It is happening! This hillside home in Santa Barbara is under construction, transforming a dark and dull house into a bright modern home that is designed to take advantage of the views to the ocean and the city below. See here for the future look
The first steps are the demolition of the back of the house and the start of grading, lots of noise, dust and dirt at this point and a bit hard for the owners to see how it will all come together. But as the saying goes, you have to go backwards first before we can go forwards. The contractor and the subcontractors will be working to remove a portion of the concrete slab to make room for the grading equipment to lay the soil back and start the foundations for the lower level.
The expectation is that the construction will take 10 to 11 months to complete, it should take about a month to complete the grading and demolition. Once this is done the work will start on the foundations and various water proofing required for the lower level that is partially buried in the hillside. Then finally the walls can start to be built and this home will start to take its shape.
Check back soon for updates on the construction of this project!
Our modern beach shack project located here on the Santa Barbara Mesa has been progressing well. After a brief pause while we worked with the owner to include additional changes to the kitchen and the rest of the house the project is coming to a close.
Here is the street elevation as the stain was going on the cedar siding. You can see the thin windows wrapping around the upper floor bringing light in from all sides and the mitered glass corner window in the lower right providing views out into the garden.
Below is the current view of the rear of the addition. Here you can see the master suite on the upper floor with the deck providing views out to the ocean. On the ground level is the garage which can be used for a number of uses, we included big sliding glass doors on the back wall to help connect this space to the back yard
Here is the view from the living room, the view doesn’t look like much right now but the landscape plan includes plans for a new fence and plenty of planting
This is the new stair leading to the master suite upstairs. We designed this with a thin steel stringer and open treads to try and bring as much light thru the space as possible. To the left you can see the beginning of the installation of the pivoting glass front door.
The master bath tub sits within what we call a wet area meaning that the shower is also within this space. The shower is not enclosed in glass which helps make the space feel larger. There is also the big bonus of being able to see the ocean from the shower.
We are very excited to see this project coming to completion for the owners, hopefully soon they will be moving in and getting a feel for their new home!
We’ve been visiting the construction site of our Santa Barbara Mesa Beach House design and wanted to share a few photos of the progress.
Below you can see the stages of construction that have happened over the course of a few months.
beach house foundation and existing house
Above you can see the portion of the existing house that remains and the formwork for the foundations of the addition. The addition is happening mainly in the front yard so access hasn’t been a problem.
beach house foundation
After the foundation and slab were poured and cured the framers start their work on the ground floor. Below you can see the corner window element and the how all the structure works together to achieve this.
beach house corner window
The next time we visited they had the second floor framing underway and the start of the roof framing. The project seems like it goes at warp speed during this phase and suddenly the form of the house is apparent.
beach house second floor view
We always knew that there would be a ocean view but you never really know until you get up there. In this case what a great surprise to find beautiful views looking out toward the channel islands from the master bedroom.
Here is the current view of the project from the street, quite a change for this little house. Check back in for more photos soon!
Our Mesa beach shack project is underway!
Demolition started and the excavator made quick work of the old garage. Next the contractor will be laying out the new foundation and the real work begins. We are excited to see this house come together over the next months, follow us on facebook and instagram to see more photos as it progresses.
View From Street
The Vaquero Residence is coming together very nicely, this project is located in the foothills of Santa Barbara. We stopped by for a visit and the walls are framed and sheathed with plywood and the roof is also framed and waiting for waterproofing. It’s starting to look more and more like the rendering we did for the project which will provide new bedrooms, a full bathroom all connected by a open room the kids can call their own. We imagine this room will transform over time, starting as a play room then becoming the kids own living room. This room will have a sliding glass door leading out to a private patio, designed based on our outdoor living principles. The client is very excited to see the progress of their addition and remodel, their three little girls have already picked out their new bedrooms and are ready to move in. We are excited to see the transformation and especially excited to see the client’s reaction. The next steps will be wrapping the exterior with water proofing then installing the windows and sliding glass doors. Before long the addition will be “dried in” as they say in the construction world which means that even if it does rain all the wood and other elements will be protected. See our tips for making the most out of your addition and remodel here. Take a look thru the photos below and check in for future updates!
The rendering we did for the project, quite a transformation for this house
A portion of the addition
Here you can see the form really taking shape and the structure still clearly defined. Those openings just below the roof will become high windows called clerestory windows which will let in beautiful light but will be shaded by the eaves.
A shot of the post and framing around the future clerestory windows with a great view of the sky and palm tree in the front yard. To the right you can see a bit of the future casement window, the beams will be exposed and stained to emphasize the materiality of the structure.
A shot of the exterior detail where the clerestory meets the sliding glass door below. This beam will also be exposed and stained, the contractor did a good job of attaching the beam to a knife plate which hides the steel connection inside the beam. A big thanks to Ashley & Vance Engineering for working with us to bring the structure to life like we imagined it. The combination of dozens of seemingly unimportant details like these is what will set this project apart from the typical house in the area. It doesn’t take much more money or time to build like this, it just takes some desire and passion to create the design and of course great clients who want to live in a house that is considered and unique.
The exposed corner post and clerestory windows for great light
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Our Vaquero Residence is underway! The building permit was issued, the builder was selected and work has begun. This project is located in Santa Barbara and is a modest addition and remodel to a single story home. We are excited to see the transformation take place and the client of course can’t wait to have it completed. We will be checking in regularly to help bring this project to a successful completion.
The before shot
Completed addition and remodel
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We presented our Sierra Madre project to the Santa Barbara County Board of Architectural Review last week for the first time and they were very pleased with the project!
View from back yard
The Santa Barbara County Board of Architectural Review is tasked with ensuring the design of homes in the County area meet the criteria of good design and that the proposed design is appropriate for the neighborhood and site. They have a difficult job and must balance the desires of the property owner with what is best for the site and what is allowable by the zoning ordinance. Often they are forced to turn away projects that are too big or too tall for the neighborhood and instruct the property owner to find an alternate approach. Typically in Santa Barbara the design review process is a 3 step process; conceptual then preliminary and final review. A project may sail thru these steps if the design is of high quality and the drawings have the information and detail required. We also use colored perspective images like the one above and models to present our ideas. Not only are these useful for the design process and for client communication but the design board really appreciates the extra effort. They can look at these and immediately understand what we are trying to do.
The design board members liked the sensitive approach of placing the addition on the back of the house and using the existing topography to integrate the lower story into the site. They appreciated the low impact on the neighborhood especially that the design does not effect anyones views or privacy. They liked the glass wall opening up to the view and how we are providing shade for the glass without interrupting the view. They asked us to return for preliminary review where we will be able to present more developed drawings, details and material choices. We will be working with our structural engineer to dial in the sizes and location of structural elements. We will also lean heavily on door and window experts to find the best layout for the glass wall, multi-sliders, folding or some combination? Working closely with talented people helps us achieve the best project possible.
Model and rendering
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A quick shot of what is on the desk today.
We are preparing for a client meeting for our Sierra Madre Residence which is an addition and remodel to a home in the foothills of Santa Barbara. We have a study model, drawings and a couple of renderings to review some tweaks to the roof form and interior layout. We think they are going to love the changes! We use study model to communicate the overall form of the house as well as how the house interacts with the topography. The drawings are best for communicating the layout and dimensions of the house while the renderings really express the materiality and quality of light and shadow.
We are making solid design progress in our Sierra Madre residence which is an addition and remodel set in the foothills of Santa Barbara. We have made a few tweaks to improve the floor plan for the master bedroom and bath which also makes for a better experience in the great room. As you can see we are fully in the computer now, adding detail to the model like materials, furnishing and lighting fixtures. We go back and forth between the plan views and 3d views like these to look for opportunities to improve the design. The computer model lets us get into the finer layers of design earlier in the process, you couldn’t do this with a 2 dimensional CAD program.
These are raw views from the model so you are seeing what we see while we work. In this interior view we are looking out from the kitchen at how the materials are working together, how much the new roof floats over the wall on the right, how do the pendant lighting fixtures look at these levels… plenty of decisions to make
View of Addition from Garden
In this view we are experimenting with how the lowest level appears and how the changes to the master bedroom addition look with the roof flying over it.
We put this much energy into all of our projects to ensure we are producing unique and site specific design.
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Doing the work to bring this home to life…
A view behind the scenes of the documentation process of our Santa Barbara Mesa Modern Beach Shack project. The project is an addition of a master bedroom and bath to the second floor, a new living room and entry and a dining room and kitchen remodel, This is where we carefully craft the details that make our projects unique and special. We filter thru the thousands of choices and options on behalf of the client to specify the materials, finishes and fixtures for the project. The doors, windows, sinks, faucets, lighting etc. are all determined, noted and detailed within the drawings. This allows the contractor to accurately price the work and gives the client confidence that the budget will stay as quoted and the project stays on schedule.