Homes Magazine - Page 48 - Creating A 'Forever Home'

Homes Magazine
- Page 48
Creating A 'Forever Home'

by laura Jane Willoughby
For Baltimore At Home


When Michelle and Greg Webb bought their two-story, five-bedroom house in Pasadena’s Ventnor neighborhood in 2013, they knew they’d found the perfect home. It was located in a good school district, 30-minute commute from Michelle’s job at TEK Systems in Hanover, and it had a first-floor master suite to accommodate Greg’s multiple sclerosis, a progressive disabling disease.


“We knew there were things we would want to do eventually, but when we bought this, the idea was this could be the kind of home the kids could be back to. This was the forever home,” said Michelle, 45, for the couple and their three children: Madison, 14, Liam, 12 and Cooper, 9.


The nearly 3,000-square-foot home’s two-acres in an established neighborhood with water privileges to Main Creek, a tributary off the Chesapeake Bay, were bonuses.


But the home, built in 2004, was outdated. The main living area’s 1,000 square feet was divided into three rooms. The galley kitchen was small and dark with the original builder-grade cabinets. An adjacent dining room was virtually unused, holding the family’s china cabinet and a piano. Three different types of flooring – tile, hardwood and carpet – helped divvy up the separate rooms, but was original to the house.


Michelle called on interior designer Wendy Appleby to help. What started out as a simple kitchen and floor makeover with a new fireplace and new railings turned into a first-floor redesign that created a cohesive open space that incorporates the kitchen, living room and dining room.


“When I got there, she had a long list of things for me,” Appleby said, but none of them included major structural changes. As Appleby talked to the couple about their use of the space, she suggested solutions Michelle hadn’t envisioned, outlining how removing the wall between the dining room and kitchen would create open sight lines and more space. “Then things started evolving. What started out as just replacing the kitchen counter turned into a complete remodel on the first floor.”


The 10-week renovation, finished in April 2018, gave the family an entertainment-and-cooking-friendly first floor, with textures, finishes and colors that create a rustic-industrial cottage motif.


The wall between the kitchen and dining room came out, enabling an oversized island that grounds the space, with the range and oven on one side and seating on the other.


Appleby turned to Summerhill Cabinets in Westminster to custom-design the layout. A vertical knife drawer on one side of the oven and a vertical drawer for cooking utensils on the other means cooking tools are within easy reach.


Daughter Madison’s passion for baking often had her creating cakes and pastries, and middle