Home Tour: East Side of Providence

A tired Wayland Square Dutch Colonial gets treated to a fresh start

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When Meg Curran first spied her home years ago, it was a fixer upper. The stately Dutch Colonial Gambrel in the Wayland Square neighborhood of Providence’s East Side has served Rhode Island’s first woman US attorney well. While years later she still adores its many charms, Curran was ready to make some structural updates. She craved open space for entertaining, the kitchen floors were dated, and the cabinets were in disrepair, yet she wanted to be sure to maintain the integrity of the grand old house. 

Curran turned to Red House Design Build, a firm in lower South Providence specializing in home additions, whole-home remodels, kitchen transformations, and historic renovation projects. Says Bridget Bacon, RHDB sales and marketing manager, “Our client has lived in the home for more than 20 years and is now in a new stage in life, so she desired a fresh start by improving the flow, organization, and functionality of the kitchen, half bath, and back entrance.”

Topping Curran’s wish list was having a home more accommodating to hosting family and friends. Focusing mainly on the kitchen and the connecting half-bath, RHDB eliminated the segmented butler’s pantry, which resulted in creating an open space – perfect for entertaining. A stylish new island with glass and rubbed bronze pendant lights overhead, black soapstone countertops, and new hardwood flooring were installed.

As a lover of architecture, art, and history, Curran stressed the importance of maintaining a style that fit with the original fabric and feel of the home. “In redesigning custom storage, we kept the soul of the traditional design style with new glass door panels in a linen-white palette and antique pewter hardware. A custom farmers sink provides a beautiful juxtaposition,” Bacon notes.

“Having a partner like Red House, who is so great with this stuff, was the key to my success with this project. Left to my own devices, it wouldn’t have been this nice,” says Curran, who describes her personal style as eclectic grad student, as evidenced by her rainbow-colored locks. “I was happy to hand over most of the decisions to others in redesigning my home.”

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