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Home Style: A spotlight on two local designers showcased at ASID San Diego’s virtual home tour

Marcia Bryan Design Group and Renae Farley Designs are two of the local designers participating in ASID San Diego's upcoming virtual event

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When the San Diego Chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) was forced to cancel its “Kitchens, Baths and More” home tour last spring due to the pandemic, the organization pivoted to a virtual format, showcasing eight remodeled homes around San Diego County. The Zoom tour featured 360-degree videos shot by Mino Pro Media and a live chat with designers. Two of those innovative projects included the work of Marcia Bryan of Marcia Bryan Design Group and Renae Farley of Renae Farley Designs.

New Look for an “Old California” Style Home

Marcia Bryan wanted to become a veterinarian until a walking tour of Frank Lloyd Wright-designed homes in Chicago changed her mind. “I was inspired by his passion for design and the positive impact it has had on our lives,” she recalls. In a recent redo of a Spanish-style home nestled in the rolling hills of northern San Diego County, her own passion shines through. Her clients are busy professionals who love to fly. In fact, the property has an FAA certified runway, and one of their garages houses a small plane. Bryan was tasked with updating the home, built in the 1980s — the peach-colored tile, oak cabinets, and other dated elements needed to go. She and her team designed custom iron-and-glass doors at the entrance and took the once dark great room down to the studs, adding a coffered ceiling, beams and integrated lighting, and arched, energy efficient windows to take advantage of the views. She also designed niches with custom cabinetry for storage. In a nod to the home’s “Old California” exterior design, she added handmade Catalina tiles around the fireplace. A Samsung television called “The Frame” transforms into a work of art when the homeowners aren’t watching programs.

Marcia Bryan added a quartzite-topped island in the kitchen for dining and entertaining and a handsome wet bar in the great room. Cabinetry is alder wood
Marcia Bryan added a quartzite-topped island in the kitchen for dining and entertaining and a handsome wet bar in the great room. Cabinetry is alder wood

Bryan changed the layout of the kitchen, adding an island for dining and entertaining. Now guests can be part of the action when the couple prepares meals for frequent dinner parties. Bryan installed custom alder cabinetry with raised panel detail and iron hardware. Counters are in honed Taj Mahal quartzite with a backsplash of hand-painted terra cotta tiles. A Venetian plaster hood tops the Wolf range. The design team added a new arched window over a hammered copper sink, and in the adjacent dining room, new LaCantina doors open onto a backyard patio. “We were so happy,” says Bryan of the finished project. “We gave them a home that functions for them.” 619.252.4770, bryandesigngroup.com

Clean and Contemporary

When Renae Farley walked into a house overlooking the La Costa golf course, she bought it on the spot. “It had great bones,” she recalls. Although the house was 26 years old with dated cabinets, flooring, and fixtures, Farley knew she could make it her dream home. She envisioned a contemporary open space perfect for entertaining, with a gallery-like feeling. So the walls, literally, came tumbling down. Farley reconfigured the floorplan, knocking down walls between the kitchen and family room, and her contractor installed major support beams.

Farley’s home has the look of an art gallery with its white walls, porcelain tile floors, and open floor plan
Renae Farley’s home has the look of an art gallery with its white walls, porcelain tile floors, and open floor plan

Farley loves to cook and entertain, but she wanted to keep dirty dishes out of sight. She converted part of the original dining room into a butler’s pantry, installing wall-to-wall glass cabinets and an extra dishwasher and sink for clean-ups. That meant jackhammering the concrete floor across the whole width of the house in order to connect the plumbing. The sleek kitchen has walnut cabinets with frosted glass doors, a stainless-steel oven and warming drawer, microwave, wine cooler, and coffee bar. Farley chose white quartz for the countertops, topped the island in white laminate, and covered most of the downstairs floor in 24-inch white porcelain tiles.

Farley closed off a window in the kitchen to install a row of sleek cabinets and appliances
Farley closed off a window in the kitchen to install a row of sleek cabinets and appliances

Farley also updated the fireplace in the adjacent living area with porcelain tile and removed the hearth for a fresh, modern feel. She designed the chic sectional and other furniture herself. The original floorplan didn’t take advantage of green golf course views, so Farley replaced the existing sliding glass door and window in the living room with a LaCantina bifold door to bring the outdoors in. The poured concrete patio lined with river rock is centered with a fire table and comfortable chairs where guests gather for cocktails and conversation, or for dinner at a concrete-topped table that is lit from beneath.

Renae Farley removed a wall between the kitchen and living area to open up the space. She updated the fireplace with porcelain tile and designed the furniture herself
Farley removed a wall between the kitchen and living area to open up the space. She updated the fireplace with porcelain tile and designed the furniture herself

In the downstairs master suite, Farley removed a linen closet to make room for a sit-down vanity in the bathroom, which also features a walk-in shower and a freestanding soaking tub. A band of mother-of-pearl tiles gives the effect of a waterfall flowing into the tub, and a glittering chandelier adds a bit of bling. The glamorous powder room has a floating underlit quartz countertop with a backsplash of white marble mosaic. “I love how it all turned out,” says Farley, who completed the project in just five months. “Everyone who enters the house is amazed and in awe of what we accomplished.” 760.931.9151, renaefarley.com

Image Credits Renae Farley Designs: Photos courtesy of Brady Architectual Photography, All other photography by Mino Pro Media

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