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This midcentury home keeps it retro in Ballard

The aesthetic embraces the Atomic Age

Dan Achatz Photography/Courtesy of Windermere

Sometimes, especially in the Northwest, we’ll tend toward midcentury homes that are understated and refined. But this Ballard home lives loud, with an atomic design sensibility that’s more mod than Mad Men—and anything but boring.

Its space-age aesthetic is in good company: It was built in 1963, the same year as the World’s Fair Century 21 Exposition that gave us other iconic pieces of midcentury futurism like the Space Needle and the Pacific Science Center. Despite the look of some of our most recognizable landmarks homes of the era tend to defer to more muted tones.

While we can’t speak to what it looked like in 1963, it’s now a colorful abode with a collection of retro finishes hand-picked by the current owner, a musician and outdoorsman originally from Las Vegas. Vaulted ceilings add to the dramatic look.

The aesthetic is perhaps the most pronounced in the kitchen, where seafoam and turquoise—colors that pop back in throughout the rest of the house—work together in fixtures, upholstery, and accent walls to create a cheery space. Showstoppers include a built-in bench for a breakfast nook and rounded double sink.

Just off the kitchen, a small office nook is just a little quieter—but still has the same retro lines on the built-in desk and rounded shelf.

The living area is more classic modern, with a towering stone fireplace and more muted decor—but it’s open to the seafoam surrounding the kitchen and stairwell. That fireplace continues into a den on the lower level.

Some of the prettiest gathering spaces are on the outside, with a large deck with Shilshole Bay views; a quiet, cozy patio under an arbor; and more sitting space among some raised beds.

The four bedrooms run the gamut from understated to sleek to retrofuturistic—and most have their own outside entrances, including French doors from the master. The master bath turns up the color intensity, with deep green and blue tiles with yellow accents surrounding a shower and jetted tub.

The home is listed for $1.2 million.