(Gustave Carlson Design, original photo on Houzz)

House Tour: Modern and rustic styles blend seamlessly in Inverness


The Point Reyes Peninsula is home to wild beaches, grazing elk and cows, a historic lighthouse, oyster farms and agri-tourism, making it a favorite getaway for outdoor enthusiasts and food lovers. It was the perfect setting for architect Gustave Carlson's clients, a couple who surf, are Waldorf teachers and have twin daughters.

The Inverness home Carlson built on their three-acre property was a "bridge between the couple's tastes. He wanted a white modern box; she wanted a cozy shingled cabin with a porch," Carlson says. He stayed true to the traditional cabins in the area while incorporating sustainable features and modern design. Whenever possible, local craftsmen and suppliers were used. And, in keeping with the region's environmental and sustainable ethos, many of the materials were reclaimed and recycled.

Houzz at a Glance

Who lives here: Adam Neale and Megan Freitas Neale, and their two daughters

Location: Inverness, California

Size: Three bedrooms, two bathrooms on a 3-acre lot

Architect: Gustave Carlson Design

(Gustave Carlson Design, original photo on Houzz)

Horizontal Western red cedar panels at the base of the house slide open to access space under the deck, where the owners store garden tools.

Drive through the nearby hills dotted with ranches and dairy farms, and it's easy to see architect Gustave Carlson's inspiration for this home. The architect says the house pays homage to the pastoral area's cabins and barns, but with a modern flair.

The exterior is stucco and locally sourced Western red cedar, and the house is angled to take advantage of the view of Tomales Bay through the trees. A vertical cutout in the stucco wall along the stairs also opens to the view.

The cozy breakfast room paneled in Western red cedar pays homage to the 600-square-foot cabin that sat on the property before the house was built.

The spacious living room is anchored by a floor-to-ceiling board-formed-concrete fireplace. Carlson says the wood-grain pattern of such concrete gives it a softer, warmer look. The house is powered by propane, but there's no need for air conditioning in the cool coastal climate, Carlson says.

Doors in the living area open wide to the deck and views of Tomales Bay. Carlson wanted a seamless boundary between indoors and out, so he also used Western red cedar for the barn-like ceilings and beams. Carlson said the wood is ideally suited for interior and exterior use "due to its high impermeability to water and its natural preservatives. It has excellent staining capabilities and [is] a stable wood with low shrinkage."

The open floor plan allows a clear view from the kitchen to the living room. A large island has plenty of workspace and storage, with space for a few stools. Teak floors extend throughout the space. Carlson chose dark brown trim for the windows and door frames for its modern appeal. "I wanted to bridge the architecture between 'local farm to table' meets modern."

// This story was written by Julie Sheer, and originally published on Houzz.

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