Have you ever walked into a space so cool you immediately dream of moving in? Well, get ready to do just that after viewing the incredibly rustic-chic abode of local creatives Gabrielle "GG" Gamarello and Beaumont "Beau" Buck.
After painstakingly restoring and revamping their Mission Terrace home over the last three years, the multi-talented duo (they're engaged to be married) are putting the awe-inspiring space on the market, which means your dreams have the chance of becoming a reality. (If you've got the cash, check out the home's real-estate site here.) For those of us not able to ditch our current digs, a major dose of home envy lies ahead.
Photographed by Michelle Drewes
Tell us how you found this amazing place. GG:
"We were looking for a long time and knew we wanted an older house with lots of charm. This home was built in 1905 before the big earthquake in 1906. Back then, the Mission Terrace neighborhood was all farmland and was referred to as the Homestead. We loved this history and knew that this house had the right potential for restoring it back to its roots, while staying modern and relevant for us."
On Beau: Vintage Big Mac Chambray Work Shirt, Vintage Belt, Levi's Selvedge Indigo 513 Jeans, and Vintage Red Wing Work Boots. On GG: Vintage Shrunken Oxford, Vintage Levi's Selvedge 501 Jeans, Vintage Leather Belt, and Cobra Rock Boots.
What year did you buy it? What did the place look like back then?
Beau: "We bought in 2010. It looked like a yellow shoe box with a pink bathroom and avocado-green kitchen! It had a wheelchair lift on the back staircase and the backyard was all concrete patio with a gorgeous lemon tree. We saw potential in the original worn Douglas fir floors, blown-glass bay windows, crafted-shingle exterior, and evidence of a brick fireplace."
A view of the living room.
Let's start with the living room. What was your vision for the space?
GG: "The inspiration stemmed from English estate libraries and S.F. nautical history. We wanted an impression of a grand library while still feeling comfortable and approachable. The built-in bookcases allowed both space for our book collection and showcasing some select art pieces. On a foggy, chilly S.F. day, we escape to this room, turn on the fire and get lost."
GG posts up on the fireplace.
The aforementioned bookcase, filled with tomes and art.
How would you describe your personal style?
GG: "We are both quite timeless. We like to invest in great pieces that have even better stories. I have grown up around fashion my entire life, so it has always been important to wear the clothes and not have the clothes wear me. I tend to gravitate towards tomboy styling. I use to borrow from my father's closet. And, now it's from Beau's."
A close-up of GG's cool, tomboy style.
How would you describe your home's style?
GG: "Modern utilitarian with a nod to Eastern influences."
The couple strike a pose in the living room.
What are some of your favorite pieces of decor in the house?
GG: "A Chesterfield sofa, our primitive 19th Century black milk-paint bookshelf with a hidden compartment. Beau converted an antique meat-hook rack into the light fixture above our farm sink. It came from the S.F. Fiel company, which produced equipment for local butchers at the turn of the century. I love our collection of Gemini prints — Beau worked there for years as a master printer in L.A. My favorite is the Richard Serra in the kitchen. And, our farm table, which we brought out with us from Philadelphia."
Mmmmm...it's a mighty fine Chesterfield, indeed.
What major renovations did you make to the space?
Beau: "We worked from front to back. We unearthed and exposed the original brick fireplace and found an antique 1900's French wooden mantel to restore it completely, then built floor-to-ceiling bookshelves using bead board from a long-forgotten kitchen pantry for the living room. In the front bedroom, to maximize floor space, we created a built-in sleeping nook for a full-size bed from the original redwood fencing surrounding the property. That structure now includes a walk-in closet, storage under the bed, and intimate reading light.
"We gutted the cramped bathroom and exposed the original wainscoting, adding period-appropriate reproduction fixtures and Heath Ceramics tile. In the kitchen, we added a generous skylight to illuminate the open workspace, changing the layout to embrace our antique farm table with wraparound marble countertops. The salvaged wood used for the cabinetry was reclaimed from the floor of a historic S.F. gentlemen's athletic club. We loved the look and feel of the wood so much we opted out of handles and instead utilized push-to-open hardware.
"In the back bedroom we added a large closet with restored French doors and hand-etched glass, and added a privacy window to overlook the garden. The back sunroom brings in the South-facing light through large windows we installed, as well as built-in cabinetry that stores the washer and dryer and supplies. I rebuilt the redwood deck to include a vertical succulent garden which takes you down to the lower garden. The tiered Gabion garden walls are built with rubble from the former patio, and the reclaimed redwood planters are positioned to collect rainwater from the roof.
"For the house systems, we replaced the antiquated gravity heater that took up half the garage with an underfloor radiant heating system using a small tankless on-demand water heater to provide all the heating needs for the house."
After all that work, how would you describe the space now?
GG: "It's our retreat in the city. Understated and intuitive, it's a detail-oriented space that is warm and tactile, where everything has a sense of touch and exposed structure. We gravitate toward antiques and found materials that are one of a kind and typically no longer made in today's world. We're attempting to make these older pieces modern and relevant again."
Beau and his buckle.
Tell us about the vision for the kitchen.
GG: "A French baker's kitchen, open farmhouse style, and modern. We wanted this room to be our main source of entertaining and welcoming, and also be extremely functional. Beau is an enthusiastic chef and loves to bake. So, we wanted the Carrera marble for his bread making, especially! Light was also key, since this room is the heart of the house. We love to sit at the table and watch the clouds fly over us, thanks to the skylight."
Did you take equal parts in the decoration?GG:
"I find inspiration and we review it, then Beau would find something else to support an idea or to help improve it. There is a lot of back and forth, shooting many holes in ideas until it is perfect. And, pages of sketching, taking measurements, and the like. When it came to finding a color for this house, it felt better to stay neutral. We reviewed over 60 shades of white until finding an ideal one with a suggestion of gray. This process is not uncommon for us."
On GG: Vintage Gone Records T-shirt, Kapital braided white leather with silver thunderbird bolo tie, Levi's Made in the USA skinny jeans, vintage Navajo Moccasins, vintage leather belt, assorted vintage turquoise rings, and Jack Walker silver and leather bracelet. On Beau: Vintage Wool Henley, vintage indigo bandana, Levi's natural wax-coated 511 jeans, and Forester leather work boots.
A closer look of GG's beautiful jewelry, and that perfect antique table.
What are some of your favorite places to shop for furniture, art, etc.?GG and Beau:
"Great Olde Things
in L.A. and PA for salvage, eBay
for old light fixtures and antique textiles, Heath Ceramics
for tile, Rough Linen
for great authentic linen sheets, canoeonline.net
for home accessories, Leadapron
for books, Stuff
on Valencia for vintage stuff and furniture, the Alamada Flea Market
, and Bonham's and Butterfield's
Do you guys entertain a lot? What sort of things do you do when hosting friends?
Beau: "Yes, we have invested a lot of time creating an enjoyable and comfortable space for ourselves and friends. I walk over to the local produce corner and get all the ingredients I need for the evening. I like making several slow courses. It's successful when everyone's completely lost track of the night."
Tell us about your professional backgrounds. How do your skills lend themselves to making over a home like this?GG:
"Beau and I met in college, we were both artists attending RISD. I majored in painting and Beau in printmaking. I received an informal education in fashion from both of my parents. My father is a painter and designer and my mother is a designer and patternmaker. After graduating, I interned at the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which led me to work on Madonna's archive private collection in L.A. and at Melet Mercantile
in NYC, a stunning vintage lifestyle showroom catered to designers and the like. After a few years of styling, archiving, and buying fashion, I decided to seriously pursue designing. I worked my way up the ranks with Free People as a designer and then moved out to S.F. to work for Levi's as Senior Concept Designer.
"I would say my exposure to different parts of the world, lots of shopping, and fast problem-solving skills have helped most with working on our home. This is our second home, we had one in Philadelphia, so prior experience surely helps as well. Beau and I are a lot more confident with each remodel and look forward to our relocation and upcoming project to work on our commercial/living space in Marfa, TX."
Tell us more about the charming guest bedroom. We're obsessed with the little sleep nook!
GG: "We like utilizing spaces and wanted this guest room to have a more daily function. We set out to create a space for a reading nook, which is also a great place for long conversations. The reclaimed redwood is warm and inviting. It has a very Americana, washed-barn appearance balanced with modular modern construction. It feels like a nest and sometimes, before you know it, it's hard not to have a nap!"
What's a typical work day look like for you? GG:
"Since resigning from my position with Levi's, my work day consists of attending to outstanding projects, researching new products, or sourcing unique materials that will fit into our projects. The hunt is what gets me most excited and usually it takes time to find that perfect piece. Beau is usually doing the actual work (he just received his contractor's license), so I leave the engineering to him, but help out whenever I can. I am really good with demo!"
On GG: Indigo Shift Mini from Oaxaca, silver chain with good luck tiger's tooth and charms, and Golden Goose boots. On Beau: Shuttle Notes Indigo Polka dot shirt, Vintage Indigo bandana, Levi's Vintage 517 jeans, vintage moccasins hand-painted by GG's dad, and vintage leather belt.
The front of the guest room.
What's a typical play day like for you guys?GG:
"A play day is usually centered around shopping in one form or another. It relaxes me like nothing else and we are both born treasure hunters. We love that just a short drive outside of S.F. and you are in some of the most magical places. We go to Petaluma for antiques, Sebastopol for Osmosis Day Spa
's cedar bath and massages after long hours and stiff muscles from working on the house, or up to Sonoma for wine tasting. We absolutely love Scribe Winery
. We indirectly talk shop about pending remodel projects or what's on the horizon. I suppose that is a good sign that we love what we do."
Tell us about your bedroom.
GG: "It's a modern, Japanese aesthetic, and a little traditional. We wanted a truly simplistic bedroom void of any additional noise or clutter. Most of the visual energy comes from the Ellsworth Kelly prints that fill the space, the antique brass bed with organic linen sheets and an antique Japanese indigo throw, and minimal vintage grey furniture. It has a zen quality that drifts you away."
The perfect place to catch those Zzzzz.
A tiny chair holds a minimalist planter.
Overall, what are you favorite aspects of the home?
Beau: "The natural light, quiet warmth, and spaces left as spaces."
A peek at the simple bathroom.
A vignette in the sunroom.
What three pieces in your wardrobe get the biggest workout? GG:
"My vintage Levi's 501's, Cobra Rock boots, and vintage Gone Records tee."Beau:
"My Red Wing work boots, vintage elephant bandana, and '70s Belstaff trialmaster jacket."
On GG: Vintage Mexican Embroidered Dress, Golden Goose short boots, Jack Walker bracelet, and brass Bonnie bracelet. On Beau: Alternative Vintage Soft Tee, Levi's black 511 jeans, Sperry leather boat shoes, and Vintage leather belt (Beau's Grandfather crafted the belt buckle).
What are some of your favorite places to shop in San Francisco?GG:
, Mill Mercantile
, and Gravel & Gold
GG in the couple's lovely backyard, complete with a lemon tree, fire pit, and artful greenhouse.
Where else might we find you in and around the city? GG:
"We love exhibitions at the de Young
, checking out estate sales on the weekends, catching a movie at The Castro Theatre
, and taking our dog to Fort Funston."
This greenhouse is extra dreamy. What's the story behind it?
Beau: "During my artist residency at Recology S.F., I collected many beautiful paned windows, French doors, and curved glass sashes that were being thrown away, and built an intimate green house for one or two people. It is a private and public space with translucent glass that is slowly becoming more private as the passion flower vines embrace the structure. It is a protected space where you can witness the constantly changing S.F. climate, as well as an idea generator for me. GG also hides away here all the time."