Admire the bright ideas behind this colonial remodel

Photography by Aaron Usher

Kitchens and bathrooms are the two biggest selling points for a home. Red House Design Build tackled both to add value to this East Greenwich property. When Heather and Jay Duke moved back to Rhode Island in 2012, they had big ideas for remodeling their five-bedroom colonial. Specifically, they wanted to target the two high-ticket areas.

Although the house was a newer build from 1997, the kitchen’s outdated traditional maple cabinets and moody accents needed a facelift. Both bathroom spaces were not utilized to their full potential to create a relaxing retreat after a long day.

The couple heard about Red House from Houzz. They reached out with several different projects in mind.

The grandeur of the exterior hid cost-saving measures like build-quality finishes and big-box components, says director of marketing Bridget Bacon, and the Red House Design team was ready to customize the house and make it feel more like a better home. suited the family.

Before the paintbrushes and drills were broken out to change the decor, the kitchen floor plan needed some tweaking.


A fresh coat of paint, white shaker-style cabinets, and an island addition transformed the moody, enclosed kitchen into a fresh, airy gathering space. Photography by Aaron Usher.

“The kitchen was underdesigned for the size of it and didn’t reflect their style,” says Bacon.

The kitchen’s original G-shaped layout was completely flipped to increase traffic and open up to the dining area. The nook and cooktop were torn down and the counters were expanded to accommodate a full stove and hood. The small, central island was extended to the length of the kitchen and seats four for dining with chairs neatly tucked underneath for a streamlined, space-saving effect. This new layout elongates the space and allows for a more inviting environment for entertaining and everyday use without knocking down walls.


Photography by Aaron Usher

After living in their home for five years, the Dukes decided they wanted to spruce up their interior. They were interested in high-end fixtures with custom finishes. Small cosmetic changes made a huge difference. Changing the maple cabinets to linen-white shaker-style doors and adding Venetian bronze hardware from Baldwin creates light and contrast. Granite countertops in River White replaced the darker countertops and created a more light and airy feel. Three clear pendant lights by Kichler strung along the length of the new island replaced the outdated single chandelier to highlight the cathedral ceilings. The matte black hardware draws the eye and stands out against the bright white paint.

The bar area, which offered a seated workplace, lacked style, according to Red House. While the design was in mind to lighten the space, the contrasting cool toned cherry cabinets against Sherwin Williams Agreeable Gray make the bar a focal point instead of pushing the room to the side. Bespoke cabinets with glass panels reflect natural light. Drawers under the counter allow for useful storage along with an elegant wine cooler.


Photography by Aaron Usher

Next order: the Jack and Jill bathroom. The dual entry full bathroom boasts two vanity areas before merging into the common shower area. Both received upgraded white sideboards and Calacatta Classique quartz countertops.

In the shared bathing area, a double window topped with a semicircle lets in plenty of natural light. Before, a single base tub sat far too small for the space under the windows, and an adjoining shower cubicle with a single glass door occupied the far corner. Shared by two middle and high school students, this dark and cramped space was not ideal. To brighten the space, the Red House design team gutted the wall separating the two and merged the bath area into a glass shower with white Carrara marble tiles and a stone mosaic floor. New shades of gray natural slate floors contrast with the walls, which have been repainted Benjamin Moore Oyster Shell.


A glass walk-in shower with white Carrara marble title and a stone mosaic floor replaced the dreary bathtub and shaded corner shower to better suit the growing young children in the shared Jack and Jill bathroom. Photography by Aaron Usher

After the kitchen and shared bathroom received a full eighty, the owners called back Red House for a new project: the master bathroom.

Like the children’s bathroom, the master suite held great potential, but the natural light and high ceilings were not utilized to their maximum potential. Although there was plenty of headroom, there wasn’t nearly enough floor space to accommodate the homeowners’ needs. The previous layout felt cramped and the couple didn’t have nearly as much closet space as they wanted. The standing shower was narrow, while the bathtub under the sink took up too much real estate.


The master bathroom suite received an upgrade in both size and style, adding a walk-in closet to unused garage space. Photography by Aaron Usher

The homeowners wanted a traditional style with some transitional details, says Red House. For an indoor soak, a smaller, sleek freestanding tub replaced the built-in under the windows to create a more airy and spa-like feel. It has the feel of a clawfoot tub with an updated design. The tub’s modern features hide the plumbing on the inside and mount the faucet on the edge so it is completely freestanding. A rectangular shower enclosure with half-glass, half-wainscotting walls breaks up the space while providing some privacy. A bench opposite the shower head provides a comfortable place to relax. Pebble tiled floor and antique brass hardware complement the walnut vanity. The built-in towel holder utilizes the half wall without taking up extra space. Natural light bounces off the large makeup mirror above the double vanity on the opposite wall. Heated twelve by twenty four stone beige porcelain tiles along the floor. Every detail was taken into account when rebuilding the bathroom, including creating a small space within the shower wall to hide toiletries.


Photography by Aaron Usher

“We are used to working on historic homes with many custom details, but also many hidden challenges. Upgrading a home to a true custom design and build is always an exciting opportunity. We’ll get it done home over with the personal information about our customers in mind and make it a special place for them to return to every day.” — Justin Zeller, Red House founder and project developer

To stay within budget and not add a new addition to the home, the design team carved out a portion of the oversized garage. The new layout allowed for a larger shower, larger double sinks, more floor space and an extension to the bathroom: an outdoor shower room.


Photography by Aaron Usher

Perfect for rinsing off after a day at the beach before entering the house, a shaded exit door next to the luxurious bathtub leads to the outdoor shower and dressing area made of cedar wood. The wood is low-maintenance, and over time it will weather to a beach gray without having to be continuously refinished. This was a hit with Jay, a surfing enthusiast, as well as the kids to use after swimming in the pool.

Originally, the master suite offered only a closet for the Dukes to share, which was insufficient for their needs. With the extension, a new walk-in closet with built-in storage was built using extra space from the adjacent garage.


Photography by Aaron Usher

Heather complimented Red House on “its attention to detail and customer satisfaction like no contractor I’ve used before.” She praised general manager Justin Zeller and his team for their hard work and looks forward to working with them again in the future.

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