Monthly Archives: January 2011

mid-century remodel buzz

I’m excited to say that Curbed SF posted a blurb about my remodel project and it was complimentary if not funny!

“570 Corbett was a shitshack. Then in 2010 it was renovated from the foundation up. Now it’s packed full of fancy finishes and smooth ceilings with recessed lighting and everything else you’d think a homeowner would put in a house if they wanted to get a spread in Dwell magazine. The building’s exterior still has its Mid-Century modern feel, as the house was originally built in 1959. But again, once inside it’s a contemporary wonderland. We never thought we’d type this, but the four different tiles in the master bathroom work really well together. The deets: it’s a 3-bed, 2-bath house in Twin Peaks for $995,000. You get 2-car parking with interior access. Property highlights include open living spaces and a gorgeous backyard that’s perfect for entertaining.”

I love that they say the house used to be a shitshack.  In truth, it was.  They never mention architects, oh well – SEE HERE

Also recently the developer / my client Rick was featured in a story in the San Francisco Chronicle.  It was mostly about his shift in career from set design / producer to residential developer.  There were a couple of photos of this house and – don’t blink! – a mention of yours truly as the architect.  May be the only time I’m ever mentioned in the same article as Liza Minelli:

“…he was building sets for stage productions and live musical shows for artists such as Liza Minnelli….Tom McElroy was the architect on the project..”



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laurel heights remodel

The whole-house remodel in Laurel Heights is sailing along…  Above, a view into the kitchen space with the new angled ceiling we achieved by pushing up into the 30″ of empty attic space above.   The new stairs to the lower floor are on the left.  A few weeks later and another view into the kitchen and down the hall with new skylight; cabinetry by Cabinets & Beyond.  The island will be a dark finish contrasting with the perimeter cabinetry.  Windows are from Andersen. Here’s how the fireplace in the living room looks now, actually looks good as just brick! But it will be tiled over soon.  The master bathroom looking toward the tub / shower combined area, over the course of a month or so.  This was formerly a split bathroom (toilet separated from sink/tub) like many older San Francisco homes have.  There’s a new skylight above, and the window at the tub will have a privacy film put on it.  The 1×1 mosaic glass tile is Oceanside “Veil”; we chose this as part of a fairly neutral palette in this room, along with 12×24 porcelain floor and wall tiles.  This is the walnut vanity cabinet for the master bathroom built by Stephen Day Design.  The pullout storage on the end was dreamed up by the homeowner so she can have a place to hide toilet paper rolls facing the toilet, and additional storage facing the sink area!  It’s great to have clients who step in to help design their space (often seems to be in the bathroom!).

The floor tile for the powder room is Italian Calacatta marble from Ceramic Tile Design.  The pattern came arranged on a backing, and will be trimmed down for installation.The back of the house with the squared-off upper floor with asymmetrical windows in the bedrooms.  The lower floor was opened up with french doors and atrium windows over the doors (high ceilings down there!) which will open onto the deck.  The basement has a pair of doors into it.  More to come!

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mid-century remodel

Where have I been?  The blog took a hiatus in December, so now it’s time to start tracking the projects again – we’re off to a running start in 2011.  This 1959 building left alone for a few decades is now waking up.  [nice blaring parking sign, and unpainted vents etc]  Here’s a quick recap of the facade up to now: I was inspired by a photo to try a green & brown earthy color scheme at the front, but we never loved the brown.  The Eichler color chart is mostly earthtones – though this is clearly far from an Eichler, not even a Likeler!  The tiled area to the lower right was intended to be a material ‘accent’, and after many suggestions were scratched from my list we settled on the 8×16 ceramic tile in ‘lavagna mood’, a purple-grey from Ceramic Tile Design.  Once the tile went in it was apparent that the brown had to go, so we matched the garage area in paint, just going up yesterday.   I drew this simple steel planter to fill in some of the corners a the facade, and eliminated the red brick planter.  The steps to the front door will be tiled soon.  The interior is almost finished – Lots of shapes in the light fixtures – the George Nelson Cigar bubble lamp, a flying saucer-shaped pendant from PLC, and cylinder pendants at the kitchen.  Details left to do, including a dark outlet plate @ the peninsula!  [alas, we had to go with a track for the kitchen pendants due the steel beam in the ceiling…]Walnut kitchen from City Cabinetmakers, 2×12 tile from Heath Ceramicstriangle tiles from Heath Ceramics behind the double-wide sink… & the drought-resistant garden seen from the new first floor bedroom.   More to come!

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