LA House Tour: Mara and Michael's Spanish Transformation

LA House Tour: Mara and Michael's Spanish Transformation

Gregory Han
Jul 12, 2007

[This is our last week of posts from our three finalists, each vying for a spot on the ATLA roster. We continue now with Laure, one of our three finalists will be walking us through a Leimert Park residence...]

Name: Mara and Michael
Location: Leimert Park, Los Angeles
Size: 1,500 square feet
Years lived in: almost three years
Inspiration: Color and texture

I have long been inspired by Mara's color schemes and was thrilled when she agreed to this house tour business. The short story is that when Mara and Michael were ready to buy a house they searched all over Los Angeles before finding a beautiful Spanish style home in a little known jewel of a neighborhood, Leimert Park.

We're always looking for more candidates for house tours. If you or someone you know is interested in inviting us for a tour, please email us!

Originally built in 1937, it had beautiful bones but needed quite a bit of work. They've had no shortage of vision and working within a tight budget they've buckled down and transformed it themselves. From plastering and painting to locating the perfect recycled glass doors for Mara's studio to laying out a drought tolerant garden -- you name it, they did it -- all the while maintaining the original character of the place. And the pay off for all this hard work? Check out the pictures. Did I mention that I am particularly jealous of the pink flowered bathroom? Enjoy!

Our Style: Very eclectic

Favorite Room: Either our bedroom or living room

Most talked about element: The disarray and clutter of our office/library

Most embarrassing element: The disarray and clutter of our office/library

Element that makes your knees weak: Original light fixtures in the hallway

Proudest DIY: Turning the garage into my art studio

Dream source or item: Design Within Reach and HD Buttercup.

Reality source: IKEA, Target, thrift stores and yard sales.

Best advice: Projects always take longer than expected.

Found treasure: When digging trenches in the back yard to begin landscaping my husband found an old blue glass bottle with raised letters
"Bromo-Seltzer, Emerson Drug Co., Baltimore, MD" which was most likely left from when the house was first built in 1937.

Had forever: The antique wall cabinet in the pink bathroom.

Just got: The buffet in the dining room

Any additional plans?: Many. The plan most likely to happen soon is building a Wisteria arbor to create an outdoor "living room" and extending the back fence for more privacy and to allow native grape vines to grow. The most extravagant dream plan is expanding the square footage of my studio.

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