Over the last few years, the California building industry has been booming with construction of Accessory Dwelling Units, which are also known as ADUs. ADUs are permitted, non-mobile tiny homes that can be built on the lot of an existing single family home. They are convenient because they do not require owners to purchase additional land, and existing infrastructure, such as utilities, can be shared with the primary home on the property.

We recently completed the interior design of a newly constructed ADU in the backyard of a Los Altos, California residence. At approximately 335 square feet, the small studio required an efficient and functional design, without sacrificing the luxurious style requested by the client. Using a little ingenuity and a thoughtful selection of top-notch products, my team and I transformed this ADU into a comfortable, upscale guest home for our clients’ loved ones.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the gorgeous details in this stylish ADU design.

We were all about creating a dramatic moment for the small-but-mighty kitchen. We combined various textures and materials, such as the moody stone farmhouse sink from Signature Hardware and the backsplash of handmade custom crackled chocolate tiles, to achieve this effect. These elements contrast beautifully with the crisp look of the custom plaid window treatments and the soft, curved lines of the glazed Arteriors pendant over the sink.

Hints of vintage inspiration also add to the charm of this tiny space. The Rejuvenation faucet features a stunning profile inspired by 1930s industrial design, and the antique Persian rug from Harooni brings an effortless aesthetic to any room.

The dining room was the perfect place to mix up the mood and play with styles. The simple design of the utilitarian Danish wood furniture makes it both practical and modern. There is an understated elegance in the minimalist style and the neutral color palette, which contrasts beautifully with the vibrant and abstract “Pop Girl Lost” raver art.


The soft color palette of the dining area was carried into the bedroom to create the ultimate restful retreat. The Amalia bedding collection is a versatile neutral, allowing each piece of furniture and decor to stand out with a unique personality. The black Noir dresser is playfully gothic, while the Arteriors sconce echoes the industrial style from the kitchen. Both pieces coordinate nicely with the Noir side table. The colorful artwork and the organic shape of the accessory on the dresser bring a bit of interest to the room.

Ample storage was our client’s primary request for this bedroom, and you can see that we were able to tastefully incorporate plenty of it. Finding the right storage solutions can be a challenge in small spaces, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you should shy away from large cabinets. It’s all about selecting one that doesn’t look too heavy or dark. We chose a Four Hands cabinet with curved lines and pretty canework to lighten up the space and fulfill our client’s needs.


The most luxurious and opulent finishes are reserved for the bathroom of this ADU. There’s nothing more sophisticated than a custom shower system, and the polished nickel finish on this system was absolutely breathtaking. That seems to be the consensus all around because it is in very high demand. But when we saw it, we knew that we couldn’t let long lead times stop us from incorporating it into the design. It proved to be well worth the wait!

Balance is essential to a strong interior design concept, so we were careful to balance the delicate features of the shower system with a masculine wall tile. The stunning graphic nature of this lilac marble does just that, making this classy, compact bathroom into a little slice of heaven.

Can’t get enough of these sumptuous details? Follow me on Instagram for even more ADU design inspiration!