A little taste of the surrounding countryside is the perfect complement to this home’s contemporary aesthetic.
A whole host of critters shares Ron and Heather Thompson’s ranch in
Marysville, California. Their 13 acres of land includes a large farmhouse (home to the couple, 16-year-old daughter Lianna, and 7-year-old son Bodhi) plus plenty of countryside for longhorn cattle, mop-headed chickens, and lambs. Beyond that is acre after acre of walnuts, peaches, almonds, and rice. “It looks like the property goes on for hundreds of acres because nothing is developed,” says Whitney Fecteau of Design Shop Interiors who, along with Leyla Jaworski, whipped the house into sophisticated shape when the Thompsons bought it. “And there are cows just chillin’ in the front yard. One of the things that inspired us was to bring the outside in.”
Sunshine came first. Previous owners had painted the walls deep gray and, Fecteau says, “it was so dark you almost couldn’t see some of the cool details,” such as woodplank ceilings and gorgeous millwork. White paint worked wonders for brightening the home’s attitude.
A wool rug stepped in as additional inspiration. Handdyed with indigo and hand-woven, it slips effortlessly under the dining table. “The darker blues in it became the inspiration for everything else in the great-room,” Heather says. Those blues crop up on a bench in the entry, pillows near the fireplace, and a runner in the kitchen.
The designers also introduced subtle, sophisticated nods to the country. A cowhide stretches under seating near the living room fireplace. Sketches of farmhouses and photos of the Thompsons’ cattle are framed and placed prominently on the walls. Leather abounds as accents on dining chairs, seats on barstools, and pillows on a bench. Fecteau notes that they kept the “country” contained: “We didn’t want the house to feel super rustic,” she says. “We wanted it to have a farmhouse vibe but with modernized, cleaner lines.” In other words, the perfect dollop of ranch dressing atop modern sensibilities.
“The wood on this wall brings in the farmhouse, and the black color is the modern part. Black adds that wow factor to a room.” —interior designer Whitney Fecteau
opposite: The guest room walls are sheathed in Stikwood, peel-and-stick reclaimed wood planks. Heather was inspired by a picture on Pinterest, “and it had these amazing pops of emerald green against black and white,” she says. Pale bedding and furniture offset the dramatic black wall, and a brass sconce brings in just a glint of glamour. above: Playful but not juvenile, Bodhi’s bedroom is just right for a 7-year-old who loves school, sports, and the color red. left: The Thompson family, Heather, Lianna, Bodhi, and Ron, enjoy views of their acreage and animals from the back porch.
left: In the dining room, pairing wing chairs with low-slung linencovered chairs partners tradition with midcentury style. Sleek, shaded pendant lights modernize the room. below: Once shrouded in black paint and black tufted fabric, this corner bar came alive with white paint and the work of a skilled cabinetmaker. Black metal pulls modernize the cabinets, and a collection of vintage items on the wall nods to homeowner Heather Thompson’s eclectic bent.