A Modern Elysian Heights Home for Two Creatives

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There are few things more terrifying at home than a fire. For the first six months after we bought our house, I spent every hour away from it worried that something would spontaneously combust or slowly burn inside the walls. I knew a few families that lost their homes to fires growing up, and I still find myself checking and rechecking for heat near sockets on a regular basis. Casey Caplowe knows firsthand how devastating flames can be — but he managed to find a silver lining when his home was devastated by a fire in 2012.

Casey, who is the co-founder and CCO of GOOD Magazine, discovered and became smitten with a 1912 California Bungalow-style house in the Elysian Heights neighborhood (in the hills of Echo Park) back in 2010. “It feels a bit like a little mountain village, right on the edge of a huge park,” he says. The first house Casey saw during his search turned out to be “the one,” and he made an offer on the spot. Two years later, the house was devastated by a fire and Casey had to tear down the original structure, a heartbreaking prospect. But with a fresh start comes new possibilities, and in the end, Casey relished the bittersweet opportunity to create the dream home he’d imagined. So he put his undergrad architecture studies into action and decided to try the design process on his own.

A year and a half into the design, permits and construction, Casey met and fell in love with Ellen Bennett of Hedley & Bennett. And what initially began as Casey’s solo dream-architectural project turned into a meaningful collaboration between the two incredibly talented creatives. Ellen and Casey chose every element and detail in the house, from the floors and window trim to the colorful kitchen stove. The result is a bright, airy space with the energy and excitement you’d expect from two people who have made creativity and happiness their life’s work so far.

Casey and Ellen said they were going for a “modern Japanese/Scandinavian/Californian” sensibility, combined with “strong pops of color.” Their goal was to create something that would feel, “really warm and cozy, but still generally minimal and modern,” and I think the final product is just that — a happy space full of playfulness, warmth and love. Thanks so much to Ellen and Casey for sharing their home with us. xo, grace

Photography by Chloe Berk


Living room
Couch – Room & Board
Green Eames fiberglass rocker- Modernica
1960s vintage leather chairs by Sergio Rodrigues
Marble coffee table – HD Buttercup
Vintage bowl with orange interior- Krenit Bowl
Bookshelf – modernica
Vintage Marantz receiver
Vintage acoustic research speakers
Photo by Joaquin Trujillo
Planter by Modernica

Dining room
Copenhague table by Hay
Vintage school chairs from Amsterdam Modern
Light by Brendan Ravenhill
Vintage life preserver from the Rose Bowl Flea Market
Wooden bar cart from Crate & Barrel
Green bowl by Heath Ceramics

Guest Room/Den/Office
Yellow chair from Modernica
Vintage school desk (purchase location unknown)

Yellow Bertazzoni range
Potholders by Hedley & Bennett
Yellow stool from IKEA
Vintage science classroom stools from Cleveland Arts
Yellow The Dots wall hooks by Muuto from A+R
Aprons by Hedley & Bennett
Nest thermostat
Blue tiles from Heath Ceramics’ Dwell series
Red trashcan – Rubbermaid Commercial Defenders Step Trash Can
Ex.T Fuse Lamps

Case study alpine bed by Modernica
Photo by Gray Malin
Vintage Caucasian kilim rug purchased at the Rose Bowl Flea Market
Vintage boomerang side table
Lamp from Target
Blue planter from Modernica
Yellow Biobu cup
Vintage end table from a flea market
New lamp (unknown)
Turquoise cup by Biobu purchased at Canoe in Portland
Credenza from BluDot
Vintage chair from Rose Bowl Flea Market
Octagon mirror – custom made
Yellow The Dots wall hooks by Muuto from A+R

  1. Such a gorgeous space! I cannot get over that backsplash – so beautiful!

    xx, Ashleigh

  2. Katie says:

    Just so bright and lovely. You both have a great eye.

  3. What an amazing story. I love the yellow stove and that bright orange barn door!

  4. Tracey Kirk says:

    The master bedroom has such a fresh, yet relaxing vibe! What is the blue paint color on the walls?

  5. HK says:

    The white and gold lined lamp in the bedroom- WHERE did you get it?? It is so very beautiful.

  6. Vicki says:

    Thanks so much for sharing! There is so much joy in this house, it’s inspiring.

  7. That corner window in the stair area is genius!

  8. Jessica says:

    This place has such a fun vibe. I love the bright stove and tile in the kitchen. Very daring and it totally works.


  9. Cathy says:

    Casey and Ellen,
    What a wonderful space! I loved reading the comments next to each photo, learning about your thoughtful design decisions.
    Chloe did a great job capturing your home.

  10. The fire thing is huge – we heat our house and workshop with wood [we live on a farm with a wood lot]. Until recently my husband spent occassional nights leaping out of bed to check the soapstone woodstoves; one night he woke up, turned to me and said, ‘i’m getting those fancy Nest fire detectors’, and that next morning – out he went! So now he checks his phone to see if our house is burning.

    Very inspiring to see this house, and the drawing; I’m contemplating turning one of our farm buildings into another house, and I love the way this house uses it’s perimeters so effectively.


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