Wednesday, 21 February 2018 18:17

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For Ingrid Jackel, the remodel of her Palm Springs weekend home was all about joy, emotion and color.

"I have an intense job," said Jackel, chief executive of the natural beauty brand Yes To. "So I went looking for an oasis where I can feel at peace."

As a fan of Midcentury Modern architecture, Jackel didn't have to go far from her Pasadena home to find a weekend pied-a-terre.

"Your breathing changes when you are in Palm Springs," Jackel said of the desert's allure. "It's an hour and a half away from L.A. and yet it feels like another world. I like that it's charged with Old Hollywood glamour. I wanted to bring a home back to that time."

After touring a four-bedroom, three-bath 1960 home designed by Glendale architect Clair Earl, she knew she had found her escape.

Despite being neglected for years, the bank-owned home had the classic midcentury touches that Jackel admired: A tall, pitched roof, tongue-and-groove ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows. The home also featured decorative-patterned concrete blocks and a larger scale than most of the homes she had toured. Ultimately there were 19 bids on the house.

She describes the preservation project that followed as deeply personal. "I wanted it to be mine inside," Jackel said. "I didn't want to return it to a museum state. I wanted my friends and their kids and dogs to be able to come here and celebrate with me."

Working with Kevin Kemper and Howard Hawkes of HK3, a Palm Springs interior design and restoration firm, Jackel transformed the house over 18 months. (The designers will offer remodeling tips, followed by a guided tour of the house, on Feb. 17 as part of Modernism Week.)

"This house is so different from other midcentury homes in that it's one-of-a kind," Kemper said. "It has a 'Jetsons,' Space-Age feel. The architect built three homes in a row [on the street] as show homes."

In an effort to balance that feel with modern living, the designers kept it simple. They retained the home's 2,200-square-foot layout and updated the plumbing, electrical, HVAC and roof. Low ceilings were raised to open up the interiors and clerestory windows were added to bring in more light and mountain views. Because of extensive termite damage — something of a surprise in the desert — they were forced to remove the drywall and plaster. And in an effort to provide better insulation, many of the original windows were replaced with period-appropriate dual-pane, low-e aluminum framed windows

In a move that opened up the main living area, the designers removed the wall between the kitchen and living room and ripped out the entire kitchen. New IKEA cabinets and a vibrant orange Silestone island are both functional and fun. "It was the most vibrant color of orange we could find," Kemper said.

White porcelain tile floors, Wow ceramic kitchen tile and Dunn Edwards "Whisper" paint set a neutral palette that helps to accentuate Jackel's obsession with the color orange, which explains why the house, which will also be open for tours during Modernism Week, is affectionately called "Maison a l'Orange."

"It's a happy color and makes me feel good," Jackel said. "I love the sun. I'm originally from the South of France. It appeals to my passionate side."

Indeed, it's an uplifting place with bold pinks, oranges and aqua tones courtesy of the poolside umbrellas and chaise lounges, custom furnishings, wallcoverings and Trina Turk textiles.

And in a move that might explain why you'll find people snapping pictures from the curb, the home features bright orange double doors, painted a custom Dunn Edwards color to match the kitchen island.

"The house really struggled with its identity before," Hawkes said.

No longer.

"It's a happy home," Jackel said. "I wanted to be able to enter the house and have a big smile on my face. Now, when we come,we don't want to leave."

Read original article at

Thursday, 25 January 2018 20:34

IRVINE, Calif. - Jan. 17, 2018 - Atomic Ranch, the trusted resource for midcentury modern home enthusiasts, is excited to announce three seminars and home tours during Modernism Week in Palm Springs Feb. 16-18.

“Due to the overwhelming success of our “Restoration and Renovation” seminar last year, we are expanding our educational series to three different shows,” said Atomic Ranch Editor / Brand Leader Sarah Jane Stone.

The first panel, entitled “House Hunting,”​ will take place on Friday, Feb. 16. Featuring Ron Parks of HOM Sotheby’s International and T.J. Pierce of Mid-Century Homes by Moniker Real Estate, it will cover the process of looking for and purchasing a midcentury modern home. A tour of a local midcentury home currently for sale will follow.
Purchase tickets here:

The second panel, entitled “Renovation + Interior Design,”​ will take place on Saturday, February 17. Featuring Howard Hawkes and Kevin Kemper of Palm-Springs based H3K Design, it will cover the process of renovating, furnishing and decorating your midcentury home. A tour of a local home designed and furnished by H3K will follow immediately.
Purchase tickets here:

The third panel, entitled “Renovation + Preservation,”​ will take place on Sunday, February 18. Featuring Steven Shields of Palm Springs-based Shields Residential and George Smart of national nonprofit U.S. Modernist, it will cover the special considerations homeowners face when bringing a period home into the modern age.
Purchase tickets here:

Tickets will also be available at the information desk at CAMP and the Atomic Ranch Show & Sale Booth. All seminars will take place at CAMP Theater from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. with tours immediately to follow from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. Maps and directions to home tours will be distributed to audience members on the day of the event.

For more information on events, please visit

For questions regarding Atomic Ranch - sponsored events, please contact Sabra Morris, Content Marketing Director, at (401) 588-1087 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

About Atomic Ranch: Atomic Ranch is a niche brand that connects with midcentury modern enthusiasts through a bimonthly magazine, website, newsletters, live events and social media.

About Modernism Week: Modernism Week is a California 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Its signature February event in Palm Springs, California, is an annual celebration of midcentury modern design, architecture, art, fashion and culture.

Tuesday, 16 January 2018 21:30

Bold Color Booming in 2018

The team at H3K Design are among many designers who predict a return to bolder, saturated colors and jewel tones as illustrated in the tile work of this living room.

Wednesday, 13 September 2017 06:00


September 12, 2017: H3K Design, a Palm Springs-based firm specializing in interior and exterior design consultation and project management for upscale residential and commercial remodeling and renovation, is one of the winners in the recently completed 2017 HGTV Faces of Design Awards. The contest asked nationwide viewers to vote on projects that exhibit excellence in a wide array of categories. H3K had entries in two categories and after five weeks of voting and more than 40 million page views, H3K’s entry for the “Curb Appeal” category was chosen as the Editors’ Pick Winner. HGTV described the “Curb Appeal’ category as residences that feature dreamy home exteriors and welcoming interiors that are sure to be the envy of the neighborhood. The H3K entry was a newly remodeled Midcentury Ranch-style residence in Palm Springs.

“We are thrilled that our local design project was featured in this prestigious annual contest,” said Howard Hawkes, H3K’s partner and principal. “Our Midcentury Ranch design was positioned against other compelling projects from all across the country, but our design clearly resonated with the judges, who awarded us with the coveted Editors’ Pick award. We couldn’t be more thrilled that the innovative and colorful nature of our design work has been nationally recognized.”

The “Curb Appeal” category featured six entries, including H3K’s Midcentury Ranch in Palm Springs. This classic 1963 Charles Dubois-designed midcentury modern home, located in south Palm Springs, was a top-to-bottom residential renovation (including interior design) that was completed in July of 2014. Since the residence already had many architectural details and textures including an elegant stone façade, the front yard yearned for a simple stage that would allow the eye to enjoy all of these elements. The H3K team added a lush, green lawn to create an “oasis in the desert” effect, and the simple geometric interplay of agaves and cacti play into the midcentury modern elements of the house. The covered front entry is punctuated with red front door and a Sputnik-style light fixture, which enlivens the entryway. The H3K team also added a narrow water feature which creates the impression of a creek running in front of the home, crossed by an entry bridge that welcomes visitors. At night the light from the fountain dances on the sweeping overhang and allows curb appeal both day and night.

Thursday, 17 August 2017 06:00

The search is on for an amazing contractor that will help you make your dream midcentury home a reality. So, where do you start? As owners of H3K Design, Kevin Kemper and Howard Hawkes have the knowledge and experience to share their insight on what to look for in a contractor. “We specialize in whole-house renovations for second homes and vacation homes, and we have a passion for Midcentury Modern design,” they say. “Part of our job is helping our clients find contractors that will work with us to build their dream homes.” Here, they share their top questions and considerations when hunting for a MCM contractor.

  • La Verne Entry Before
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  • BEFORE. “At some point in time—probably the ‘80s—the amazing breezeway between the house and carport was enclosed off this Alexander house,” says Kevin Kemper and Howard Hawkes.
  • AFTER. “The contractor was instrumental in helping us bring it back to life by opening the space, installing a fountain and adding breeze block,” says Kevin Kemper and Howard Hawkes. Photo by Patrick Ketchum Photography.

1. Check their MCM experience.

Contractors are used to tearing things down and working with a fresh start. To ensure that your contractor shares your desire to preserve MCM features when possible, it’s best if they have experience with period homes. “Renovating MCM homes is more about restoration and keeping and improving upon the things that are already there,” says Kevin and Howard. “If you want to keep things that are valuable, you need someone who is experienced, so they can think outside the box and come up with solutions for problems that may arise.”

This is also relevant to materials used. “Let them know the aesthetic is just as important as the function,” they say. “They may want to choose the path of least resistance and go with travertine tiles when you want cork or linoleum, or they’ll suggest cheap vinyl windows when you want aluminum. Decide what you want to do with your restoration and stay true to those roots.”

Saturday, 29 July 2017 00:48

Times of Sandiego ( recently highlighted one of our recent projects. Here's wht they had to say:

1. The Ultimate Getaway

BEFORE: Though the pool in this somewhat dilapidated 1958 property was in decent shape, it needed a few upgrades and some landscaping.

AFTER: This view showcases the quintessential Palm Springs retreat, from the flamboyant poolside umbrellas to the midcentury modern home projecting into the clear desert sky beneath towering palm trees. “We really tried to give off the sense that this was an ultimate Palm Springs getaway,” says Kevin Kemper, who renovated this home with Howard Hawkes, his design partner and co-owner of H3K Design.

The designers added a hot tub and waterfall feature. A new sun shelf at the pool’s far end enables guests to pull umbrellas and chairs into the water. Artificial turf breaks up the hardscape without requiring excessive water or maintenance to stay green. A new flush fire pit makes for an inviting amenity when the desert cools off at night, but it doesn’t get in the way when not in use. “You can put a bar over it during a party or a dining table — when the fire is off, of course,” Kemper says.

Wednesday, 08 February 2017 00:00

There's a home improvement project taking place on a midcentury modern dwelling every day: A Rummer in Southwest Portland's Garden Home neighborhood or Beaverton's Oak Hills. A ranch-style house in Hillsdale or another version of the low-profile, high-style design in Milwaukie or Lake Oswego.

But nowhere in the world is restoring midcentury architecture taking place on a grander scale than in the Southern California's Coachella Valley, inarguable the greatest depository of 1960s swank.

From October through mid-April, members of the Palm Springs Historical Society escort visitors on walking tours of "Mad Men"-era architecture.

Oregonians attending Palm Springs Modernism Week, Feb. 16-26, will be able to go inside some of the rehabbed homes once owned by celebrities, tennis pros and golfers.

Tuesday, 06 December 2016 00:00

A decade ago, Howard Hawkes and his partner Kevin Kemper combined their diverse backgrounds, expertise, and talents to launch H3K Design, a Palm Springs-based design consultation and project management firm. Ten years later, the duo are at the top of their game, offering everything from large-scale renovations to whole-house remodels to upscale residential and commercial clients. By offering high-caliber designs and prioritizing form, function, and styleHawkes and Kemper deliver every time. Learn more about the designers in our Q&A below.

Wednesday, 15 June 2016 00:00

Poolside Paradise 
Dive into summer with dream-worthy pools that bring midcentury style to life amid the heat waves. 

Wednesday, 14 October 2015 23:12

On Sunday night, Modernism Week will take center stage in Rancho Mirage for the Swan House — a roomy, newly remodeled Thunderbird Heights estate with mysterious provenance. The estate features clean lines and clerestory windows in the international style, and inside, it’s riddled with accent wallpaper and tile.

Just three years ago, however, appraisers suggested tearing it down.

“I really think we saved this house,” said Howard Hawkes, one of the co-owners of H3K Design, which bought the house out of foreclosure in 2012 and started restoring it this spring. “When we were getting our financing, one of the appraisers who came here told us that the house wasn’t worth saving... But we saw its potential.”