Architects Redesign a Midcentury Residence

Interior designer Jana Valdez and her homebuilder husband, Armando, owners of Haven Design & Construction, gutted and remodeled a San Antonio, Texas, home built in 1959, maintaining its midcentury aesthetic while modernizing its design and features. They’d bought the house along with an investor, with the intention of renovating and then selling it to someone who likes to entertain. “We wanted it to appeal to a wider variety of people. We wanted to blend modern with midcentury modern,” Valdez says.

They initially tackled the home’s layout, then updated its finishes and added some special features inside and out. The house had good bones but was in disrepair. “It needed roof repairs. Part of the ceiling was hanging down in one of the rooms,” Valdez says. “It had a bad remodel and addition in the 1980s, which chopped the house up. It didn’t flow very well. We had to gut it and start over.” She worried that die-hard midcentury fans would question its authenticity, but it was a big hit at open houses. “I made a point to say this was made to honor the architecture, but also how we live modern-day,” Valdez says.

House at a Glance
Who lives here: A young couple and their dog
Location: Alamo Heights area of San Antonio, Texas
Size: 2,300 square feet (214 square meters); four bedrooms, two bathrooms

Architect, builder and designer: Haven Design & Construction

The entire home was rewired and all windows and doors replaced with energy-efficient models. Valdez used Houzz to research midcentury kitchens and bathrooms and to settle on colors and finishes.

“I didn’t want to do all brown,” she says. “I thought, what else can I put with this. I definitely wanted wood accents that were nice but more modern. That’s when I chose blue, which looks more peacock in person. I played off that to tie spaces with that.”

Valdez says she’s proud of how her husband came up with solutions to what she wanted to do with the home’s layout, along with other challenges. “I figure out what I want and he figures out how to make it happen,” she says.

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Before: The kitchen previously had a peninsula and dated appliances and finishes. A window over the sink looked into the garage and another window had a view of the roof overhang outside. “I wanted to keep that clerestory window in the corner,” Valdez says. “It was way taller before and you could see the roof overhang through the window. It looked awful. We wanted to keep it as part of the original architecture, but had to figure it out.”

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