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Garage Remodel with a Potted Flair

Normally I stick with doing garden design.  Having Potted with Mary for these almost 10 years has afforded me a lot of opportunities to learn and develop that skill and I really love it.  But design is design and turning our garage into a pool house let me get to do all sorts of fun things, even interior design.  Here’s the story… (Note: All photos except a couple are by Bethany Nauert)

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Here’s the old view from my upstairs porch down to the garage.  I have a very old house (by California standards anyway) and these old houses usually had their garages in the back.  But all the backyard real estate it takes up really was a bummer so…

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…we decided to change it into a pool house.  Much nicer view, don’t you think?

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Here’s the view coming down the driveway toward the newly done garage.  We wanted the entry to be on the driveway so there was privacy for both abodes.  We created the driveway by sawing it up and filling the gaps with large river rocks and dymondia.  That’s a small White City Planter announcing the entrance.

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Here’s a little patio vignette showing a Fermob Bistro set with Chili chairs and a Willow Green table and our very own Orange Circle Pot.

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This is the front door.  Instead of framing in the old garage entry, we decided to create a window grid for interest and keep the old header.  It’s my feeble nod to Mondrian sans the primary colors.

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The view from the front door looking toward the amazing Palm Trees that line our street.  That’s Callistemon ‘pink fairy’ in the foreground underplanted with Chalk Fingers and Cosmos.

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And another view of the bistro set.

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On the other side of the little patio we put these fantastic Loll Lollygagger Chairs and one of our own white Midge Tables.

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A Susan Wong bowl with an echeveria on the Midge Table.

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A Bauer Bullet Planter that has just been re-issed by Bauer Pottery.

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Coming through the front door, we created a studio loft with the kitchen on the left, the living room on the right and the “bedroom” in the back.  Since there wasn’t room for a proper table, we created this peninsula as the center of the whole space which totals approximately 400 square feet.  That’s a Ric Heitzman signed print on the wall straight ahead.

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The kitchen is a mix of Ikea cabinets, both high gloss white and brown/black.  I chose the brown/black cabinets for the peninsula so that the space segued into the living area and made it feel less kitcheny.

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Here is the living room.   You’ll notice the ceiling is what appears to be the original garage roof but actually it’s another layer that we created with a blow torch and a wire brush.  High-density foam was put up into the old roof and then the new roof was nailed on top.  If we hadn’t come up with the solution for insulation, we would have had to lower the ceiling and that would have been a crime.  The floor is real sheet Linoleum in a flecked grey.  The “picture rail” is painted in Behr ‘underwater’.

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Here is my favorite thing in the kitchen.  I used old field tile in a similar Mondrian type pattern and made my own design.  I really like how it turned out.  Such a low-cost solution for something that gave a big impact (I think, anyway).  I used steel chain from Home Depot for the pot rack with hooks.  Works great.

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The tile I used on the back splash was what was left over from the main house’s remodel (the tile is actually crackled and really cool).   The wood shelving is from old barn siding purchased from E & K Vintage Wood in West LA.  I may have to seal it at some point as it likes to splinter.  But it’s soooooooo pretty.

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We even managed to squeeze in a laundry room.  The door were actually the old doors that opened to the pool and I used frosting spray normally used for Christmas decorating to block the glass.  The orange glow is a Tub Trug used as a laundry basket sitting inside.

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A Baby Head Planter looks pretty cool with an air plant on it (but doesn’t everything?)

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And these great little water globes have really come in handy for keeping houseplants watered where I don’t see them all the time.  Reindeer Moss makes a great filler too so you don’t see the nursery pot.

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Here’s one of the Vintage Baby Dolls we were lucky enough to score next to a Nantucket and Little Shirley Vase above the sink.  The sempervivums in the Nantucket really like that crowded space.

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The top of the peninsula.  Butcher block was a good, inexpensive choice.  That’s a Titia Estes low bowl in the foreground and a vintage Bauer pot on the left.

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Here’s another air plant on the kitchen shelf.  Isn’t the grain of the wood gorgeous?

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This was a bronze Owl Hook that we also sell along with a Skinny LaMinx tea towel.  We have got to get more of these.

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Tillandsias on the window ledge.  The little three-footed pot is also by Titia Estes.

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Here is looking back to the sleeping area.  We modified an Ikea stand with rollers so that the television could be watched in the living area or pulled out and turned around to watch in bed.

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The bookshelf behind the bed is very useful.  You may also find it amusing that all the furniture to the left is totally outdoor furniture but just goes to show you, “Indoor Style for Outdoor Living” (our motto) works both ways.

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Another Little Shirley Vase next to some Ronni Kappos Jewelry.

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View out the back window.  A bromeliad in vintage Bauer.  That’s a Wally Three by Woolly Pockets disguising the ugly back fence in the background.  I filled it with Boston Ferns, bromeliads and String of Pearls succulents.  It made the view out the back so much nicer.  I love Woolly Pockets.

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I used this fiberglass Spindle Table  for a bedside table with a Judy Jackson Planter to the left with a Sanseveria (a good plant choice for some where you can’t be consistent with water and lower light.)

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This Luxembourg side chair by Fermob worked great as a dressing chair.

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Here’s the hall that leads out to the pool and hot tub.  The bathroom is on the left and the right side has a really great wardrobe from Ikea with frosted doors (sorta like the laundry room).  We used an up/down accordion shade so you could let light in but still maintain privacy.

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Here’s the view with the door open.  The rug is also an outdoor rug from Apricot Home.  We have lots of different colors in the store.  Hopefully they will be making them in bigger sizes soon too.

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Here’s the wall to the left of the bathroom door that I used Trooks on for hanging clothes or towels or whatever.  They have proven very useful.

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And last but not least, the bathroom.  The little wooden shelf is made from the same barn wood.  The tile back splash is plain glass tile that we edged with black ceramic slivers we cut from 3′x6′ subway tiles.

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The space is small but works pretty well.   We opted for a shower instead of a tub and got a little space at the end to add shelves for a mini linen closet.  The shelves are made from old stairs saved from the original restoration of the main house.

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Here’s a close up of the wooden shelf/box.  I love to have little areas to create still lifes.  Those black and white postcards are from a collection I started in college because I didn’t have enough money to buy real art.  Put 20 of them on a wall and they really make a statement…and cost about $20.

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And finally in the shower inset I repeated the tile I had created in the kitchen…just for fun.  The rest of the tile was the least expensive white subway tile but then 2/3rds of the way up, I switched to the same plain glass tile of the backsplash separated by black liner.  It looks a lot more expensive than it was.

Hope you enjoyed this little tour.  Now I’m itching to do another one!

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8 Responses to “Garage Remodel with a Potted Flair”

  1. Pam/Digging says:

    I could move in and never leave except for a dip in the pool. I love all your details and am so glad you showed the intimate vignettes as well as the bigger picture.

  2. AMAZING! This is better than our house which we live in 24/7/365. So is it essentially a guest house or will you rent it out? (our neighbors run a very successful airbnb in their basement!). You’ve done an amazing job and I love all the details.

  3. Verokolt says:

    Wow Annette, it looks so beautiful. Excellent use of space and details.
    Questions:
    Do I get to sleep there?
    Can I hire you?

  4. annette says:

    Oh I can’t deal with an air bnb. It’s a guest house/maybe longer term rental. Who knows?

  5. Denise says:

    Your attention to detail is of course amazing, but I gotta say that solution to the ceiling is pure genius — as is the homage to Mondrian. That’s gotta be summer’s HQ right there.

  6. annette says:

    Thanks, Denise. So happy you liked it and so happy I got to spend time with you at Dustin’s the other day. xo

  7. Dayna says:

    Love this tour! So inspiring.

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