The City Magazine Since 1975

Overall Winner: Cottage Classic

Overall Winner: Cottage Classic
March 2010
Kathy & Robert Heller, Sullivan’s Island

The red, circa-1890 cottage near Sullivan’s Station 24 (known on the island as “The Barn”) has seen its share of living. “People would stop by during the renovation to see what we were doing,” recalls homeowner Kathy Heller, “and one gentleman remembered sitting on his grandfather’s knee on the porch back when the roads were dirt and horses and buggies were here.” To transform The Barn (named for its red façade) from a rambling, dark home into a cozy but breezy retreat, Heller and her husband, Robert, teamed up with architect Elizabeth Allen. Resurrection complete, the couple now agrees that The Barn’s “after” life exemplifies the old-time good life.

What they did:

1. Eliminated three additions that housed the former kitchen and reinstated the home’s original, two-bedroom, rectangular footprint.

2. Stripped and stained existing heart pine floors and redid walls in beadboard for a clean, consistent backdrop.

3. Installed an eat-in kitchen adjacent to the living room, with open shelving and under-counter storage. 

4. Cropped the living room fireplace and added windows on either side.

5. Replaced all existing windows.

6. Converted a bedroom into a bunk room to save space.

7. Painted in soothing neutrals to streamline the entire interior.