A 109-year-old house grows into its own, gaining living space and creature comforts while honoring its heritage
Right after moving in, the pair set about addressing immediate needs, replacing the sagging asphalt roof with standing-seam metal, and opening up the kitchen by removing a wall, then adding a spacious prep island in the center. “We love to cook, but we’re messy,” says Michael of the improved workspace.
Recognizing that a cozy first-floor study would likely become a regular go-to spot in the house, they decided to create one that would be especially welcoming for themselves and guests. Key to the dramatic transformation of what had been an unused sitting room was installing wall-to-wall bookshelves and cabinets, including a bar, fashioned from old floorboards and ceiling joists with no finish on them, just the natural patina of time. “We chose wood based on its character,” says interior designer Matt Larkin, a friend and neighbor who designed the builtins with his wife, designer Lainie Grant, and who collaborated on other projects during the remodel.
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