original fireplace
Photo: Nathan Kirkman
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But to take the house’s voice to heart, they had to strip away layers of ugliness. And to make room for their growing family, they needed to figure out a way to gently insert an additional 900 square feet into the 2,000-square-foot house. Over the course of a year, with the help of kitchen designers Mary Beth Shoemaker and Todd L. Atkins and contractor Marian Plewa, a Polish-born woodworker with a flair for old-home restoration, the Stilps transformed the pink, paneled palace into an authentic early-20th-century house that celebrates the glory of old wood.

The door to the left of the living room's pared-down original fireplace leads to the new family room.
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