Brave souls and a lot of imagination are required to commit to a top-to-bottom home renovation. But for Kristopher and Lyndsey Ricci, the opportunity to put their own stamp on their 1960s-era home allowed them to turn a once-dated interior into a modern and playful take on classic French design.
The expansive open floor plan of the 4,400-square-foot home is a far cry from what once existed. The couple worked with a team of builders and designers in order to open up the standard closed-in spaces of homes this age. The changes to the home didn’t stop at moving around a few walls, though – much of the interior was stripped down to the studs. A 1,100-sq.-ft. addition boosted the size of the project. What was once slated to be a 10-month remodel turned into two and a half years – made all the more stressful with the arrival of the couple’s baby, Sophia, now five months old.
Even with all of the renovations, the Riccis were adamant about maintaining elements of the home’s history. “It was in its original state when we first moved into the house,” says Lyndsey. “We fell in love with the original details, so we tried to keep a lot of that, but just update it.” Character pieces were reimagined. The built-in cabinet was repurposed as a sideboard. The fireplace in the formal dining room received a fresh coat of paint and new hardware. They seamlessly blended the vintage charm that they love with the home’s more modern touches. The intricate millwork of the home, from the delicate wainscoting that runs the length of each wall to the stately built-ins, acts as an elegant backdrop to the couple’s whimsical and irreverent decor choices.
“Lyndsey is pretty eclectic and I like to be a bit safer,” says Kristopher, “but, at the end of the day, we’re young too, so we like to have some fun.” The mix of metallic accessories, fur and cheeky taxidermy-like busts and statues that dot the home are reflective of the Riccis’ bold approach to decorating, while the upscale material choices – Carrara marble, hand-scraped wood floors and gleaming crystal chandeliers – speak to the family’s affinity for traditional European design.
Old-world charm, while not lacking in beauty, doesn’t always allow for some of the conveniences that modern families are seeking. The master bedroom addition that the Riccis built above the home’s garage is an expansive and luxurious retreat for the new parents. The towering vaulted ceilings and massive windows fill the room with natural light, and the extravagant decor is grounded by the custom-made black tufted headboard.
Perhaps the most envy-inducing addition to the suite is the alcove built to hold Lyndsey’s array of designer shoes. The bold black-and-white spotted recess allows for the brightly coloured footwear to look more like pieces of art than just fashion accessories. The massive renovation was intended to turn the original house that the Riccis purchased into a home for their growing family. Despite the setbacks, the couple worked tirelessly to ensure that their daughter would have a place all her own. With seating for story time, an antique change table, bookshelves and an elegant circular crib front and centre, tradition meets modernity in the nursery. “This is my favourite room,” says Kristopher. “This is the one room that we really wanted to get done by the time she arrived.”