From 'Restoration' to Market - Page 2

Architect Jack Corey's 1954 Sierra Madre home shines following HabHouse renewal
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Custom birch cabinetry is featured throughout, and incorporated into an updated galley kitchen that follows the feel of the original. "The kitchen was in very bad condition," according to Larsson, "so what we did was document it...[and] it became a high-end organic kitchen that functions much better today."

The HabHouse team moved the laundry from the kitchen into the hallway in order to gain more functionality out of the kitchen, and then redesigned in the same style incorporating the same material that Corey originally used—birch. "The birch seamlessly goes with the organic [feel] of the kitchen, and birch panels cover the dishwasher and fridge," Larsson says.

"We also used period-correct tile and refurbished porcelain Japanese knobs that were often used in Straub & Hensman's work."

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A bedroom and bath are located near the entry; the other two bedrooms are in a separate wing of the house connected by a bath. Both baths feature completely restored original fixtures in pink and blue.

A detached two-car garage is at the rear, topped by a pergola that was missing when Larsson purchased the house. "The back pergola of the deck was completely gone, but I had seen it in the Los Angeles Times when they did a story and thought this was the coolest pergola. I asked Jack [Corey] if he had any drawings, and he didn't miss a beat…and I think we got it pretty close."

Vintage Schlage doorknobs were removed, and then returned to their rightful places after being restored and oiled after 70 years. Citing Finnish architect Juhani Pallasmaa when discussing the amount and level of detail that goes into a project like this, Larsson remarks, "The door handle is ‘the handshake of the house.' It needs to feel right; if you put in a contemporary Baldwin knob, it's not going to feel right."

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Larsson, who founded HabHouse in Los Angeles 11 years ago, comes from an art and architecture background. He moved to LA from Chicago and fell in love with the surrounding architecture.

"I think the Corey house," says Larsson, "was a very important house to not whitewash [as so many modern-day marketers do], or destroy or lose the types of details that were still there. Some [details] were neglected over the years, but most of it was still there."

For the Corey house sale, the home is co-listed with Joey Kiralla and Michelle St. Clair of Sotheby's International.

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