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An Overhaul Reveals the 'Rigor and Economy' of A. Quincy Jones

Of the 160 tract homes designed by A. Quincy Jones built in the Brentwood nieghborhood of Crestwood Hills, only 33 survive. When Bruce Norelius and Landis Green bought theirs from the original owners in 2009, they knew they wanted to make cosmetic changes; some that revealed more of the home's original materials, and some that Jones may not have chosen, but all in keeping with what Norelius (an architect) calls Jones' "rigor and economy."

"I believe he designed these houses to be living things," Norelius told Dwell, which featured the project in its February 2015 issue. "They're not museums, and though I don't want to change the bones, this isn't a historical restoration." Much of the effort involved stripping the 1,200-square foot home's "countless coats of paint" to expose original timber and concrete.

Here's what the dining area looked like. (Floorplan here; right here for a shot of the living room on the other side of that chunky fireplace.)

The original concrete floors stayed. The couple added redwood cabinetry to the dining area, to complement the original redwood paneling (pictured up top). "We started stripping off white paint, [and] the browns of original timbers and the grays of concrete block were exposed," says Norelius. "We're people who love light. But the dark palette is so comforting. It makes the house feel like a shelter."

"All that stripping," continues Norelius, "is about getting to the natural surfaces of the wood, and the concrete block." Some of the biggest changes took place in the kitchen, where the couple brought in white-marble countertops and cold-rolled steel cabinets.

In the master bedroom (the other two bedrooms became a guest room and Norelius's office) you can see some of the straight-grain vertical fir plywood they replaced some of the "really sad plywood" with. Visit Dwell for the full account.

&;183; L.A. Renovation Respects Midcentury Bones (While Adding Some Flair) [Dwell]