Ranch house revival

Skylights and vaulted ceilings transform a 1950s house

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Even on a gloomy day, the interior of the home seems surprisingly bright, thanks to mostly white walls and ceilings and 18 skylights. In most cases, the skylights are placed so diffused light reflects off the walls. The kitchen, bathrooms, laundry room, and office have skylights centered over the room, partially masked by open grids of maple that are flush with the ceiling.

Level ceilings define corridors that link but visually separate the major rooms with vaulted ceilings. This design strategy creates an accordion-like feeling of compression and decompression. A vivid persimmon-colored wall and a skylit art partition add drama to the foyer.


The Moffats added great built-in storage during their remodel. 

The dining room features cabinetry with open niches and glass doors, plus a built-in buffet.

In the office, deep bookcases and display shelves surround the windows ― even extending across them ― turning the wall into a series of storage niches.

A corner of the kitchen contains a built-in pantry with vertical storage drawers that roll out, putting canned goods and spices within easy reach.

Daylight floods the master bath, thanks to a glass ceiling over the shower and glass interior partitions.

Glass cabinets act as dividers between the kitchen and the family room, pre-serving openness.

Alcoves in the hall contain built-in bureaus and a jewelry cabinet.

Design: Gregory P. Evard, Architect, Palo Alto, CA (650/843-1014); Pete Moffat Construction, Palo Alto (650/493-8899); Jay Thayer Landscape Architects, San Francisco (415/626-2636).


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