When Chad DeWitt, creative director of Framestudio, and his husband, James Cook, went searching for home to buy after being priced out of the Bay Area, they ended up finding an architectural gem — a tiny 1986 cabin in a redwood forest — in Sea Ranch, a beachside community 100 miles north of San Francisco. DeWitt wanted to preserve the history of the cabin (which they now call The MiniMod) which was the work of notable Bay Area–architect Joseph Esherick, while making some modern upgrades. At the top of the to-do list was a fully functional kitchen and more sleeping areas. DeWitt and Cook also wanted to make the home available as a short-term rental, so the update needed to be durable and have more storage.
The design preserves the home's open plan and by using reclaimed wood from the house, Framestudio was able to restore original details. Eco-friendly and recycled materials were chosen and costs were kept low by opting to forgo things like granite countertops, a tile backsplash, and even dimmers on the light fixtures. DeWitt also made sure every square inch had a purpose, from the extra drawers in the kitchen toe-kicks to the custom built-in sofa that conceals storage and a pull-out queen bed. The finished cabin is just right for the couple and their many visitors.