coverings in our family room all work perfectly together.

The inspiration for our home: Much of our home inspires itself. Most things that are attached to the original part of the house have been inspired by the past, like Victorian-era moldings and rosettes, wide plank flooring that matches the original stuff, and reproduction schoolhouse light fixtures. The kitchen is quite modern, though. We were stuck using IKEA cabinets for the bases, but I�ve always been inspired by henrybuilt kitchens.

Favorite element: The setting, the view, and the ability to live indoors and out. Also, the vintage chicken lamp — it�s a really great contrast to the flatscreen TV that it sits under.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Biggest challenge in designing our home: Working with an old, sagging house with a poor foundation and ancient utilities. Most of the money gets used up before you have time to even start thinking about the design.

What friends say about our home: That I was lucky to buy my first home when I was 25 for $85K in Portland, Oregon. (This one in Sausalito is the last — we hope — in a series of fix-ups and trade-ups since then.)

Biggest embarrassment in our home: Our bathroom on the main floor (not pictured), which hasn�t been remodeled since 1960. We don�t let guests use it. Also the front yard, which is just a pile of dead weeds. (We�re saving up for that project next summer.)

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Proudest DIY: The tile installations. I installed the fireplace tile and kitchen tile, and Robin and I installed the outdoor tile together — all using products from our company, Heath Ceramics.

Biggest indulgence with respect to our home: The new refrigerator from Liebherr. (We found the rest of the appliances on craigslist.) Other than that, there�s the $15K for the unexpected new sewer pipe, which was a mandatory �indulgence� before the city would give us a permit to do anything else.

Best advice: Acquire fewer things, and only things that you really love. You�ll spend more time enjoying your environment and less time searching for new stuff that ends up in the landfill anyway.

Dream source for stuff: BDDW and Ted Muehling.


* IKEA kitchen faucet
* Bosch oven (found on craigslist)
* Dacor cooktop (found on craigslist)
* Liebherr refrigerator

* Saarinen Womb chair and Bertoia Bird chair and ottoman from Hive Modern
* Cork stools from Jasper Morrison
* Vintage fireplace, Knoll credenza, and huge lamp from the Art Deco & Modernism Sale
* Parsons dining table from Room & Board
* Bertoia kitchen stools from Circa50
* Custom outdoor table frame by Ohio Design, tile by Heath Ceramics

* Family room pendant: George Nelson Propeller Bubble Lamp from Hive Modern
* Kitchen light from Schoolhouse Electric
* Chicken lamp from the Rose Bowl Flea Market
* Jasper Morrison Glo Ball bedroom lamp from Hive Modern

* All paint is from Pratt & Lambert
* Family room paint: Pratt & Lambert Dawn Mist (32-25)

* Family room and bathroom floor tile from Heath Ceramics

Rugs and Carpets:
* Dining room and family room rugs from FLOR
* Living room felt rug from Peace Industry

Tiles and Stone:
* All tile from Heath Ceramics

Window Treatments:
* Window treatments from Smith + Noble
* Family room window coverings from Smith + Noble�s Loft Living Collection

* Paintings above the Swan chair and in the bathroom by artist Damon Soul
* Painting above the yellow Eames chair from Creative Growth in Oakland
* Other art from the San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery and artist Dharma Strasser MacColl

* Architectural moldings and rosettes from San Francisco Victoriana
* Kitchen cabinets from IKEA
* Concrete kitchen counters by Concreteworks
* Vintage Fisher-Price toys from eBay
* Wood play kitchen from Oompa Toys
* Edward Wohl cutting boards from Heath Ceramics
* Norstal flatware from Heath Ceramics
* Pillow on bentwood chair by Lisa Congdon
* Pillow on leather chair by Heidi McDowell
* Red quilt from Egg, London

Thanks, Catherine and Robin!