Wednesday, June 13, 2012


Desert- almost DESSERT

As I have mentioned, I am working on a couple of projects in the California Desert. (Think, Palm Springs area.)  I was on the job site yesterday and thought I should show you the property and give a progress report.  Now, when I say almost dessert, I want to warn you that my dessert may not be your dessert.  

I LOVE construction.  When I walk into a house, I almost never see what is actually there.  I see what it could be!  In my mind, I move walls, take out doors, change cabinets and add lighting.  When the dust starts falling, I see mirrors and pillows.  I know, a little crazy, but when I saw this home, I saw gorgeous-ness!!

From a distance, you may be able to see it too.  The sprawling Mediterranean, the mountain peaks behind, the lovely grass that leads into the golf course.  Can you?

Now, here is the back of the house as I saw it that first day.  A little more rough in the edges, but I focus on the palm trees, the great quality roof tile and the arched windows.

Inside the great room, you may think, "Not bad."  Again, I see the potential. Near Newport Beach, we have a bunch of Mediterranean tract homes that were built in the 90s.  They look dated and the curved ceiling reminded me of this.  Why have it?  This is a custom home, so let's give it soul and character that can only come from the details.

Within a week, the room was squared off.  Then, to bring your eye up to the amazing 16' ceilings, I wanted to add wood beams.  Don't get distracted by this mustard yellow.  I see a more sophisticated, clean lined home. (Do you like my "little" set of plans!?)

You say, "Why wood beams if you want a more contemporary home?  Do character and contemporary need character?"  You bet!

This was yesterday.   The paper was off.  The walls have been painted and the beautiful (un-distressed) beams were exposed.  Now, if you remember a post a while ago with the light fixtures, remember that I am having two 50" round Ralph Lauren fixtures hanging off these beams.

It is the little things that add the character, too.  Most of the windows are arched, but with the few doors and windows that are straight across the top, I thought we should add a wood lintel (beam across the top).  This brings more substance and weight to the doors. 

The rounded foyer is gone.  Now when you walk in, your eye will go up and follow the beams to the outdoors where you can see the glorious mountains!  Do you see the thick baseboard that was added?  The doors, baseboard and beams were stained in the same color to give the house consistency.  

I have just ordered 1,459,102 pieces of furniture.  You can see the outline in blue tape on the the floor.  The great room is so great that there will be more than one seating area. You need to make it intimate, right?  Nothing worse than shouting to someone 16 feet away from you trying to "converse!"

There are so many things I want to share.  Yesterday, the built ins were arriving.  The great room will have long cabinets flanking each side.  I am having 4 round pendants hanging over the built ins, two on each side.  We don't even have the stone on (or IN) the fireplace yet!  We also will be removing the transom windows and the large sliders in the third photo.  We will be putting in ten foot windows that can be pushed all the way to either side and bring the outdoors in!  

I can't wait.  I also can't wait for all of the furniture and fabrics and window treatments and pillows and mirrors and beds (well, you get it!) to arrive:-)

Hope you have enjoyed!



  1. I can't wait either! Looks like an awesome project, Kathleen!! I L-O-V-E the beams!! Please show us more. Thx!!

  2. Incredible improvements, Kathleen! You are truly visionary!! Hope to see more photos as the project progresses.

  3. Thanks Loi and Phyllis! I will add more photos as I go:-) xo


I love your comments! Thank you for reading. Best, Kathleen