Mario and Junet Bello renovated their 3-bedroom house in Buechel to make is perfect for their growing family. Louisville Courier Journal
When Mario and Junet Bello moved into their Buechel home five years ago, the three-bed, two-and-a-half-bath house had more than enough space for the two of them. But, as every parent knows, everything changes once you have a child. Once little Liam arrived in 2015, the couple began thinking about home improvements. After a renovation and some professional design help, the Bellos now have a house thatâ€™s fit for a family.
Heart of the Home
The home’sÂ original kitchen was semi-enclosed, with minimal cabinet space and a configuration that didnâ€™t align with what Junet needed â€” aÂ space that could beÂ used for cooking family meals twice a day that boasts both comfort and functionality.
â€śShe knew what she wanted,â€ť said Kristen Pawlak, of Decorating Den Interiors â€“ KP Designs.
She and her team helped Junet transform the area into an open space with a transitional/contemporary look. The new white and gray color scheme gives the kitchen a light and airy feel, as recessed lighting and three geometric pendants â€” which Junet found with her own eye for design â€” give the room a soft glow. The modified shaker cabinetry, which extends to the walls and complements the stainless-steel appliances, is unique in that it has moldings at the tops and bottoms, but not the sides.
â€śItâ€™s contemporary with a twist,â€ť Pawlak said. â€śI was excited to do that for her.â€ť
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Junetâ€™s favorite part of her new kitchen is the 10-foot island, with its quartz countertop, farmhouse sink, and extended seating area. She also loves the fact that thereâ€™s a lot more storageÂ â€”Â although she could probably use a bit more.
â€śIt seems like a lot,â€ť she laughed, â€śbut itâ€™s still not enough!â€ť
In addition to bringing Junetâ€™s dreams to life in the kitchen, Pawlak also did a lot of work in the living room â€” blending grays, blues and greens withÂ bamboo flooring to give the space a calming aura. A sofa rests against a wall and faces the kitchen; nine framed pieces of artwork are set above it. A coffee table is positioned in front of the sofa; two modified Wingback chairs with deep button tufting and nailhead trim sit on the other side, creating a cozy conversation area.
“Itâ€™s all custom made,â€ť Pawlak said, â€śSo no one has these exact furnishings.â€ť
A pendant similar to the ones in the kitchen hangs above â€” another like it in the foyer helpÂ pull the overall look of the home together. The Carrara marble hearth also matches the detailing above the stove top.
â€śIt had nasty, old tile,â€ť Junet said. â€śIt had been there since they first builtÂ this house.â€ť
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Across the fireplace, little trinkets and wedding photos lie in six box shelves, glimpses of the Bellosâ€™ life together on display. â€śI wanted to have something with picture frames and other decorations, but I didnâ€™t want to use too much space,â€ť Junet said. â€śKristen found those for me and I love them.â€ť
Space for a Child
There are no toys strewn about or crayon markings on the walls. No board books left open on the coffee table or tiny handprints on the kitchen counters. Mario and Junet do an excellent job of keeping their home tidy, but traces of three-year-old Liam are all around. A child-sized table sits off to the side of the kitchen island, an art easel is tucked away in the guest bedroom.
Upstairs, next to the office space where Mario and Junet work as software engineers, Liamâ€™s room waits for him to get home from preschool. White wooden letters spelling his name hang from blue and green ribbons; a quote in Spanish, the familyâ€™s native tongue, is painted on the opposite wall.
On one side of the room, a blue star comforter lies atop a bed with a castle frame; on the other side sits a gray and white chevron chair, which matches the color scheme downstairs. Though heâ€™s too young to realize it now, but surely there will come a time when Liam will know of and appreciate the changes his parents made to make their house his home.
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nuts & bolts:
Owners:Â Mario andÂ JunetÂ Bello, software engineers; and 3-year-old son Liam.
Home:Â This is a 3-bed, 2-and-1/2-bath, 2,796-square-foot, ranch-style, single-family home built in 2008 in Buechel. It has a finished basement and attached 2-carÂ garage.Â
Distinctive Elements:Â Bamboo flooring throughout; granite and quartz countertops throughout; matching gray subway tile in laundry room and on kitchen backsplash; open-style concept on first floor; Carrara quartz countertops in kitchen; white farmhouse sink; 10-foot centered kitchen island; extended deck area of patio extends along entire back side of house, is accessible through the kitchen and master bedroom, and includes a Jacuzzi and granite-top grill; finished basement; finished garage; double-granite vanity and Jacuzzi in bathroom; office area; manicured landscaping.
Applause! Applause!Â The Bellosâ€™ renovation was completed in May 2018 and they would like to thank the following individuals/companies for their hard work, patience and passion: Kristen Pawlak, her husband Ralph, and the rest of the team of Decorating Den Interiors – KP Designs; Leomar and Irene Marin of Marin Construction & Remodeling; Dolly Rivero and the rest of the team at Elite KY Homes; Aly Cabrera of Aesthetically Organized.
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