When we first spotted Kate Davison’s home on Instagram, we were enamored with the arched doorways, beamed ceiling, and if we’re being honest – that bright blue sofa. We wanted to see more! Today, we’re chatting with Kate about everything from the home’s eccentric quirks to what she loves most about Oakland:
Tell us a bit about the home itself. Where is it located? How did you find it? How long have you lived there?
I live in a rare 1920’s storybook home located in the hills of Oakland, California. I found it by chance while looking around on Craigslist one day. The listing had very little information and super low quality iPhone photos, but I could tell it was at least interesting enough to see for myself! The brick spiral staircase in the foyer was a feature that stands out in my memory from the listing. After visiting, I immediately applied. This was in May 2016.
What changes did you make when you first moved in?
The home was very eccentric when I moved in (and it still is, I suppose). The living room had these moody wrought iron cage lights that looked like they were straight out of castle! And they would cast the spookiest shadows at night, so those were first to go. I replaced them with beautiful brass sconces from Schoolhouse Electric which immediately made a difference in the look and feel of the room. All other changes were subtle and only required a coat or two of paint to brighten up the space, both inside and out.
What was your priority as you began decorating?
I had only one goal/challenge: to create an aesthetic that would blend my modern pieces with the original storybook characteristic of the home. This was somewhat of a daunting task, given the exaggerated architecture and quirkiness found throughout. But it actually came together perfectly. The bold blue couch and wool shag rug worked well to anchor the living room, even with its soaring and exaggerated beamed ceiling. The updated light fixtures really neutralized the space and I was lucky that the walls had already been painted white, which was the perfect canvas to build upon.
What do you love most about living in the Oakland Hills?
I love that my neighborhood feels like it’s a world away from San Francisco, yet the city is just a 20 minute drive away (without traffic). There are also really lovely hidden staircases that wind through the neighborhood. And there are lovely shops and restaurants just down the road in the Grand Lake district of Oakland. Some of my favorites are Boot and Shoe Service, Shakewell, and Oak Common. And I am only a short drive to the beaches and overlooks in Marin County, which I visit quite often.
Finally, describe a perfect day at home.
My daily morning routine includes a cup of tea on my back porch, watering my plants, listening to music and catching up on Instagram or Pinterest for a dose of inspiration, whether it be for work, travel, interior design, etc.
Kate takes us on a virtual tour of her space in the slideshow.