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Villa Nel Bosco Published in Getaway Style

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Oakland Kitchen remodel, budget:  $15,000

I recently finished a fresh new kitchen in the East Bay. A large home built after the '91 Oakland fire was in need of a kitchen remodel for a possible home sale or rental.  They had little time and $15,000.  After taking stock of the space, I decided that the cabinets could stay if we shored them up and changed out the knobs.  The appliances, countertops, sink, faucet and tile had to go. So, I got busy scouring design showrooms and websites for lower cost, good looking products (a faucet on sale here, a range promotion there).  We ended up with a gorgeous kitchen and the house had eight families begging for the rental.  The family that won moved in the week it went on the market! See the before and after photos below.








Villa Nel Bosco in Glen Ellen, CA

I spent much of 2011 furnishing an event and vacation rental in beautiful Sonoma County, CA.  I began in March just when the mustard was blooming in full cadmium throughout the winter vineyards and over the rolling hills - stunning.


I started with interesting furniture finds like a solid hand carved teak dining table from Bali and some mid century french club chairs, installed a pool and patio, bocce court and fire pit. Put a new face on a bathroom, and built an outdoor shed and shower out of salvaged materials found in Petaluma and some shutters found on the side of the road.

Turned a deck into a romantic sleeping porch and designed my own light fixtures I like to call movable sconces.

Made box spring covers out of men's Italian suit fabrics and commisioned Pennsylvania artist Katherine James to create some whimsical artwork which we suspended from a primitive pulley system.



Picked out wood from the Reuse People in Oakland to build a portly outdoor dining table, found and installed some hulking old library doors to close off a bedroom and used bolts and bolts of burlap. You can see the complete home and rent Villa Nel Bosco for your next vacation here.