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My Houzz: Inspired by Art, Travel and Long Dinners (27 photos)

Photos by Jours & Nuits

House at a Glance

Who lives here: Catherine Mikolajczak, pictured, founder of Galerie 42b; her husband; their five children (Lila-May, Juliette, Lou, Adam and the oldest, Marussia, who is usually at school in Montreal); and their dog, Daphne
Location: St.-Maur-des-Fossés, southeast of Paris
Size: About 1,905 square feet (177 square meters), including an addition of 829 square feet (77 square meters)
Renovation budget: $237,000 to $356,000

“We bought this house in 2009,” Mikolajczak says. “We were looking for a home big enough to accommodate our stepfamily of five children. St.-Maur-des-Fossés was ideal: It is a charming, quiet town. With the river Marne nearby, it has a pleasant countryside setting that makes us forget Paris is only [about 6 miles] away.”

The couple kept looking despite an expensive market, eventually finding this house, which is typical of 1920s workers homes in France. “We immediately saw its potential because we could build an extension in the garden,” Mikolajczak says. The garage and a small house that had stood in the backyard were torn down to make room to expand the originally 1,076-square-foot space into a 1,905-square-foot home.

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