Elements of Design

A Hawaii Island home is rejuvenated with elevated Island charm.
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Photos: Olivier Koning

Interior design is an art that requires a deft hand and eye to bring many nuanced details together effectively in a personalized space. Homeowners can benefit from working with an experienced interior designer who understands not just the interplay between colors and motifs, but who can also coordinate logistics, materials, architecture and construction in harmony.

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Bringing cohesiveness to woodwork in the home was a priority for the project team.

Revitalizing this Hawaii Island home was a project for Jamie Jasina, principal interior designer and owner of Jas Interiors LLC. Located in the exclusive Kukio community on the island’s western coast, the home is a detached multidwelling residence that Jasina describes as “a true indoor-outdoor Hawaiian cottage design.” The refreshed interior highlights her expertise in spatial planning and layering intriguing tactile and aesthetic features with sensible lighting and furnishings.

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The natural beauty of Hawaii Island is honored with indoor-outdoor living arrangements that complement surrounding foliage.

“Designing for your senses and respecting your surroundings is … the basis for good design,” notes Jasina on the Jas Interiors website. “When you enter a space, it should be an experience that promotes functionality and exudes comfort. Finding the balance of the design elements along with the client’s wishes is the process that unfolds within each project.”

The Kukio residence originally had many textures and multiple wood finishes. Dark carved wood furniture gave the interior a sense of heaviness. According to Jasina, the homeowners wanted to collaborate with a Hawaii-based designer to remodel and enliven their spaces — in particular, they looked for a professional who had good relationships with local artists and who could navigate the intricacies of shipping furniture to the Islands.

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Custom media and window seat built-ins are among the many unique additions in the spacious and tranquil great room.

To start, Jasina focused on minimizing the use of various woods throughout the home. In terms of general woodwork, the original doors, trims, ceilings and other areas lacked cohesion. She and her team fixed that by outfitting the home with new doors, custom cabinets and trims. They aimed for new trims to match one of the existing wood trims and opted to paint some of the remaining previous trims as well.

In the great room, Jasina and her team removed lau hala from behind the drywall on the ceiling. They installed new tongue and groove trim between the beams and finished it with a custom stain on the entire ceiling, softening the look of the ceilings and the overall area.

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Thoughtful selections of Island-inspired books and accessories give the home a strong sense of rootedness in local culture and arts.

“The great room feels bigger and calmer with a more functional, streamlined kitchen design and custom media and window seat built-ins,” notes Jasina.

To complete the interior design, Jasina thoughtfully curated complementary flooring, lighting and textured wallpapers. Neutral furniture pieces were selected for a sense of serenity and relaxation.

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Specialty fabrics and tactile features, such as airy linens and textured wallpaper, contribute to a comforting and multisensory interior design experience.

“The goal was to tone it down and create a cohesive and balanced interior architecture with a soft beach vibe feel with Hawaiian accents and fresh furnishings,” shares Jasina. “The overall home feels inviting and airy, yet warm without all the heaviness. You can appreciate the details without feeling overwhelmed.”

Jasina notes that the project was started during the winter of 2020, at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Because of that, the project team experienced delays in shipping, and the procurement of materials — including furniture, lumber and appliances — took longer than usual.

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Soft lighting and furnishings round out the home’s spaces.

Despite those challenges, Jasina says that the home was completed, for the most part, in 14 months.

Working primarily with custom new builds and high-end renovations, Jasina is well-versed in taking her clients from concept creation through construction and installation. In addition to residential interiors, her range of experience includes hospitality, corporate and retail design, here in Hawaii and on the East Coast. She brings this diversity of knowledge and spatial understanding to projects like the Kukio home, which she says called for something “unique.”

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Excellence in execution and dedication to detail are admirable in the home’s design, inside and out.

“Attention to detail and her desire for excellence is seen in every project,” notes the Jas Interiors website. “Whether you’re designing a residence in Jamie’s hometown of Honolulu, or an office space in NYC, this process is the same. In the end, she hopes to create a space that will enhance overall well-being. She approaches all her projects in this way, big or small.”

Categories: Featured Homes, Interior Design, Renovations