A Life Turned Upside Down

Life throws a curve at a couple, who finds the perfect designer to set things straight

For homeowners Steve and Paula and the rest of their family, which includes grown children, spouses and a handful of energetic grandchildren, time spent on the Cape was the best time of all. Nestled on an idyllic, and iconic, point in Hyannis Harbor, the Cape house was exactly where everyone wanted to be. Built as an “upside down” home to best be able to take in the view, the home had plenty of bedrooms downstairs, a kitchen upstairs that could boil some lobsters and corn, and a rooftop deck over Steve’s favorite spot to retreat, the garage, where he would sit as he watched the ferries, boats and summer sights float by. It was all they needed, or so they thought. 

When Paula visited her cousin, who had just completed a home makeover with interior designer Christine Granfield, principal of Sea Squared Design, she was so impressed with the outcome, she asked Granfield to help her incorporate some new colors into her home.

The first visit to the home started a momentum of change that would impact the homeowners for the rest of their lives. “I walked in, and from the front door, on the ground floor of the house, you entered this long dark ‘tunnel’ that was the hallway to the bedrooms,” Granfield explains. “There was a closed-in narrow staircase that went upstairs to the living area. I just couldn’t understand it. I asked Paula, ‘Have you ever considered flipping your house?’” What was originally an interior design project to freshen up the space suddenly became a life-changing, and possibly a life-saving, transformation.