Peek Inside This Interior Designer's Updated Midcentury Abode

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Renovating a period home can be a tough balancing act between old and new. But when Jessica Hansen, owner of Tandem Design, started the renovation of her midcentury modern home in Santa Monica, California, she was excited to mix her own style with the original design. "I love to restore midcentury homes," she said. "I think the key to doing that is knowing what to preserve and what to replace." First thing on the list of items to replace was the wall-to-wall carpet. Hansen swapped it for white oak flooring with a lye finish.

Another top priority was creating a better flow between the common areas. The house, which Hansen shares with her husband and two sons, had a bonus room that was separated by a breezeway with a laundry room. Hansen removed the laundry room and made the breezeway part of the interior of the house to connect all the spaces. She kept many of the original details intact, such as the stone fireplace and built-in shelving in the living room, and used a pale palette to let the vintage furnishings stand out. The end result is cool and collected — and the right blend of past and present.

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Living Room
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Living Room

Hansen kept the living room's fireplace and wood paneling intact to maintain the midcentury vibe. Vintage finds, such as the Ib Kofod-Larsen chairs and Hans Wegner circle chair, are mixed with new pieces, including a Design Within Reach sofa and a West Elm mirrored side table. The macrame in the window is from the couple's wedding.

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dining room
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Dining Room

A vintage Turkish rug from Etsy adds color to the dining room, which also features a vintage table and chairs and a Sputnik chandelier.

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Kitchen
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Kitchen

Hansen said the biggest challenge of the project was living in the home while renovating the kitchen. The birch cabinets were whitewashed and the backsplash was lined in custom-cut tiles by Royal Stone. Stools by Erik Buch are pulled up to the counter.

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Family Room
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Family Room

Hansen replaced the legs on the family room's Ikea sofa to fit with the midcentury furnishings. The rug and table are vintage and the bookcases are by Modern Shelving.

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Master Bedroom
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Master Bedroom

The master bedroom's Design Within Reach bed is topped with a bedcover by the Citizenry and pillows from Etsy and Jonathan Adler. A vintage Robert Wood painting and a macrame hanging by Obodo Home Craft bring color and texture to the room.

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Guest Room
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Guest Room

The designer stripped the wood panelling off the walls of the guest room and painted the brickwork white to brighten the space. The Nelson bed is from Design Within Reach, the end tables were made by Hansen's dad, and the vintage brass sculpture above the fireplace is from Red Snapper in Portland, Oregon.

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Child's Room
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Child's Room

The original red oak parquet floors in son Walter's room were whitewashed to match the home's new floors. The colorful rug is from Etsy, the bed is by Oeuf, and the flags are homemade.

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Child's Room
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Child's Room

Paintings and a DIY needlepoint are among the collection of art in son Otis's room. The Kalon Studios bed sits beside an Ikea dresser.


Elizabeth Stamp is a freelance writer in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in Architectural Digest, Elle Decor, and CNN Style.

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