A devastating fire that all but completely destroyed their home compelled a family to enthusiastically embrace a new design that welcomes them home daily.
Story by Ann E. Butenas | Photos by Matt Kocourek
All it took was a simple piece of toast to destroy a large portion of the interior of Amanda and Corey Marsh’s home, but after months of rebuilding and remodeling, it would appear the efforts involved were a piece of cake! However, there is more to this gorgeous home than meets the eye and the story behind this one is certainly worth telling.
Located in the Wyngate subdivision in Overland Park, Kansas, this stunning five bedroom 4.5 bath home was the perfect place for Corey and Amanda to raise their daughters Mailyn and Irelyn and their three lovable bull dogs.
Built in 2008 by builder Thomson Sailors, the Marsh family assumed possession in late 2010, enamored by the elegance, stylish sophistication and functionality of the home. It was a dream come true for Amanda.
However, on January 31, 2014, that dream took a turn and presented a nightmarish situation for the Marsh family. A fire broke out that morning when no one was home, the cause of which was later determined to have come from faulty wiring in the toaster. The resulting destruction forced the Marsh family to temporarily reside in anther home for eight months, during which time the home was restored and remodeled to seeming perfection, and while Amanda is thrilled with the results, the entire process was truly a labor of love.
In collaboration with custom builder Brian Koehler of Koehler Building Company, who has a vast history of overseeing numerous fire restoration projects, Amanda and Corey were able to rebuild the interior of their home, maintaining some of the original personality while simultaneously incorporating additional elements that have made this home not only a showcase, but also a place where family and friends can comfortably gather.
“There was no doubt in my mind that Brian would make our house even better than it was before,” said Amanda, who, instead of deferring to anger and frustration over the situation embraced the project and indulged her inner design goddess.
Throughout the process, Amanda consulted with Carla Rieke, interior designer with Madden-McFarland Interiors, who assisted with all aspects of the redesign, including trim work, tile, paint, lighting and flooring.
“I brought samples to her and she made the choices,” said Carla. “She has a terrific eye for everything and there’s no doubt she favors the bling and sparkle elements. Every step of the way she knew what she liked and didn’t like. We shared our ideas, worked out the details, and I think the final results are amazing. They have a lovely home.”
The kitchen and living room sustained heavy smoke damage and much of the interior of the home had to be ripped to the original studs. The walkout basement was primarily affected by water damage. Amanda and Corey opted to stick with the original design of the home, but tweaked the layout to a degree. Archways replaced former square door openings; the kitchen was restructured to accommodate an oversized Wolf range and a Sub-Zero refrigerator, which were appliances Amanda has always desired.
Amanda immersed herself in the entire redesign process, learning all about paint color, carpet textures, flooring, light fixtures and accessories. The half bath near the kitchen is home to a funky mirror comprised of all circles and the animal print wallpaper has a personality all its own, much like Amanda.
“I like sparkle and glitter, so we chose a color schematic throughout the house that is heavy with silver and gold, along with some elements of crystal for effect,” she noted. “I like pretty things but don’t go over the top with them. I am more of a sparkly-glam kind of gal!”
Central to the main level is the open multi-level two story curved staircase with iron spindles, which makes a grand statement of style and elegance and the effect of looking down from the top through all three levels is mesmerizing.
On the lower basement level, the one area that survived the fire, the original bar remained, but Amanda chose to update its appeal with new lighting. The granite countertop was unaffected and the tile and cabinetry were simply resanded and restained. The bar is situated in a full-function kitchen area, complete with a full size refrigerator, microwave and dishwasher.
A former storage room was turned into a playroom/theater room for the two girls, and its turquoise wall color, paired with the orange background behind the book shelves, adds a bit of pop and flair and is the perfect place for the girls to play while their parents entertain friends and family in the nearby bar and kitchen area. The entire lower level, previously carpeted, now enjoys a more user-friendly hardwood floor.
“I love the Palm Springs feel and design to the playroom,” expressed Amanda, referring also to the hot pink couch, the orange and hot pink throw rug and the funky light fixture, all of which seamlessly make this room a statement of style in and of itself.
Transitioning into the master bedroom makes for an experience in glamour and dramatic appeal. The deep grey paint color on the walls marries harmoniously with the gilded gold accents the ceiling trim work. Custom made curtains and bedding add to the charm.
The adjoining bathroom continues with the scheme, boasting deep gray wallpaper with a raised, sparkly design, and the Carrera marble countertops provide a modern touch. A quick peek into the expansive master closet reveals a wall of cubbies specifically designed for Amanda’s collection of purses.
Amanda revealed she spent countless hours at Wilson Lighting picking out fixtures, but fell in love with the process.
“Lighting can really change and enhance a home,” she explained.
When the Marsh family moved back in on November 26, 2014, the final touch, however, was a new toaster for the kitchen.
“I definitely needed to get one of those!” laughed Amanda, demonstrating strength of character through a very challenging time. “We finally feel back at home.”
Contractor: Koehler Building
Interior Designer: Madden McFarland
Appliances: Factory Direct Appliance | Cabinets: Shamrock Cabinet | Countertops: Kenny’s Tile | Drywall: Wallboard Specialties | Electrician: ASAP Electric | Fireplace: Midwest Fireplace | Floral Arrangement: The Korner Shoppe | Framing: JoCo Framing/D&Z Construction | Glass & Mirrors: Fountain Glass | Heating & Cooling: Midwest Heating & Cooling | Home Security & Theater: Damewood Technologies | Light Fixtures: Wilson Lighting | Lumber: McCray Lumber | Paint: Sherwin Williams | Painter: A&A Painting | Plumbing & Fixtures: Miller Plumbing | Specialty Painting: Groover Designs | Tile: Kenny’s Tile | Windows/Doors: Kansas City Building Supply