This lively young family purchased their Bay Area home with one big goal in mind: to expand their space by adding a second floor and a rooftop terrace. They had the plans from their architect, but as the decision-making process began, they felt stuck. Fortunately, they stumbled upon our feature in HGTV Magazine and called us up.
Before they knew it, their newly completed home had inspired press of its own — a feature in May’s edition of House Beautiful!
Sure, you can buy the magazine for yourself and enjoy this project from its glossy pages, but you know I can’t resist telling my own story. Grab a glass (a full one) and walk with me.
Before: Simple Spaces Bursting with Potential
This cottage-like SF Victorian had great bones and a decent layout, but there’s a reason this family came to us. They wanted to infuse their family home with joy, life, and personality, and we never say no to that.
We had initially planned to keep the layout of the main floor and reuse materials (like kitchen cabinets), but during the construction phase, a freak storm rolled across the Bay Area and destroyed everything. It was a major setback, but this family saw an opportunity to embrace a blank slate. They trusted us to craft a completely new vision for their entire home, and the results blew them away.
After: Joining the Most Colorful Houses in San Francisco
The home is situated in a neighborhood known for colorful houses (can you say “dream project?”) so in true JSD form, we didn’t hold back.
We went bold, painting the exterior in a gorgeous, bright, sunshine yellow. It’s not too in-your-face fluorescent, but it’s bright enough to make a statement and inspire smiles. Paired with this azure-blue staircase, it’s a two-tone Victorian sure to become famous. Let’s step inside…
Cozy & Collected SF Parlor
As soon as you enter the front door, you’ll be greeted by a classic SF parlor. It may only be a pass-through space, but we believe every inch of a home should be intentional…and that’s exactly what we did here. We crafted a beautiful built-in storage unit in this cheerful teal hue and installed sunset-inspired ombre wallpaper behind the shelves for a touch of the unexpected.
The statement-making red piano was the perfect piece to add a bright color to the room. (Red and teal are always a match.) Although no one in the family plays it, who knows, it might inspire the kids to pick up a new hobby or tempt guests to give it a try.
A few steps away, you’ll reach…
Original Victorian Living Room with a Punch
This living room is the heart of the home and the only original space remaining after the renovation. To keep this room warm, inviting, and family-friendly, we installed custom walnut cabinets and floating shelving that add natural warmth and elegance.
We brought this space to life with a colorful area rug in tones of fiery orange and fuschia with pops of sapphire and browns — all of which can be found in these cozy yet luxurious sofa and chairs. As always, a Samsung Frame TV is our go-to choice, allowing the family to display their favorite artwork when not enjoying a movie night.
Moving on from our warm yet bright living room, we step into a moodier space…
Ombre Dining Room
Simplicity. Elegance. Bold creativity. This room has it all. We want to make this ombre wallpaper the star feature of this room, which meant keeping the other elements fairly neutral. We selected a black dining table with brass legs, created a black-and-white gallery wall, and combined two sideboards to create a wall of wood with plenty of functionality.
With a bar setup (you know we couldn’t resist) and mood lighting, this space is now perfect for fun family meals and intimate dinner parties. Speaking of…
Colorful Kitchen in Yellow and Blue
This kitchen is where the magic happens! This space turned out incredible, thanks to the amazing mosaic backsplash created by Fireclay Tile. The color combination completes this space (and echoes the exterior) by providing a stunning focal point that begs for attention. The cerulean blue island, walnut stools and shelving, and blue-and-yellow mosaic tie everything together effortlessly.
To complement the backsplash, we painted the bottom cabinets a soft sage tone while keeping the uppers crisp, clean white. Brass hardware was the obvious choice for warmth and shine.
For casual dining in the kitchen (or the kids’ snack time), we added this cozy nook under the new stairs. We designed a custom banquette for built-in seating, which takes up less space than chairs would and has the added benefit of offering storage underneath.
To create a seamless connection with the rest of the kitchen, we added colorful chairs, painted the bench blue, and added a modern-meets-traditional style brass chandelier overhead. Playful yet sophisticated. Next, let’s wander upstairs…
Soft & Relaxing Principal Suite
In the principal bedroom, we created a soft and fun atmosphere with none other than…wallpaper! Yep. If you think we used a different wallpaper in every room, you aren’t wrong. This house features 6 very different wallpapers, each with its own unique character.
For this room, we selected a wallpaper that sets a whimsical tone while infusing a sense of calm and relaxation. It’s the perfect backdrop for a good night’s sleep or a great start to the morning. And the color doesn’t stop here…
We leaned into the green tile in this gorgeous ensuite bathroom to create a spa-like oasis. The bold and vibrant color sets the tone for the space, infusing a sense of energy and vibrancy that’s both invigorating and calming. And did you notice that stunning marble floor?! Not to be missed.
Raising the ceiling during construction created a sense of volume and openness rare in bathrooms of this size. Beautiful walnut cabinetry, teardrop sconces, and brass hardware beautifully balance the green tile for a sense of natural warmth.
Creative Kids’ Bedroom & Bathroom
Kids’ rooms are extra fun to design because it’s almost like there are no rules.
For their daughters, we mixed wild wallpaper with a neon rainbow light, and fun reading nook/fort. Meanwhile, we added a cozy rug in their favorite color, blue, and added natural softness with this bedside table in oak and woven light fixture. The perfect balance of fun yet restful.
While the elements of a bedroom are easy to change with their evolving taste, the bathroom is full of fixed elements that would be hard to swap out — tile, the vanity, etc. So, we made the overall feel slightly more mature while still keeping it fun and energizing.
We sourced timeless herringbone floors, designed this custom vanity in salmon (with tons of storage), paired it with custom wallpaper, and added contrast with this subtly patterned shower tile in blue. Beautiful.
Not to be missed, we also added a designated fitness area (for kids and adults) paying homage to the Bay Area skyline and a surprise reading nook. So fun! Who wouldn’t want to spend time in the spaces??
Finally, the last stop on our tour — still have your drink? — it’s time to make our way onto the crowning jewel of this entire renovation, the rooftop deck.
Vibrant SF Rooftop Terrace
The addition of this deck sparked the entire design process, and let me tell you, it was worth it. There is no better way to end your day than with stunning views of the city at sunset. This relaxing and comfortable space embodies everything our clients desire: creativity, innovation, and a deep appreciation for the beauty of the area.
How does the design magic happen?
A home this creative, cohesive, and personalized doesn’t happen by accident. It takes planning, time, and trust! In fact, one of the things that made this project so special was the level of trust our clients placed in us. They didn’t even ask to see all of the designs before installation! They wholeheartedly trusted the process and allowed us to do our job… while having some fun along the way. And the results? Well, they speak for themselves. ;)
If you’re ready for a home infused with color and inspired by your personality, let’s talk. You know where to find us.