San Francisco’s Hidden Show House

From Margaret Everton on January 3, 2011 in San Francisco

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In the heart of an almost unknown Bay Area neighborhood exists a show house of one of the world’s most known magazines: Elle Décor. With many elements and styles coming together to create the house, it physically embodies the magazine’s décor prerogative—to exhibit tradition with a twist.

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The magazine selected the home and gave the designers a back-story for cohesive momentum: the space was to be designed for an imaginary cultured, green, well-traveled, affluent fifth-generation San Francisco family looking to provide a domestic magnet for family and friend leisure getaways.

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And tradition with a twist is certainly is. From midcentury rocking chairs nabbed from the Alameda Flea Market, to a black-framed image by the American photographer Harry Callahan, this house pulls together a plethora of detail to create one cohesive look.

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Developed by Duncan McDuffie, this St. Francis Wood house ideologically embodies the Garden City movement of the early 20th century.

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Dealing with “a million different people, a house that’s under construction lighting design, budgeting constraints and not having a client,” as designers Jay Jeffers describes it, might prove certain limitations—but this house has come together with the modern style and grace that only Elle Décor embodies.

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