Carmel French Cottage

Carmel French Cottage, Living Room, design by Gardner & Associates

Project Description

French country meets elegance in a charming cottage nestled in the forest of Carmel By The Sea. The homeowners were from Los Angeles, CA and wanted something French but not in the sense of the Pierre Deux style that is so often seen in Carmel. We were told “no roosters!”

The design team developed a style of warm colors and French fabrics with a color scheme that flowed throughout the small scale residence. The house had many windows and french doors that looked out to greens and whites in the garden. We wanted to bring the outside into the interiors to create harmony and restfulness — place where they could walk into that feels calm and inviting.

Project Details

Client: Second Home

Skills: Design, Lighting, Furniture

Painter: Superior Painting

Photographer: David Duncan Livingstone

About the Carmel French Cottage Project

The walls were painted by Superior Painting, a local talent, creating shadow effects and warm movement in the plastered walls. The beams were stained to add contrast and bring in a French provincial feel.

Custom wool carpet by Stark and matching sofas by Burton James covered in Brunschwig & Fils flank the living room. Jacobean print on the chairs and striped roman drapes add that classic pattern on pattern we love to use. The antique floor lamp was done by Cathleen Caid a well know designer out of Los Angeles creates old world charm; it’s like a bit of jewelry.

The dining room is anchored by a antique needlepoint rug that the designers found in England and it set the tone for the room. The chandelier with crystals is from Nierman Weeks; the chairs and table are from Bausman & Co. We upholstered the chairs in a beautiful floral pattern with the back of the chairs in a butter yellow cow hide. The hand-painted buffet by Century furniture holds the client’s fine china and glass ware.

The kitchen has a small breakfast nook that sits in front of sun-drenched windows, overlooking the classic English gardens. Each bedroom has a distinct color palette and mood.

Selected Photographs

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Designer Notes

This project was for a young couple who used the house for weekend trips to escape their hectic lives in Los Angeles. They wanted to retreat to a cozy, upscale cottage. They asked us to combine French antiques with vintage light fixtures. We ran the gold and green tones throughout the house. Because it was small, this helped to maintain an easy flow from room to room. We did get a little whimsical in the guest room after falling in love with a mint and lavender toile fabric. We also added some trompe l’oeil painting details to accent certain areas of the house, which added personal charm.
~ Julie Gardner