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Trend Alert: The Excavated Look, 15 Ways

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Trend Alert: The Excavated Look, 15 Ways

October 29, 2017

Noticed lately: architects and designers embracing the past with the “excavated look”: unearthed, distressed plaster walls, remnants of long-covered-up wallpaper, and more. The look suggests a sympathy for historic buildings, and happy accidents such as pink plaster, dried glue patterns, and painted frescos are the kind of details that can’t be made up. Here are 15 ways it’s done.

N.B.: We identified the look as one of the new design trends in our post Trend Alert: 10 New Design Developments on Our Radar for Fall 2017.

the \200 year old durslade farmhouse of hauser & wirth&#8\2\17;s iwan w 9
Above: The 200-year-old Durslade Farmhouse of Hauser & Wirth’s Iwan Wirth and Manuela Hauser was restored by Laplace & Co. and Benjamin & Beauchamp who stripped paint and wallpaper to reveal original surfaces. See more at Durslade Farmhouse in Somerset: The New Bloomsbury?
german artist anne schwalbe embraced the excavated look of plaster walls and pe 10
Above: German artist Anne Schwalbe embraced the excavated look of plaster walls and peeling paint in her country house. See more in Portrait of an Artist: A Photographer’s Soulful Cottage in Rural Germany.
in a historic building on the spanish island menorca, architects quintana partn 11
Above: In a historic building on the Spanish island Menorca, architects Quintana Partners renovated some elements while exposing the raw plaster walls. See more at Casa Telmo in Menorca, with Rooms Inspired by a World Traveler.
italian architects archiplan studio exposed the 400 year old fresco in a \1600s 12
Above: Italian architects Archiplan Studio exposed the 400-year-old fresco in a 1600s apartment designed with a “blurry relationship between the natural and artificial,” say the architects. See more at In Mantova, A Romantic Apartment with Remains of a Late Renaissance Fresco.
designer cassandra ellis renovated a victorian terrace house in london leaving  13
Above: Designer Cassandra Ellis renovated a Victorian Terrace house in London leaving some of the old details—like the half whitewashed stove housing—in place. From Expert Advice: Developing Style with Designer Cassandra Ellis.
in gothenburg, sweden, architect axel robach transformed a historic auction hou 14
Above: In Gothenburg, Sweden, architect Axel Robach transformed a historic auction house into a cafe and multipurpose space but left the original walls exposed to “use the soul of the room and its humble character” as a design element. From Restaurant Visit: Past Present at Kafe Magasinet in Sweden.
at the restored \1900s hacienda of scribe winery in sonoma, california, archite 15
Above: At the restored 1900s hacienda of Scribe Winery in Sonoma, California, architects Aidlin Darling integrated original details into the restoration process as seen here on the living room plaster walls. Photograph by Andres Gonzalez for Remodelista. To see the Scribe kitchen visit Kitchen of the Week: A Hacienda Kitchen in Sonoma’s Hippest Winery.
design firms delordinaire and ciguë renovated a historic five story warehouse  16
Above: Design firms Delordinaire and Ciguë renovated a historic five-story warehouse in Chicago into the Robey Hall where they stripped the walls to contrast new with old. See more at Hotels & Lodging: The Robey Hall in Chicago.
when deborah ehrlich bought her \17\2\2 stone house in hudson, new york, she &a 17
Above: When Deborah Ehrlich bought her 1722 stone house in Hudson, New York, she “just began tearing things down to get to them,” she said. “I knocked down walls to open up the entire downstairs, exposed the beams and original plaster walls, and sanded the floor. Then I just left it. I kept thinking I would repaint the evergreen trim, which was left over from the previous owners, but I never did. Now I like the archaeological history of it.” From House Call: At Home in the Hudson Valley with Designer Deborah Ehrlich.
the bulgarian flat of creative director and designer clarisse demory, who opene 18
Above: The Bulgarian flat of creative director and designer Clarisse Demory, who opened up the space but left the ancient concrete and pink lime paint walls as she found them. See more in A Parisian’s Pied-à-Terre in Sofia, Bulgaria.
another room in the six bedroom durslade farmhouse where some walls were restor 19
Above: Another room in the six-bedroom Durslade Farmhouse where some walls were restored and painted white while others were left bare. See more at Durslade Farmhouse in Somerset: The New Bloomsbury?
in london sculptor alex chinneck&#8\2\17;s victorian house, kitchen walls a 20
Above: In London sculptor Alex Chinneck’s Victorian house, kitchen walls are exposed pink plaster which were sealed with a glaze. For more, see Artful Victorian: Sculptor Alex Chinneck’s Renovated Family Home in London.
in an \18th century farmhouse refurbished by lsl architects, old wallpaper was  21
Above: In an 18th-century farmhouse refurbished by LSL Architects, old wallpaper was removed in the bedroom and the glue used to apply it left a fresco-like X pattern on the walls. See more in The New Provencal Style: An Artfully Reinvented French Mas.
at bones, a restaurant in paris, chef james henry excavated the former irish pu 22
Above: At Bones, a restaurant in Paris, chef James Henry excavated the former Irish pub exposing pipes, stone walls, and concrete floors. See more at The Lovely Bones: A Stripped-Down Bistro in Paris.
designers quintana partners stripped the surface of a \150 year old townhouse b 23
Above: Designers Quintana Partners stripped the surface of a 150-year-old townhouse bathroom and found small rectangles of wood set into the walls that were sealed with varnish to prevent against the humidity. For more, see The All-Vintage Renovation by Quintana Partners in Menorca, Spain.
dottír restaurant in berlin, germany, exists in a jewish merchant house from t 24
Above: Dottír Restaurant in Berlin, Germany, exists in a Jewish merchant house from the 1880s where walls were exposed or left as-is. For more, see Scandi in the Mitte: Antiqued Interiors at Dottír in Berlin.

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