The McKinley House
Last week I joined Adorne by Legrand as they unveiled a complete retrofit of light switches and outlets at the McKinley House in Venice, CA. Those of you who are fans of the Showtime series “Californication” may recognize the home as the primary set for the show. The home was designed by owner/architect David Hertz, FAIA and not only is it quite a structure to look at, but it also boasts the latest in environmental features, earning it the Sustainable Living Award by the Eco Home Network. . The home, built in two phases, started in 1996 on a single lot and then completed in 2003 when the adjacent lot was purchased and the property extended. The property resembles a small compound and is comprised of four smaller structures that are connected via natural light filled bridges. These four structures open up to a central courtyard with a long lap pool and the indoor/outdoor spaces that blend into one another recall the modern Balinese style that I became so familiar with while I lived in Bali, off and on for 20 years during my last career.
Retrofitting the Light Switches
Recently the owners of the McKinley House decided to retrofit each and every light switch and electrical outlet in their home, as the ones installed when the house was built were either outdated or an eyesore (or in some cases, both) The beautiful lines of the home warranted light switches that were in keeping with the minimal aesthetic and that blended into the surrounding environment. It was then that they called upon Legrand to install Adorne line of light switches, wall plates, home systems and under cabinet lighting.
Being active in the interior design community and attending show homes and trade shows almost monthly, Adorne by Legrand has been on my radar for quite some time. You may recall that I touched upon Adorne when I covered my friend, Laura Schwartz-Muller’s studio loft design for Dwell at Met Lofts back in June? Coming to see an entire house (especially a large-scale house with the notoriety of the McKinley House) really made me focus in on the light switch and realize what a difference a roughly 3″ x 5″ rectangle can make in a room and an entire residence.
The owners of McKinley House also turned to Adorne switches by Legrand because they blend in seamlessly to everything around. No more visible screws, fussy buttons and awkward edges!
Until you see the before and after side by side, it may be tough to visualize, but the examples above give you a visual side by side comparison.
The light switch in the hallway leading to the rear of the house is my favorite Adorne product – the “wave switch”, which incorporates a touchless, motion sensor operated switch. Just walk by, wave your hand, and the lights turn off or on. I wrote about this switch a little while ago for my post on the touch-free, germ-free bathroom, and it is a brilliant way to reduce germs in the bathroom and only requires minimal effort to both install and operate.
Adorne by Legrand has an extensive list of product- light switches, dimmers, timers, pop out outlets, a night light switch plate that can act as a portable flashlight when needed. The options are limitless, but one thing is for sure. Adorne products have the most streamlined and unobtrusive appearance on the market, which is why they have been embraced by interior designers and homeowners alike.
I was offered Adorne light switches a while back but never had the chance to take advantage of the opportunity. However, after seeing how they can enhance and update the appearance of the home, I might just get my act together and make it happen sooner than later. Each room in my house has a different color or wallpaper, so unlike the McKinley House which used one metal finish, I will probably take advantage of the more than 32 finishes and customizable plates available. Stay tuned – there’s much more to come from Adorne by Legrand.