Seven Tips From a Heritage Remodel

Using pre-existing challenges as opportunities to be creative.

15 May –

Seven Tips From a Heritage Remodel
01 Playful Office Space

Remodeling a home with pre-existing walls and quirky layouts comes with many different challenges, but with creative solutions the end result can be beautiful and functional.

Recently, Shea and the design team helped a client renovate her childhood home. Since our client grew up in the house, she had a lot of ideas about how the space should function, look, and feel. Our job was to make her vision come to life in a cohesive way. The client’s style is classic, timeless, and paired-back with a need to withstand the daily life of a young family. The first thing we needed to address was a few flow issues, making sure the home functioned properly for a busy family of five. We changed a few walls, selected all new finishes, and curated a furniture plan to reflect the simple, light, and soft aesthetic our client was asking for. Watch below to see Shea’s take on the remodel highlights and keep scrolling to find all the tips we have learned to help you take on your own remodel.

“Embrace the home’s character and use its challenges as opportunities to be creative.”

Shea McGee


Add Trimwork

The entryway sets the tone for the rest of the home, and we wanted to do it just right. The original space had great bones, so we refinished, repainted, and added a stair runner to dress up the pre-existing staircase. Next, we added molding to the walls which made the biggest difference in the space. Our first tip is that trimwork is a no-fail approach to elevating any space, especially an entryway.

Paint Guide: The entryway is painted Westhightland White by Sherwin Williams.

Trimwork is an easy opportunity to add period-appropriate character.

Remodel Tip


Element of Surprise

In the entryway of this home, Shea and the design team created a barrel archway that conceals a pocket door leading to a powder bathroom. When you slide the door open it is a jewel-box moment revealing a fun, patterned wallpaper within. This detail is simple but thoughtful and gives the home an extra dose of character. In the pantry we painted the cabinetry Lousiburg Green by Benjamin Moore, which creates a nice surprise when peeking in from the kitchen. When adding a moment of surprise to a space it doesn’t have to be a loud one, just unexpected.

Look for opportunities to add an element of surprise.

Remodel Tip


Utilize Built-Ins

In the entryway there is a door that leads into a multipurpose space. The client wanted this space to work as a laundry room, mudroom, and craft room. So, there were a lot of things we needed to fit into the footprint of the area. Shea and the design team tried multiple layouts but landed on styling a table in the center to ground the space and then created custom built-in cabinetry to store everything else behind closed doors. To give this room a playful pattern, we installed tile in a diamond motif. We actually used an outdoor tile, and it gives this space a beautiful and rustic look with loads of durability.

Paint Guide: The cabinetry is painted in Steamed Milk by Sherwin Williams.

Employ custom built-ins to hide unsightly items and bring order to a multi-use space.

Remodel Tip

Use outdoor flooring materials indoors for instant patina and character.

Remodel Tip


Blend Old & New

Throughout the entire home Shea and the design team didn’t want to do anything too fussy but instead wanted to stick to the simple and classic aesthetic the client loved. In each space the team tried to incorporate vintage finds with new styles—in the living room the client’s childhood piano paired with new furniture and in the powder bathroom a vintage sink was installed. It is all about balancing old and new that brings contrast and character to a home.

Blend old and new for a look that honors the home’s history but adds contemporary style.

Remodel Tip


Add Architectural Interest

Shea and the design team wanted to add structural details to the space that complimented the furniture selections and the history of the home. In the living room and family room the team designed ceiling beams which give both spaces a more custom look. The built-in cabinetry between the living room and dining room brings in a little extra charm. The arches throughout the home also create visual interest. All of these architectural details give the home character and make the space feel custom and unique.

When making structural changes, add materials and shapes that speak to the home’s existing history, like beams and arches.

Remodel Tip


Innovative Details

Our client had her heart set on a gorgeous white kitchen with a wood island. These are classic selections, but we didn’t want it to feel generic. From here we added intentional details that complimented the light and timeless vibe of the house. We created this beautiful arched hood and continued that curved theme with the quartz backsplash. We made the fridge look like a piece of furniture, like a hutch, rather than cabinetry to take it to the next level. All of these details work together to make the kitchen feel thoughtfully designed.

Paint Guide: The walls are painted Westhightland White by Sherwin Williams and the cabinets are painted in Steamed Milk by Sherwin Williams and bring a two-tone warmness to the space.

Elevate a classic, all-white kitchen with innovative detailing.

Remodel Tip


Embrace Asymmetry

When we design a kitchen, we always start with the layout. It is a commonly asked question whether the range should be centered on the wall or the island, and typically Shea suggests the island. In this home the range was asymmetrical on the wall and centered on the island. In the corner of the kitchen, we added a charming oval window that brought balance to the space.

Embrace an asymmetrical kitchen footprint by employing thoughtful, structural details.

Remodel Tip

Date Posted
15 May