The Insider: Fresh Decor, Cohesive Color Brightens a Family’s Newly Renovated Greenpoint Home

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This 1870s brick row house on a coveted historic district block made it into the 21st century with its elegant parlor beautifully intact. But the rest of the four-story building had been chopped up into small rental units, with 1960s fixtures and finishes.

New homeowners, a couple with two children, hired Barker Associates Architecture Office (BAAO) to undertake a major renovation. Their goal: a triplex that felt bright and open, with a garden rental beneath.

The architect’s main challenge was fitting everything the family needed into space measuring only about 1,600 square feet. “The house has a small footprint and is an odd wedge shape, with walls that aren’t parallel. It’s on a small lot, so an extension wasn’t possible,” said Alexandra Barker, the founder and principal architect of the Gowanus-based firm.