Michael DeGrandpre and Rich Pezzillo like anything with a story, so it makes sense that they have made their home at Corliss Landing, a former machine parts factory circa 1838 that was converted into condo units in the late 1980s. Both moved to Providence from Washington, D.C., and became instantly attached to the city, so much so that they formed the Downtown Neighborhood Association and have been rallying residents and spearheading hands-on and cost-saving improvements to downtown ever since.
While the couple kept many trappings from their unit’s previous owners like blinds, they have made structural modifications such as switching out white tile flooring for hardwoods and cutting a hole in a wall to create a pass-through between the kitchen and living room. “That was a game-changer and helped the space feel much more open and inviting,” says DeGrandpre.
When it comes to decorating, the couple takes their cue from the rustic physical location. “Rich and I try to find things that accent the architectural elements of the space. For example, we spent months waiting and looking for the perfect dining room table. Our favorite antique shop, White Star Antiques, posted a picture of a table on Instagram and we loved it. We love pieces that marry old with new. When clean, contemporary chairs from Target match a table that is made from a factory cart — that’s when we fall in love. Our decorating style is partly dictated by things that have a story. If a piece has a good story behind it, then we’re in,” says DeGrandpre.