Midwest Nest Magazine

Midwest Nest Magazine

Culture, Entertaining, and Home Design

Category: Architecture

From the Mountains to the Midwest [Basement Remodel with studioBARRED architecture & interiors]

Story by Reyna Bergstrom Photography by Dan Francis Photography Although the Midwest is not known for mountains nor rustic chalets, this Horace couple wanted to bring their love for the…

Story by Reyna Bergstrom
Photography by Dan Francis Photography

Although the Midwest is not known for mountains nor rustic chalets, this Horace couple wanted to bring their love for the great outdoors and passion for skiing and travel, into their 1994 home. They entrusted the 1,778 square-foot basement overhaul to architect and interior designer, Elizabeth Medd of studioBARRED architecture & interiors. To the homeowner’s delight, Medd fused both talents to give them more than they could have ever imagined. Their open-layout basement is based on beautiful craftsmanship with a Spanish, mountain-lodge influence, that is every bit as light and bright, as it is warm and cozy.

Raw Beauty Underfoot
Heading downstairs, guests are likely to take their time, admiring the sturdiness and raw beauty of the custom staircase. Solid steps made from three-inch-thick reclaimed wood from Dakota Timber Company can be felt underfoot, accompanied by a curved, sleek steel railing from Fargo Fabricators. This design was the brainchild of Medd and created a seamless flow from the original first-floor to the redesigned lower level. To help with the construction, Medd and the homeowner recruited general contractor, Dan Savageau. Recessed lighting illuminates the handrail and Spanish-inspired arches lead the way from room to room.

Open Floor Plan = Endless Options
Designed to capture the natural light, Medd worked with the homeowners to create a cozy, travel-inspired escape using Spanish elements with beautiful wood and stone, accompanied by soft textures and colors. The new layout allowed for a redesign of the kid’s bedrooms, as well as plenty of extra space for entertaining. “With two kids sharing the lower level, I wanted the space to be able to take a beating; be durable enough for running around and playing, yet still look beautiful and elegant for entertaining,” said Medd. With an open floor plan and nine-foot ceilings, the kids requested to keep the long hallway unobstructed and the homeowners obliged. This hallway was the perfect spot to let their two kids, 10 and 11, kick the ball around, especially in the winter months.

White textured walls accent earth-toned furnishings and provide the perfect balance of light and airy with warm and cozy. Wood ceilings and arches add dimension and character to the newly reopened floor plan. A wine bar, pool table area, movie theater and family room all flow effortlessly through the open space. Medd’s goal was to create a space that was every bit as comfortable as it was aesthetically appealing.”It is fairly rare to be a licensed architect and hold an NCIDQ certificate,” said Medd. “Because I am passionate about both fields (architecture and interior design), it was important for me to pursue both. It allows me to design projects that tell the client’s story through the entire language of the project, from the very beginning and down to the last detail.”

Wine & Dine
Just beyond the stairs, the wine bar makes a stunning first impression with it’s warm, wood ceiling tiles and illuminated space. Medd designed the bar to be fully functional with a sink, full refrigerator and freezer. The woodwork and cabinetry were completed by Fargo Cabinets, Inc. with details executed by Dan Savageau Construction, along with custom, built-in cabinets Medd designed for wine storage. Floating shelves accented with lighting are accompanied by a backsplash made of a geometrically patterned, porcelain tile from TileXDesign.

The blue-grey pool table, which is ornamented with Buffalo nickels, is a statement piece that Medd came across at Hot Spring Spas & Pool Tables in West Fargo.

 

Movie Night + Tee Time

A few steps from the wine bar and pool table is the family’s sunken movie theater with nearly 10-foot ceilings. Comfy loungers, side tables and plenty of pillows make the space cozy and inviting. Instead of typical home theater seating, Medd opted to install a more versatile design with specially-designed benches and one large, custom-made cushion.

One of the benches is designed to transform into additional bedding for guests. “The idea was to have one large cushion, custom-made, so it wouldn’t slide around and have uncomfortable separations between cushions,” said Medd. “We included a large screen for the theater, and soon this space will also accommodate a golf simulator, so the extra space will definitely be used.”Stained, knotty alder wood continues throughout the space with deep Benjamin Moore tones on the walls. To hone in the room’s acoustics and manage any potential moisture issues in the basement slab, Medd chose Kinetics flooring from JJ Flooring; an ideal choice for a lower-level movie theater.

It’s not just the home’s design that was mountain-inspired; their dog, Alta, takes its name from a ski resort in Utah.

Fun by the Fire

The large, see-through fireplace is the primary focal point of the connected rooms and was selected by Medd, then sourced by the homeowners. With a reclaimed, timber mantel from Dakota Timber Company, the clean, simple design is larger than average and placed closer to the floor for a more authentic and connected look. On the pool table side of the fireplace, an additional fun detail includes two arched inlets with chalkboard paint (Benjamin Moore Ebony King) that flank the stone hearth. “Using chalkboard paint allows the homeowners a fun design element where they can keep track of game scores or write fun notes for birthdays or other gatherings,” explained Medd.”Growing up in Arizona, I was exposed to a great deal of desert architecture. When I design, I like to incorporate some of those unique elements that I grew up with and studied early in my career,” said Medd. “It’s a part of who I am, so it always comes out in some way in the design process.” As an architect and interior designer, this remodel was Medd’s first residential project in the Fargo-Moorhead area, but she has worked extensively with many residential projects in Arizona, Utah and Georgia before she returned to the area.“It is important for me to really understand my client and use my knowledge and experience as an architect and interior designer to deliver a design that reflects who that client is, and what that client is passionate about.”
Elizabeth Medd, studioBARRED architecture & interiors

Travel-Inspired Retreat

On the opposite side of the fireplace, the family room’s design is centered around the stone hearth and their mountain-top travels. Deep-stained, wood built-ins flank the fireplace and warm wood extends to a coffered ceiling. According to Medd, the empty wall facing the fireplace was originally designed to have built-ins and bookcases, but after further discussion, they decided to keep the wall open. This would allow them enough space to eventually create a gallery wall, filled with art pieces and photos from their family’s travels.12
For the family room furnishings, Medd needed to provide ample seating and textures that would reflect elements that were reminiscent of a ski chalet. While the family owned the sofa previous to the renovation, Medd worked with the homeowners to find elements like the back table and coffee table from Pottery Barn, and the side table from West Elm. The nesting tables and chair underneath the stairwell are from Ashley Furniture Homestore and the pottery was found at Scheels Home & Hardware, Eco Chic Home and McNeal & Friends.

“Although basements are typically thought of as being cold, I think we’ve done a good job to ensure that’s not the case,” said Medd. “We’ve brightened and refined it with the furnishings and incorporated pieces from their travels. It’s an eclectic mix, but it’s intentional to reflect their personal life, and balance those elements with the natural warmth of what one would think of at a ski chalet.” Although more pieces and artwork will be added, Medd has opted to be patient and wait for the right pieces, rather than rush the remaining details.10
“I’m obsessed with layers, details and multiple levels in houses. I love the textural aspect of space and material, and I enjoy the challenge of creating a balanced space that has a defined textural quality. It’s nice to have nooks and crannies and places where you can escape and yet still be a part of the bigger group,” explained Medd. A perfect example of this concept is the sunken theater and cozy reading nook that she designed under the stairwell.1

Although we don’t show all bedrooms and side rooms, their daughter’s newly expanded room also received a makeover with a few simple requests; soft pinks, ruffles and a chandelier. To carry over the light and bright feeling from the rest of the remodel, Medd made sure to incorporate recessed lighting, instead of just one central light. According to Medd, when designing for the kid’s basement bedrooms, proper lighting was the most important element.

Then & Now

The homeowner’s once dark and segmented space left Medd with a few challenges before she could even begin the remodel. Due to moisture issues, the entire concrete slab had to be removed and repoured, while the first-floor fireplace was also removed. “When we started digging into the project, it was clear that the first-floor brick fireplace was too heavy for the frame of the house, so it had to go,” said Medd. “The house had started sinking and bowing with floor height differences up to three-inches across a room. The contractor, Dan Savageau, worked over the course of a couple weeks to get the structure level again. Dan did such a great job on this project and he was fantastic to work with.”To make the kid’s bathroom more efficient, they opted to move the existing sauna to its own room; a plan which helped open up more space to expand the bedrooms. Tackling the basement first was a strategic move in order to secure the foundation. For her next project, Medd will be working with the homeowners on plans to redesign the home’s first floor and repair the damage that was caused by the original brick fireplace.

About the Architect + Interior Designer
Originally from Arizona, Elizabeth Medd is the lead designer and architect at studioBARRED architecture & interiors. After earning her Undergraduate at Arizona State University and later her Masters at NDSU, Medd worked on world-class commercial, as well as hospitality and luxury residential projects throughout the country. Ten years ago, Medd and her husband, Todd Medd along with their two children, moved from Utah to Fargo in order to be closer to his roots; he’s also an architect, principal at JLG Architects in Downtown Fargo. Upon the return to Fargo, Medd worked as a job captain and commercial interior designer for JLG for six-years before eventually opting to start her own firm.

Central to Medd’s design philosophy is the belief that designers must be able to understand people in order to design for them. “I am fascinated by the human mind and how people think; what drives people and makes them do certain things,” said Medd. “As an architect and interior designer, it’s really important for me to fully understand my client and deliver a design that reflects who that client is and convey what they’re passionate about. After all, the client is the one using the space day in and day out, so I want them to feel connected. My role is to be a creative and technical guiding force that wrangles the aspirations and intentions of the client into a successful, and beautiful architectural work.”

 

Find the Finishes
Architect & interior designer – Elizabeth Medd, studioBARRED architecture & interiors
General contractor – Dan Savageau Construction
Tile and flooring subcontractor – Floor to Ceiling Carpet One

Lighting – Henricks, Ferguson Bath Kitchen & Lighting Gallery, Pottery Barn

Reclaimed wood – Dakota Timber Company

Stair railing – Fargo Fabricators

Woodwork, cabinetry contractor & custom mirror frames – Dan Savageau Construction
Cabinetry – Fargo Cabinets, Inc.

Backsplash tile – TileXDesign

Movie theater flooring – JJ Flooring

Paint – Benjamin Moore (colors: Deep Space, Ebony King, Glacier White)

Tile – sourced from Syverson Tile

Pool table – Hot Spring Spas & Pool Tables 2
Pool table light – Valley Lights

Interior painting  – The Painting Girls
Concrete – Cash Concrete

For more information, contact:
studio BARRED Architecture & Interiors
Elizabeth Medd – Architect, NCARB, NCIDQ | Design Principal
801.347.3663
emedd@studiobarred.com
studiobarred.com

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Take a Tour! [Dietrich Homes]

Photography courtesy of Tara Swanson, Hatch Realty If you missed out on our One-Year Anniversary Party and Design Challenge at this West Fargo dream home, here’s your chance to tour…

Photography courtesy of Tara Swanson, Hatch Realty

If you missed out on our One-Year Anniversary Party and Design Challenge at this West Fargo dream home, here’s your chance to tour the beautiful Inspired model home by Dietrich Homes. With a floor plan providing party perfection, vaulted ceilings, and a 180-degree scenic view of the pond, this model had guests feeling right at home. Since it’s difficult to see the finer details through the crowd, we decided to share a peek inside…but this time, without the guests.

Dietrich Homes – Inspired Model Stats:
6 bedrooms, 3.5 baths
3 fireplaces
5,951 square feet

Main Floor Masterpiece

This family home is currently on the market and features over 5,951 square feet including quarter-sawn white oak hardwood floors, a main floor master suite with vaulted ceiling, office, four-season sunroom with fireplace, vaulted two-story great room, and a gourmet kitchen. Just off of the family foyer with built-in benches and command center, you’ll find a large laundry with built-in craft storage cabinetry and pull-out drying racks. Head upstairs to find the loft and three spacious bedrooms with a split bath.

Inside this stunning kitchen with custom walnut island and Silestone countertops, you’ll find a professional-grade 48” Wolf range top, drawer microwave, steam and convection wall ovens, and 60” Sub-Zero refrigerator/freezer.

The master suite’s spa-inspired bath features a custom tile shower, freestanding soaking tub, makeup table, and his and hers vanities.

Lower Level Lovely
The lower walkout level is specifically designed for entertaining with ease. The space features a theater room with 110″ screen and full audio/media package, pool table, custom bar, family room, lounge and covered patio with stamped concrete and full landscape design. The custom pub-style bar features Silestone countertops, stone accent wall, sink, drawer microwave and an under-counter wine and beverage refrigerator with ice maker. Just beyond the entertainment mecca, the lower level features two spacious bedrooms with walk-in closets, a split bath and convenient garage access. As if you could possibly want for more, the house is equipped with a 7-Zone whole-home Sonos Audio system, four Sonos Playbars and one Sonos Sub.

Special thanks to Clay and Suzy Dietrich and the team at Dietrich Homes for allowing us to celebrate in his beautiful model home.
Find the Finishes
Builder – Dietrich Homes
Floorplan design – Dietrich Homes – Inspired, with Melissa Meyer, CAD Designer
Interior Design – Heather Sagvold, Dietrich Homes Inspired Design Consultant
Cabinets – Ira’s Custom Cabinets
Granite – Spaulding Stone
Appliances – Rigels
Audio – Media Master
Wood flooring – Kensok’s Hardwood FloorsFloorcoverings – Carpet World
Fireplace – Hebron Brick
Light fixtures – Valley Lights
Closets – JL Shelving
Siding – Lemke Home Improvements
Masonry – Brick Stone Masonry
Windows & materials – Crane Johnson
Garage door – EZ Open Garage Door
Mirrors & shower doors – Frontier Glass
Landscaping – A&L Landscaping

 

To take a tour, contact:
The Erik Hatch Team, Hatch Realty
Erik Hatch, REALTOR®
4215 31st Ave. South, Fargo
erik@hatchrealtyfm.com
701-369-4849

For more information, contact:
Dietrich Homes
701-364-2781
info@dietrichhomes.com
dietrichhomes.com
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Plains Art Museum: Progressive Architecture Dinner [Pelican Lake, Minnesota]

Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by Dan Francis Photography Imagine touring four spectacular homes on Pelican Lake, visiting with the architects and owners, then being offered an array of drinks…

Words by Tracy Nicholson
Photography by Dan Francis Photography

Imagine touring four spectacular homes on Pelican Lake, visiting with the architects and owners, then being offered an array of drinks and a spectacular catered course at every stop. This is your look inside Plains Art Museum’s Progressive Architecture Dinner. Join Midwest Nest as we recap their September 8th event which introduced us to an entirely new approach to lake home living, architecture, art and cuisine.

Art + Architecture

A concept dreamed up by Sandy Thompson of Plains Art Museum, this four-home tour is custom designed to introduce the idea of art plus architecture. Along the way, 50 guests were invited to dine on locally prepared fare and admire the space, art and stunning lake views. Although the original plan was to tour via a five-pontoon armada, the day’s wind and whitecaps kept the tour traveling by dry land. Every home’s tour lasted one hour and ended with a conversation between the homeowner and the architect, with an open forum for guests to intervene and inquire. All proceeds from the tour sustain PlainsArt4All, the Museum’s free general admission initiative.

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Tour Stop #1: The Dawsons
To kick off the tour, guests arrived at noon to the spectacular home of Georgia and Tom Dawson where the first course of Hors-d’oeuvres and cocktails were served by Chef Jeff Reitz of Urban Foods. Guests were allowed to tour every inch of the home while the architect, Terry Stroh of T.L. Stroh Architects, offered input regarding the home’s timeless and coastal design.

About the Dawson Home:
Tom Dawson’s grandfather purchased the site in 1958, which is where Dawson was raised. For 17 years, Tom and Georgia Dawson spent their summers in a 900 square-foot cottage near the property, before opting to design their year-round lake home. Nine years ago, they reached out to longtime friends, Terry Stroh of T.L. Stroh Architects and contractor John Gunkelman, to make their coastal vision a reality. In their first meeting, Georgia Dawson had the entire first floor drawn out on a yellow legal pad, leaving the remainder of the design to Stroh. Taking into account the early drawings, the design needed to include equally beautiful spaces for their growing family.

When in town, the Dawsons reside in a 90-year-old home with dark wood, historic elements. So, for their lakeside retreat, the Dawsons requested the opposite; bright and airy with spacious windows to capture the view. Between their gorgeous regional art collection, pine ceilings, white-washed elements and metal fabrication by P2 Industries, every angle of the Dawson’s home is perfectly molded to embrace life on the water.

Upstairs, the Dawsons display an oversized photo book by the celebrated photographer, Annie Leibovitz. The book contains a collection of photos once featured in Vanity Fair.

From the Architect, Terry Stroh:
“Working with Tom and Georgia was always fun. Their design was more about capturing the outside than anything; they wanted something that had a little more of a Floridian vibe to it. The floor plan was centered around family and creating the spaces that they wanted, not what I wanted for them – that’s really what it’s all about.””We have two houses on the tour, the Dawsons and Schlossman’s and they happen to be best friends. I think any architect would say this; you don’t come out with a great house unless you have a great client – they’re all people with great taste and also kindness.”

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“When we first started talking about doing this Progressive Architecture Dinner, something that I had done in California – I sat down with Chris Hawley and asked him if he thought we could do that here. We’d talked about different venues and places that might be interesting, but it was Chris who said, “We have to do the lake. We could do five years of these events just on Pelican Lake.” This is the second year now, and it’s been a joy to put together.”
Sandy Thompson, Plains Art Museum

“I really love the connection that this event creates with architects. Architecture has
a strong relationship with the arts and this gives the architects a chance to really talk about their work in a fun and comfortable setting while building appreciation for their designs. These homes really push people’s sensibilities when it comes to design and many of them have well-curated art collections that we love featuring.”
Andy Maus, Plains Art Museum
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Tour Stop #2: The Hansons

The second stop on the tour led us through a home built on the idea of sparking creativity, expanding the view and redefining traditional lake home standards. Welcome to the year-round lake home of Pam and Dave Hanson with the architect, Craig Helenske of Helenske Design Group. This is a creative and cozy home, almost completely devoid of right angles…read on and we’ll explain. At this location, guests were treated to a fall-inspired salad course presented by VIP Chef, Anthony Bachman.

About the Hanson Home:
The Hansons purchased a small cottage on the property in 1987 for a mere $42,500. Hoping to salvage the existing cabin, they explored expansion and renovation options; eventually deciding it was a better investment to start from the ground up. The couple’s year-round lake home was completed four years ago with architect Craig Helenske of Helenske Design Group and contractor, Jon Anderson of Dreambuilder. There were only two prerequisites given to Helenske by Dave Hanson; it was to have a modern cabin feel with no square corners – he just simply doesn’t like them.

For the exterior, Helenske and Hanson opted for a green-black siding to give the home a robust contrast to the environment. They purposefully drifted away from the stereotypical, white and bright lake home. Their version is a simplified farmhouse style with a unique bow element on the front that expands the view from being a narrow 50-foot, to a panoramic view that’s nearly three times the lot’s width. In creating those angles, it allowed the two to shape several interesting environments within the home, like a quiet space for reflection and a separate space for socializing.

As president and CEO of H2M, an advertising agency in Downtown Fargo, Dave Hanson is a creative guru during the workweek and after hours. Throughout the home, guests enjoyed a collection of his own photographic art displayed on the walls. In the back guest quarters, Hanson, who’s also a musician and past sound technician, has his own recording studio located in the upper loft.

From the Architect, Craig Helenske:
“This was very much a collaborative experience between two stubborn creatives. Dave and I worked pretty closely and he had a vision of wanting to have a slatted acoustic, rosewood-style ceiling in here, so that became kind of the icon for the public space. Rather than a traditional lake or cottage-style ceiling that’s overused, the slatting gave the home a unique twist. When you take all of the furniture and people out of here, the home is just sheetrock and paint. It’s really Dave and Pam that put the character in this home, through their art, photography and music background. I was just given an opportunity to present their character through this design.”

“The lake experience is both inside and out; it’s about the wind, finding spaces to enjoy the morning sun – morning, afternoon and evening. There is a lot of opportunity for inside and outside living spaces, and we let those really shape the home. It was a great experience to exchange ideas back and forth and not just communicate ideas to the client. To have somebody that can respond back to you with just as much creative energy makes for a really positive experience.”

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Tour Stop #3: The Schlossmans

At our third stop on the tour, guests arrived at the extraordinary summer home of Mary and Bill Schlossman with the architect, Terry Stroh of T.L. Stroh Architects. For the entree, guests dined on Blackbird Woodfire’s specialty artisan pizzas. Chef Casey Absey and his team brought in their mobile woodfire oven and all were invited to choose one of their tried and true recipes or design their own woodfire masterpiece.

About the Schlossman Home:
Bill Schlossman grew up next door to the existing property, eventually purchasing the adjacent lake lot with small cottage from his brother. When it was time to rebuild, the couple contacted architect Terry Stroh, whom they had previously worked with on the design of their condo, as well as interior designer Lark Lomsdal. To mimic the yesteryear appeal of an authentic cabin or summer home, they opted for a design with more minimally-sized bedrooms and closets, leaving the majority of the square footage for post and beam communal areas.

Working through the details of the design with Stroh, Bill Schlossman had an idea to omit sheetrock in lieu of clear Douglas Fir siding and cedar ceiling beams. This concept would involve a labor-intensive process of perfecting each individual piece of wood, on every wall of the home, with no room for error. Kevin Pagel of Dakota Construction would do the painstaking fabrication with timbers sourced from Pierce Log Homes. Now 12-years old, the home’s extraordinary carpentry has maintained its original beauty and structural quality from day one.

Most of the photos throughout the home were taken by Bill Schlossman himself or influential locals like the late Fred Scheel Senior, a renowned photographer in his day. One treasured photo, framed high into the beams, is a sentimental image which inspired the lake home’s design; a photograph from 1928 with Bill Schlossman’s mother seated at the back of a small row boat, along with his grandfather and uncle.

“We love working with Terry. He originally came up with three different plans, but when we saw this one, it was fabulous,” said Mary Schlossman. “This was a great project for Bill and myself – we found out that we had a lot of similar tastes and it was really fun bringing those ideas to Terry. He found a really interesting book at Walker Art Center that had a lot of this style of house depicted in it and quite a few of our ideas were inspired by what we saw.”

“Working with a great architect like Terry on this project was critical for pulling together our vision,” said Bill Schlossman. “Some people are great designers, but Mary and I, as much as we enjoy looking at different things, can’t put it all together by ourselves. We also worked with an interior designer, Lark Lomsdal – she’s wonderful. She worked with Braaten Cabinets to design all of the cabinetry throughout the home.”

From the Architect, Terry Stroh:
“The whole idea of doing a post and beam structure and the concept of combining that with other conventional construction made this a really fun project. We actually built a model with the contractor, John Gunkelman and he used it during construction because it had every detail within this house. We still have it in our office and we use it to show clients what we can do.”

“As architects, we don’t always get to see the home once it’s lived in, but both the Dawsons and Schlossmans invited us down to see their furnished homes. Seeing what they bring into it and how they use the space, is really what makes it a home.”

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Tour Stop #4: The Promersbergers
Our final stop on the Progressive Architecture Dinner did not disappoint. Led down a tree enveloped path, guests were delighted to find brilliance in color and design at the lake home of Jan and Ken Promersberger, with architect Chris Hawley of Chris Hawley Architects. Just when we thought our day could not be any brighter, we were treated to a dessert course, including six different cheesecakes by Pastry Chef Kayla Houchin of Indulgence Baking Co.

About the Promersberger Home:
As owners of The Promersberger Company in Fargo, Ken and Jan have spent the majority of their lives brainstorming creative marketing solutions for clients all across the country. Designing a lake retreat unlike anything else is simply a more personal outlet to foster their creativity. Beyond the barn doors of the agency, they’re known for spearheading a unique farmstead-themed community concept called Rocking Horse Farm; another collaboration with Chris Hawley Architects.

After being on the lake for many years, the couple found this 50-foot lakefront, which they purchased within 15-minutes of walking the lot. They’d always envisioned a white exterior with a high pitch, but once on the lot, Ken Promersberger found a bright Scandinavian design with three offset cubes he needed to explore. Presenting the idea to Hawley, each cube would be in a different primary color and have their own view of the lake. To enhance the concept, Hawley suggested having the roof the same color as the siding, which became a game changer in achieving their Scandinavian exterior. These days, the Promersbergers have heard just about every colorful remark about their home, which is often fondly referred to by neighbor kids and their six grandchildren as the “Lego house” or “Crayola house”.

“The Airstream on the property was part of the site plan from the beginning. It could be used as an extra bedroom, but we just use it as storage. I’ve been in the design business all my life and to me, an Airstream is a piece of art,” said Ken Promersberger.

Surprisingly, the interior of this colorful abode is a stark contrast to what most outsiders would expect. “We knew for sure that we wanted the interior’s style to be minimalistic; we liked the wood and white elements,” said Jan Promersberger. “We’ve always had that style with every house we’ve had. It is kind of a surprise to walk up to the red, yellow and blue, then come inside and see things calm down a bit. Tom Dawson’s son, Mike, is also an architect with Chris and spent quite a bit of time out here – Mike and Chris were both wonderful to work with.”

Within the bright white and pitched ceiling design, the Promersbergers and Hawley incorporated acoustic tiles to absorb and reduce noise in their open-concept floor plan. Their next project is to hang a mobile made entirely of white acoustic tiles.

“We wanted to have a screened-in porch but we didn’t want to lose the depth, so that’s why we have all of these windows that can open. We get quite a breeze through here just by opening the patio doors and a couple of the cubed windows on each side,” explained Ken Promersberger.

Continuing their minimalist lake living, the Promersbergers purposefully left closets out of the design, instead, adopting a more Scandinavian approach of using wardrobes. Interestingly enough, two out of the four featured homes do not have closets; the Hansons also keep their lake life minimalistic.

From the Architect, Chris Hawley:
“Ken sent me a photo of a Scandinavian fishing village that was a group of gables all lined up in different colors; that’s really how this idea got started. The lot is skewed and every cube touches the setback – there’s also a five-foot grade change from front to back. It’s really interesting that every cube has its own zone; one is the public space, one semi-public and one more private. There’s a six-foot offset between the cubes, but we were able to use the same truss all the way through. It was quite the game; anything we did on one side to a cube, we had to do on the other side and stay within the lot line.

“There are a lot of windows, but the way it’s designed, they can see far more outside than other people can see in. The discussion about the window placement and quantity was probably the longest conversation that we had when we were designing the home.”

Naturally, not everyone in the neighborhood fell in love with their creative expression, but one neighbor, who did admire their creative spirits, gifted them with a piece of art that spoke volumes; affirming their decision to keep pushing the boundaries of conventional architecture and design.

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Interested in attending the next Progressive Architecture Dinner? 

Sandy Thompson / Director of Development
704 First Avenue North, Fargo
sthompson@plainsart.org
701.551.6122
plainsart.org

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Rebuilding Life & Home

Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by M. Schleif Photography Adjusting to life as a single mom, homeowner Heidi Henegar decided to rebuild her life and home with a builder she…

Words by Tracy Nicholson
Photography by M. Schleif Photography


Adjusting to life as a single mom, homeowner Heidi Henegar decided to rebuild her life and home with a builder she knew she could trust. Working with Katie Kern and Amanda Voss of the Jordahl Custom Homes team, Henegar and her two young sons made a smooth transition into a 1,913 square-foot split-level with a contemporary twist. For Henegar, this would mark her second build with the Jordahl team and a second chance at offering her family a fresh start. To see inside her modern approach to the traditional split-level living, we headed to South Moorhead’s Stonemill Estates.


“I had looked at several different homes, existing and new construction when in the process of deciding what my next move was, but nothing quite felt right or I didn’t find myself being 100 percent confident in my decision,” explained Henegar. On a search for the right fit last fall, Henegar decided to go to a couple of open houses and the minute she stepped into a Jordahl Custom Homes model home, she knew it was perfect floor plan for her new life and two sons.

Embracing the New Normal
At the time Henegar decided to build with Jordahl, she was recently divorced and had been living in her parent’s basement for about six months with her two sons, Ryder 6, and Brody 3 – along with their 50-pound labradoodle named Remy. “My parents are saints,” laughed Henegar. “Within the same year, I left a company I had been with for 10 years and started working for AVEDA. Needless to say, I had a few changes going on in life. My ultimate goal was and will always be to provide my boys with a house they would be proud to call theirs. I wanted them to feel comfortable in a place they loved coming home to. Mainly, I wanted to be able to get things back to our new normal as soon as possible for them and myself.”

“It’s her second build with us, so she’s more of a friend and we had that personal relationship with her. Knowing her story and what she had been going through, we really wanted to make sure the process was smooth,” said Jordahl Custom Homes Director of Design, Katie Kern. “Since she was downsizing, we wanted to maximize closet space so we shifted some things around to give her a larger master closet. She also really wanted a feature wall in the living room, so we customized the plans to give her a beautiful space with floating shelves and a fireplace.”

“Heidi has great style, so our team worked hard to make sure we were able to give her the things that she really wanted,” said Amanda Voss, New Home Sale Consultant at Jordahl Custom Homes. “To stay within budget though, we used an electric fireplace versus gas. We still get the effect, but it’s much more affordable and takes up less space.”

Modernizing the Bi-Level
Henegar chose The Walsh layout which is a modern approach to the traditional split-level. These days, when we hear the word split-level, we often think of tiny, closed-in entries with stairs that are far too abundant. Today, Jordahl Custom Homes has taken huge strides to redefine split-level homes, yet still keep the design cost-efficient and high functioning. Simple modernizations include white trim and doors, vaulted ceilings, spacious entries and a more open-layout stairwell design. Beyond the floorplan, clever design elements fuse fun accent walls, floating shelves, grey-toned alder cabinetry and rustic, wood-look laminate flooring.

“My ultimate goal was and will always be to provide my boys with a house they would be proud to call theirs. I wanted them to feel comfortable in a place they loved coming home to.”
Heidi Henegar, homeowner

Building a New Life
Thrilled to eliminate some of the heftier out-of-pocket expenses, Henegar’s build would include appliances, a deck and a finished lawn. As an added bonus for building with Jordahl Custom Homes a second time, Henegar would receive a repeat builder promotion, which solidified her decision. “I had such a wonderful experience building with them the first time around and all the circumstances aligning made me feel like this was what I had been waiting for,” said Henegar. “I trusted that going through the experience again with Jordahl would be just as good, if not better the second time around.”

At the Heart of the Home
Choosing a handful of upgrades, Henegar’s kitchen design incorporates a five-foot alder island with quartz countertops and a six-foot overhang. Built-in wine storage, oversized subway tile and an adjacent formal dining room overlook the deck and backyard.
Just beyond the kitchen is the laundry room and master suite with a walk-in closet. To find the home’s beautiful mixed-metal accents and whimsical messages, Henegar frequents stores like Target, HomeGoods and TJ Maxx.

Second Time’s the Charm
“I loved building with Jordahl a second time, and I will probably do it a third time, but not for a long time – famous last words,” laughed Henegar. “I went into the process a lot more confident and knew what to expect with the process. I had a good idea of the aesthetic and the feel I wanted for my home. Since I had worked with Amanda and Katie prior, I felt super comfortable asking questions and appreciated greatly their suggestions and opinions. They were also a tremendous help in personalizing the actual floor plan of the house to make it the most functional. They pointed out things I would have never thought of that I am so happy we changed after living here for a few months.”

Downsize to Upgrade
For Henegar and her two sons, this move would mean a major downsize, so her design and layout would have to be high-functioning and efficient to suit her busy lifestyle. She also wanted to add upgrades and customizations that would make her smaller home feel more upscale while adding in plenty of character. “I had my list of wants and tons of Pinterest pins for inspiration. I had those initial must-haves priced out and then decided on what upgrades I really needed,” said Henegar. “My boys and their tendency for being rough and wild also came into play when making selections, along with neighborhood and location of schools.””Budget with this home was more important and top of mind than ever before so, I had to be super conscious of that. I loved that the team knew my situation and my priorities and priced out as many options as possible or suggested different alternatives to what I was looking for,” said Henegar. “They were also super patient and attentive during the whole process which was amazing to have that support.”

Love on the Lower Level
Downstairs, each of Henegar boys has their own room with plenty of square footage to keep their toys at bay. To maintain the tidiness upstairs, the boys have a designated play area centered around the large sofa downstairs; the only piece of furniture that represents their old life. “One of the rules that we made when we moved in here, was that there would be no toys upstairs,” explained Henegar. “I really made a big deal about emphasizing that the lower level was their space.”


Post-Build Perfection
“I have never loved a house I lived in more. This home represents so many things for the boys and myself, a fresh start, new beginnings and ultimately the idea that if you work hard to get to where you want to be, anything is possible,” said Henegar. “This home has solidified to me that the happiest spaces don’t have anything to do with size, it is loving the people that you share it with. For me, seeing the vision and process of this home coming together was amazing, not only for the physical appearance but also knowing that this is where amazing memories would be made with the two boys I love more than anything in the world. I am so thankful I put my trust in Jordahl to help us not only transition into a new home but into a completely new life.”

Find the Finishes:
Interior Designer – Katie Kern, Jordahl Custom Homes
Flooring – Laminate, vinyl and carpet, Carpet World
Tile – 4×12 Glossy White subway tile, Carpet World
Cabinetry – Antique Slate – stained knotty alder, SWI Interiors
Wall Color – Repose Gray, Sherwin Williams
Countertops – Iced White quartz – Granites UnlimitedFor more information, contact:
Jordahl Custom Homes
4802 Amber Valley Parkway, Fargo
701.234.0404
info@jordahlcustomhomes.com
JordahlCustomHomes.com

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The Pines by Grain Designs [ Countdown to Wedding #1 ]

Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by M. Schleif Photography, renderings by Grain Designs, Transparent venue image by Exposure Creative Group In our last story introducing The Pines, we captured the…

Words by Tracy Nicholson
Photography by M. Schleif Photography, renderings by Grain Designs, Transparent venue image by Exposure Creative Group


In our last story introducing The Pines, we captured the guys of Grain Designs swinging golf clubs on a grassy plot of land, slated for their new venue, just South of Fargo. This month, we revisited the crew and instead found them swinging hammers on a framed-in, concrete foundation. By mid-September, 17 acres of rural beauty will be transformed into The Pines, the area’s newest wedding and event venue, unlike anything you can imagine. The clock is officially ticking and this countdown ends with an “I do”.


With their very first wedding booked for September 15, the guys of Grain Designs are hard at work finalizing the construction for The Pines and finishing the remodel of the adjacent home on the property. Fittingly, the first couple to get hitched at The Pines will be Grain Design’s own, Pat Bresnahan and his fiancé, Nicolette Berge.

Wrapping up Construction
“We are focused on getting the venue wedding-ready before that date, but we know we will still have a few construction projects to finish afterward,” said Bresnahan. “The things that won’t be done for our own wedding will most likely be aesthetic projects. We have another wedding booked for the end of October, so, without question, we will have any remaining work wrapped up by mid-October. The most exciting part right now is actually seeing the building start to come together and being able to see how grand the space is. It’s one thing to talk about how it’s going to be 35 feet to the peak, but then you stand in there and it’s just amazing to experience.”

Inside The Pines
The Pines is designed to be almost 9,000 square-feet and will accommodate 350 plus for a seated dinner. The interior is slated for a clean and classic white with black detailing and rustic, reclaimed wood elements. Design elements will include exposed beams, white reclaimed wood paneling, farmhouse windows and exposed concrete floors. Within the venue, they will offer a prep kitchen for the caterers provided by Chef’s Table Catering, full bar set-up, outdoor patio and private men and women’s restrooms. The venue will be equipped for year-round use and have capabilities to accommodate outdoor ceremonies, with ample space to move indoors in inclement weather. There will also be designated areas for outdoor wedding ceremonies and a patio for cocktail hour with an on-site bar and yard games.”On the Grain Designs side, we are in the process of building sliding barn doors and 60 tables for the venue right now,” said Bresnahan. “One of the unique challenges for us was building actual farmhouse tables, but with foldable or collapsible legs.”

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Nicolette + Pat
As the first wedding at The Pines, both Berge and Bresnahan have delved into the project, offering their talents to nearly every aspect. The couple has been living in the property’s home for the past few months, taking on the bulk of the redecorating and renovations, while in the midst of planning their nuptials. Berge, who is already an event planner by day, has lent her talents to give tours of the property and venue every Thursday night. She has also managed the redecorating and new finishes that have gone into the house renovations. Since the house sits adjacent to where the venue is being built, this on-site bridal retreat has been prepped and primed for wedded bliss.

 

Welcome Home to The Pines
If you book a wedding or event at The Pines, the on-site home with in-ground pool is one amenity you don’t want to miss. Inside the home, the wedding party will be welcomed to relax, hang out by the backyard, in-ground pool and prepare for their big day. As part of the wedding package, couples can choose to rent the house for the day or for the weekend. “With the weekend wedding package, the families will be able to host the groom’s dinner on Friday, ceremony on Saturday, then the gift opening and brunch on Sunday,” explained Blain Mikkonen of Grain Designs.

 

Retreat Remodel
Starting on the exterior, the Grain Designs team updated the outdated features and painted the home a farmhouse blue by Magnolia. The in-ground pool, decks and patios have been spruced up and more landscaping and signage is about to go in. “We already moved three pine trees into the center corridor near the house. This area will have retaining wall blocks, floral and landscaped areas to create a setting or backdrop for pictures,” said Grant Koenig of Grain Designs.”Before” photo:

Moving inside the home, Berge tapped into her own design skills and played off of the farmhouse vibe they’d already envisioned for the venue’s space. “I wanted to do a farmhouse style without screaming farmhouse – so more of a modern farmhouse with a simple, bohemian look,” explained Berge.
“I found a lot of the decor pieces at Moorhead Antique Mall and of course there are pieces from Grain Designs like the farmhouse dining table and centerpiece candle block. I also purchased pillows like the blush peach one in the family room from my friend at Olove Design; they are available at Etsy.com.”Over the course of three days, Berge and Grain Designs collaborated with Brushed Interiors to complete the main floor’s master bath renovation. Making use of the existing textured wall covering, Brushed Interiors gave the retro design a fresh look with a light and bright tone before she moved on to refinish the outdated oak cabinetry in a cool grey tone.

Giving the older home modern appeal, Grain Designs custom-designed a beautiful wall mirror and vanity top, then installed updated lighting, plumbing fixtures, trim and sleek new flooring. “Ashley Bakkegard of Brushed Interiors did a great job with the main floor bathroom paint and cabinetry refinish. Nicolette and I, along with some of our friends, helped paint throughout the home,” said Bresnahan.

Pat, Nicolette & friends helped with interior painting. Brushed Interiors did all bathroom painting

Just around the corner…
Just beyond the newly updated main-floor bath, the master bedroom and spare bedroom are nearly completed and will be featured in our final showing in October’s issue. The kitchen, which only needed minimal updates to its cherry wood facade, will be getting simple cosmetic upgrades like new lighting and decor.

Bridal Party Bliss
Right now, the upstairs has two bedrooms and a full bath, but this is the area that will soon have the most dramatic transformation. This will be a private bridal suite to accommodate the bride and her party. The downstairs will also be undergoing a change, turning the large space into sleeping quarters with a game room and a man cave for the groom and his party. “There is a separate entrance to the downstairs, so the groom and groomsmen will be able to come and go without seeing the bridal party. A lot of this renovation will take place this coming winter and hopefully, be ready by spring,” said Bresnahan.

Find the Finishes:
Interior wall paint & bathroom paint finishes – Brushed Interiors

Home decor – Nicolette Berge
Exterior paint – Hirshfield’s Vermont Slate (Similar to Magnolia Signature)
Vintage accessories & furniture – Moorhead Antique Mall
Dining table and candle block – Grain Designs
Bathroom paint and cabinetry refinish – Brushed Interiors

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Booking the Big Day
Berge will continue to offer personal tours of The Pines every Thursday for brides and grooms who want to ponder the property. “We’ve had a lot of interest from companies regarding corporate events, but peak wedding season for 2019 and even 2020 are filling much quicker than we anticipated. We’ve had a healthy mix of both Friday and Saturday events, but Saturdays are definitely the more popular choice,” said Berge.”So far, everyone is doing the day package which includes being able to make use of the house from 8:00 a.m. on their wedding day to the start of their reception. For my own wedding, I’m having the hairstylist come to the house where the bridal party will be. I think there’s appeal in having everyone come to you instead of having your bridal party go from place to place on your wedding day. That can really eliminate a lot of unnecessary stress.”

 

Catered Cuisine
Chef’s Table Catering is The Pines exclusive caterer and they’re also helping to get the kitchen properly equipped. “If someone requests a different caterer, they can certainly do that; they would just have to pay an ‘outsider caterer fee’ to use the space and equipment for that event,” said Koenig.

Collaborate & Design
“We are working with Taylor Belk of Epic Homes to complete The Pines building. We’re also working with Rhet Fiskness of Rhet Architecture – he executed the construction documents for the official, stamped drawings. Then Grant and I created the 3-D model based on Rhet’s floor plan and completed the renderings,” said Mikkonen.

“Trever Hill Design is helping us with all of the interior finishes and fixtures. We’re really trying to accent the bathrooms. They’re going to be really unique – something that people haven’t seen yet,” said Koenig. “We’re doing huge 2×4-foot tiles on the wall and long, farmhouse-style sinks. We’re also building a permanent bar in the venue. Having the White House Co. stage for Pat and Nicolette’s wedding will be great – I think their style and aesthetic really fits the venue and vibe, so I’m sure we’ll be working with them a lot.”

Setting the Outdoor Scene
When it comes to outdoor weddings, The Pines’ 17 acres offers endless possibilities. “When I give tours, I tell brides about the different options that what we have in mind; but the great thing is, we can do whatever you want – this is your day and this is an experience, it doesn’t have to be a cookie cutter version of a wedding,” said Berge. “We are planning to use that opening in the grain bins as a sort of aisle for our wedding. Guests will walk through the Grain Designs barn doors in between the grain bins and they will enter an outdoor living room scene staged by White House Co. with an outdoor rug, chandelier, lamps and vintage sofas. Back behind the bins between the field and trees is such a beautiful area for the ceremony and it’s really protected well from the wind.”

“An on-site pergola will be available for all brides to use, however, they’ll have the option to have Grain Designs build them a custom pergola, which after the wedding can be broken down into a queen size bed headboard,” explained Berge. “That’s one of our à la carte options along with a few other options like the wood and metal monogram signs, that guests can sign instead of a traditional guestbook.”

“We also are working on building fire pits and new walking paths through the trees with a procession area where the bride and party can walk through the house and down the stairs leading to the ceremony. We’ll have two designated, outdoor spots where ceremonies can take place, but wherever people want to get married on the property, we can try to accommodate,” said Berge.


_________________________________________

Sneak Peek from the Designer: Trever Hill
To get an advanced peek into their collaboration with Trever Hill Design, we asked Hill to share a few of the finishes and fixtures you’ll soon find at The Pines.

“When Grain Designs asked me to be the designer on the project, I was so honored. I look up to them as being cutting-edge and always on trend,” said Hill. “I needed to execute their vision, but I also wanted to put a spin on the average venue space; doing our best to not use the same lighting and design elements as other venues. The Pines has a refined farmhouse feel that everyone will feel at home with.”

“The men’s bathroom, for example, will have a large format tile that has an appearance of steel. Above that tile, will be a woven grasscloth wallpaper. The sink that was chosen for both bathrooms is by Kohler, and we loved that the base can be custom painted to your liking,” explained Hill. “In the men’s restrooms, we are painting the base black with a textured black brick behind the main vanity. In the women’s we are painting the base of the sink a beautiful, blush pink with large format tile in a Calcutta marble look and a metallic wallcovering with a mirrored effect.””When you walk into the entryway of the venue you’ll be greeted with a beautiful, black chain chandelier hanging over a marble tabletop with a black iron base. Off in the distance will be a custom pergola connecting the front entryway to the main hall,” said Hill.

 

“The accent chairs from Eco Chic Home, table and chain chandelier are all for the entryway,” said Hill. “We chose a long vanity light for the men’s bathroom along with the sconces. To keep the refined, farmhouse feel, I found the shaded sconces with black, matte finish to go in the main hall with the diamond shaped chandelier with rope accent. The classic white chairs are for outdoor weddings and the walnut cross back chairs were chosen for the interior.”

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Follow the Progress
“We’ve had really good success in booking the venue while under construction, so having it fully completed soon, will make a huge impact,” said Koenig. “With the success of The Pines, we’re not going to stop upgrading, renovating and building, so what it is now, could be drastically different in the future. We have a much bigger vision for what the whole property can become.”To make sure Midwest Nest readers get the scoop on The Pines first, we will be covering each step of their progress from the final reveal of wedding number one next month, to phase two where they will be transforming the on-site grain bins into guest lodging. The Pines might be slated for a venue now, but it will soon be a local destination with an extraordinary lodging experience that will attract adventure seekers everywhere.


For more information, contact: 

The Pines

701.850.6064

sales@thepinesvenue.com

ThePinesVenue.com

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[ Lakes Area Home Tour ] Sneak Peek: Ottertail, Minnesota

Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by Studio Three Beau   Mark your calendars for the fourth annual Lakes Area Home Tour. This self-guided tour of seven homes takes place for…

Words by Tracy Nicholson
Photography by Studio Three Beau
 

Mark your calendars for the fourth annual Lakes Area Home Tour. This self-guided tour of seven homes takes place for one day only, on September 29. To give our readers a sneak peek, we met up with tour coordinator, Emily Dreyer, to walk us through one of the stunning, featured homes owned by Paula and Casady Thiel of Ottertail, Minn. If spectacular homes don’t pique your interest, maybe their charitable cause will. Find out how taking a tour will benefit the 549 Family Foundation and go on to support the valued student programs in their Perham, Minn., area school district.


Take a Tour / Help a Student
“The Lakes Area Home Tour started in 2015 and has been a great way to showcase many of the beautiful homes in our area, as well as help our local vendors promote their businesses and the work that they do,” said Dreyer. The 549 Family Foundation is based in Perham, Minn. and composed of 250 alumni and community members who work to counteract budget cuts and provide creative contributions to programs, activities, educational tools and facilities.

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Featured Home Sneak Peek:
The Thiels – Ottertail, Minnesota


Casady and Paula Thiel with their son, Phoenix, and French Bulldog, Betty


When Paula and Casady Thiel, along with their son Phoenix, began the design of their rural home, they were not without inspiration. Their gorgeous lot is uniquely positioned between three lakes, just outside of Ottertail’s city limits. Employing the help of talented friends, family and RHET Architecture, Casady and Paula Thiel constructed a dream team of creative visionaries to complete their build.

Although a design we’d classify as one-of-a-kind, this type of project is one of many for the Thiel family. They’ve become well-known in the area for their artistic endeavors with scrap metal and salvaged materials. Take a drive down Main Street in Ottertail and we have no doubt you’ll be able to spot their family’s handiwork. In fact, you can tour one more if you’d like – Paula Thiel is the owner of Ottertail’s infamous Red Brick Boutique, also designed in their signature style and located in the restored Ottertail Creamery.

Inspiration Sparked
Influencing the home’s design was the initial work of Casady’s father Pete Thiel, the founder of Firestarters Worship Center in Ottertail. Pete Thiel’s desire to create a unique space for his ministry and restore the old Ottertail Creamery, eventually led their entire family to become local experts in making use of salvaged materials. For the Thiels, the family that builds together…stays together.Casady and Paula Thiel began their build in September of 2015, reaching out to RHET Architecture to help with the layout and placement on the lot. From the beginning, Casady Thiel, who runs his own tile business (Thiel Tile & Stone), worked closely with architect Rhet Fiskness, to make the most of the beautiful, three-lake lot, positioning all of their main living spaces south, toward the lake.”Technically, this is lakeshore, but as you can see this is a backlot of Donald Lake. The lot is split in half by Three Lakes Road with Long Lake; our lakefront is across the street on Portage Lake,” explained Paula Thiel.

Inside
Just in the entrance, the Thiel’s design-forward thinking is in full force. Referring to the rough-sawn red oak, Mid-century modern chandelier and vintage tin ceiling tile, Casady Thiel sums up their style as ‘rustic elegance’; a complementary combination of Paula’s career in fashion and Casady’s in construction.

Head up the stairs to the great room and office, and you’ll find the stairwell’s glossy, wood-paneled walls – a unique take on an ordinary building material. “This is actually B-grade plywood from Menards that we stained and polyed,” said Paula Thiel. “We went through a lot of plywood at the store, trying to find the best pieces. They ended up looking really random because some of them took stain better than others.” To finish the pieces, the Thiels worked with their friend Wendell Danielson who helped them roll on a high-gloss floor polyurethane and cut each one into 32×48 panels – getting roughly three pieces out of every sheet of plywood. “I think the sheen is the reason this design works,” said Danielson.

Custom fabrication by local welder James Virnala was used in the making of the raw steel stair railings. Throughout the home, Casady Thiel’s eye for perfection takes center stage with the precise install of raw steel wall panels with exposed bolts and steel trim work.

Open-Concept Living
The East wing of the house features an open concept with the kitchen, living room and dining room sharing one unified space. Rough-sawn oak flanks the ceiling while Carrara marble countertops and custom tile designate the kitchen space. “Casady found the tile at Menards, but they were sold as 12x12s. It just didn’t look very interesting, so he cut them down to 6x12s,” explained Paula Thiel.#1, 14
The living room is a favorite spot for the Thiels to relax, build a fire and take in the view. With only one TV in the home, the outdoors is considered their primary source of entertainment.
The Thiels have 4,000 square feet of rough-sawn oak, so in some areas, it’s white-washed and in other areas, it’s the raw, natural color like on the ceiling in the family room, kitchen and dining room. “We found the red oak from a guy in the woods up by Park Rapids, Minn. When we found a material that either Paula or I really liked, I would just buy a lot of it, so we actually had to use it,” laughed Casady Thiel.

Inside the master bath, Casady Thiel used rustic corrugated metal on the ceiling, antiqued brass plumbing fixtures, vintage pendants and his wife’s white Carrara marble tile as the elegant focal point. “Since tile is what I do for a living, I had to go big with the shower,” he laughed. “We just did marble everywhere in here.”

Just a few steps away, the couple created closet perfection with an inexpensive IKEA system that fit so well, it left them with only 1/8-inch to spare. According to Casady Thiel, about 80 percent of the closet is currently his wife’s terrain, inhabited by an array of personal favorites from her clothing store, Red Brick Boutique. For this project, Andrew Campbell helped with the framing and finish work.With his prior construction experience, Casady Thiel was able to work on the entire building project from start to finish, with help from friends and family. “My dad helped me with the foundation and fireplace masonry and my father-in-law helped me frame it,” he said. “We also had Andrew Costin of Costin Construction and our long-time friend, Wendell Danielson, helping with a lot of the work.”

Extraordinary Exterior
With their picturesque lake view setting, the Thiels chose to keep their exterior as organic as possible with elements like rough-sawn wood, salvaged corrugated metal, and raw steel which will naturally age with time. “I’ve always like the look of the shed roof and modern lines, but with rustic and salvaged materials,” said Casady Thiel.”Rhet came up with the idea of doing a sort of ‘pod’ design so that the materials would be different on each section of the house,” said Paula Thiel.#15
“To make this work, we sided it with all different styles of accent panels. Call it O.C.D., but I really needed all of the exterior windows to align,” laughed Casady Thiel. The section encompassing the living room is in a naturally rusting raw steel, while the master’s exterior is wrapped in salvaged, corrugated metal they purchased for 25 cents a square foot in Fergus Falls.Look closer and you’ll find rough-sawn wood on all of the soffit and fascia, which is carried over to the exterior, underneath the lean-to. Also on the roadside, the garage entrance doors have been wrapped with raw steel for a more cohesive exterior design.

In the Future
On the lakeside, the Thiels ongoing plan is to build a boathouse and continue working on the lakefront area which already includes a finished volleyball court. On the exterior, they will be building a Juliet-style deck on the second level coming out from the upstairs office and great room. They also plan to design a trellis over the garage doors to bring in more of the rough-sawn wood elements.

Find the Finishes:
Architect –  Casady Thiel, Rhet Fiskness, RHET Architecture, Fargo, N.D.
Landscape – Paula Thiel with floral by Swedberg Nursery, Battle Lake, Minn.
Plywood walls and tile supply – Menards
Tile design & install – Casady Thiel, Thiel Tile & Stone
Countertops – Carrara Marble, Syverson Tile & Stone, Fargo N.D.
Masonry – Casady Thiel and Pete Thiel
Metal fabrication – James Virnala
Master closet system – Ikea
Construction – Andrew Costin, Costin Construction, Wadena, Minn., Pete Thiel, Casady Thiel, Andrew Campbell
Woodwork – Casady Thiel, Pete Thiel and Wendell Danielson

 

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Take a Tour
“This year, we have homes in Perham, Frazee, New York Mills and Ottertail,” said Dreyer. “We want to have a little something to inspire everyone in their own decorating, remodeling or building projects. The homes range in sizes, decor styles, locations and more. We try to pick homes that have done some updates, are new builds, or have interesting features that would be fun to see. Inspiration can come from anywhere, and I think people just enjoy seeking that inspiration out and then bringing it to life in their own space.”

Tour Sponsors:
The tours Title Sponsor is Lumber Depot of New York Mills, Minn. “They have been our Title Sponsor for the past few years, and their knowledge and expertise in the building industry has been instrumental throughout the planning process,” said Dreyer. “Their goal is to help people find inspiration that suits their lifestyle and make their spaces uniquely their own.”Each home also has designated ‘Host Sponsors’ which are businesses in the community that are affiliated with the home on some level. These sponsors are present in the home on the day of the tour to showcase their business and assist with the tour traffic. “This year, you’ll find Bremer Bank, New Horizons Realty, Hilltop Lumber, Refreshing Designs & Karvonen’s, United Community Bank, and Thiel Tile & Stone at different homes on the tour. They change each year based on the different homes that will be featured,” said Dreyer. The tour also consists of “Friend Sponsors” and “Neighbor Sponsors” that can support the tour while marketing their products and services.

 

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Lakes Area Home Tour:
Saturday, September 29, 2018
9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Cost is $25/ticket with proceeds benefiting the 549 Family Foundation.
[Tickets come with a coupon for a free seasonal beverage at Brew Ales & Eats in Perham!]

 

Find Tickets At:
Nest, Bremer Bank, Refreshing Designs in Perham or at Lumber Depot in New York MillsPurchase Tickets Online:
Facebook – Lakes Area Home Tour
https://www.facebook.com/events/1477321369012671/For more information:
Facebook Page – Lakes Area Home Tour
* Be sure to ‘like’ their page to see updates and sneak peeks of each featured home!To Support 549 Family Foundation, contact:
Emily Dreyer
800 Coney Street West, Perham, M.N.
info@549family.com

549family.com

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Luxury & Livability

Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by J. Alan Paul Photography This month, we met up with a local builder, Robert Leslie, to see inside his extraordinary personal home in The…

Words by Tracy Nicholson

Photography by J. Alan Paul Photography
This month, we met up with a local builder, Robert Leslie, to see inside his extraordinary personal home in The Wilds of West Fargo. This stunner by Designer Homes is 6,700 square feet of the latest design trends and amenities, you need to see before you build. Step inside their laid-back style with high-tech entertaining, and fun-filled features around every corner. As a family retreat for Robert, his wife Melissa, and their three children, home is truly where the heart is.

Positive Energy
When Designer Homes’ founder, Robert Leslie, decided it was time to rebuild, the goal was all about fusing extraordinary design with the latest in technology and amenities. “This house will host private tours, by appointment, so that we can walk our clientele through all of the different ultra-custom features that are now available,” said Leslie. “Our clients deserve to know the latest trends and technology in new homes, and it’s our job as home builders to always be educating ourselves on new trends, as opposed as just knowing how to build. I personally work with clients on every build when it comes to the design elements of their home; I really pride myself on the relationship I have with each of those clients.”Nearly every inch of Leslie’s six bedroom, six bath home is automated, controlling each room’s specific lighting, shade controls, media, security and audio settings. “It’s great to be able to show people all of the different things we do, and also showcase our subcontractor’s work.”

Laid-Back Luxury
“Our family and our style is laid back; it’s kick your feet up, enjoy your home and enjoy your family,” said Leslie. “We’re not fancy people and I appreciate every style of living, but for me, I wanted our home to be a place where we could just be at home and be comfortable.”

Near the great room, Leslie displays Designer Homes’ custom wood wall and geometric patterned stair railing, fabricated by Straightline Design. These are just a couple of the endless features that Designer Homes can bring into their homes, giving each client their own signature look.

Pristine Privacy

To offer their homeowners a well-rounded experience to complete the interior or exterior design, Designer Homes offer additional services through two different divisions. “Through EnVision Builders, we are able to provide the install and design of decks, fences and basement finishes. We also offer designer window treatments and window films through our subsidiary company, Designer Window Treatments,” said Leslie.

“A lot of people don’t want to put blinds on their windows, but they still want their privacy. This is a linen look and it’s simply a film we apply to the windows; if you get tired of it in two years and you want a different look, you peel it off and you can easily replace it. All of the windows on the back side of the house have a custom film which blocks out around 99% of ultraviolet rays. This will help protect your flooring, furniture and cabinets from fading.”


Heart of the Home
In the kitchen, Leslie designed the custom cabinetry with Braaten Cabinets and worked with Spaulding Stone to create the three-inch-thick, quartz waterfall countertop. A gourmet kitchen and appliance package is featured, including a more modern, raised dishwasher design.

Entertaining is made easy with a spacious butler’s pantry which doubles as a second kitchen. This space showcases multiple storage options, another set of gourmet appliances and unique amenities, hidden behind closed doors.

Contemporary meets Vintage 

For Melissa Leslie, the home’s host bar, pantry and built-ins provided the perfect backdrop for her vintage dishware collections, in cheerful tones of Hazel Atlas, Jadeite, Blue Charm and Ruby Red. “It adds a pretty pop of color, but I also think it makes a house feel like a home because of its sentimental value,” said Melissa Leslie. “My inspiration comes from my grandma and my mom; they always made meals the most important part of our day as a family.”

To perfectly complement the space, Designer Homes custom-built Leslie’s one-of-a-kind dining table base with three-inch-thick quartz to mimic the adjacent kitchen design. Furniture design is just one of the many features his company can now offer clients who crave custom.

Masterful Suite
Custom dresser built-ins with waterfall-edge, quartz countertops, white shiplap and tray ceilings make this suite any homeowner’s dream. Their masterful retreat also comes complete with a private patio, double crown molding and LED strip lighting.

Inside this Designer Homes master bath, the Leslie’s start their day with plenty of natural light, gorgeous ceramic tile, clean white finishes and a spacious walk-in shower. “I love big spaces, so to me, this is how I want to start my day,” said Leslie. “The tiled walk-in shower has interior and exterior controls, glass doors with a custom film for privacy, as well as more appealing, tile drain basins. It’s also a steam shower with two separate steam units and five shower head options for each person.”

___________________________


Lower Level Luxury
In the Leslie’s lower level, Designer Homes worked with Straightline Design to create the custom wine racks in a glass-enclosed space between the bar and theater areas.

 

With custom wood columns and LED lighting, guests are greeted with thick quartz, waterfall countertops and seating for four. This alcove features a beverage center, ice maker, dishwasher and wine bar with a separate chamber for temperature control.

 

“We have seating for 12 and we worked with Custom Cinema & Sound to incorporate the best theater features like silver lenticular screen technology, so you can watch a movie and get a perfect picture, even with the lights on,” said Leslie. “It actually has the LED built into the back side, so you can change it to over 100 different colors.


____________________

Extraordinary Exterior
“Tricked out and lit”, might be the most accurate phrase to describe the Leslie’s stunning exterior with stamped concrete and stone surroundings. Directly off the home’s back entrance, guests can enjoy the pond view through tempered glass railings in the patio’s dining area, fire pit, playground or custom-designed, outdoor kitchen and grill station with granite countertops.5721
In the backyard, Leslie wanted the pond, but not the slope. As a solution, he incorporated an eight-foot retaining wall that extends all the way across the back, with varying levels stepping down to another level-ground yard near the pond.
If that’s not enough to keep you entertained, keep walking and you’ll find the salt water pool with automated cover, spa, built-in fireplace cove and the garage room; which is fully equipped with a poolside bath, flat screen, state-of-the-art sound system, smart home technology, cozy seating, game room and built-in storage room. There’s also wireless hubs throughout the entire house, so you never have a poor signal, even around the pool.

Leslie’s stunning, fireplace cove is a jaw-dropping, limestone haven with a massive flat-screen, fireplace, automatic shade controls to control sunlight, wind and mosquitos – as well as color-changing LEDs to coordinate with your favorite team.

“As a builder, I feel it’s our responsibility to have a design background. For me, when I built this house, I didn’t just design a house, I designed the home around this location,” said Leslie. “We kept every detail of this land in mind and designed the home around maximizing the space and the views.”

Building Better

We all know that Designer Homes can wow us with their ultra-custom, luxury line of homes; but if given the challenge, they’re ready to show off what they can do in other areas. “People don’t know that we can build high quality in a lower range like $275,000 to $500,000 including lot,” said Leslie. “This year, we’ll still be focused on the high-end, ultra-custom homes, but we’re excited to showcase a few examples of this type of high quality at a different price point.”

Find the Finishes: 

Builder – Designer Homes
Designer – Cheyenne Jundt, Designer Homes
Cabinetry – Braaten Cabinets
Countertops – Spaulding Stone
Furniture – Scan Design
Tile & flooring – Floor to Ceiling Carpet One
Home automation & theater system – Custom Cinema & Sound
Window films – Designer Window Treatments, a division of Designer Homes
Power shades on patio doors – Pella Windows
Power shades in bedrooms – Kateva
Glass door fabrication – Frontier Glass
Fixtures, lighting, plumbing and appliances – Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery
Theater seating – thetheaterseatstore.com
Metal fabrication – Straightline Design
Spa & fiberglass pool – Hot Springs Spas
Playset – Rainbow Play Systems
Plumbing & HVAC – Precision Plumbing

Drywall – Red River Drywall
Exterior dryvit and stone install – Ottertail Stucco and Stone
Siding – Knoke Seamless Siding
Concrete and stamped patios – All-Finish Concrete
Fence – Envision, a division of Designer Homes
Electrical – K&D Electric
Home security – Laser Systems
Landscaping – Scenic Landscaping
Sprinkler system – Aqua Lawn
Stone supply & fireplace – Hebron Brick

For more information, contact:

Designer Homes/Remax Legacy

4342 15th Avenue South Suite 105, Fargo

701.492.5057
DesignerHomesFM.com

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Paradise on the Peninsula [ Whitefish Lake, Minnesota ]

Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by Chelsie Elizabeth Photography Just 30 minutes North of Brainerd, nestled in the red pines of Whitefish Lake, the home of Kevin and Cindy Roberg…

Words by Tracy Nicholson
Photography by Chelsie Elizabeth Photography

Just 30 minutes North of Brainerd, nestled in the red pines of Whitefish Lake, the home of Kevin and Cindy Roberg is a testament to creative architecture and distinguished design. To create their dream home on the peninsula, the couple assembled their dream team with Travis Miller of TWM Architecture, Brittany Wille of Redstone Interiors and contractor Jake Wille. Together, they would design and build a rustic, contemporary home that would gather the family for generations to come.


History of
Donaldson Island
The Robergs chose the property thanks to their good friend and realtor Rob Birkeland. “He felt the location was special, even though the building envelope was a challenge due to setbacks with the lake on both sides of the parcel of land,” said Kevin Roberg.

According to the Robergs, the property had once been owned by Keith Donaldson who was CEO of the Donaldson Companies out of Minneapolis. He had gotten permission in the mid-1900s to link the mainland with what was then called Donaldson Island. “After the road was completed he built the main home and a tennis court. The Donaldson estate was once known as a destination vacation place and became popular for its parties in the 60s, 70s and 80s. Eventually, meeting tough times, Donaldson would subdivide the rest of the land and sell some of the property to others. Where the tennis court once resided, the Robergs envisioned their dream home.

Getting Started
The Robergs met Miller while working on the design for their South Dakota property, Sutton Bay Club through RemWhirl. Miller helped design their home on the property where they would move to in 2012. “When we moved away from South Dakota, we immediately contacted him as we felt he was a good fit for us since not only was he a talented architect, but one who listened carefully to what his clients were trying to create,” said Kevin Roberg. “Plus, we frankly just liked him and when you design a house, it is in everyone’s best interest to get along.”

Setting Goals + Gathering Inspiration
“Kevin and Cindy came to me with concepts and photos of other cabins, pointing out specific aspects that they liked of each one. We dissected the project so I had a clear vision of their goals and expectations,” explained Miller. “They wanted something that was rustic but had a light and airy feel, so it became a combination of rustic and contemporary. They had previously lived in cabins that I would consider more lodge-like. They were log-sided and had a large volume of spaces. This time, they wanted something different – cozier and brighter, but still wanted it to fit with the character of the neighborhood.”

“I’ve always enjoyed what I call ‘mountain architecture’, mixing of style and materials, so I studied a lot of homes you’d see in Colorado or Montana and tried to put my own spin on it,” said Miller. “They didn’t want a great deal of square footage, but at the same time, wanted to make the cabin live larger and be comfortable for their day-to-day activity as well as host family and friends. The lot was the main challenge, getting them the space they wanted and fitting it onto the property with the lake setback and the road setback.” The lot is 1.8 acres with 1.3 of it considered upland due to the West bay’s wetland status. The Robergs have 260 feet of frontage on the East lakeshore and 276 feet on the West wetland side.

Lakeside Design
For the Robergs, their interior goal was clean lines with warm tones. The main living space needed to suit their needs as they aged and the natural light needed to be captured. “We wanted lots of windows for light so that we could accentuate the natural beauty of our peninsula lake location,” said Kevin Roberg. “Having the morning sunrise on the main lakeside and the sunsets on the back bay side was a plus we wanted to take advantage of every day.”

“Travis was a pleasure to work with since he listens to his customers so well. He is creative yet practical, and constantly keeps ‘value’ of the design at the forefront of what he creates,” said Kevin Roberg. “We had an overall theme of ‘Rustic Contemporary’ and a set of functional criteria – main floor living for Cindy and myself, lower level for family and friends, screened porch that would be our main living area and two large wood-burning fireplaces. Travis was the key to putting everything together and it was a true collaboration.”

For the interior’s design, the team worked with Brittany Wille of Redstone Interiors. “We had also worked with her on our Sutton Bay and Los Cabos building projects. Just like Travis, she was creative yet pragmatic,” said Kevin Roberg. “We had built two other lake homes in more of a traditional log or rustic style and felt that now was a time to separate our cabin from the traditional ones from a style standpoint. We felt the rustic, contemporary style would fit the region, but be more modern in look, yet very warm in feel.” For the rustic collaboration, flooring was chosen in a resawn white oak, with cabinets and beams in rustic alder with a stained finish. To achieve the brighter side of their design, the team relied on enamel-painted, poplar ceilings in a 1×6 shiplap.

Heart of the Home
To carry their signature style to the heart of the home, the Robergs worked with Scott Ivy of Ivy Cabinets on their gorgeous kitchen, incorporating clean lines and rustic alder textures. “He’s a very talented young man who made a rather small space seem larger due to his ability to create a great deal of storage in a limited space,” said Kevin Roberg.

Capturing Sunsets
The Roberg’s screened-in porch has already become a family favorite and daily retreat. “It has tremendous views on three sides, comfortable furniture and a centerpiece fireplace that gets used often,” said Kevin Roberg. With the combination of EzeBreeze windows and the wood-burning fireplace, this porch was designed to be utilized nearly year-round.

Birds-Eye View
A late addition to the original design, Cindy Roberg came up with the idea to incorporate a guest suite above the garage. The suite features its own entrance, living room, bedroom and a spacious bathroom. “Travis made it happen and now all our guests want to stay there instead of the main house,” said Kevin Roberg. “We put in a breakfast bar and also a refrigerator so that guests can have their own place to just enjoy. The small deck outside the front entrance also has the best sunset views of the entire property. We call it the ‘Eagles Nest Suite’ since there used to be an eagles nest in a 150-year-old white pine just outside the window next to the bedroom.”

Boathouse Bliss
Recent changes to the county’s building codes allowed the Robergs to build up to a 120-square-foot “boathouse” by the lake, as long as it met certain setback requirements and building codes. “We took advantage of this opportunity and built a wonderful combination office, lakeside bar and just plain ‘hangout’ by the lake,” said Kevin Roberg. “It has a bar, large bookcase, refrigerator, ice maker and chairs that make it a great escape when I need to get away.”

“We love the final product and absolutely love our home,” said Kevin Roberg. “We love it so much we created a family cabin trust so that it can remain in our family for generations. Our children and grandchildren love it too and are often sharing the home with us.”

Into the Woods
“To achieve their rustic, contemporary exterior look, we used a product called Rough Rider, combined with timber accents, aluminum windows and a lot of glass,” said Miller. “Rough Rider is a natural wood siding that has an Eternity Finish. The finish process enhances the grain in the wood and accelerates the weathering process, so ultimately it looks like old reclaimed wood but has the characteristics of new siding which provides the protection needed to make it low maintenance.”

For the home’s stunning landscape, the Robergs relied on Reid Price of The Woods Landscaping. “We had worked with Reid on a number of projects over the years and he is very creative, listens well and performs at the highest levels,” said Kevin Roberg. “He turned an old, tired tennis court into a masterpiece, park-like landscape.” Adding to the outdoor appeal, the team managed to save the majority of the mature red pines on the site which helped keep the character of the property.

Meet the Architect: Travis Miller

Miller grew up in Fairmount, N.D., and attended NDSU receiving his architecture degree in 2002. “I had college friends that lived in the Brainerd area and really fell in love with the lakes, woods and all of the outdoor activities available,” said Miller. He has worked for Widseth Smith and Nolting in Baxter, Minn., and RemWhirl in Crosslake, Minn., where he ran the architecture department until starting his own firm, TWM Architecture in 2011.

Find the Finishes:
Architect – Travis Miller, TWM Architecture
Contractor – Jake Wille
Interior Design – Brittany Wille, Redstone Interiors

Cabinetry – Scott Ivy, Ivy Woodcraft
Landscaping – Reid Price, The Woods Landscaping

 

For more information, contact:
TWM Architecture
Travis Miller
11443 Co. Road 77 S.W., Nisswa, Minn.
218.821.6780
travis@twm-arch.com

 

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Living & Dining at the Lake [Middle Cormorant Lake, Minnesota]

Words by Tracy Nicholson / Photography by Travis Beauchene, Studio Three Beau We’ve gotten to know Moorhead resident, Laneil Skaff, over the past year and she has never disappointed with…

Words by Tracy Nicholson / Photography by Travis Beauchene, Studio Three Beau

We’ve gotten to know Moorhead resident, Laneil Skaff, over the past year and she has never disappointed with her remarkable, at-home culinary skills. With each passing month, her brilliant recipes have become a fixture in our pages. While last month she gave us a glimpse of her Tuscan adventure, this month she once again teams up with her daughters, Julie Stoe and Jenna Stowers, to show us three simple and fun lake recipes their family loves. To immerse ourselves in the lake life, we visited their newly renovated, Middle Cormorant lake home to see how their family lives and dines on the water.The Skaff family built the first cabin on the property in 1990. Add nearly 30 years, and their now-grown family had over doubled. Realizing it was time for a renovation, Laneil and Sam Skaff recruited more family to help – Brad and his dad Dewy Vesta of R.V. Construction. With a goal to stick with their current footprint of 1,800 square feet, the Skaffs collaborated with architect Herman Novak, certified kitchen designer Bill Tweten of Western Products, and the Vestas to make the same amount of space feel like a home that’s twice the size.

The Renovation
To start their renovation, the entire lake home had to be gutted and completely reworked from top to bottom. Like many older lake homes, the prior footprint had a floorplan that was much more divided, making the space feel closed in and less efficient. The kitchen was much too small for their growing family and with grandkids running in and out, there needed to be a bathroom with easy access from the door. “Because we had to use the same footprint, the only other thing I asked was that we keep at least the same amount of storage.””Before the renovation we had a lot of carpet, so that was another thing that we really wanted to change,” said Laneil Skaff. “We replaced that with a linoleum vinyl plank – it’s really easy to clean up after when you have wet kids, bathing suits and sand.”

Raise the Roof
In the more communal space of their lake home, Brad and Dewy Vesta raised the roof to give the illusion of more space. “We took out the original scissor truss ceiling that was up there and we raised it 42 inches by taking that out and putting in I-joist beams,” said Brad Vesta. “Basically, it’s a truss that Mid-States made for us and instead of fastening it together like they usually would, my dad and I put up each end one-by-one with a pulley system. We bolted it all together while we used a temporary wall on each side to hold the roof up until the truss was in place. Then we covered it in reclaimed lumber from Dakota Timber Company.”

The Landing Pad
Tweten’s cabinetry design started at the front door with a unique landing pad accommodating every family member and guest. Custom built-ins were created to provide a drop zone and charging station for computers, phones, keys, sunglasses and even the kid’s lifejackets. “Bill really was so good at thinking about every little detail. I didn’t want my computers and the phones cluttering up the island, so this is a great spot to keep everything organized,” said Skaff.”We originally had the life jackets up higher on a bar in the old cabin, but it just made more sense to make the bar lower so the kids can learn how to hang up or grab their own life jackets,” said Jenna Stowers. “When you have eager ones ready to swim it’s a really easy place for the kids to grab a life jacket and go jump in the lake.”

Another spot in the landing pad is designated for a giant basket of Crocs. “They’re our all-purpose lake shoes,” laughed Skaff. “Everyone can find the basket, you take out a pair that fits you and that’s what the whole family seems to wear all weekend.”

Island Ambitions
To make their kitchen worthy of large family gatherings, the Skaffs worked closely with certified kitchen designer, Bill Tweten of Western Products. With a need to squeeze a lot more function into the same square footage, this was one room that required extreme efficiency and sneaky storage. For the finish, the Skaffs chose a unique, pigment white for their upper and perimeter cabinets. “I wanted it to be a softer white and as cabin-like as possible, so with this pigment stain, you can still see a little of the grain coming through.”S

The island, finished in a deep Slate stain, was designed with distinguished storage encompassing every inch. “One of my favorite features are the big, deep drawers. I’ve got all of our dishes in the drawer – we have a drawer for glass, one for plastic and one for paper products. Don’t mind the ants on the glass dishes, those are painted on ants – a fun set my sister gave me,” laughed Skaff.(beach towel storage – island)
In the island, Skaff has a designated spot for her cookbooks as well as a place reserved for an item their family is in constant need of – beach towels. “The girls really helped me by reminding me of what I had, what I needed to make room for,” said Skaff. “One of the big things was that we always had a huge basket for beach towels. So, I said, ‘When I take down all of the walls, where’s that going to go?’ That’s now the upper part of our island – the two drawers on this side are all beach towels. Bill really helped me think through and provide some great solutions for the storage and things we had to have to make it all work.”

Dining at the Lake
To design their new dining room, the Skaffs relied on beautiful built-ins and a custom-made table by Josh Humble of Finnu. Their table for 12 was built using redwood pickling barrels hailing from California.Laneil Skaff had chosen the drop-down chandelier but soon realized that it was not meant for installation on their slanted ceilings. To remedy the design dilemma, Brad Vesta used reclaimed lumber to create a flat base for the fixture to hang evenly.

Master Suite
In the master suite, the family worked with Tweten to design a wall of built-in cabinetry for drawer space and office, using every inch of the rooms available space. “On the back wall, we did a white-washed shiplap from Stenerson Lumber,” said Brad Vesta. “To get a more rustic look, we didn’t prime it. That way the knots could bleed through. Then we did two coats of paint and one coat of clear so fingerprints can be easily wiped off.”  In the bedroom and throughout the lake home, windows were replaced with a pre-finished pine from Pella’s Designer Series.The Skaffs refurbished their existing night stands with chalk paint from Eco Chic Home and kept the style uniform, relying on comforting quilts for every room.In the master bath, Laneil Skaff chose a wood-look porcelain tile with a quartz seating area in the shower. “It’s the lake cabin and I just wanted it to feel like a lake cabin. So, when they started laying this tile, Sam called and asked if there was something wrong with it. I had to explain to him that that’s how it’s supposed to look,” laughed Skaff. “I just love the old, weathered wood and beachy textures. I also wanted a matte finish for the vanity, so we used a Corian from Western Products.”In the guest room wing, even the Skaff’s hallway is beautifully accented with gorgeous pieces like the reclaimed wood and dock cleat coat hanger and one-of-a-kind barn door. “This wood was actually from the old redwood deck that we took out during the renovation,” said Brent Vesta. “I brought Finnu a bunch of the wood and they used the larger dock cleat for the handle.”“I love the barn door because all of these colors are different stains that we had used on it over the past 30 years,” said Laneil Skaff. “Finnu used different planing techniques and worked hard to keep that original finish.”

Fun & Functional
With an idea that spurred from Pinterest, Laneil Skaff found an industrial solution to a create fun and functional sleeping space for six. “Brad and my son, Nate, built this set of bunk beds in the kids’ room, then my boys finished the other set. Brad was really the engineer to help us with the design using industrial plumbing pipes.” The design consists merely of 2x4s fastened to the wall with the piping grounded to the floor for support. For the smaller beds, Skaff used crib mattresses, then baskets and hooks for efficient storage.“We just tried to keep everything looking as much like the lake as possible. So, you’ll find a lot of reclaimed wood, vintage skis and paddles, along with comfy quilts in each room,” said Skaff.”All of our closet systems are from Smart Spaces. They came in and customized them to every room for us,” said Skaff. “She really used our space wisely. We designed most of the closets with enough space to fit a smaller crib, so the kids can have the babies close by, but also be able to close the door a bit, so they can still use the room.”

____________________

Midwest Nest is always thrilled to join Laneil Skaff and her daughters, Julie Stoe and Jenna Stowers in the kitchen. Gathering around their beautiful new island at the lake, they shared three recipes they love to serve up, with a side of sunset.

Chicken-Farro Salad

(Serves six meal-size servings)
This salad uses the grain Farro – it is an ancient grain that an excellent source of protein, fiber, and nutrients like magnesium, zinc and some B vitamins. It has a nutty flavor and chewy texture. With a great mix of sweet and salty, and a mild dressing to tie it all together, this makes a great summer meal.

Ingredients:

½ cup pearled or regular farro

6 – Ounces (about 9 cups) mixed baby greens (I like to use some iceberg lettuce in this salad for the crunch)

1 ½ – Cups leftover cooked chicken – coarsely shredded

1/3 – Cup unsweetened dried cranberries (can also use dried blueberries, currants or cherries)

1/3 – Cup chopped dates

2 – Ounces Manchego cheese –
shaved with a vegetable peeler

¼ – Teaspoon salt

¾ – Cup vinaigrette

¼ – Cup chopped Marcona almonds

Instructions:

Bring two quarts of salted water to a boil. Cook according to directions on box – it will be different depending what farro you get. Pearled farro will cook faster. Cook until tender. Drain well and spread the farro on a pan to cool.

In a large bowl, combine the greens, chicken, cooled farro, cranberries, dates cheese and salt. Toss with ½ cup of the vinaigrette, adding more as needed. Garnish with almonds.

Champagne Vinaigrette

(Makes one cup)

Ingredients:

¼ – Cup champagne vinegar

1 – Tablespoon honey

¼ – Teaspoon salt

Pinch of freshly ground black pepper

¾ – Cup canola or vegetable oil

Instructions:

Put the vinegar, honey, salt and pepper in a blender. Pulse to combine the ingredients. With the machine running, drizzle in the oil. Blend the dressing until it is well emulsified and thick. Refrigerate. Shake well before using.

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Easy Rhubarb Pie

We are often making this pie as we are finishing up meal prep. It takes under 10 minutes to make and then off it goes to the oven while we are eating supper. A pot of coffee gets made, get the bowls, spoons, napkins, and of course ice cream and we’re off for a sunset cruise on the pontoon. A perfect way to end a day at the lake!

Ingredients 

Crust:

2 – Cups flour

¼ – Teaspoon salt

2 – Teaspoons sugar

2/3 – Cup vegetable oil

4 – Tablespoons milk

4 – Cups rhubarb- finely diced

Filling:

1 ½ – Cups sugar

1 ½ – Teaspoons cinnamon

2 – Eggs, beaten

½ – Cup flour

1 – Tablespoon melted butter

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a medium-size bowl, place all crust ingredients – EXCEPT the rhubarb. Mix with a fork until well mixed. Crust will be crumbly. Set aside ½ cup of the crust and press the remaining mixture in a 9” deep dish pie pan or a 9” round cake pan – pressing crust on bottom and up the sides of the pan. Pour rhubarb on crust and distribute evenly.

In a medium-sized bowl (I often use the same one), combine all the filling ingredients with a whisk until well blended. Pour over rhubarb and spread evenly.

Crumble reserved crust over the top of pie.

Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, then 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

Serve warm with Ice cream or whipped cream.

Variation: This recipe works well with peaches or apples.

_____________

Brazilian Cheese Bread

Pão De Queijo
A perfect little gluten-free bread bite to go with any salad. We first discovered these little bites of goodness when we celebrated the opening ceremonies of the Olympics when they were held in Brazil. 

Ingredients:

1 – Egg –room temperature (can place in a bowl of warm water for 5 minutes to gently warm egg)

1/3 – Cup olive oil

2/3 – Cup milk

1 ½ – Cups Tapioca Flour

½ – Cup queso fresco, feta, or parmesan cheese – grated

1 – Teaspoon salt

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Put all ingredients in a blender and pulse until smooth. Use a spatula to scrape down sides to be sure everything gets mixed in. Pulse a few more times. Do not over mix. (The more you mix, the tougher the dough)

Generously grease mini muffin tins with cooking spray and pour batter into 24 muffins.

Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes, until they are puffed up and a golden brown. Eat while warm with a drizzle of honey, or my favorite, butter!__________

Find the Home’s Finishes:
Contractor – Brad Vesta and Dewy Vesta, R.V. Construction
Architect – Herman Novak Designs
Cabinetry Design – Bill Tweten, Western Products
Cabinetry – Crystal Cabinets, Western Products
Closet shelving systems – Smart Spaces
Pine windows – Pella Designer Series

Tile – Syverson’s Tile
Countertops – Corian, Western Products
Fireplace wood/steel art – Grain Designs
Reclaimed truss and dining chandelier wood – Dakota Timber Company
Dining room table & bench – Josh Humble, Finnu
Dining chairs – Restoration Hardware
High island stools – CB2
Low island stools – Crate & Barrel
Masonry – Winter Masonry
Siding – Iron Grey, by Hardie Board
Drywall – Amundson-Klungtvedt DrywallFor more information, contact:
R.V. Construction
Brad & Dewy Vesta
218.233.4471
Bradley.j.vesta@gmail.comWestern Products
Bill Tweten, CKD, CBD
474 45th Street South, Fargo
701.293.5310
billt@westernproducts.com
westernproducts.com

No Comments on Living & Dining at the Lake [Middle Cormorant Lake, Minnesota]

Hub41 [ Cornering Lake & City ]

Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by Scott Amundson The beachside strip of West Lake Drive in Detroit Lakes, Minn., is easily one of the summer’s hottest lakeside destinations. It’s home…

Words by Tracy Nicholson
Photography by Scott Amundson

The beachside strip of West Lake Drive in Detroit Lakes, Minn., is easily one of the summer’s hottest lakeside destinations. It’s home to Lakeshirts, Lakeside Tavern & Brewery, Zorbaz, The Pavilion and a slew of beach bums ready to relax and bury their toes in the sand. Last summer, the strip got a little hotter with the opening of Hub41, a new restaurant designed by Chris Hawley Architects and owners Gretchen and Nate Hunter. See how this team created the perfect beach bum hang out with a stunning rooftop view and eclectic surf and turf menu.

Taking advantage of an old water park site that had been sitting vacant, owners Gretchen and Nate Hunter, set their sights on creating a new concept in beach dining. Just a stone’s throw away from their other property, the Fairfield Inn & Suites, this corner spot on the strip would provide a beach bum experience worth the drive. Wanting a casual beach vibe and killer lake views, the two recruited the help of Fargo’s Chris Hawley Architects to design their vision, and Detroit Lakes contractor, Josh Lessman, to build it.

Creating a Concept

When the Hunters built the nearby hotel, Fairfield Inn & Suites, they left a pad site that was originally intended for a single-story building. “The only stipulation was that it had to be 3,800 square feet on one level. We actually went back to the county and asked if we could split it into two – that would put us at 1,800 square feet on each level,” said architect Chris Hawley. “We just saw that on the first level, you can kind of see the lake, but mainly the view is of parking and boats. If we added a second level, guests would be able to take in the entire view of Detroit Lakes. In this project, the design had to more about the view than the building.”

For Chris Hawley Architects, their design process started with a little outside inspiration.  “We looked at ideas from a restaurant in Minnetonka that they liked – there were also a few residential projects that they thought were funky and pretty cool,” said Hawley. “I think the one thing they wanted was to differentiate themselves by not having the classic cabin forms you’d expect. They didn’t want the cutesy cottage feel – they wanted it to be more contemporary and edgy and just have a little more fun with it in terms of design”

“Really the whole project was about creating the perfect rooftop patio,” explained Hawley. “So, when you look at it, the design’s success is determined by having as many people sit outside as possible. This is a year-round restaurant, but like all lake restaurants, their whole livelihood is based on three months of having access to the exterior.”

Hot Curb Appeal

On the exterior, a sleek, contemporary design, bold pops of mod color and a tiki bar-type patio are bound to lure you in. But, look a little closer and you’ll see an ancient Japanese technique. The black siding is all charred wood, also known as shou sugi ban. “The owners actually did the charring. The beautiful thing about it is that once you char it, it has natural weather, rot and UV resistance, so you basically don’t have to touch it again. Bugs don’t like it and creatures don’t like to live in it.”

To fabricate the exterior signage using steel and exposed bolts, Chris Hawley Architects employed a hefty foundation to ensure stability for the massive, backlit logo.

Creating Calm

Like many larger lakes, the wind can take a toll on anything near the shoreline. With a rooftop patio plan in place, the team needed to ensure that guests would get a calm dining experience versus being literally blown away. “Rooftop patios are great, but if you’re getting drilled by the wind, nobody is going to enjoy it. To solve this, we used black glass as a windbreaker about five-feet in the air. When you’re sitting up there, you feel pretty tucked in and it gives you a nice little break from the wind,” said Hawley.

Inside Hub41 

Creating the perfect destination for beachgoers meant designing a bar and dining experience that would be fun, creative and non-fussy – a place where flip-flops and beach towels would be welcomed attire.

Guests will find a crisp white palette with details like black plywood with cedar strips, industrial plumbing pipe, exposed I-beams, a corner fireplace, a contemporary twist on sliding barn doors and birch bench seating. “The details are pretty fun, they did some really great workmanship and yet it’s not fussy, it’s simple and creative,” said Hawley. “Josh Lessman did all of the construction on this project – he did a really great job, especially considering it was a very fast-track kind of project – we started in Nov and it was open by May of last year.”

“This is obviously a fun strip down in Detroit Lakes and a building like nothing else on the beach.”
Chris Hawley, Chris Hawley Architects

Embracing the Outdoors

To bring the outside in, the design playfully utilizes the exterior siding elements and cedar slat detailing. Both levels feature an overhead garage door making the exterior and interior a unified space. “The cool thing is that no matter where you’re sitting in the bar, you’re looking at the lake,” said Hawley. “Instead of your back turned to the water and the bartender looking out, it’s the opposite. This is obviously a fun strip down in Detroit Lakes and a building like nothing else on the beach.”

“The one thing about doing an overhead door is that you can’t do anything overhead, so you have really limited storage in that area. The cedar slat details were one of the solutions to get as much storage as we can in a space that is occupied by an overhead door,” said Hawley. “The exterior siding became storage shelving for the bottles, glasses and other bar items.”

If you’d rather grab a booth, the dining areas offer plenty of natural light and interesting design details to create a true beachside experience. “This is just a really durable design and a little wear and tear will only give it more character. The blue material panel is all technically, exterior siding, but we’re using it in a pretty economical way,” said Hawley.
“In other areas, the same siding that we painted blue, we just painted black and screwed on the batton. I think of it like the rainscreen is the black panel, but then the wood is kind of the armor. This project is a very economical approach to design. It really takes common materials and uses them in a very creative way, but not breaking the budget.”

On the Menu:

If you think the design is creative, just wait until you experience their menu featuring weekend breakfast, lunch and dinner. “They have really good food, with kind of a funky menu – I’d say it’s a modern interpretation of a surf and turf,” said Hawley. For a taste of what Hub41 offers lunch and dinner guests, starters include the falafel, California sushi rolls, sweet potato nachos, Cajun shrimp bucket, Scotch eggs and lobster fries. Dinner will definitely delight with eclectic entrees like the shrimp po’ boy, muffuletta, chicken and waffles along with gnocchi mac and cheese, fish and chips and bangers and mash.

Find the Finishes:

Architecture & Interior Finishes  – Chris Hawley Architects

Project Manager – Wayne Schommer, Chris Hawley Architects

Contractor – Josh Lessman, Ledgestone, Inc.

For more information, contact:

Hub 41

104 West Lake Drive, Detroit Lakes

218.844.8488

info@hub41.com

hub41.com

 

Chris Hawley Architects

2534 University Dr #3, Fargo

701.478.4600

info@chrishawleyarchitects.com

chrishawleyarchitects.com

 

Ledgestone, Inc.

421 West Main Suite 104, Detroit Lakes

218.849.6140

Josh.Lessman@LedgestoneInc.com

ledgestoneinc.com

 

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