Detail view from Boxleaf’s West Atherton full-site landscape renovation

Chroma collaborators are industry-leading creative visionaries, prolific polymaths—and amazing humans. Meet the kindred spirits making The Villanelle possible.

Boxleaf Design

Founded by landscape architect Sarah Warto, Boxleaf Design is an award-winning landscape design firm renowned for intuitive, timeless gardens. Known for their high-end work and adeptness at complexity, they have an uncanny ability to unleash the potential of a site, with a stealth eye for proportion, a genius hivemind for uncommon design solutions, and a thriving portfolio. 

Sarah Warto of Boxleaf Design
Founder of Boxleaf Design, Sarah Warto

What’s the Boxleaf aesthetic?

Our aesthetic isn’t defined by a singular style, but rather an approach that encourages human engagement with the outdoors and sparking joy. Our spaces must, at the core, feel comfortable, intuitive, and restorative. Achieving timelessness drives much of our creative process. We love learning about new materials and techniques, but we don’t follow trends. For us, it’s about blending historical precedence with the cues of nature to guide a unique expression. Our gardens and spaces are carefully designed to stand the test of time aesthetically, practically, and environmentally. And in our current climate, creativity now means seamlessly integrating sustainability and longevity into all of our work. Once we know our spaces meet these core values, then it’s time to sprinkle in a little fun, whimsy, and fantasy.


Wildly tranquil native flowers and plants cocoon sculptural seating in Boxleaf’s West Atherton landscape renovation.
Wildly tranquil native flowers and plants cocoon sculptural seating in Boxleaf’s West Atherton landscape renovation.

Favorite garden—past, present, real, or fantasy?

I’m a New Yorker with French roots. I have to credit Central Park with being one of my earliest influences, mixed with the Mediterranean wonderland of the Jardin Exotique in Eze (close to where I was engaged to my husband, true life partner, [and fellow Boxleaf principal] Steve).  

What’s on your vision board?

… whatever the wind blows my way. I’m a sponge for inspiration and moved by the human spirit in many forms.  

Visit website

@boxleafdesign

A striking Mill Valley home, designed by Brooks McDonald Architecture, nestles in untamed nature.
A striking Mill Valley home, designed by Brooks McDonald Architecture, nestles in untamed nature.

Brooks McDonald Architecture

A San Francisco local, architect Brooks McDonald has practiced in the Bay Area and beyond for more than 15 years, specializing in boutique homes and sustainable building practices. His work is extraordinarily thoughtful and quite simply brilliant, rooted in context with a strong connection to nature.


Brooks McDonald in his Sausalito studio
Brooks McDonald in his Sausalito studio

Describe the vibe of a Brooks McDonald project.

We approach our projects with intention and purpose behind every design detail, and our primary goal is to guide a joyful process. Our product is a direct result of this collaboration, which makes each project unique with its own story. 

 

Who are your design idols?

Alvar Aalto, Steven Holl, and Julia Morgan, each of whom mastered the craft of responding to cultural and geographical context with such grace. 

 

What’s your superpower?

I have none, but I strive to be a good listener. 

 

Visit website

@brooksmcdonaldarchitecture

 


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