front of this great old house was confounding: a front yard
big enough for a parking lot, but the driveway was squished
right next to the house. the outside entry was small &
felt like a wrought iron cage. since the house felt long &
shallow, it was easy to imagine a deeper entry, adding some
sexy curves & building a more inviting front patio.
visualized an entry of open arms: low walls that were
welcoming & also embraced our visitors. with the ironwork
& tile removed, the front extended forward & new
color-integrated stucco all over, the house looked amazing.
(obviously, i spent hours with omar, dry-vit’s friendly stucco
color-mixer, creating the perfect hues for the house. there
are 6 exterior colors: 3 for house elevations, 1 for window
trim & 2 yard/patio wall colors.) we installed a wonderful
antique door, built my “parenthesis” patio walls, tiled the
floor with vintage encaustics & installed old & new
two, (whew!) i designed the landscape. i loved sweeping a
curved gravel drive into the shade of mesquites & winding
an inviting path to the front door. our porch has become one
of our favorite hangouts: we watch the sun set, the monsoons
strike & the fireworks explode over the baseball stadium.
back patio was always a great space, but the ceiling was so
darn low. so...we took it off & put on a new one. oh &
i drew arches at the columns & covered the floor in the
same herringbone concrete tile that flows through most of the
house. i designed the patio to be a family room that happened
to be outside, so i filled it with vintage furniture &
lighting. it’s an enchanted place to spend the first &
last parts of the day.