MBC Interior Design
Describe the featured project.
Our client had lived in this quintessential Manhattan Beach bungalow—just steps away from The Strand—for more than 20 years. The existing home had been designed in the popular Mediterranean style with antique furniture and window treatments that made it feel a little dark for beach living. The client was ready for a refresh, but she still wanted it to feel classic; some of the pieces she owned had been passed down, and she needed them to be incorporated into the new design.
The result is a modern take on traditional living. Inspired by a painting from the client’s art collection, the new color palette is lighter and brighter. We replaced the window treatments with woven shades and linen drapery that allow the light in but still provide plenty of privacy. We lightened up the upholstery and kept the lines of the furniture clean and tailored to make pieces like the antique dining table feel a little less formal. A beautiful, shimmery grass cloth wallpaper in the powder room complements the custom vanity we had painted in a smoky green.
Tell us about your business.
We are a residential interior design studio that specializes in creating modern-classic interiors for everyday living. We focus on all levels of design—from a one-room refresh to full-scale remodels and custom builds. What is most essential to our design process is getting to know our clients—their style and how they want their home to live. Our goal is to make each space not only beautiful but beautifully unique to each client. We put our stamp on every project but believe a home is most compelling when it’s a reflection of the people who live there.
Are open floor plans still in demand?
I think—especially here at the beach—open floor plans are still in demand because they allow in lots of light and make a home feel airier. We are seeing people looking to carve out special places within that open floor plan, providing the best of both worlds: less of an enclosed room and more of a nook that’s off to the side of the main living space. Spaces such as a home office, den or TV room are great for this because they can still feel cozy and private but not be completely separated from the rest of the home.
Vintage or new?
The answer is both—mixing styles and different elements is what makes a space interesting. When everything is new, it can feel staged and sterile. If there is too much old, it can feel dated. Finding the right balance and blending styles makes a space feel custom since it’s those homier, more comfortable elements that can make a new home feel lived in. The best thing about vintage pieces is how easy they are to mix in no matter your design style.
Project photographed by Lauren Pressey