The old school classic 1950's aspect of Culver City is what draws many people to our wonderful city. And yet, we want to give our house an updated flair and well deserved makeover. Some people buy these charming old houses on stunningly pretty streets, knock them down and put their modern and elegant twist on their new abode. Others are merely adding touches and utilizing their outdoor space to its maximum, considering our near perfect climate.
Three of the houses just north of my street went fully modern with glorious results. They are sleek and environmentally conscious but completely beautiful and blend in well with our street. I marvel and covet them every time I drive by. I think harmony and subtlety is the key.
Some people take their property and erect obscure modern monstrosities and they just stand out like sore thumbs. It doesn't show respect to the neighborhood or the heritage of this area.
Many people are converting the front of their homes with a full native garden taking advantage of all of those wonderful native Californian plants that are so interesting and of course, drought resistant.
This instantly gives their home a fresh, updated feel and is tremendously welcoming to guests and people walking by.
Designer Suzanne McKevitt created an oasis clumping bamboo at the end and grew grevillea to sprawl out, block out the street and still define the outside area. Our driveways here tend to be very long and one can still park two cars in tandem whilst giving you and your family another place to chill out and decorate.
Architect Alejandro Ortiz's old driveway and front yard were paved in unsightly asphalt. He wanted to "design a protected entry without making the house seem like a fortress from the street." He wanted a sense of "mystery and discovery." He staggered screen like fences, bamboo and colorful planters having guests follow a gentle boardwalk that is offset by theses attractive fences. For him "they create a friendlier barrier making the house much more welcoming.
On the many walks I take around all the neighborhoods in Culver City, I get so many ideas from how other people have updated their homes. I long for the day when we can really transform ours to its full potential.
Keep up the good work Culver City, being house proud is a wonderful thing.