La Playa, San Francisco

I recently helped my sister move to San Francisco.

In that process, we were able to really start with a blank slate in terms of the interior space she was hoping to create.  There was a lot of new furniture to buy, many things to move, and new spaces to consider — spaces we did not have the measurements for before we got to California.  This was a fun process for me… taking an ugly duckling of an 80’s condo and turning it into someplace relaxing and homey for my sister.  This is a two-bedroom, two-bath unit on the ground floor of a complex directly across from Ocean Beach on San Francisco’s west side.

So here are some before and after photos I snapped.  Click on them for a bigger view.  Perhaps someday I’ll get better at lighting to show things off, but we’ll go with this for now!

The main living area consists of a galley kitchen, opening into a long dining room/living room area.  French door leads to small exterior patio.  Windows open to complex courtyard.  The ocean is visible past courtyard.  We ended up getting quite a few fun things for this space.
The candelabra was a fun find at an antique store before we left (we also picked up some fantastic vintage martini glasses!).  The overhead light is bad, but nothing we can do about that right now.  The narrow carved wood chair was passed along from a friend.  She wanted a place to display and store her dishes, as there is limited space in the kitchen, so we got the Vallvik bookcase from IKEA to put behind the table.  Couch, chair and coffee table were owned prior to move.  We picked up the funky Andy Warhol rug off Craigslist, as well as the tufted cranberry leather storage cubes.  The media stand and white metal tray are from IKEA.  The gold bamboo vase is from Cost Plus World Market and the sticks were moved.  The 3 narrow IKEA Billy bookcases on the  moved with us.  The dark ladder-back chairs were found on Craigslist as part of a different dining set.  We framed up some Paris posters for the walls.  It is against regulations to actually burn a fire in the fireplace (go figure), so we opted for an iron fireplace candelabra with ivory pillar candles.

Before: Dining/Living Room                         After: Dining/Living Room

Before: Living/Dining Room                         After: Living/Dining Room

After: Dining area                         After: Dining area

The guest room has to serve many purposes.  Closet on the left, door entry hallway on the right.  Room also has a door on that same wall to the guest/main bathroom.  Sleeper sofa, light and small shelves (actually former tops to the Billy bookcases in the living room) all moved with us.  The space is also used for her treadmill and to keep her bikes, as there is no garage space.

Before: Guest Room                         After: Guest Room

The theme in the guest bath  is red/white/black with a shower curtain depicting sketches of London, Paris and New York.  In the packing process, I unearthed some silver figures of London’s Big Ben, the Eiffel Tower and the Empire State Building (from Target, I think).  The funky long, skinny shelf over the toilet proved a perfect spot for these.  Framed photo of the Eiffel Tower in winter.  Towels are from Restoration Hardware, though they no longer carry the red.

After: Main bathroom

We went with a purple and silver theme in here with the dark espresso wood accents.  Hallway in master leads to main hall, as well as master bath and closet.  Slider opens to small exterior patio.  Lamp & window sheer in “before” photo were left by previous occupant.  The bed and nightstand are an espresso color and was purchased from IKEA.  Bedding and window coverings from Bed Bath & Beyond.  Large Paris canvas from IKEA.  Beside lamp found at Tuesday Morning.  Print over the bed is a vintage map of Paris.  Bird chair and feather lamp from Pier One.  Afghan made by Grandma.  This is my favorite corner of her space.  We had intended to purchase a different chair, but when we saw this one, we knew we had to “put a bird on it” and get this one!
She needed a space for her “home office”, so we did our best, and put it in the bedroom.  The desk moved with us.  The gray bamboo vase came from Cost Plus World Market and the sticks inside came with us from IKEA.  The sketch over the desk is from a friend.  Also, we kept the color theme going for the master bath, with Orchid and Espresso towels from Restoration Hardware.

Before: Master                         After: Master

Before: Master                         After: Master

After: Master                         Reading spot


About Caroline

Aspiring to inspire through organization and revitalization of spaces.

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