How A Seattle Classic Embraces Modern Living


foyer with glossy black walls,...

The foyer features walls lacquered in a glossy black hue from Fine Paints of Europe and floors adorned with a marble mosaic from Artistic Tile. A Soo Hong abstract artwork hangs over a Villa & House console, Arteriors mercury glass lamp and a custom leather fringe ottoman.

lounge with sectional, floor covering,...

The lowest level of this Seattle Craftsman serves as the ultimate lounge with walls cloaked in Benjamin Moore’s Blue Note. A Bernhardt sectional, Loloi Rugs floor covering, CB2 side table and an Essentials for Living coffee table complete the space. The skull artworks are by Reed Weily.

living room with white sofa,...

In restrained hues of black and white, the living room features a Kravet sofa, custom leather-and-steel coffee table and an RH rug. Interior Define chairs and Lee Jofa ottomans add notes of mossy green.

kitchen with marble topped island,...

Family meals take place at the kitchen’s expansive Statuario marble-topped island, surrounded by Four Hands stools. Brass pendants by The Urban Electric Co. illuminate cabinetry by Acorn Custom Cabinetry.

dining room with dramatic green...

Alligator-embossed Thibaut wallpaper envelops the formal dining room, which is further layered with drapes made of Threads velvet and a Tufenkian rug. Arhaus chairs surround an RH table, which complements the Kelly Wearstler for Visual Comfort chandelier. The artwork, Spiracle, is by Soo Hong.

bedroom with views of the...

Reflecting Seattle’s cloudy horizon, soft hues fill the primary bedroom, from the Innovations wallpaper and hide rug to the chenille bench with bolsters in a Clarke & Clarke fabric. An Arteriors fixture catches the light.

bedroom entry with ombre wallpaper...

A small vestibule centered around a Joe Nye for Visual Comfort fixture marks the bedroom entry. The dark gray ceiling, painted in Benjamin Moore’s Kendall Charcoal, blends into the ombre Emma Hayes wallpaper.

deck with neutral outdoor chairs,...

Enjoying panoramic skyline vistas, the deck was envisioned as an extension of the interior living areas. The Jensen Outdoor table, chairs and lounge chairs are made with sustainable Bolivian ipe wood and Sunbrella fabric. A Tropitone steel-framed sectional faces the view.

Much is required from today’s family abode. It needs room for work and play; for early morning chaos and weekend cocktails; for moments of serene solitude and communal celebration. One young Seattle family dreamed of finding such flexibility in their grand old Craftsman residence with views of the city skyline.

First built in 1911, the four-story structure endured numerous renovations over the decades, each adding its own—sometimes conflicting—idea of what family living should be, creating a muddled layout. The current owners set out to redefine home life on their own terms. “This house definitely provided more room for our three boys,” the wife says. “But we needed individual areas, as well as gathering points where we could all be together.” The husband adds, “We also wanted to keep some of the original home’s traditional nature.” 

Taking the interior down to the studs, designer Kristi Street and architect Ryan Rhodes designated each floor for different facets of family life. They retained the main level as the center for living and entertaining and reserved the second for individual bedrooms. The boys commandeered the entire attic as an imaginative playroom, while the basement “became a grown-up entertaining space, with a big theater room and large wine cellar,” Street says. “Our goal was to create inviting spaces for everyone.”

Form following function, each floor features a distinct approach to style with the first reviving the abode’s graceful past. “Houses built back then were a lot more compartmentalized than how we live now,” notes Rhodes, who worked with project manager Joe Duzan. “We nodded to that, going back to more of a classic Seattle four-square layout with well-defined spaces.” The new floor plan carves out a dedicated formal dining room and generous foyer that graciously welcomes guests—a sense of occasion underscored by new crown molding and wall panels. 

Coffered ceilings and door and window trim also bring architectural definition to the central open kitchen and living room, so “they don’t get all washed out as one space,” Rhodes adds. Seamlessly connected to the living area through a folding glass wall, the new outdoor deck exudes a cabin-like atmosphere with wood-paneled vaulted ceilings and a reclaimed-brick fireplace. When the gas lanterns flicker with their warm light, “it feels so cozy and special out there, especially in the fall,” Street notes.

Materials further define each floor’s character. Street’s restrained black, white and evergreen palette complement the main level’s timeless quality. Yet the controlled color scheme proves far from simple, as “I liked playing with the different feelings that can be evoked through texture, pattern and material,” she explains. See the foyer’s dramatic black-and-white marble tile and obsidian lacquer on the walls and ceiling, the dining room’s alligator-patterned green wallpaper, and the kitchen’s vast slabs of gray-veined Statuario marble. Leather, velvet and tweed upholstery add tactile richness, like the tête-à-tête settee Street designed to face both the living area and deck.

Bolder hues distinguish the kid and adult zones. In the luminous attic playroom, Street adorned the white walls with pops of color through textiles and artwork that complement the children’s toy collection, including their beloved Pac-Man arcade game. In contrast, she enveloped the basement lounge “in a very moody blue, so the whole space feels seamless when you walk in,” the designer notes. A smoky gray sectional, brass-accented lighting and eclectic artworks complete the area’s clubroom ambience. 

The second floor is dedicated to rest and refuge, with the parents’ suite serving as a place of serenity. “I wanted that moment when they open the doors to be incredible,” the designer says. She turned the hallway vestibule leading to their bedroom into a dramatic entry, the dark charcoal ceiling dissolving into a gray ombre wallcovering. More layers of soft, soothing grays envelope the bedroom, from the cowhide rug to the textured wallpaper, which echo the space’s cinematic water views on cloudy days. The bathroom, however, gleams pure luminous white with walls wrapped in marble. 

Such personal, purpose-driven design felt complete when the family moved in. There are days filled to the brim, from the boys’ baseball victory parties to New Year soirees watching the city’s fireworks ignite across the horizon from their cozy deck. But, according to the owners, some of the best days aren’t tied to celebration. The wife appreciates the dwelling when “it’s just a calm day, and everyone is home, having dinner and being together,” she says. For this family, that’s when the quiet magic happens.