The homeowners arrived each morning ready to tackle the next old thing. “They put in so much sweat equity,” says Jerusha Kaffine, a designer who helped the couple turn gutted space into a cook’s kitchen. “There were days when it was sweltering hot, and they were working.” Along with demolition, Frank helped rebuild the porch, install new windows in back, replace soffits, seal the foundation, and tackle the rough and finish carpentry. After learning that the fireplace surround had once been gleaming unpainted wood, Tamiko made it her job to scrape and strip away layers of paint until the grain reappeared.
There was a lot to do and even more to discuss, as any couple will tell you. “Trust me, it was very stressful,” Tamiko says. “And even though we were on the same page, my husband’s ideas—let’s say he can be bold in his decisions, and I have to say, ‘No, that doesn’t look right.’ You have to meet in the middle, and we did.”
Shown: The first-floor library TV room boasts a barrel-vaulted ceiling, a fireplace entertainment stand, and enough leisure space, Tamiko jokes, to qualify as “the man cave, for sure.”
PAINT: Sherwin-Williams’s Quixotic Plum (office walls), Mediterranean (library walls), and Seaworthy (library ceiling panels)