A Contemporary Corona del Mar Home with a Bohemian Vibe


Contemporary Neutral Dining Room with Hand-Printed Dining Chairs

Anchoring the great room’s dining area is a built-in banquette with cushions in a Hodsoll McKenzie fabric. Above the oak Madison dining table, from Bliss Home & Design, is an Aerin chandelier from Linden Rose & Co. A hand-blocked print by Walter G covers the dining chairs.

Contemporary White Great Room with Whitewashed Brick

Reclaimed wood and whitewashed brick appear throughout a Corona del Mar house with interiors designed by Brooke Wagner. In the great room, custom chairs wear a Raoul Textiles pattern. Barclay Butera Home executed the upholstery on the chairs and the custom sofa. A carpet from J.D. Staron tops floors from Warren Christopher Flooring. Draperies in a C&C Milano fabric grace the windows.

Contemporary Neutral Entry with Rustic Wood Lattice Door

To add a more complex dimension to the spaces, Wagner brought in rich yet understated textures and patterns, and she used wood reclaimed from barns for shelving, window casings, ceilings and beams.

Contemporary White Kitchen with Blue Barstools

A trio of pendants from Linden Rose & Co. bring a dash of bohemian glamour to the kitchen. Barstools in a Peter Dunham Textiles fabric draw up to an island with a top by Epic Ceramic & Stone. The Rohl faucet is from Pirch.

Contemporary White Kitchen Counter with Bronze Accents

Pulls by Top Knobs accent the kitchen’s sleek white cabinets by GNA Cabinet. Open shelving provides display space for ceramics and artwork. A shade in Walter G’s Maya Slate linen crowns the window from Associated Building Supply.

Contemporary White Kitchen Island with Farmhouse Sink

Architect Christopher Brandon created a kitchen open to the great room that is as stylish as it is functional. The farmhouse-style Rohl kitchen sink is from Pirch; the Sub-Zero refrigerator and Miele dishwasher are both from Renwes Sales.

Contemporary White Bathroom with Black Tile Backsplash

Builder Andrew Patterson ensured that the home’s artful mix of finishes, including tiles from Famosa on the master bathroom’s backsplash and the floor, was flawlessly executed. Ralph Lauren Home hurricane sconces flank a pair of custom mirrors. The Rohl faucets are from Pirch.

Contemporary Neutral Bedroom with Reclaimed Wood Tiles

Reclaimed wood tiles from Famosa, set in a herringbone pattern, provide a rustic-chic backdrop for the master bedroom’s custom bed, which is upholstered in fabric from C&C Milano. Draperies in Triangulated by Christopher Farr Cloth frame doors by Generations Finish Carpentry.

It’s a classic story. A woman falls for the charming beachside hamlet of Corona del Mar after living for several years in Newport Beach. She finds the perfect home and then sets out to feather her nest, turning to designer Brooke Wagner for the job. Here, the story takes a quintessentially 21st-century turn. To guide the designer, the owner turned to Instagram. “I remember her showing us pictures of homes with a bohemian vibe,” Wagner says, “lots of white, and textures accented by saturated textiles, vintage mixed with new.”

Wagner settled on a subtle base palette with an emphasis on whites and grays, giving her client the serene backdrop she craved and harmonizing with the home’s clean modern lines, high ceilings and wide-open layout, the work of architect Christopher Brandon. “It was all about removing as many walls as we could in the primary living spaces, with a lot windows to bring light into the house,” he explains. “We tried to create something simple, with two strong gables and symmetry off the master bedroom, to make a powerful statement. You can’t have too many fussy details.”

To add a more complex dimension to the spaces, Wagner brought in rich yet understated textures and patterns, and she used wood reclaimed from barns for shelving, window casings, ceilings and beams. Of course, getting those beams flush with the clean, high-gloss wainscoting took some finagling, says builder Andrew Patterson, adding, “To put those rustic wood beams next to that tongue-and-groove ceiling and get it super-crisp, we had to fill every single groove in with painter’s tape.”

More rustic wood pops up in the master bedroom, where the material creates a stunning accent wall. “I always imagined having something herringbone in my house,” says the owner, whose trip to Famosa to look at surfaces proved inspiring. “The salesperson there told me, ‘You have to see this.’ ” The ‘this’ in question was weathered barnwood in tile-size shapes. “We were dying to use it somewhere,” Wagner says, “and realized it would be perfect in the bedroom wall.”

Elsewhere, shiny dark gray tiles line the walls in the master bathroom, and much of the kitchen’s backsplash is composed of white-painted brick. The textures aren’t just a visual treat, though. In every space, the client wanted to make sure that everything felt as great as it looked. “She would come into our office, and we’d put a bunch of rugs on the floor, and she would take her shoes off and walk on them,” Wagner says. In the end, coverings from patchwork cowhide to wool sisals to plush Moroccan-inspired designs grace the floors.

To achieve an easy, bohemian vibe, the owner and designer played with patterns. While browsing at Raoul Textiles showroom in Santa Barbara, for example, Wagner spotted a linen fabric in a distinctive West African print and snapped some photos. “I sent them to her, and we were sold,” she says. The fabric made it onto a pair of chairs in the living room, next to a leather-swathed sofa. For the bathroom floors, Wagner also opted for pattern, choosing a simple dark gray arabesque tile for a powder room, an aqua-and-white hexagonal look in the guest bath and hand-painted terra-cotta tiles in a bold charcoal-and-white diamond pattern for the master bathroom. To keep the bold mix of patterns from being too overpowering, Wagner primarily chose them in shades of blues and grays with the occasional infusion of rose hues and brass tones.

Given her prime location, Wagner’s client plays host to plenty of friends and family, so it was essential that the great room and kitchen spaces function together as a flexible entertaining space. In the kitchen, there’s a breakfast spot with a built-in coffee station, for example, and a mini-bar area with a wine fridge. For the dining space, Wagner and company designed an expansive banquette. “It maximizes the space, and it’s a little more casual,” the homeowner says. “I knew that I would have that style of dinner party, rather than a formal dinner party.” And if she and her guests want to sip cocktails while enjoying the ocean view, they can head up to the spacious rooftop deck, which is outfitted with comfortable seating and a hot tub. “Part of it’s open, and then you have this cozy protected side,” Brandon says. “So you can be out there and entertain or be a little more private.”

Now settled by the beach, Wagner’s client couldn’t be happier. “It’s a tight-knit community,” she says. “There are great little mom-and-pop shops, everyone is so friendly, and you can walk everywhere.” But the pull of her new digs is equally as strong: “I’m a working professional, and I travel a lot, so I’m not home often,” she says. “But when I am, I don’t want to be anywhere else.”

—Kimberly Olson