Color and Light Transform Renovated Palo Alto Eichler Home
Architect Gustave Carlson and Interior Designer Jessica Davis of Atelier Davis Breathe New Life into a Palo Alto Eichler Home
A Palo Alto Eichler home has been transformed into a 21st-century domestic haven by a team including architect Gustave Carlson and interior designer Jessica Davis of Atelier Davis. The house was originally one of the projects of founding 20th-century real estate developer Joseph Eichler, who sought to bring modernist architecture to the everyday family home. Examples of this type can now be found throughout California and are often affectionately referred to as “Eichlers” – but it may be the only one of its kind in the hills of Palo Alto and Los Altos.
The current owners of the house, Florie Hutchinson and her husband, were looking for a spacious, comfortable and stylish base to raise their four children; when they spotted this property on the market, they bought it. Together with Carlson, Davis and landscaper Kasorn Piamsukon of Ground Cover Landscaping, they worked to redesign the space into a sturdy yet elegant interior that was light and at the same time sturdy and suitable for family living.
To improve the feeling of space, Carlson removed partitions and cleaned up the interior space, while adding a perforation of the structure to create an atrium skylight above. This completely transforms the living space below, flooding it with natural light. Strategically chosen pieces of furniture, such as the swing attached to the roof structure, further accentuate this height and generosity.
Keeping the architecture clean and fairly monochromatic, using black, white and off-white tones in materials such as wood, cork and natural stone, creates a sophisticated backdrop for decor that adds layered color , using blues, corals and yellows throughout. Meanwhile, an art collection comprised mostly (about 90%) of female artists further elevates the space.
A mural by Mariel Capanna in the hallway, for example, welcomes guests. “Every element of the mural brings a smile to our face and is a time capsule of our family and this bizarre time of global instability,” Hutchinson says. §