Jessica and Kevin Klein purchased their St. Matthews home in March 2007. Up until last year, they’d painted the walls and made a few minor improvements, but the couple hadn’t updated much else.
“We were married, didn’t have any kids, and bought the house thinking we’d grow into it eventually,” Jessica recalled. “Maybe three months later, (we found out) we were pregnant. So, it’s a good thing we found this when we did!”
The home was vacant at the time, “and all the rooms were a different shade of an obnoxious paint color,” Jessica exclaimed. “Upstairs, one of the rooms was such a bright orange that when the sun came through the windows, it hurt your eyes.”
Still, the Kleins were in no rush to renovate. In fact, they spent all their time on the first floor, barely going upstairs when they first moved in. Even after they grew from being a couple to a family of six, the house, just as it was, served its purpose for quite a long time.
“(We) lived and enjoyed the house for 12 years until last year. … The (kitchen) cabinet doors started falling off, and we couldn’t get them to go back on,” Jessica said. Right around the same time, the downstairs sink and shower stopped working. “We were all using the bathroom upstairs — all six of us. So that was what really pushed us over the edge to get started.”
Dream kitchen come true
Kevin and Jessica enlisted the help of Bailey Remodeling, who started the renovation process with one question: What problems were they trying to solve?
“That was one of the best things about working with Bailey,” Jessica said, explaining it was an unexpected but astute query — and a perfect way to begin considering exactly what the remodel would entail. “Right away, (some of) the problems were our kitchen was falling apart. … And I couldn’t see anybody (from there); I couldn’t be with them.”
Jessica, a self-proclaimed extroverted introvert, liked the idea of an open-floor concept, but she still wanted a clear separation of space. Baily Remodeling solved that by opening the living room to the kitchen but creating a visual distinction of where one space ended and the next began. “This allows me to be in the kitchen and still interact with the people in (the living room),” Jessica said.
In addition to having a more open space, the new Klein kitchen boasts stainless steel appliances, dual dishwashers, quartz countertops, a glass subway tile backsplash, a farmhouse sink and a 10-foot island with enough seating for the whole family.
“I love to cook,” Jessica exclaimed. “It’s one of my favorite passions, so I wanted a beautiful kitchen. This was my dream come true.”
Specially made suite
The next part of the renovation was creating a true suite for the Klein couple. “This house originally was sold as a five-bedroom house,” Jessica explained. “There was an office space that we used (downstairs), and we created a master suite. That was the other big thing — there was a bedroom down here, but there was no bedroom/bathroom combination.”
She and Kevin now have a true first-floor master suite, complete with a spa-like bathroom, as well as a large walk-in closet/dressing room with a center island.
“We can shut the door and be away from everybody,” Jessica said with a laugh. “At the beginning of the pandemic, I was working in (the closet) … because I could shut both doors, and the kids had to come through two doors to get to me. So at least I knew they were on their way.”
A perfect porch
The most recent home addition — and Kevin’s favorite — is the family’s new covered porch. “We had a porch before,” Jessica explained, “but we never used it, because it was just not super functional. We created this outdoor kitchen. … Then ended up doing this extra patio.”
Once the weather warms up, the large covered porch will likely serve as the Klein family’s second living room. The space features a vaulted ceiling, gas fireplace and a large seating area big enough for 10 people.
“(The porch is) kind of my escape,” Kevin said, “and in the limited time that we’ve had it, we’ve had a lot of good family time out there. I love watching games and listening to music, and it’s a great outlet to just get away from work and get away from the business of life and relax. I’m looking forward to using that for a lot of years to come.”
This space was the last of the big projects the Kleins worked on with Bailey Remodeling, though there are a few other minor changes they’d eventually like to address. Until then, they plan to enjoy spending time together in their new-and-improved living spaces.
“We loved every last inch of the house when we bought it,” Jessica exclaimed, “and now it’s even more ‘ours.’”
nuts & bolts
Owners: Jessica and Kevin Klein. Jessica is the senior vice president of compensation at Humana, and Kevin is a teacher and the head basketball coach at St. Xavier High School. Also in the home is the couple’s four children: Connor (12), Carter (11), Katherine (9) and Kevin, Jr. (9), as well as Cavapoos Bear and Lilly, who are both 11 months old.
Home: This is a 4-bed, 2-and-a-half bath, 3,300-square-foot, Cape Cod-style home built in 1953 in St. Matthews.
Distinctive elements: Hardwood floors and crown molding throughout; wainscoting in entry hallway and along staircase; stainless steel appliances, dual dishwashers, quartz countertops, glass subway tile backsplash, farmhouse sink and 10-foot island with seating for six in kitchen; plantation shutters throughout; half bathroom on first floor with whimsical and light wallpaper with flowers and bees; first-floor master suite, including spa-like bathroom with granite countertops and large walk-in closet/dressing room with center island and chandelier; built-in bookshelf in dining room with original brick floor and floor-to-ceiling windows; dining room designed specifically for the dining room table, a family heirloom handed down from Jessica’s grandmother; two indoor fireplaces with a third gas fireplace on the covered porch; large covered porch/outdoor room with vaulted ceiling, including a dining area, seating area large enough for 10 people, grill and gas fireplace; large brick patio immediately off the covered porch.
Applause! Applause! Everyone at Bailey Remodeling, especially Brandon Bailey, Jon Steimel, Amy Boardman, Katharine Hatcher, Ryle Reynolds, Cory Welsh and Alan Smith; Gant Jones from Jones Design for architecture and planning; Blakely Greenwell from Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery; Britney Schneider from Arhaus; Century Entertainment & Furnishings; Jason McDonald from McDonald Painting; Wayne Terrell from AML Construction for mason work; Corrigan Electric; St. Matthews Plumbing; and Gunnar Graven from Steepleton.