And thanks to a new three-story steel moment frame in back,
the stilts are gone; in their place, a new unfinished basement
will someday be a dedicated yoga studio.
By adding less than 200 square feet of enclosed space
within the same footprint, Terpeluk has created spare, taut,
modern interiors in the rest of the 2,000-square-foot home,
which now seems even larger because several areas within it
serve multiple functions.
At the entry level is a garage; behind it are a laundry area
and the master suite. “Part of the master bedroom used to
be a deck that we enclosed,” Terpeluk says, so now it’s big
enough for more than just sleeping. The partially enclosed
bathroom takes up much of the new space, and the sculptural Tyrell & Laing bathtub in the window faces a view
seen through a Monterey cypress with a beautiful trunk and
branch structure in the foreground; the vanity nearby is also
freestanding so the owner can move around it easily. One
corner of the bedroom is reserved for yoga.
Terpeluk’s new minimalist light-filled stairway with
recessed space-saving handrails leads to the top floor, where
two guest rooms face the street.
On the top floor in the back, an open-plan living, dining
and kitchen space with fewer partition walls than before has
large sliding door and window openings with slender, barely
visible, recessed Vitrocsa frames that showcase the sky, adding
to a feeling of being afloat.
The nondescript 1950s brick-framed gas fireplace would
have been too costly to move, so Terpeluk opted to merely
strip and modernize it. New stained walnut cabinetry “
underlining” the fireplace doubles as a bench. It also conceals a
laundry chute and an audiovisual system. Window blinds and
a projection screen recessed in the ceiling can be rolled down
to darken the room and transform it into a home theater.
This flexible living space leads to a small deck and unimpeded views; the tempered glass guardrails for the deck are
transparent and quite thin, to minimize the material’s inherent bluish tint.
In lieu of fake veneers and plastic finishes, the new spaces
incorporate solid integrally colored materials as much as
possible: white plaster walls, Carrara marble counters, oak
floors and blackened steel shelving.
“These materials are a lot of my old companions that I
befriended and feel comfortable with,” Terpeluk says. “Oak
has a warm color, the grain is spectacular and it is a very hard
wood that is readily available and gets a fine patina over time.”
However, there’s one exception: the solid oak stairs meet
three-quarter-inch-thick engineered oak boards that won’t
warp over radiant heating. “We’ve tried to balance design
innovation with technical design discipline,” Terpeluk says.
“The rigor and complexity of modern design details that
make things better may not always be immediately obvious.
But when you touch natural materials, they, at least, are
instantly calming.” n
The master bedroom,
which used to have a
standard deck with heavy
redwood railings, right,
is now an airy light-filled
space that incorporates
the old deck, thanks to the
dark steel moment frame
that adds structural support, above; large-paned
windows look toward the
view through a beautifully
pruned Monterey cypress
tree. The open bathroom,
which has a Tyrell & Laing
bathtub and freestanding
vanity, can be curtained
off if desired.