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Retro/Modern Mashup Made Real

A fun, artsy family was ready to invest in their turn-of-the-century farmhouse. They wanted a new kitchen where the mom, an artist, could display her colorful collection of “its and bits” and the dad could make his homegrown hot pepper sauce. They also dreamed of a first-floor powder room, better storage space, and a luxurious upstairs bathroom.


Willy-nilly renovations from another era had resulted in an awkward warren of upstairs rooms that weren’t being used to capacity. The dark and dreary galley kitchen had a sagging floor at its center. There was nowhere for the family to sit down for a meal.


The green and black tile floor was already on the family’s wish list and served as inspiration for the kitchen. Removing a wall expanded the footprint. Dad contributed distinctive open shelving built from pipes and live-edge wood. A confetti-like back-splash and new display space for colorful Fiesta ware (along with the quirky “its and bits”) create a perpetual party in the kitchen. 

Opposite the kitchen, the main entrance/mudroom provides custom storage for shoes, coats, and garden paraphernalia. Sunny yellow walls in the new powder room brighten the petite space. The tile floor in the upstairs bathroom sets the tone there: Although the palette is quieter, the Moroccan flower motif still feels lively.


The colorful redesign perfectly matches the personalities and lifestyle of the homeowners. It's a little farmhouse, a little retro, a little modern and a lot of whimsy. The larger world approves, too. The kitchen was a favorite on the design site Houzz, winning honors as one of the Best Kitchens showcased.

Houzz Kitchen of the Week  |  Houzz Top 20 Kitchen Tours

Designed to Ignite Inspiration

A design studio in Doylestown needed flexible, inspiring offices for a staff of eight. The starting point was a bland space consisting
of three empty rooms and one chopped up hallway. 

Not a lot to work with

The budget was small and the timeframe short. From that we needed to conjure highly functional spaces that felt modern and inspiring. Plus, we had to deliver on the design studio’s professional aesthetic — clean and timeless with a vintage-industrial accent.

A little can go a very long way

Bold color choices and a balanced mix of high- and low-end furnishings brought interest to the drab space — quickly and inexpensively.  One of our clients adored a peacock blue that made the conference room walls pop. That sparked the rest of the refreshing, modern palette. Pairing brand-spanking new furnishings (desks, bookcases, upholstered pieces) with sweet vintage scores (art deco and farmhouse light fixtures, a salvaged barn door) allowed us to get serious mileage from the modest budget. Finally, light-filtering roman shades in linen cut glare, added texture, and offered privacy. And the awkward hallway? It was transformed into a high-functioning space focused on storage and now provides a smart transition from offices to kitchenette.


Owners, staff, friends, and clients all enjoy the space now, finding it both comfortable and practical, as well as an apt reflection of the studio’s industry and unique aesthetic. 

Big Additions Made in a Small, Smart Space

A young couple on the verge of starting a family was hoping to add some additional practicality and style to their 18th-century home. They wanted a new mudroom and adjoining powder room. Both had to be wheelchair accessible.

Small addition, big challenge

The addition needed to suit the house’s historic Georgian style without pretending to be original to the stone structure. And there was only one place the new square footage could possibly go — a very tight spot between an existing window and door. 

Now and then

Stone and stucco on the exterior of the addition reference the period of the house and blend with the original architecture. Dusty blues complement colors on the trim and front porch, and in the landscaping. A Dutch door keeps pets in while allowing fresh air to circulate. A flagstone floor creates a seamless transition from outdoors to indoors. The interior works hard to balance the original Colonial aesthetic with one more timeless. A Greek key theme on the custom vanity helps reference the Georgian period. A pocket door for the powder room makes a smart space-saver.

A perfect fit

The owners now easily manage gardening supplies, coats, and wet boots thanks to generous storage and a convenient bench in their new mudroom. The powder room is a popular first and last stop for both family and visitors. Contemporary yet aesthetically integrated to the larger structure, the little addition is a big success.