Hidden Depths


Interior designer Kristi Will works her winning design philosophy in a Palo Alto home

Photo by Matthew Millman

Interior designer Kristi Will believes that every project has two clients: the homeowners and the home itself. “We must delve deep into the home’s architecture, scale and style in order to create designs that speak to those elements,” she explains. The lifestyle of the homeowners, their personalities and how they use the space are layered into that knowledge. “The design is never about what we want to do,” she emphasizes, “it’s about putting designs together in such a way that we are giving the homeowner the best of what they love.”

For this Palo Alto project, with architecture by EYRC Architects, the clients had created a competition. “They asked a handful of interior designers to submit concepts and design boards before they selected which firm they would work with.” Will’s firm was chosen because the clients felt that they understood the spatial challenges of the home which centered around a long and narrow living room.

In the office, Hermes’ ‘Matieres’ couch and chairs are joined by Hermes’ ‘Standard’ lamp and their ‘Carre D’Assise’ coffee table/ottoman. The rug is Han Feng ‘Meng I’. Photo by Matthew Millman

The Silicon Valley couple, who work in tech, wanted the interior to echo the home’s modern style while also being comfortable enough for everyday living. “Our vision for that space completely resonated with them,” says Will. It paired opposing sectionals, transforming the space into a room that was at once intimate and functional”.

Photo by Matthew Millman
Boffi’s ‘Iceland’ basins partner with their ‘Comfort Mood’ bathtub.
Photo by Matthew Millman

“We were working with a lot of more contemporary hard surfaces such as concrete and brick,” Wills shares, “So we sought to warm those up by introducing layers of textural interest and pops of color.” That included the wife‘s favorite ‘Hermes Yellow and art that the couple had acquired during their travels. “It was a very collaborative design process where they would bring us pieces and ask how we could make them work with throughout the interiors.”

The dining room’s bright chairs are Hermes’ Sellier Chair in 5x Jaune. Henri Burzzytn’s Wave hangs above the table. Photo by Matthew Millman
In the downstairs seating area, Knoll’s Barcelona chairs and Flexform’s Piuma coffee table in walnut sit atop Holly Hunt’s Beyond Borders ‘Arabesque’ rug. Photo by Matthew Millman

The open floor plan provided a direct link between the kitchen and the dining room. However, because the client loves to entertain, they were also interested in a design that would shift the focus from preparation to eating when it came time to sit down to dinner.  “We devised a thin, sheer mesh metal divider that can be fully retracted to create a seamless look when not in use,” says Wills. Wood paneling along the back wall of the kitchen hides a large pantry while a gunmetal gray matte lacquer wall conceals the kitchen’s appliances.

The metal curtain is from Cascade Coil.
Photo by Matthew Millman
The kitchen’s cabinets are Bulthaup, the countertops are Silestone’s “White Zeus,” and the barstools are from Janus & Cie.
Photo by Matthew Millman

“The clients were absolutely thrilled to see their design vision come together in such a beautiful way.”