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before and after

Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington

by Annie Werbler

Renovation superstars Alexandra Becket and Greg Steinberg of the design/build firm ModOp Design work their rehab magic all over Los Angeles. The pair found a rundown mid-century modern post and beam home in need of their help in the Mt. Washington hills. Originally built in 1964 during their favorite era of California architecture, Alex and Greg seized their first opportunity to work on a building from this time. They were glad to achieve yet another first — keeping the home’s 1,668-square-foot original floor plan, which they attribute to the comfortable, open flow of the period layout.

They began the project by tackling all the basic systems, totally overhauling the plumbing, electrical, heat, and AC, replacing windows and repairing original siding. New walnut and douglas fir floors were installed in place of worn carpet and tile — all within a five-month timeline. Despite these grand achievements, Alex and Greg had to leave a few things remaining on their wishlist. They wanted to stain the living room and kitchen ceiling beams instead of painting them white, but the cost would have put them over budget. They also tried to salvage all the wood paneling in the office, but sadly found it was too far gone with water damage to be fixed. Luckily, the built-in bookcase, one of their favorite features of the home, was in great shape and survived the previous years of neglect. “We were able to bring that room back to its glory days!” Alex proudly shares. They also transformed a boarded-up pass-through window from the kitchen to the deck, replacing the glass and setting up a leisurely bar just outside.

Embodying the free spirit of 1960s California, the couple staged the home with mid-century furniture and accessories — mostly vintage pieces they collected over time, including some special hand-me-downs from parents and grandparents. Alex and Greg are most thankful that they were able to bring the house back to life, and to create a new living space for the grateful homeowners who steward it today. —Annie

Photography by Charmaine David

Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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Alexandra Becket and Greg Steinberg of ModOp Design brought this 1964 mid-century modern home back to life, highlighting its best original features and adding the most current conveniences.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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Engineered walnut floors throughout the home's interiors maintain the open feeling of a mid-century floor plan.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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Bulky cabinetry was removed from the kitchen to create a seamless flow to the dining area.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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IKEA Sofielund kitchen cabinetry has an upscale vibe overlooking green hills.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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On the balcony, Douglas fir flooring, new Milgard aluminum windows, and restored board and batten wood siding make for one of several inviting outdoor spaces.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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A collection of vintage decor in the dining and living areas, including the orange sofa custom-made for architect Welton Becket, Alexandra's grandfather.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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Alex and Greg restored the original built-in office cabinetry full of vintage collectibles, then added a Craigslist Danish desk and Eames office chair to complete the look.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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The master bedroom is decorated with a retro walnut headboard and side table set from Casa Victoria Vintage Furniture in nearby Silver Lake.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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The lower deck outside the master bedroom offers privacy and sweeping views.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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The front door foyer is an inviting entrance to the home, with bright colors and sleek finishes.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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Alex hung a vintage African woven wallhanging passed down from her parents to coordinate with the vibrant front door color.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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Outside, the home's exterior received an extensive facelift as well.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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Orange and green tones enhance the drama of lighting and landscape.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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Around the side of the house, a third deck wide enough to host guests around the firepit.
Before & After: A Mid-Century Post and Beam Home in Mt. Washington, on Design*Sponge
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The 1,668-square-foot Mt. Washington home has four bedrooms and three bathrooms on two floors.

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Comments

  • What a great before and after! I love it when you also show a home’s exterior in addition to the interior. I always need curb appeal ideas!

  • Love the dark wood finish on the bookshelves and new wood floor laminate. And also love how they made the bigger window smaller, then went with white for the ceiling and roof beams to make the space even brighter.

  • Absolutely love this renovation, the whole house is just super cool! The colors and finishes make it come alive while being practical & functional at the same time. Great work and excellent taste!

    • Alison

      What may be old to you is new to us, and the vast majority of our readers, so we’re still excited to see great work (regardless of when it happened).

      Grace

  • wow! i thought the first couple of “before” pictures were the house under construction. I can’t believe how “bland” it was, and now looks so amazing!!

  • From the vintage old gloomy, yellow-taped crime scene to a modern living space for the owners to enjoy. What a project! I especially like how the office space turned out. Restoring the original vintage built-in office cabinetry is a wonderful approach.

    Regards,
    Tim the Fixer

  • I am the architect on the project. Our office completed this project in only 90 days with a modest budget. We were approached by this client to manage the project, specify finishes, and bring in the contractors. The project was completed with great success.