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Design: Penny Dru Baird | Photos by Trever Tondro

Montecito Spanish Modern

Step inside a serene Montecito home with stunning ocean views. "Old Montecito with new fusion flair" is the style described by designer Penny Drue Baird. Comfortable, effortless and elevated is the look. “I’m a big believer that interior design should respect a building’s architecture,” Baird muses. And so, taking stock of the newly constructed dwelling’s cathedral ceilings and material palette of stone, wood and plaster, she imagined a modern riff on classic Santa Barbara style: a home designed with ease, entertaining and indoor-outdoor living top of mind, yet peppered with artistic conversation pieces. From far-flung treasures to comfortable nooks perfect for sipping a fresh-squeezed cocktail, this home’s waltz between casual and elevated befits a dreamy California locale beloved in equal measure for its rustic and glamorous accents. “We wanted comfort, a relaxed mood and a neutral backdrop to let the trees and ocean shine,” the homeowner adds.

“With today's open floor plans, the emphasis on dining rooms has disappeared. But the opposite situation can also arise. What happens when there is no area designated for a dining room? How can one create an area for entertaining?" says Penny.

"In the case of our Montecito project we had to improvise. The living room had numerous architectural constraints that made dining awkward and oddly sized. After examining the possibilities- we designed a dining area in a large and wide corridor. As we already had a sumptuous chandelier here, a dining table was right at home underneath it... and a new dining ' room' was born. So start thinking out of the box!” encourages Penny.

Nab AD Top 100 designer Penny Drue Baird's effortlessly chic style with a curated collection of breezy seating, organic lighting and colorful accents.

Poliana 4-Drawer & 2-Door Cabinet - Antique Brass
Napa Chaise - Valley Nimbus
Eichholtz Coffee Table Prelude Travertine
Nuevo Nuevo Lily Side Table - Gold HGTB266
CFC Noir Holt Console - Natural OW265-GW
Nuevo Lily Side Table - Gold | Alchemy Fine Home

Napa 3 Piece Sectional - Bennett Moon


Explore Penny's Style


About Penny Drue Baird

Penny Drue Baird, the owner of dessins, llc, is an internationally renown interior designer, celebrated for her top tier architectural detailing and design.

Ms. Baird creates atmospheres filled with architectural detail, warmth, and sophisticated charm; she has a penchant for European traditions and style. She is known for her in-depth knowledge of sources, especially in Western Europe. Baird divides her time between her offices on Madison Avenue and her outpost in Paris. Dedicated to creating highly personalized homes for her clients, Ms. Baird inspires her creativity by traveling through Paris, London and the English and French countrysides in relentless pursuit of unique, fine antiques, objects d’art, and cutting edge new design furnishings that her clients will not see in other homes.

Baird has been named to Architectural Digest’s list of the Top 100 Architects and Designers world-wide for over 20 years, she has also been named to Luxe magazine’s Gold List. She has been featured and quoted in more than 200 magazines, newspapers and books both in the U.S. and internationally.


Get to know Penny Drue Baird