From the backyard pool, Melanie and Curtis Richins can admire their stucco-and-stone 1910 Craftsman style home with its peaked roofs, brackets, and corbels. There’s no evidence of the structure’s recent addition until they climb the stone steps — salvaged from the back wall of the original house — and enter a very contemporary family room.
Melanie, 50, and Curtis, 52, met as divorced singles who were volunteering at a fund-raising event at the Shipley School in Bryn Mawr. His son and her daughter were students there.
When they married in 2009 in the backyard of their Wynnewood home, neighbors around the corner invited the bride and groom to take photos by their pool. “It was a foreshadowing of the future,” Curtis said.
Three years later, the Richins bought the neighbors’ seven-bedroom, 3½-bath house. Curtis had always liked the home, and “we wanted more room to entertain,” Melanie said.
The Richins updated the three-story home’s wiring, heating, and air-conditioning; replaced the old pool; built a stone and glass pool house with its own powder room and shower; incorporated the pantry into a remodeled kitchen; and added the stunning family room.
The couple credits interior designer Cynthia Brooks, architect Ruth Rowe, and XL Builders for blending original Craftsman with what Brooks calls “modern Craftsman” features. When the house was included on the Ardmore Library Kitchen Tour in April, the Richins displayed business cards for Brooks, Rowe, and XL, as well as for Mack Landscape Management and C&V Wetworks pool designers.
The pool house and the new family room both have mahogany tongue-and-groove ceilings and stone fireplaces. Flooring throughout the original home is oak; for the new family room, they picked polished cement. The Richins’ three dogs and four cats have the run of the house, so practicality was a consideration.
Melanie, who formerly operated her own catering business, purchased state-of-the-art kitchen appliances, including a convection oven and a separate steam oven, and then Brooks designed cabinetry to accommodate them. A wall of cabinets houses liquor, a wine rack, and a cigar humidor for Curtis and his guests. “Garage” cabinets pull down to hide small countertop appliances. Melanie said she likes an uncluttered, “minimalist” look.
A painting of a bright pink sunburst by artist Sydney Edmunds gives a pop of color to the sleek silver and white space.
The same deep pink covers pillows in the adjacent family room. Melanie purchased the silk fabric on a trip to Bangkok. Gray sofas scattered with the pink pillows, orange-and-white patterned pillows, and an orange chair are arranged around a new walnut and black resin coffee table made by Garvin Hunt of Allentown.
Melanie has had the tigerwood dining room table, crafted by Lancaster County artisans, for years. Brooks found new chairs and helped Melanie select the dining room’s blue-green seagrass wall covering. The portrait over the buffet of three young people — Melanie’s son, Hayden, now 15, and daughter, Isabelle, 20, and Curtis’ son, Mason, 25 — was a gift to Curtis on his 50th birthday.
The dining room’s crystal chandelier is original to the house. A new white circular chandelier in the foyer came from Oly Studio in New York.
In addition to the formal staircase off the foyer, the Richins kept the back stairs in the kitchen. “I like being able to scoot down to the kitchen in PJs,” Melanie said.
The living room with cream walls has a teal sofa with coral pillows and two walnut-trimmed chairs upholstered in coral and white fabric. A painting of a farmhouse by Nantucket artist Jane Albaugh hangs over the stone fireplace.
The Richins have a couple of remodeling projects yet to come. They plan to convert the room next to the living room into a home office for Curtis, who is president of Mortgage Capital Trading.
Upstairs one of the bedrooms will become a “teen cave” for Hayden.
Outside, the home has been landscaped with shrubs and perennials. The front porch is furnished with pots of annuals and, harkening back to the original Craftsman style, bentwood rockers.