Inside an Updated 1950s California Home That Brims With Japanese-Inspired Design

When Aiko Morton and Momoko “Momo” Morton Wong were being increasing up in Colorado, each and every number of months their mom would travel them from Pueblo—the tiny town they identified as home—to Denver. They’d make a working day of it (go purchasing and have lunch someplace entertaining), but the most memorable times for the two of them rarely experienced everything to do with superior meals or new apparel. “She’d take us to these really nice areas of Denver and generate so gradual, and we’d stare at all the properties,” Aiko remembers. “We’d be like, ‘I like that a single, simply because of this I don’t like that a single, because of that,’ and people today would be honking powering us.”

This residence adoration ongoing into adulthood for the two sisters. In the early 2000s, they’d both of those moved to Japan and put in plenty of several hours going for walks through neighborhoods to look at homes and perusing design outlets alongside one another. “We lived in style and design outlets around the weekend,” Aiko states. Later on, when Aiko moved to Singapore, she retained the spouse and children tradition alive there too. Momoko, on the other hand, worked at numerous interior design and style corporations in advance of opening her individual, Naka Interiors, in the same city that birthed their collective appreciate of the craft. So when Aiko moved back again to the United States soon after 20 several years overseas, it was only natural that she would have her sister style her dream house.

“There was no concern that we’d do this jointly,” Momoko states of the rework that the 1950s-era California assets Aiko acquired in 2017 needed. Though the footprint of the residence was there, most of it experienced to be reimagined. The household is mostly divided into two sides, but given that it was made in the middle of the very last century, the structure did not come to feel ideal for a up to date way of living. Ahead of, the home experienced a little kitchen area and eating room on one particular side—which Aiko didn’t like (she’s a self-proclaimed foodie). Bedrooms and offices took up significantly of the more substantial facet of the residence.

The sisters started addressing these considerations at a 10,000-foot degree. They developed bubble diagrams to define a new stream and layout of the household, which the architect and contractor swiftly place into program as soon as introduced on board. The outcome was, primarily, a flip-flopped model of how the undertaking had begun out. Now, the shared spaces—like the family space, dining space, and kitchen—take up the more substantial side of the home, and the personal locations are on the lesser conclude. “But it saved a whole lot of schematic design and style time to presently have that figured out,” Momoko suggests.

For the interiors, Momoko needed to provide in Asian influences to honor Aiko’s many years residing in Japan and Singapore. “We were being also born and raised in Colorado, so I desired to combine some of those people elements—like beautiful stones, woods, and metals—into the job also.” Of program, the home’s amazing mountain sights have been taken into thought as properly. “Aiko loves purely natural mild, so we wished to seize the sights in a way the total family could appreciate.”

Overall, clean lines and a neutral coloration palette channel the relaxed and harmonious aesthetic of Japanese style and design even though complementing the landscapes just further than. But which is not to say there are not times of shock sprinkled all through the household. “If you go into Aiko’s pantry, you find a actually enjoyment wallpaper,” Momoko claims. “I like to set joyful matters in utility places because they are normally just for doing the job.” Now, each time Aiko steps foot in this element of her house, she receives not only a second of pleasure, but also a sweet reminder of her sister as a result of her signature move.

Nevertheless functioning on the household was “four years of enjoyment,” the project was often additional than just a little something to do together. Immediately after Aiko and her partner invested decades dwelling and doing the job as “expatriate nomads,” Momoko wanted to give her sister a spot to plant roots, a person that is also conveniently much closer to her far too. “This is her retreat,” she states.

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