An Open & Airy Whole-Home Remodel in Long Beach, CA

Minimalist Design, a Neutral Color Palette, and Earthy, Organic Materials Tie Together Indoors and Outdoors in This Breezy Southern Cali Home

An Open & Airy Whole-Home Remodel in Long Beach, CA | Minimalist Design, a Neutral Color Palette, and Earthy, Organic Materials Tie Together Indoors and Outdoors in This Breezy Southern Cali Home | Interior design by Daniella Carter of Pretty Smart Studio | Photo by Bethany Nauert | Dining Room Inspiration | Modern Dining Room | Dining Room Storage | Wood Cabinetry and Brass Handles | Contemporary Dining Room
Photo by:
Bethany Nauert
04/17/2018

Get ready for an incredible before and after! These Long Beach homeowners had grown tired of their cramped, closed floor plan and were looking to give their pre-war home a fresh, open remodel to make room for their growing family. So they enlisted Architect and Interior Designer Daniella Carter of Pretty Smart Studio to make their home interior dreams come true! The result is an airy, open floor plan featuring indoor-outdoor living that promotes quality family time.

“Our clients had lived in their single-family, 3-bedroom pre-war home in the Plaza neighborhood of Long Beach for 2 years”, explains Daniella. “Like most older homes, the traditional closed floor plan was making their living spaces feel cramped, dark, and isolating. While the space functioned for the couple while their three children were younger, they knew they needed to make some big changes as they began to enter school age.”

Photo by:
Bethany Nauert

To accomplish an open floor concept, Daniella designed an entire home remodel for the young family, complete with interior and exterior renovations. 

“There was a challenge though, since an addition to the home had been made previous to them moving in, some interior walls were actually exterior and necessary to holding up the roof frame. While a roof-reframe wasn’t in the original budget, once we explained they’d have to keep a few of the walls, they were on board. In fact, we decided to lift the ceiling height to nine feet as well.”

Photo by:
Bethany Nauert
Photo by:
Bethany Nauert

By taking down the dividing walls in the common spaces, the dining, kitchen and living areas become one large, open space – perfect for entertaining guests and enjoying family time. Each space flows effortlessly into the next.

Photo by:
Bethany Nauert
Photo by:
Bethany Nauert

The natural walnut island in the kitchen beautifully stands out agains the white cabinetry and is carried through to the storage cabinets in the dining area.

Photo by:
Bethany Nauert

Daniella perfectly executed her clients’ want for a minimalist, beachy design aesthetic by blending clean lines, neutral hues and organic, modern furnishings.

Photo by:
Bethany Nauert

A fun, geometric wallpaper makes a statement in the powder room.

Photo by:
Bethany Nauert

I collaborate closely with my clients, I want them to feel like we are partners in the process together. My goal is to take the homeowners tastes, lifestyle, and budget and transform that into creative, tangible design ideas. One of my favorite parts of a collaboration is learning about my client’s needs and presenting solutions that they love and never even knew they had wanted. Daniella Carter

Photo by:
Bethany Nauert
Photo by:
Bethany Nauert

The children’s room is natural and soft with a touch of whimsy.

Photo by:
Bethany Nauert
Photo by:
Bethany Nauert
Photo by:
Bethany Nauert

The main living area open ups to the backyard through dramatic sliding glass doors. 

Photo by:
Bethany Nauert

Daniella did a beautiful job at modernizing and opening up this family’s once outdated and chopped-up home. By designing one large open living area, she not only created the illusion of a larger space but also brought the family closer together.

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Meet the designer Daniella Carter of Pretty Smart Design Studio
Bio:

Pretty Smart is a different kind of design firm. We believe design should be an enjoyable process of inquiry, discovery and growth, developed out of a close collaboration between client and consultants that results in spaces that inspire and connect us: to each other and to the planet.

Design affects every part of our experience: Interior environments are an intimate part of our everyday lives that surround us, touch us, and color our perspectives. Furniture is the perch from which we see the world and our posture affects our outlook. The space that surrounds us can enhance, uplift and refine an experience. As such, we endeavor to design all aspects of a project.

Our studio embraces a design- build approach, and craftspeople are respected as an integral part of the process. Building materials are allowed to sing with their truest voice. We find joy in detailing, creating, and getting muddy in the trenches. A true multi-disciplinary design firm, we are interior designers who speak architecture, architects who speak construction, hardscape and landscape designers who speak graphic design. In our studio it is all connected and we are happy to participate in as much or as little as a project requires.

Pretty Smart was founded by Daniella Carter, a Southern California native who graduated cum laude from the hands-on architecture program at California Polytechnic University in San Luis Obispo. A licensed California architect, she has over 15 years experience designing, building, drawing and beautifying objects and spaces of all sizes and budgets. Daniella embraces a hands-on approach and is personally involved in every project, from design conception through the construction process.

What is your Modern Sanctuary? What space brings you peace, comfort and joy?
The backyard of my family home, which is like a little urban oasis here in Long Beach. We have chickens, an organic garden, and places to gather around the fire, watch movies, and let the kids be kids. It's the perfect blend of urban gritty and wild nature, which is something that really represents my design style in general. We love to spend time back there as a family, whether we are all engaging together or each doing our own thing.
Copy by
Caitlin Diggles
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