San Francisco Soul

  • While San Francisco is home to an incredible mix of architectural styles, it’s the Victorian and Edwardian homes that spring to our minds when thinking of the city’s quintessential look. Preserving this iconic style through a modern upgrade is no easy feat – but we’re happy to say this renovation from local design firm VIF Studio makes it look simple. Balancing modern elements with the traditional character of the house, they’ve invigorated the design without losing the home’s original soul.

    DESIGN VIF Studio | PHOTOGRAPHY Cindy Loughridge

    Located in the Richmond District, the Edwardian home was in need of a renovation that would bring it into the 21st century without compromising its history. To achieve this, VIF Studio have reconfigured the home, restored initial features of the building and integrated new elements to gently modernise the design.

    As a central hub of the home, the kitchen was reconfigured to open up the space while creating additional storage (and providing places to hide away appliances like the washing machine and dryer). Custom Shaker cabinets and half-hex tiles characterise the light, bright space, while traditional soapstone counters have been left un-oiled to add a warm contrast to the modern white palette. The back sunroom was also restructured, becoming a master bathroom bathed in sunlight – although developing a double vanity to fit around a window called for some creative solutions! To this end, a custom wood vanity was designed to float below the window with pivot mirror medicine cabinets spaced in on either side, creating storage and symmetry.

    Striking a balance between historic and contemporary sensibilities, VIF Studio have restored and preserved original elements of the home while introducing new modern features, including the client’s own enviable collection of mid-century pieces. Classic moulding is continued throughout the home, contrasted with the modern lighting fixtures and furniture. Against a backdrop of simple, cream walls and rich timber floors, it sets the scene for the soul of the home to develop and grow for many more years to come.

    While the classic features of the home are retained through the white, grey and timber spaces, the client’s own collection of mid-century design pieces introduces modernity and a gallery-like aesthetic.

    Throughout the design, VIF Studio have found ways to achieve the balance of traditional and modern while preserving the soul of the house. Take the Roll and Hill chandelier of the living room, its’ iconic bubble shape contrasted against the soft, classic features like the moulding, traditional windows and high ceilings.


    Adding modern style with some distinctive design pieces.

    Wegner Papa Bear Chair | PP Møbler
    Beton Neolith | CDK Stone
    Bluff City designed by Jonah Takagi | Roll & Hill
    Around Coffee Tables | Luke Furniture
    Modo Chandelier by Jason Miller | Roll & Hill
    Roost Circa Bar Cart
    DSW Chair | Living Edge
    French Oak Grange Noir | Porter’s Paints

4 Responses

  1. Hi Carissa,

    It sure is! We recommend reaching out to VIF Studio directly to find out the exact name of the material specified.

    Kind regards,

    The est team

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