INTERIOR DESIGN: JOE NYE
ARCHITECTURE, LANDSCAPE DESIGN
& INTERIOR ARCHITECTURE: TICHENOR & THORP ARCHITECTS, INC.
PHOTOGRAPHER: ROGER DAVIES
IF YOU ARE NOT IN THE HOME DESIGN industry the names of architects M. Brian Tichenor and Raun Thorp will mean very little. But inside the design industry this husband and wife team are the go-to architects for many of the most important interior designers.
For years the clients were searching to find a parcel of land suitable to build on in this area of Pasadena. Since this land was on one of the great Pasadena streets, T&T was engaged to design the project, both because of their reputation for carefully wrought traditional homes and for their practice of designing from the ‘garden in’—a concept particularly important on this challenging site.
Georgian architecture, and its many echoes in the Californian architecture of the 20’s served as a guide for the design of the buildings. Carefully scaled gardens were designed for the deep street frontages to expand the sense of space, and to calibrate the presentation of the primary front façade. The two-story home was designed with a large pool and spa, a guest house, as well as a dining courtyard with an outdoor fireplace.
(excerpt from Outside In)
THE CLIENTS HAD A FASCINATION WITH the late eighteenth early nineteenth-century neoclassicist Sir John Soane, the great Regency architect, and the widely influential architectural theorist Christopher Alexander. They presented Tichenor & Thorp with a completely unique intellectual challenge: to examine the two sophisticated aesthetic languages and determine where they overlapped.
A primary force in the development of this design happened to be its context. The lot sits on a corner in the heart of Pasadena, a block from the Cal Tech campus and very near the Huntington Botanical Gardens in San Marino, a beautiful old residential community. The entire area is rich in architectural history. Tichenor & Thorp turned to nearby precedents for inspiration and were able to bring much of the local architectural history to bear.
In the plan of the house and all of the detailing, Soane, Alexander and the Southern California masters converge. From panel trims to molding to balustrades, ceiling treatments, floors, fireplace mantels, hedges, spa, and pool, essential geometries
reoccur in various scales and dimensionalities, always with delicacy, restraint, and understatement, making it feel both timeless and of this time.