‘Found’ Treasures Inspire Design

Although the clients’ tastes evolved over the course of this bathroom and kitchen transformation, the designer was able to create spaces that are classic and elegant while also being warm and livable.

authors Kim Berndtson | August 13, 2020

Scottsdale, AZ — When Amy Klosterman first met with her clients about the renovation of their home in Scottsdale, AZ, their initial discussions focused around a relatively dark and ornate traditional style home with Moroccan influences that would incorporate a few ‘found’ treasures they had already purchased, including a pair of vintage doors, a carved entry façade and a triple arch structure. However, over the course of the 18-month project – which included a complete gut and remodel with a raising of the roof and additions to expand the square footage completed in collaboration with JCM Development – their tastes evolved and became more simplified.

A crystal and gold chandelier adds glamour and ties the tub area to the vanity area.
Photos: Laura Moss Photography

“One of the challenges, which ended up being a positive thing in my opinion, was that their overall style changed over time,” says Klosterman, Allied ASID and principal of AB Design Elements, in Scottsdale, AZ. “It created shifts in products and design details along the way that resulted in a lighter, cleaner and more elegant traditional style home with more subtle accents of Moroccan shapes.

“My client and I now joke about how I brought her over from the dark side, guiding her toward a lighter palette and an edited version of the ornate details,” she continues. “Sometimes providing sketches and inspiration photos, and even taking a client to past projects to show them a proposed concept, is very effective…and it helped a lot with these clients. They were very open minded and trusting, and in the end, we were able to create a classic, elegant space that is also warm and livable!”

Making an entrance

Although the design evolved throughout the renovation, Klosterman did incorporate two of the three antique pieces that served as inspiration for the project, including the vintage doors that provide an impressive entry into the master bathroom.

“Having ‘found’ pieces in an interior space that are unique and artful adds so much character to a space,” she says, adding that while the triple arch structure didn’t survive the design process, the carved façade now frames the entry to the wine room.

After passing through the doors, attention quickly settles on the focal point, a hand-painted Victoria + Albert freestanding tub.

“We’re all used to seeing pattern on a tub wall with dimensional tile, wallpaper or even paint,” she says. “But my client wanted something different, so we shifted that thought process and commissioned a local artist (Anna Sadler, Surface Refinements) to incorporate a custom pattern onto the actual tub. It’s not something that is typically seen, which my client loves.”

Antique pewter
metallic colored custom cabinetry is adorned with crystal carved gold hardware. A few upper cabinets also feature seeded glass doors accented with mullions that complement the nearly floor-to-ceiling leaded glass windows.

While the tub undeniably steals the show, Klosterman maintained interest in the wall, encrusting it with mica to add texture and shimmer. A thin linear grazer light – just 1.35″x1″ – from Pure Edge Lighting runs subtly along the ceiling to illuminate the mica finish, heightening its sparkle.

A crystal and matte gold chandelier from Fine Arts Lamps adds glamour and ties the tub area into the vanity area. The latter features gold toned, dimensional backsplash tile from Tabarka Studio and custom cabinetry – color-matched to a library sample in an antique metallic pewter – from F1 Cabinetry. Adorned with crystal carved gold hardware from Edgar Berebi, a few upper cabinets also feature seeded glass doors accented with mullions that complement the nearly floor-to-ceiling leaded glass windows that flank the ThermaSol steam shower located behind the tub wall.

“This bathroom offers my clients a place of sanctuary, which has become increasingly important in the time we’re in now, where self-nurturing and the beauty of home are imperative,” she says.

Nothing ordinary

In the kitchen, a lighter palette and cleaner design style are represented by a foundation of ivory perimeter cabinetry painted in a custom glazed version of Sherwin Williams’ Moderate White contrasted against a darker taupe island painted in a custom glazed version of Sherwin Williams’ Virtual Taupe, all fabricated by F1 Cabinetry.

“At first glance, this might appear to simply be a white kitchen with a dark island,” she notes. “However, the ivory and taupe colors give it so much more complexity than bright white, which doesn’t readily lend itself to adding layers and warmth.”

To give the cabinetry a furniture-style flair, the client requested hutch-style upper cabinets that sit atop Taj Mahal quartzite countertops.

The sink window overlooks the outdoor kitchen – which also includes stylized cabinetry and a metallic backsplash – and the golf course beyond.

“Initially I was concerned about reduced countertop space, but she does have an expansive island so we felt we could make it work,” she says, noting her client also enjoys the additional workspace provided by the pull-out shelf beneath the built-in Miele coffee maker. “The hutch-style cabinetry ended up being a beautiful detail that adds character, without being too ornate.”

To satisfy the clients’ wish to retain some ornamental details, the cabinetry features hand-carved mouldings such as the pilasters that frame the Wolf range and anchor the four corners of the island.

“Although there were changes made during the design process, one thing that remained consistent was my client’s desire to include details that were different and unusual,” she says. “While some people want to follow trends, this client didn’t want the ordinary. That gave everyone involved in the design process, including the local craftsmen, more freedom to create amazing and unique pieces.”

Some of those custom pieces were used to create the focal-point cooking wall, such as the leaded glass windows crafted locally by Chanikva Studio and the antique pewter ventilation hood fabricated by Grayleaf Studio. The dark solder and framing used in the former complements the black framed sink window, which overlooks the outdoor kitchen and the golf course beyond. The latter complements the backsplash, comprised of dimensional silver leaf tile from Tabarka Studio.

“Consistently throughout the home we used metallic finishes,” says Klosterman, adding that she balanced them with neutral paint colors and natural wood elements such as the ceiling beams and the walnut flooring in the adjacent foyer. “The metal finishes, metallic paint finishes and even the polished quartzite perimeter and (Silver Roots) marble island countertops add a sparkle, shimmer and lightness…without being too feminine. In the case of the backsplash tile…I love the pattern and neutral coloration. We didn’t want to pull in a specific hue, but we did want contrast and pattern.”

Additional sparkle emanates from a pair of rock crystal chandeliers from Fine Art Lamps.

“Although they boast a dramatic proportion, the white of the crystals lighten their scale,” she concludes. ▪

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