Although glorious mid-century modern homes seem to run rampant on America’s west coast, finding the perfect one can still be something of a challenge for those with something specific in mind. For graphic designer Traci Yau and her family, something specific translated to something by Joseph Eichler, the 20th-century California real estate magnate who is often credited for introducing Modernist design to the masses. Taking cues from legends like Mies van der Rohe and Frank Lloyd Wright, Eichler’s homes typically featured open floor plans, large windows and skylights, intended to bring the beauty of California’s nature inside. After an exhaustive search that began five years ago, Traci and her husband, Herman, finally found what they were looking for in 2012—an Eichler original with an open atrium and a floor plan designed by architect Robert Anshen.
“Our goal was to create a clean, modern space that respected the history of the architecture, yet didn’t confine us to being strict preservationists,” Traci says of their Sunnyvale, CA home. “We intentionally picked decor and finishes that would enhance the best things about having an Eichler: floor-to-ceiling windows and massive amounts of natural light.” A clutter-free decorating scheme was enacted (“the windows are almost a work of art themselves,” Traci notes) and white walls, cabinetry, and flooring were chosen in order to enhance light. This simple, subdued scheme allows the furniture and artwork within the home—much of it from other mid-century designers—to shine. It’s just the sort of timeless space that is malleable and adaptable enough to fit the ever-changing needs and tastes of a growing family. —Max