From Farmhouse to Townhouse

Modernizing a Chadds Ford townhouse with classic touches requires a complete overhaul.

A new kitchen was at the top of the renovation  checklist for the Hoopes’ Chadds Ford town home.

resources  cabinetry and interior work: Pine Street Carpenters and the Kitchen Studio at Pine Street, 901 S. Bolmar St., West Chester, (610) 430-3333, tile: Devon Tile & Design Studio, 111 E. Lancaster Ave., Devon, (610) 687-3368,

Terri and Andy Hoopes couldn’t have asked for a better place to raise their son than on their sprawling West Chester farm. But once he went off to college, they started to look at the place differently. “We loved living there and had a lot of happy memories,” says Terri. “The property had a lot of upkeep, though, and we were ready to downsize.” 

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The Hoopes’ search led them to the Ponds at Woodward. Built in the 1980s, the picturesque Chadds Ford townhouse development is surrounded by meadows, woodlands, ponds, and 50 acres of pick-your-own apple and peach orchards. Indeed, the farm-like setting made the transition that much easier for the Hoopes.

“A complete overhaul”

The interior of the Hoopes’ three-story, three-bedroom unit “hadn’t been touched for more than 20 years,” says Terri. 

As it turns out, Terri had been the general contractor for work done on the farmhouse, so she wasn’t about to shy away from this project, bringing in West Chester-based Pine Street Carpenters for the renovation. 

“The house needed to be upgraded,” says designer Bill Dolan. “It needed a complete overhaul. Terri wanted a transitional look. They were looking for clean and modern.” 

Such an aesthetic allowed the couple to mix contemporary furniture with the handmade early-American pieces created by Terri’s father-in-law. “I wanted to be able to show off his pieces, but not have the house heavy with furniture,” she says. “We wanted to keep this house light and airy. We didn’t want the inside to fight with the gorgeous views outside.”

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From Left to Right: The dining room’s sideboard was designed by West Chester’s Pine Street Carpenters; 
a glass-tile backsplash pops behind the induction stove; a redesigned fireplace is the focal point of the living room

A kitchen for entertaining

The open, airy kitchen is a far cry from its cramped predecessor. Accented with a light-cappuccino stain, the white cabinetry is from PSC’s Kitchen Studio at Pine Street. The soft-beige walls conform to the neutral tones Terry chose for the home’s overall color scheme, while the backsplash is comprised of taupe/gray glass tiles by Walker Zanger.

A large center island and peninsula offer plenty of seating, eliminating the need for a proper kitchen table. The Hoopes used the extra space for a sitting area, with its sleek leather chairs, end table from Studio 882 in Chadds Ford, desk made by Terri’s father-in-law, and flat-screen TV mounted on a swivel. “This is where we spend most of our time,” says Terri of the sitting area, which also has beautiful views of the surrounding grounds. “Everyone loves relaxing
here and watching whatever game is on.” 

The Hoopes removed the original wall that separated the dining room from the kitchen, allowing for a genuine flow be-tween the two spaces. Surrounded by pale-blue walls, a pine dining-room set and a walnut corner-cupboard share space with a sideboard designed by PSC. Overhead cabinets display glassware illuminated by interior lights. 

Left: The new master bathroom features a double-sink vanity and an oversized shower. Right: The master bedroom.

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Built to last

To give definition to the great room’s stark original design, Dolan and his team built out the fireplace chimney, incorporating a chase that extends up to the cathedral ceiling. “The design helps make the fireplace look bigger and the room feel smaller,” says Dolan. 

The Hoopes had their great room’s original oak floors stained a darker walnut shade and installed a striking gold-and-bronze chandelier. A wall of windows and a set of glass doors lead out to the deck, which overlooks the ponds behind the home. A round leather ottoman in front of a sectional couch invites guests to put their feet up. “I didn’t want anything too fussy,” says Terri.

In the first-floor master bedroom, the en-suite bathroom underwent a complete makeover. An oversized soaking tub was removed to make room for a spacious shower, along with additional vanity and storage space. 

“We like to think that, if you bring enough classic elements into the design, it will hold its own,” says Dolan, reflecting on the Hoopes project. “Build it well and build it to last, so it feels good and looks like a quality job that’ll last a lifetime—that’s what we accomplished with this house.” 

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