When designers and homeowners Karan and Sapna Aggarwal of Bungalowe first decided to renovate a Tudor-style chateau in L.A.’s Eagle Rock neighborhood, they didn’t realize that finding the right builder would be the biggest challenge. Five contractors and two years later, they transformed the 1920s home from a 1,400-square-foot house into a 3,000-plus-square-foot hideaway with an impressive outdoor area and modern essentials such as a home office.
“Our goal is to become masters of our craft,” explains Karan. “It is our belief that in order to become a master, one must have a comprehensive understanding of the process from beginning to end and navigate that process without losing focus of their ‘why.’ This being our first project, it was very important for us to learn this process hands-on while staying true to our mission: to bring form and function together. In that vein, we were very involved with every step of the renovation.”
The couple took the existing space and transformed it, opening the floor plan, adding storage space, and making it lighter and brighter overall. At the center of the project was the kitchen. “The kitchen is the heart of any home, and this one was built with a lot of heart,” explains Karan. Furnished with a suite of Bertazzoni appliances and 17 inches of countertop space, the duo added in a large island and bar-top peninsula, a built-in designer pantry, and a cute little breakfast nook.
Color played a major role in the renovation, as the designers wanted to retain the quaint aesthetic of the house but also make it modern and fresh with the newly opened floor plan. “The vibe we wanted to create was sophisticated without feeling cold,” says Karan. “To create a cohesive aesthetic, we chose a palette of black and white mixed with natural wood accents to keep it warm and inviting plus pops of satin brass and sage green to add a bit of personality.” They opted for Benjamin Moore in Simply White, Black Beauty, and Sagebrush for a rich color palette. Fun pendant lamps throughout the house were sourced from Anthropologie and Pottery Barn, with many of the mirrors and sconces coming from West Elm.
Karan and Sapna also knew the house was missing something: a home office. So they built in a detached studio, which allows for a work-from-home lifestyle. “With hardwood floors, brand-new windows and doors, an accent wall with original texture, an exposed beam painted black, a darling pendant light, and a gorgeous view of the whimsically landscaped garden, it has an amazing vibe perfect to foster both productivity and creativity,” says Karan.
The next major project was utilizing the outdoor space, as the home sat perched on a 20,000-square-foot lot. “It’s easy to overlook, but the landscaping made as dramatic a transformation as the interior,” adds Sapna. For the occasion, the two partnered with Jonathan Froines to design a bright and open outdoor space where form follows function. “The front yard was drab and overgrown with two very large ash trees dominating the entire front elevation. While it was a hard decision to take them down, we wanted to keep their history alive and did so by recycling the stumps for our hilltop picnic area,” says Sapna. The backyard itself is composed of different areas that flow together: a deck for lounging, an elevated dining area lit by twinkle lights overhead, the hilltop picnic area accessible via a private hiking trail that was built into the hillside, and a European-style alley between the main house and the garage.
At the end of the day, the couple think of the home as their dream project—with an undeniable flow and a synergistic relationship between the indoors and the outdoors.
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