interior designInteriorssneak peeks

sneak peek: olive route

by anne


in keeping with last week’s national stationery show coverage, our latest sneak peek comes to us from letter press designer olivia san mateo of olive-route. her 1950s bungalow is located in walnut creek, about 20 minutes east of berkeley, ca. besides being a charming place they love that the house is surrounded by lots of trees and close to
trails on the open space at the foothills of mt. diablo. don’t miss additional images at the end of the post. [thanks, olivia!] anne

[above: my mom used to work for an oriental furniture store when i was growing up. so i was surrounded by lots of rosewood furniture and antiques mostly imported from china. attending architecture school also started my love for anything mid-century. so i feel that now, my aesthetic is a combination of these two strong influences. since most of my furniture tends to be darker and heavier, i lighten it up with the details such as airy chars, white vases, light walls…]


i like how masculine the dark chair and the rosewood side table look against the light walls and painting by jane kim. the base of the lamp is this pink cherry blossom jar that my mother had made into a lamp. my husband trusts my design choices, his only request is that the house not look too “girlie”, so this area is a great example of how we compromise.


i like collecting pieces from artists i know personally or have encountered at one point in the past–i feel more of a connection to the work that way and gives it a story :) my mentor, david, gave me the original linoleum block he carved for the nurse poster above my fireplace.


we spend most of our time in the backyard during the summer months. this outdoor living space is great for
warm nights. succulents and orange plastic chairs from ikea lighten things up. [right] this armoire is great for hiding things such as throw pillows, magazines, junk, etc.–i tend to put my things in compartments and can’t stand too much clutter so this works great. the plant sits on one of 2 porcelain antique drums (one of my favorite pieces). again, i feel it lightens up the space and is a great contrast to the heaviness of the armoire.

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