Project size: 4,950 square feet

Program: This live/work house for the architect and his artist wife has two studios, native gardens, and flexible indoor-outdoor living. The couple collaborated on all aspects of the project: the architect led the building design and site planning, while the artist directed color and material selection, furnishings, and gardens. The two approached the house as a case study in sustainability, based on passive design with building and environment in harmony. The house celebrates its connection to the local and regional landscape. In Rustic Canyon, just two miles from central Santa Monica, it nestles low between canyon ridges to the east and west

Location: Rustic Canyon, California

Solution: The house is organized along an east-west axis to optimize north and south solar orientations. A gallery forms the spine of the house: rooms alternate north and south of it, creating the sense of separate pavilions while allowing for all major areas to have ample exposure to light and prevailing ocean breezes. This alternation of spaces creates a hierarchy of courtyards from the entry and the library court to the central south-facing court, which frames a 125-year-old English oak, the anchor of the site. As a deciduous tree, it gives perfect summer shade and allows the court to capture warmth in winter. Operable glass walls allow spatial variations of indoor-outdoor connectivity. Like the Japanese concept of “ma,” the house is experienced progressively as a transformation from inside to outside and back again.

Construction and materials: The structure is steel with engineered wood studs. The material palette represents a blend of elements such as hand-mixed integral color plaster and stone for thermal mass, with contemporary products: treated wood siding as a rustic but fire-resistant exterior cladding, recycled materials, LED lighting.

Additional Information

Completion dateMarch 2016

Gross square footage: 4,950 square feet

Total project cost: withheld

Owner: Buzz Yudell and Tina Beebe



Moore Ruble Yudell Architects & Planners
933 Pico Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90405


Personnel in architect's firm who should receive special credit:

Architects: Buzz Yudell, FAIA and Tina Beebe
Associate: Clay Holden, AIA
Interior Design: Tina Beebe
Garden Design: Tina Beebe
Color: Tina Beebe
Construction Documents: glaserworks


Architect of record:

Moore Ruble Yudell


Interior designer:

Tina Beebe



Structural—Parker Resnick;

Civil—CW Howe Partners, Inc.; Geotech—Grover Hollingsworth and Associates, Inc.;

Surveyors: M&M & Co.


General contractor:

Oliver Garrett Construction, Inc.



Colins Lozada/Moore Ruble Yudell tel: 310-450-1400





Structural System

Structural steel and engineered wood studs (all wood 100% FSC)


Exterior Cladding

Other cladding unique to this project: Thermery for exterior wood cladding and garden walls



Metal: Standing seam metal roof
Zinc flashing and downspouts

Metal frame: Fleetwood aluminum casements and awning



Glass: Solarban 70 Low E



Metal doors: Fleetwood

Sliding doors: Fleetwood



Other special hardware: Stainless steel railings by Art Metal


Interior Finishes

Cabinetwork and custom woodwork: Henrybuilt

Paints and stains: All paints and stains low VOC and custom mixed by Tina Beebe

Special surfacing: All walls integral color trowelled plaster, custom mixed by Tina Beebe

Raised flooring: All walls integral color trowelled plaster, custom mixed by Tina Beebe

Special interior finishes unique to this project: All walls integral color trowelled plaster, custom mixed by Tina Beebe



Chairs: Varied: including chairs by Bellini, Aalto, Rietveld, Prouvé, and Yudell

Tables: Varied: including tables by Noguchi, Bouroullec, and Yudell & Beebe



Interior ambient lighting: All LED low energy fixtures



Energy management or building automation system: Solar panels provide:
Radiant space heating
Domestic hot water
Seasonal pool heating
No air conditioning

Photovoltaic system: PV panels provide excess energy on an annual basis
Enphase energy monitoring

Other unique products that contribute to sustainability: More than 80% of the pre-existing house was donated and recycled.