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Collective Collaboration

The other key player Cathy called up was the North Falmouth design/build firm of Barnes Custom Builders who started on the project in early 2019. Partners Charlie Barnes and Dave Medeiros have been building and renovating homes on the Upper Cape for over 10 years and between the two of them, there isn’t much that scares them off. They are developing a reputation for flawlessly resolving the myriad of challenges inherent to antique remodeling. Barnes says of working with such a seasoned designer, “Cathy knows her way around a project. Honestly, we were just her tool belt.” Clearly they were that and more. The new heating system that Barnes recommended provided a four-zone, high-velocity system that added central air and benefited from fairly small ducts that were manageable in such an old home.

Entering the home from the new porch on the back side of the house, the re-worked pantry is the real head-turner. A vintage sink, salvaged from a dear friend’s home in the northern Adirondacks, grounds a bank of cabinets Cathy designed with Lisa Steers from Mid-Cape Home Centers’ Martha’s Vineyard location. The base cabinet, with a charming bump-out for the sink, painted in a soft green provides the perfect farmhouse vernacular for the stacked wood backsplash that Cathy found with the help of Danielle Barnicle from Stonewood Products. An open double shelf allows for all the merchandizing needed to give the space freedom to be defined as a mudroom, a potting bench, or a pantry.

A minuscule water closet off of the space, clad in painted beadboard, avoids claustrophobia and becomes light and airy thanks to a vintage transom window Cathy has had “waiting for just the right spot” for years. The space, perhaps mostly due to the window, is so charming that Barnes says, “I actually incorporated the same feature into a bathroom in my own home.”

Wide plank floors engineered by Sawyer and Mason, also sourced at Stonewood Products, span the living portion of the addition where Barnes and his team were able to seamlessly transition the new flooring with the original floors Barlow installed over 130 years ago. New two-over-one farmhouse windows by Andersen allow sunlight to puddle in large patches across the new open floor plan. A comfortable and cozy seating area gathers around a new gas fireplace that Cathy says is in use every day of the year.

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