Midwest Nest Magazine

Midwest Nest Magazine

Culture, Entertaining, Home Design, Fargo, Interior Design, DIY

Category: Architecture

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.

__________

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

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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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Las Vegas to Little Cormorant [ Sugar Island – Little Cormorant Lake, Minnesota ]

Words by Tracy Nicholson / Photography by Dan Francis Photography Fargo native Jack Lavelle is no stranger to creating hospitable surroundings. His company, PWI Construction, recently completed the remodel on…

Words by Tracy Nicholson / Photography by Dan Francis Photography

Fargo native Jack Lavelle is no stranger to creating hospitable surroundings. His company, PWI Construction, recently completed the remodel on the last of 7,000 high-end hotel rooms on the Las Vegas strip. While he’s lived in Las Vegas for the past 18 years, Lavelle has since retired and headed home to the more serene surroundings of his lake home on Little Cormorant. Follow along as we take a tour of his “Sugar Shack” project that’s become a family affair.

Sugar Island on Little Cormorant Lake has been a prized getaway for Lavelle’s family for the past nine years. Returning to the area after an accomplished career managing the construction for a long list of high-end hotels, restaurants, nightclubs and prestigious boutiques, Lavelle wasn’t quite ready to hang up his hard hat.

The Making of the Sugar Shack

Four years ago, Lavelle’s family of contractors drew up a sketch and asked Designer Brent Behm of Ruki Modern to assist with the contemporary, lakefront build. Managing the project was Lavelle’s son-in-law, Eric Berg of Eric Berg Construction and son, Ryan Lavelle, of Invecta Construction Management. With a family of experienced contractors at the helm, Lavelle’s lake home became exactly what he asked for – an informal retreat centered around family, friends and fun.

From left, Brent Behm of Ruki Modern, Ryan Lavelle, Jack Lavelle (not shown, Eric and Jessie Berg)

Architectural Ambitions

“The whole front of the house is all public space and the bedrooms are just a minimal line of five bedrooms along the back,” said Behm. “It’s a super simple concept- everything is about the social aspect and communal space overlooking the lake. The form of the building really followed the program of the building – the lake view first and then the bedrooms being secondary in the purpose. This is what evolved out of that purpose.”

“Ryan and Eric really simplified the construction and kept the project at a reasonable budget. The guys didn’t have any grand vision of what the exterior should look like, this is just how it evolved after all of the plan elements were met,” said Behm. “The goal for this home was pretty loosely defined, it was mainly about providing as many bedrooms as we could and a large space to entertain. From the back, when you’re driving up, the house doesn’t look like anything extravagant, but it really climbs up toward the lake.”

“I think he’s got the right idea for how to live at the lake. Most people want their bedroom window overlooking the lake. For Jack, he said the opposite, ‘Why would I want my bedroom overlooking the lake? That’s where I sleep’.”

Brent Behm, Ruki Modern

The More, The Merrier

With three grown children and seven grandkids, Lavelle’s lake home is typically hopping with family, friends, kids and dogs. Between the home, the camper he parks in the side yard and the three sheds, his lakeside property easily sleeps 30. Not only does he not mind the crowds, he encourages them. Each summer, Lavelle throws a “Sugar Shack” bash for 150 of his closest friends and family, complete with a food truck and his son Ryan Lavelle’s band, Three Legged Horse, entertaining the crowds.

To accommodate the guests he’s happy to entertain, the bedrooms were kept modest and efficient, tucked away in a quiet corridor at the back of the lake home. “In terms of the bedrooms, it first started out as an idea for a separate building, but that’s kind of what it is,” said Ryan Lavelle. “The five bedrooms, two bathrooms, mudroom and laundry located in the back, can be completely closed off from the common space. Guests who are visiting for the day, usually don’t ever see that part of the home, which isn’t all that common.”

Sugar Shack Shakedown

Residing on acreage equivalent to three spacious lake lots, Lavelle doesn’t waste an inch. One-level living and a commercial-sized deck, with Western Sky rocks from Wyoming, wraps the entire front of the 2,996 square-foot lake home, stretching out to a massive front yard. Entertaining the crowds is made easier with a spring-fed lake on 400 feet of beach, a treehouse, volleyball court, pickleball court, guest sheds, fire pit and enough space to accommodate multiple campers and tents.

Entertaining well is a top priority for Jack Lavelle and his family. Not surprisingly, he’s even designated a theme song for his Sugar Shack retreat. “I lived in Vail for a year-and-a-half and became a fan of the band Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats. I’ve decided our theme is, ‘I Need Never Get Old’,” laughed Lavelle. “Now, my kids listen to them and Ryan even learned one of their songs – it’s his band’s most requested song.”

Garden Shed Getaways

The Lavelle family built the three sheds four years ago and the grandkids named them the Eagle’s Nest, Bear’s Den and Butterfly Cabana – the Bear’s Den is where Lavelle prefers to sleep. “The Bear’s Den was originally a garden shed that we made into my bedroom,” laughed Lavelle. “In the others, there are two queen beds in each and they’re for guests and mainly the kids. Jay Ray from West Fargo, did the custom chainsaw carvings in front of each one.”

Swanky Interiors

“We knew we would have a heavy traffic flow in and out between the common space and the exterior space,” said Ryan Lavelle. “That was the factor that helped define this room to make it big, tall and provide the best view possible to see the sky and the lake.”

If the furniture looks familiar to you, chances are you’ve visited one of the hotels that Lavelle has built or remodeled. The majority of the furnishings and materials used in the house were salvaged from remodels in high-end, Rodeo Drive boutiques and swanky resorts.

Lavelle’s daughter, Jessie, and wife to Eric Berg, spearheaded the interior’s design with with assistance from her brother, Ryan Lavelle. Jessie chose all of the finishes including lighting, cabinetry, paint and fixtures, while Ryan added interesting features like the green-stained dooring throughout. Jessie was also tasked with the challenge of figuring out how to place all of her father’s salvaged finds and fuse them with newer decor items.

“Our dining room table came from a designer boutique on Rodeo Drive,” said Lavelle. “They had painted it shiny black, almost like a granite. We didn’t even know what was underneath until we got it from L.A. to my shop in Vegas where I had my guys strip it down and we realized it was wood.”

In the Lavelle lake home, even the kitchen makes use of some unexpected materials. “The granite came from a Las Vegas jeweler that had tried it out as flooring, but then changed their mind when they did the slip testing,” said Berg. “I worked with Granites Unlimited to template, cut and install it for kitchen countertops.”

Low-Maintenance Lake Living

Although Lavelle just recently retired, he still loves to travel, so for the exterior, durability and minimum maintenance was necessary. Everything on the exterior is done in a maintenance-free Azek composite material that was special ordered through Crane Johnson. Since this material had a little more natural variation of color like real wood, the team also used Azek as horizontal siding to distinguish the side entrance.

Due to the height and the way the roof pitches upward, the team used commercial storefront windows to achieve an unobstructed view. “Really, the best part of this design was bringing the outside in with that 30 feet of glass looking toward the lake,” said Eric Berg. “It had it’s challenging times, but it was really rewarding because our whole family now gets to enjoy it.”

Find the Finishes:

Design – Ruki Modern

Contractor – Eric Berg Construction, Inc.
Contractor – Invecta Construction Management

Cabinetry – Quality Cabinets

Chainsaw carvings – Jay Ray (jayraycarves.com)

Aztek siding and decking – Crane Johnson

Millwork – Simonson’s, install by Eric Berg Construction, Inc.

Countertops – install and template by Granite’s Unlimited

Tile – I’ll Tile & Stone

Carpet – Floor to Ceiling Carpet One

______________________________________

 

For more information, contact: 

Eric Berg Construction, Inc.

1257 3rd Street North, Fargo

701.306.1812

 

Invecta Construction Management

Ryan Lavelle

701.371.7141

invectabuild@gmail.com

invectabuild.com

Ruki Modern

Brent Behm

701.730.0060

rukimodern@gmail.com

rukimodern.com

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Midwest Nestled [ Roy Lake, Minnesota ]

Words by Tracy Nicholson / Photography by Scott Amundson Located on Roy Lake near Nisswa, Minn., this weekend getaway is a trompe l’oeil dream home that would pique anyone’s interest….

Words by Tracy Nicholson / Photography by Scott Amundson

Located on Roy Lake near Nisswa, Minn., this weekend getaway is a trompe l’oeil dream home that would pique anyone’s interest. Once deemed an unbuildable lot, the site was one of the last lots available in the Gull Lake chain, and not without reason. Never one to turn down an impossible project, the homeowner’s hometown friend and college roommate, Chris Hawley of Chris Hawley Architects, gladly accepted the challenge.

An Uphill Battle 

For CHA, turning an arduous hill into an award-worthy design took a bit of architectural mastery. “We were able to design this on a really steep site with some crazy topography and only 100-feet of lakefront. Getting the septic system and everything else to fit was a real challenge,” said Hawley. “There are basically four levels; the roadside where the bridge is, the lower level platform which is the main house, then the fire pit level and the last level down by the lake. They’re all tiered, so the fire pit is somewhat buried in the hill – it’s quite the perch where he can take in some awesome lake views.” To distinguish the varying levels, the team used split-stone, boulders and retaining walls.

In order to navigate the hillside, CHA had to do a lot of topography and the bridge became necessary to the design. “If you were to measure where the setbacks are from the lake, and look at the buildable area for the site, you would find about 16 feet of grade change from where you would typically have a house from the front to the back,” said Hawley. “To make this an efficient design, we had to tier it just to get the parking to work and make sure it still looked like a home from the roadside.”

If you sat down and made a list of all of the things this home needed to have, then told someone how much space they had to do it in, most people would politely decline the challenge. “It seems like an impossible task, and we certainly pushed the constraints of the lot lines, but it worked out so well and achieved everything he wanted with a really seamless design,” said Hawley. “It also helped that the homeowner was so open-minded, he loves great design just as much as I do.”

Bridging the Gap

If you’re lucky enough to be invited, you’ll have to walk the plank…so to speak. As a visitor, guests park in the driveway, walk over a charming cedar bridge and enter on the second floor.

“Guests have their own little entryway and there’s two bunk rooms and a secondary master bedroom. His mom and dad stay in the secondary master with a murphy bed that can be converted to an office,” explained Hawley. “When the homeowner arrives, he pulls into the garage and walks down the stairs to the main level where his master suite and the main living areas face the lake.”

Exterior

The extraordinary exterior ties contemporary grey steel and black metal panels, with warm cedar and naturally rusting elements like the corten retaining walls and fire pit. The roof line is a gable with a pitch-break which was altered mid-way through the build to accommodate a bump-out for the second level rooms. The bump-outs gave them an additional two feet for the murphy bed on the second floor and the bunk beds. From left lakeside is the master bedroom, kitchen and great room, all with a remarkable view of Roy Lake.

Architectural Interior

“A really cool feature for guests is when they’re walking over the bridge, they can see all the way through the window to the sputnik lighting and the lake,” said Hawley. “Then you come downstairs and you’re struck with the larger view of the lake. Spatially, it’s a really fun space to be in. I love how three-dimensional his home is – it’s not like you are on an upper or lower level, you are living in a spatial volume. The interior is pretty wild when you consider how all of the rooflines fit together. ”

Throughout the lake home, reclaimed wood extends to accented areas from the great room ceilings to the powder room, master bedroom and sliding barn doors. Giving the home a modern and minimalist flair, the homeowner chose heated concrete flooring, mid-century modern lighting, colorful artwork and industrial metal elements to define the spaces.

A fun find for guests is the reading alcove underneath the stairwell. If you follow CHA’s work, you’ll recognize the cushion and upholstery work which is always done by Chris Hawley’s mom.

The fireplace in the great room is wrapped in steel-panels with four symmetrical boxes including wood storage, fireplace and media storage.

The stairwell to the second level bunkrooms feature vinyl plank treads with steel risers to coordinate with the raw steel paneled fireplace wall.

Intimate Efficiency
“The idea was that the homeowner wanted a really intimate space, but the irony of the design is that even though the rooms are on the smaller side, he can still have up to 40 people over and they will all have a place to sleep,” said Hawley. “In the upstairs alone, he can have 12 people between the bunk rooms and secondary master. Then he has additional space like the alcove under the stairs, living room and main level of the garage which can serve as an overflow room.”

Park at the Top, Party on the Bottom… 

For CHA, one of the project requirements was to create ample lake storage. What you see from the roadside is actually a pre-cast two-story garage, and the roadside represents the top floor. The homeowner parks on the precast deck, just like a parking garage made for two cars.

Below, on the lakeside, the main floor of the garage acts as storage and an occasional entertaining space. “His garage, facing the lake, can have 20 to 30 people there for entertaining and it becomes kind of a party room with heated floors and a sauna right next door,” said Hawley. Here, you can take a sauna and run straight to the lake. The homeowner loves cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, so this is a year-round lake destination for him with plenty of storage for his outdoor hobbies.

“It’s a classic Minnesota way of thinking to build a lake home and then want a Morton building for storage across the road. With this precast garage, we designed it connected to the house and it just looks much better since it’s integrated into the home’s design,” said Hawley. “It’s basically a concrete box, but a huge, practically indestructible space for him to store everything he needs.”

“You have to pour concrete to build a garage like this, and in most cases, people will work really hard to cover it up. We thought it was an awesome raw finish, so let’s just let it be the finish. It’s very contemporary, but I think it works well with this design,” said Hawley.

“He has a nice condo in the city, but he tries to spend as much time at the lake as possible, so this is more of his weekend home right now,” said Hawley. “We made sure to design it so that down the road, it can become more of a year-round residence. In my mind, his lake home is the best of everything, but it’s nice because nothing is super fancy, there’s not a lot of high-end finishes – it’s just really well put together.”

Find the Finishes:

Architect – Chris Hawley Architects

Builder – Vercon, Inc. (Baxter and Menahga, M.N.)

Landscape architect – George E. Prine III, DIG Garden Design
Landscape designer – Jamie Lipke, Backyard Reflections

For more information, contact:

Chris Hawley Architects

2534 University Dr #3, Fargo

701.478.4600

info@chrishawleyarchitects.com

chrishawleyarchitects.com

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Edgewood Estates Elegance

Words by Tracy Nicholson / Photography by M. Schleif Photography You don’t have to wait for an open house to see inside Designer Homes’ latest listing. Before guests arrived at…

Words by Tracy Nicholson / Photography by M. Schleif Photography

You don’t have to wait for an open house to see inside Designer Homes’ latest listing. Before guests arrived at our ribbon cutting, we took a quick tour through their stunning home in the beautiful Edgewood Estates of North Fargo. This luxury, craftsman-style rambler with finished basement, is a rare find in any well-established neighborhood.

Home Stats:
3708 Aspyn Lane North, Fargo
Square Footage: 4,080

Bedrooms: 5

Bathrooms: 3

  • Main floor master bedroom
  • Home is pre-wired for surround sound
  • 3-stall, insulated and sheet-rocked garage with floor drains and gas heater
  • No specials
  • Within walking distance of Edgewood Golf Course and Trollwood Park

With the open-concept layout of the main floor, the home’s great room boasts 10-foot-high ceilings with inset wood detailing. Designed to draw attention to it’s immaculate, craftsman detailing, the fireplace is surrounded by stone and crisp-white shiplap, a floating shelf mantel and custom built-ins for added storage and display.Perfect for a growing family or retirees, the main floor offers two additional bedrooms with two baths, mudroom, laundry and a custom locker system and message center, just off the garage entrance.

The master suite features custom wood ceiling details, a tiled shower, dual vanities and a spacious walk-in closet.

Designer Homes went above and beyond with this gourmet kitchen that’s custom-designed for both entertaining and daily function. A walk-in pantry, maple cabinetry, quartz countertops, subway tile backsplash and high-end appliances complete the space.The home offers a fully-finished basement with 9-foot ceilings, beautiful wood insets, stone accents and full-service wet bar. The lower level also features a theater area and two additional bedrooms with a full bathroom.

Want to attend an open house or request a private tour?
Office: 701.492.5057
Cell: 701.492.5055
info@designerhomesfm.com

See more photos and take a virtual tour at:
designerhomesfm.com

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A New Way of Redefining Value with Thomsen Homes

Words by Rebekah Stoll / Photos by Rebekah Stoll and Robb Siverson / Team photo by Dan Francis Photography Back from left: Heidi Toso, Britten Churchill, Shelby Gustafson, Josh Caroon…

Words by Rebekah Stoll / Photos by Rebekah Stoll and Robb Siverson / Team photo by Dan Francis Photography


Back from left: Heidi Toso, Britten Churchill, Shelby Gustafson, Josh Caroon
Front from left: Alyssa Asheim, Rebekah Stoll

The process of building your new home is an exciting time with a lot of decisions to be made. At Thomsen Homes, our goal is to make the building process fun and simplified, while still offering numerous selections. From the layout to the finishing touches, there are choices abound. When it comes time to decide on the selections that will turn your new house into a home, we have a professional team ready to help you make the decisions that best suit your lifestyle.

Wanting to ease the exterior design process by offering several curb appeal options, our Design and Studio Lead, Heidi Toso, Project Estimator Lead, Josh Caroon, and Architectural Drafter, Britten Churchill got to work. With the focus being able to present the client with different options, the goal was to introduce four new elevations for each of our floor plan offerings. These elevation options include a Modern, Craftsman, Colonial and Traditional style – the Traditional being the original style we offer.

The inspiration for this project came from multiple resources including the International Builders Show in Florida, common customization of client’s homes and upgrades of clients looking to have a more appealing or custom curb appeal. With both a challenging and rewarding task at hand, here were some of the obstacles these three faced.

 

“The most challenging aspect of the project was the task of coming up with a handful of visibly different elements for the designer to choose from while remaining cost-effective.
It’s a delicate balance between finding what people want and what they’re willing to pay for.”
– Britten Churchill, Architectural Drafter

“The first challenge was deciding on which three exterior options to design. Coming up with a Modern, Craftsman and Colonial elevation option, apart from our Traditional, was the goal. I wanted to present options that would appeal to any type of buyer. The second challenge was to make each floor plan its own, but to share common elements. I did this by incorporating different windows, materials, architectural details and colors.”
– Heidi Toso, Design and Studio Lead

“Trying to bring many of the details together from the design stage to a buildable product, all while keeping our ‘affordable luxury’ was the most challenging part, yet also most rewarding. We are expanding our product market and constantly innovating. This is one more way we are able to do that for the market.”
– Josh Caroon, Project Estimator Lead

Modern:
Our Modern-style home is a favorite of many. The incorporation of a bold front door and black trimmed windows is an immediate attraction. The stark, clean profile of this exterior style gives it a contemporary feel. Bold, black garage doors with frosted windows containing clean straight lines create, yet another, major statement piece on our modern elevation. Featuring trimmed out doors and windows, our Modern-style homes give the feeling of being crisp, spare and sharp. The special finishes of this option include EFIS, which is similar to stucco, board and batten, upgraded exterior lights, and metal or wood accents.

Craftsman:
Charming us with intricate, hand-crafted details, our Craftsman-style home is another new exterior option that has caught the eye of many. This style home features gable roof lines, overhanging eaves, exposed rafter tails and finishes that blend with the surroundings. A front door and porch that provides a gentle transition between the outside world and a cozy space inside. Reflecting a mixture of textures, these finishes incorporate elements such as shake, timber trusses, band accent details, and stone based or wood columns giving it a natural and hand-crafted feel.

Colonial:
Representing one of the most familiar styles of homes is our upscale, Colonial option. Using a decorative crown over the front door including a covered front entry supported by columns, our Colonial-style homes give the feeling of a “warm greeting”. The Colonial’s elements give these homes a fresh feel. Featuring multi-paned, double hung windows, corbels, shutters, window boxes, flower boxes and other small characteristics lead into the Colonial style.

Traditional:
The Traditional style includes a variety of elements such as upgraded LP siding and 4” band around all windows and doors on the front of the home. This style offers a classic appeal for any home buyer. White short panel garage doors, brick and custom window grids on the front of this home style for some great curb appeal.

Everyone has a style in mind when thinking of building their dream home. The challenging part is communicating that image, to watch it be brought to life. “These exterior options truly offer clients opportunities to turn their classic-style home into their own,” said Toso. To launch these new elevation options, Thomsen Homes built three winter models, two of them each featuring the Modern, Craftsman and Traditional styles. In a matter of just 15 days, all three sold. With the 2018 Spring Parade of Homes right around the corner, we have another great set of these elevation options waiting for you. No matter what your style may be, Thomsen Homes is sure to assist you every step of the way to achieve it, picture perfect. These elevation options are just the start of bringing that dream home of yours to life.

For more information, contact:
Thomsen Homes LLC
3168 41st Street S. Suite 1  Fargo
701.478.3000
Facebook: Thomsen Homes LLC
Instagram: thomsenhomes
www.ThomsenHomesLLC.com

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Family Retreat + Finnish Tradition [West Battle Lake, Minnesota]

Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by Scott Amundson Photography When this Fargo family first sat down with Chris Hawley Architects to discuss their West Battle Lake build, the conversation got,…

Words by Tracy Nicholson
Photography by Scott Amundson Photography

When this Fargo family first sat down with Chris Hawley Architects to discuss their West Battle Lake build, the conversation got, well… a little steamy. Their new home’s design had to start with the sauna, the same way it had been done by the Finnish for centuries. For the homeowners, having a sauna was not just an amenity, it was a necessity and a time-honored tradition of their Finnish family tree. See inside the award-winning family retreat, that’s bound to inspire guests to sweat it out and run for the lake.

As Hawley explained, “Fins tend to be crazy about their saunas. Most of the time, these are detached buildings, but our site didn’t allow that, so it became a part of the house, which is pretty awesome,” said Hawley. “The sauna conversation drove the project. In terms of its location, it was a really important part of the project and was discussed in our very first meeting.”

Sweat it Out
“The sauna is my favorite part because it has an amazing view of the lake when you’re sitting on the bench,” said Hawley. It’s part of the home, but immediately accessible to the outside. From the exterior, it’s located just behind the black, spiral staircase to the side of the master suite, so guests can come and go as they please. The area consists of the master suite, sauna, laundry and three-quarter bath, all connected so they can come right in from the lake without having to walk through the house.

__________________________

Great Room:
Coordinating with the rustic, stone entrance details, the great room’s fireplace extends nearly 20 feet to the second level’s living space and Moso bamboo ceiling fan. As a unique design element and extension of the heated concrete flooring, a poured concrete firewood storage area was built near the bottom and doubles as a sitting bench.

Near the main entrance, Hawley and contractor, Jackson Strom, worked with Straightline Design to fabricate the custom staircase and railing.

“If you look at a classic, 1950s cabin at the lake, the way that they used to be built was, they’d build a masonry fireplace, then build a wood house around it. That’s kind of here, but it’s done in a very 2018 way. It’s evocative of an old-school cabin, but meeting far more of the needs of the homeowners.”

Den:
Entering from a sliding barn door in the great room, this room has been designated as the den and sunroom, with a stunning view of the lake. From the exterior vantage point, this is the left, cedar-sided box facing the water. A two-sided, stone fireplace with custom steel detailing creates the focal point for their more casual living space. Cedar ceilings match the room’s exterior siding with polished concrete flooring for a more natural approach. 

Award-Winning Design
Recently, this project was awarded Juror’s Choice by the North Dakota Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. “This was one of our first projects where we did the construction management on it as well,” said Hawley. “We designed and built it all in-house.” While Hawley was the main designer and did the initial front elevation and the floor plan, Strom managed the 3-D models of the home and the construction drawings. As the project progressed, Strom assisted Hawley in making tweaks to the original design, customizing it to meet the needs of the family.

Kitchen:
One idea that the homeowners presented to Hawley, was the concept of the kitchen being located at the back of the cabin. “Typically you see people come straight into the kitchen at the lake, but what’s cool about this is the fact that the door to the lake is wide open and the dining room is almost outside,” said Hawley. “When you’re standing in the kitchen, it still feels like you’re part of that lake scene. We typically don’t lay out houses this way, but it’s awesome.”

A major focal point in the kitchen, this column wrapped with steel and 2×2 cedar sections, was fabricated by Straightline Design and provides a transitional wall, dividing the kitchen and the main entrance.

“If we’re going to be honest, it seems like pretty much everything Chris Hawley Architects is a part of turns out awesome. This project was just remarkable and it was an absolute blast to be a part of it.”
Eric Soyring, Straightline Design

For the kitchen design, Chris Hawley Architects worked with Bill Tweten, a Certified Master Kitchen and Bath Designer from Western Products. Wall-hung cabinetry in a sleek, contemporary design, flows seamlessly with high-end Cambria countertops to an adjacent wet bar. The family chose their own Mid-century Modern-inspired, lighting throughout the home.

Dining Room:
A stand-out feature on the main floor is the 12-foot-wide, bi-folding door panels which completely open the dining room setting to the exterior’s private patio and lake view. “We designed this with a motorized screen that comes down at the touch of a button, creating an interior, screened-in porch,” said Strom. “The bi-folding wall of doors is a great feature, but they don’t work well for going in and out throughout the day, so we made sure to include a swing door to the side of it.”

“Classically, a dining room table doesn’t get used unless it’s in a place where it should be used,” said Hawley. “In this case, it was front and center. The homeowners love to entertain and have dinner parties. They actually use their table and really enjoy each other’s company.”

(Cedar Wall)
This is the actual cedar from the exterior that was designed to flow through to the interior wall, creating the backdrop for the kitchen. The doorway on this wall is the entry to the master suite.

Master Suite:
“There were a lot of design elements that were indicative of a classic, Minnesota, shed-roof cabin,” said Hawley. “The stone chimney has a 1950s type of cabin approach, but they have the contemporary wood boxes that extend from the inside to the exterior. That’s really one of the coolest features in the design, especially the master bedroom. The master suite has a prime location facing the lakeside in the right hand, cedar-sided box.”

_________________________

Upstairs:
According to Hawley, the homeowner bought this entry light fixture back when she was in college, with the intent to put it somewhere, at some point in her life. “It’s a 1950s or 60s fixture but looks like something in a Mid-century Modern style you’d find now. So, she’s been saving this for about 20 years,” said Hawley.

Open-Concept Bathroom Design
With efficient design in mind, Chris Hawley Architects created a singular, yet spacious bathroom with an open concept, designed for sharing. The only private, doored spaces are the shower and toilet. The shower is a room in itself with an area designated for changing. The vanity area with double sinks and coffee bar is considered a large, communal space in a centralized location accessing the three upstairs bedrooms.

“We do a lot of these at the lakes, it’s a great solution for people who don’t want to clean three separate bathrooms for guests,” said Hawley. “What people always do with bathroom design is create one doored-off space which holds the shower, toilet, tub and sink area. So, that is a design where you can only have one person in there at a time. This is only one bathroom, but three people can easily be using it at one time. At the end of the day, it saves a lot of money and works just as well.”

Classic Cabin + Contemporary
The homeowners chose one of the last available lots on West Battle Lake with a 100-foot shoreline and a wooded lot that could accommodate their design. “We basically maxed this lot out – but we have to remain 10-feet from the lot lines,” said Strom. “If you looked at the lot from an aerial view, you’d see that the home is almost touching that 10-foot line at four different spots. The lot consists of 100 feet on the shoreline and it trails back to about 90 feet on the roadside. It’s parallel with the lakefront but then angles back to accommodate the smaller part of the lot.”

From the roadside, Hawley designed two intersecting mono-pitches with cedar soffits. On the left, the black dryvit garage has a custom cedar door and bonus room above while the other side represents the main form of the house. The two are connected by a more traditional, cabin-style, stone accent and custom steel trellis with inset 2×6 cedar boards.

Lakefront Hideaway
“A design perspective that I try to do on a lot of projects, is to create a pocket or a u-shape with the building,” said Hawley. “So, when you’re sitting on your patio, you’ll have ultimate privacy and the neighbors can’t see you.”

Hawley achieved this by using two mono-pitched rooflines with two cedar boxes that extended out toward the lakeside. This created a private, courtyard area between the two. The right side cedar box is the master bedroom with a rooftop patio and access from the black spiral staircase, while the left side features and den and sunroom.

Elevating the View
A Jack-and-Jill patio for three upstairs bedrooms, the homeowners’s rooftop space is custom-designed with guests in mind. Hawley and Strom worked with Straightline Design to create the spiral staircase and steel-fabricated railing which incorporates lighting within the handrail. The exterior’s spiral staircase is their own entrance to that living space and direct access to the lake and sauna. Not missing a detail, they also ran a line up to the rooftop, allowing for a gas fire pit for their upstairs guests to enjoy.

Carrying on a Finnish Tradition
If you want to learn more about the health benefits and long-standing sauna tradition, Hawley suggests a book called, “The Opposite of Cold” which he considers the “bible” of saunas. He’s also done his research, sharing information about how the Fins immigrated to the United States and set up shop in the Duluth, M.N., area. “Back in the turn-of-the-century, you’d walk down Main Street and every three storefronts was a sauna or bath house. That’s how important it was to their culture,” said Hawley. “When the Fins first moved here, they would build a sauna first – live in it, bathe in it, give birth to their kids in it; it was like the center of Finnish life back then and still is for many.”

Find the Finishes:
Architect and contractor – Chris Hawley & Jackson Strom – Chris Hawley Architects
Steel fabrication – Eric & Tami Soyring, Straightline Design
Cabinetry & Countertops – Bill Tweten, CMKBD – Western Products
Great room ceiling fan – Haiku, by Big Ass Fans
Lighting – Homeowners

For more information, contact:
Chris Hawley Architects
2534 S. University Drive #3, Fargo
701.478.4600

info@chrishawleyarchitects.com
chrishawleyarchitects.com

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Perfecting the Patient Experience

Photography by J. Alan Paul Photography When we think of healthcare and virtually any clinical environment, blinding fluorescent lights and ill-designed, sterile surroundings are typically what come to mind. Recognizing…

Photography by J. Alan Paul Photography

When we think of healthcare and virtually any clinical environment, blinding fluorescent lights and ill-designed, sterile surroundings are typically what come to mind. Recognizing a change in the way healthcare is approached, Dr. Fadel Nammour and his wife Heidi Nammour of Dakota Gastroenterology Clinic worked closely with Paces Lodging architect, Kim Matteson to redefine the patient experience.

From the exterior, the South Fargo clinic is reminiscent of a contemporary spa with its clean lines and varying textural elements. “We just looked online and drove around and took different pieces of buildings that we liked,” said Heidi Nammour. “Then I would take pictures and get them to Kim Matteson, the architect at Paces Lodging. I wanted the exterior to have dimension as well, so we were able to do that using varying materials for the siding.” Inside, Heidi Nammour designed the space’s 6,500 square-feet to be a soothing sanctuary for incoming patients.

Clinical Comfort
In this business, Dr. Nammour knows that putting patients at ease with a comfortable environment is a prerequisite for better healthcare. “It’s a Gastroenterology clinic. When people hear colonoscopy, they flinch,” laughed Dr. Nammour. “We tried to create a warm environment prior to the procedure so they will be comfortable here in the waiting room and the suites. A lot of patients have been telling me that when they come here, they feel like this is a spa or a home. They wait in comfort and when they go into the procedure, they are much more relaxed.”

These days, even hospitals are rethinking their decor in their new construction and remodels, veering away from the more sterile, institutionalized environment they’ve been known for in the past. “We wanted a more modern, contemporary look, trying to stay away from that cold, clinical feel one would expect,” said Heidi Nammour.

Waiting Room I
In the Endoscopy waiting room, Heidi Nammour chose a modern, Scan Design sofa accented with beautiful statement pieces from online sources, Wayfair and Joss & Main. High ceilings and expansive windows bathe elements of reclaimed wood, glass and stone in natural light.

Waiting Room II
To create a contemporary space with warmth, Heidi Nammour favored rich textures like marbled quartz, stacked stone and comfortable furnishings.

For the room’s rustic elements, she chose a Grain Designs magazine rack coffee table, floating shelves, side tables and custom barn doors.

To get the custom barn door hue, Grain Designs used a whitewash finish with an ebony stain. “I wanted something unique for the ceiling, so I spent a lot of time looking online, at different magazines and on the Houzz app for inspiration for the round ceiling details,” said Heidi Nammour.

“I had a vision of white countertops with marbling to help create a modern look to complement the rustic feel of the barn doors. I got ideas for the reception desks by looking through magazines and going online searching out reception desks,” said Heidi Nammour. “I gave Paces pictures of what I wanted based on what I found, and eventually came up with a design which incorporated reclaimed wood for the front of the desk to match the custom barn door. I knew from the very beginning I wanted barn doors and a reclaimed wood wall. For the flooring, I chose a distressed, vinyl laminate in a wider plank design.”

The Doctor Will See You Now
On the clinic side, a long hallway consisting of exam rooms is designed with custom barn doors from Grain Designs.

Beyond the exam rooms, patients can relax in one of the many La-Z-Boy-style recliners chosen to provide comfort for the patients.

Architect, Kim Matteson of Paces Lodging
“From the very beginning, Heidi and Fadel had a vision for what they wanted their contemporary building to look like. They had photos of design elements, materials and colors that they showed me and wanted to be incorporated into their building. Those were so beneficial and became a starting point for the design of the exterior and also as a basis for the interior finishes,” explained Matteson. “We utilized three-dimensional modeling as we worked through the exterior elevations and how the various materials would look and be arranged on the building. Then we were able to present those ideas to them from all possible views. We even used 3-D modeling when we worked on the design of the curved reception desk and its varied elements. The interior finishes are also a contemporary arrangement of materials and features that incorporate their design style into distinct and appealing spaces for their patients.”

Dakota Gastroenterology Clinic
Dakota Gastroenterology Clinic is an independently-owned clinic specializing in digestive health since 2014. The clinic offers diagnosis and treatment of digestive conditions as well as a non-surgical weight loss procedure.

About Dr. Nammour
Dr. Fadel Nammour is a board-certified gastroenterologist. He is originally from Lebanon and moved to Fargo in 2002 after completing his internal medicine and gastroenterology fellowship in New Jersey. When his career took him to Essentia Health, he met Heidi, who was a nurse at the time. Today, the couple resides in West Fargo with their three sons.

Find the Finishes
Contractor – Paces Lodging
Architect – Kim Matteson, Paces Lodging
Barn doors, side tables and floating shelves – Grain Designs
Fireplace – Home & Hearth
Flooring – All States Flooring
Quartz countertops -Fabricators Unlimited
Artwork – SCHEELS Home & Hardware, Kirkland’s
Recliners – A&B Business Solutions
Roofing – Herzog Roofing
EIFS – OTXteriors
Landscaping – Pro Landscapers LLC
Painting – Weyer for Hire LLC
Casework and plastic laminate countertops – Woodside Industries
Aluminum windows and doors – Galaxy Glass and Caulking
Doors and millwork – Builders Millwork, Inc.
Plumbing & HVAC contractor: Midwest Mechanical Construction, LLC
Electrical contractor – JDP Electric Inc.

For more information, contact:

Dakota Gastroenterology

5049 33rd Avenue South, Fargo
701.356.1001
dakotagi.com

Paces Lodging
Kimberly Matteson – Senior Project Designer, Associate AIA

4265 45th Street South, Suite 200, Fargo

701.499.0212
paces-lodging.com

 

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Unconventional Elements

Words by Tracy Nicholson House photos by Robb Siverson Photography Portrait of Trever Hill and Rebecca Knutson – J. Alan Paul Photography When Trever Hill explained his latest design project…

Words by Tracy Nicholson
House photos by Robb Siverson Photography
Portrait of Trever Hill and Rebecca Knutson – J. Alan Paul Photography

When Trever Hill explained his latest design project in Jamestown, N.D., melding traditional and contemporary stylings, we had to see this unlikely pairing for ourselves. After living in their home for eight years, Michel and Jay Grotrian were ready for a lower-level upgrade which would reflect their eclectic style and love of local art. Without the usual, marital decor squabbles, this couple was equally enthralled with both ends of the style spectrum and ready to get creative. Marrying the two vastly different tones, amidst an extensive basement remodel and complete demo, meant bringing in reinforcement. Before heading West, Hill called on designer Rebecca Knutson of Floor to Ceiling to collaborate, brainstorm and help define the space. See inside the Grotrian’s extraordinary entertainment space, custom-designed to give guests a glimpse of local talent and their native Jamestown flair.

Familiar with Hill’s past projects, the Grotrians were excited to see what kind of elements he could bring to their own space. After realizing the scope of the project, Hill decided to recruit Knutson, whom he knew would bring her expertise in flooring, tile and cabinetry.
As avid art collectors, the Grotrians worked closely with Hill and Knutson to fuse their styles and give every inch of their basement eclectic appeal.

“They’re not that transitional of people, as most would say,” said Hill. “They truly love both traditional and contemporary decor. Obviously, these are opposite ends of the spectrum, but they both pretty much have the same taste. It was such a pleasure working with them.”

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“In my first meeting with the Grotrians, it was clear that we needed to have a wine cellar somewhere. They have a beautiful, curved stairwell that actually goes from the upstairs to the main floor then down to the lower, basement level,” explained Hill. “It’s a fantastic feature of the home. So, I thought, how amazing would it be to have a curved wine cellar under the stairwell and design smaller windows in between the beams.”

“We worked with Straightline Design to fabricate the interior wine storage and then decided to take it one step further and hang mini-pendant lighting that would show through the small windows. This added feature created a gorgeous focal wall for a seating area on the curved wall exterior,” said Hill. “For the seating area, we were able to use some of their existing furniture from Room & Board. We absolutely loved those two chairs that are in front of the wine cellar.”

“Michel and Jay definitely wanted the space to be ready for entertaining their friends as well as a cool family hangout space,” said Knutson. “There would need to be durable finishes for kids to play on and beverages and snacks to be served. Enter, the bar design. The size and octagon shape fills the space with plenty of standing and sitting room for guests to chat. We covered the walls in the bar with an amazing mosaic tile and tied it into the wine cellar area – a space the clients spoke passionately about from the beginning.”

“We collaborated with Straightline Design on the bar shelving making sure the metal details didn’t cover up too much of the mosaics,” said Knutson. “The cabinetry has the unique finish of a hand-brushed glaze and houses many appliances and electronic components behind hidden doors.”

“I wanted lights on the inside of the bar, shooting up onto the bar shelves, so we did glass shelves so the light really emanates through,” said Hill. Then we had puck lights installed above. The electrician initially had some concerns about this feature, but they are fully sealed and technically considered outdoor lighting, so we made it work.”RCS_6857.jpg

“All of our appliances and lighting came from Alisha Wiesshoff at Ferguson in Fargo. She’s been wonderful to work with,” said Hill. “For the flooring, we ran the laminate at a diagonal throughout the entire basement. We really wanted it to go with the line of the octagon. We also chose beautiful, Cambria countertops and hanging pendant lights that have a handblown glass effect. I really like these because each one is different and has its own unique dimension of color. I really thought these were true to the Grotrian’s style. There’s is so much that’s handmade in this home.”

“In addition to the bar and wine cellar, the Grotrians wanted this space to feature a theater and game room with shuffleboard and ping pong,” said Hill. “I felt it needed a focal wall, so I did Phillip Jeffries wall covering along with two sconces flanking the theater screen. We found our theater seats from FourSeating.com. We didn’t do elevation in the theater like you’d normally see, so we chose Four Seating because they have seats that come in three different levels of elevation.”

“We wanted to have a bar looking into the theater on each side, so there’s a walkway in the middle and bar height counter on each side,” explained Hill. “Throughout the house and the traditional features, they have arches everywhere. So, I really wanted these pillars to have arches as well. They’re very stately, so you can’t miss them. Trying to find a way to give them some personality, I came up with an idea to add the drink rail around them and use the lit, inset area to display the same Phillip Jeffries, metallic wall covering we had used on the accent wall. I thought this was such a great feature and really serves to anchor the room.”

“We also did a guest bathroom and included a shower just in case they ever wanted to make their pool table room into a bedroom with the existing egress window,” said Hill.

For the Love of Art
“Trever and I road tripped to the client’s home last fall where I fell in love with Michel and Jay’s colorful style and love of art,” said Knutson. “We knew from then on that we needed to pack a punch into this entertainment space and tie in details with their main floor finishes.”

“The pieces that you see on the left of the wine cellar are handblown glass, they’re through McNeal & Friends, but they’re from a company called Global Views. All of their pieces are handmade,” said Hill. “There’s a story behind each piece and artisan. Also, you’ll notice when you come down the stairs, next to the bar is a piece from local artist, Steve Knutson. This was a piece that I had found at his art exhibit at Abovo in Downtown Fargo. It was kind of a fun play, because of Jay’s career, they do have people that come from out of town and visit and I thought it was kind of a fun play on Jamestown’s buffalo heritage.”

Running down the hallway, on the other wall closest to the theater, we’ve chosen Jessica Wachter paintings,” said Hill. “Those are some of the mixed-media pieces that she had displayed at her Scottsdale, Arizona residency and I just knew that they had to be in here.”

“Your art does not have to match your home, however, I felt that Jessica and Steve’s works were a fun pop of color, yet still coordinated beautifully and made it a cohesive space,” said Hill. “They have so many Walter Piehls up here in the space – in fact, the Grotrians are the largest Walter Piehls private dealer besides Microsoft.”

Collaboration & Creativity
“Rebecca and I have been collaborating now for a little while and it’s been amazing working with her,” said Hill. “It made the process much easier, being able to choose and order the flooring, countertops, cabinetry, tile and backsplash, all through her at Floor to Ceiling.

“My design studio staff at Floor to Ceiling Carpet One is an integral part of our process,” said Knutson. “We provide 3-D renderings and hand sketches to best explain our designs. My assistant, Shannon Simon, supports the design process on all levels including tile and flooring quoting, ordering and scheduling. Krystal Andersen inputs all of our ideas into our cabinetry design program and assists with ordering, while our design intern creates the 3-D renderings of the entire space. It’s an awesome experience to watch all of these creative people come together to give our clients the best experience possible by showing them every angle of the design intent. This is definitely a highlight of how we function in our Design Studio, in conjunction with the large showroom at our fingertips.”

“Trever and I had so much fun exploring finish options for this project together,” said Knutson. “Our team is a well-oiled machine and we have meshed so well with Trever. He is so imaginative in his selections and we really work well together when we collaborate on projects,” said Knutson. “Through my project management role, we were able to design and install the complete project in a timeline that allowed the Grotrians to host their first party, just in time for March Madness.”

Find the Finishes:
Appliances and lighting – Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery
Main flooring – Engineered vinyl plank by Shaw, Floor to Ceiling Carpet One
Mosaic tile for bar and wine cellar walls – Daltile, Floor to Ceiling Carpet One
Bar cabinetry – Décor Cabinets, clear alder, painted with hand-wiped glaze – Floor to Ceiling Carpet One
Bar, drink rails, and bathroom countertops – Cambria Quartz, Floor to Ceiling Carpet One
Bathroom flooring and shower tile – Syverson Tile
Metal fabrication – Straightline Design
Bathroom cabinetry – Omega Cabinetry, Maple with a painted finish, Floor to Ceiling Carpet One
Hardware – Vintage nickel finish, Floor to Ceiling Carpet One
Wall covering – Phillip Jeffries, McNeal & Friends
Chairs – Room & Board
Cowhide rug – Eco Chic Boutique
Bar stools – McNeal & Friends
Theater chairs – FourSeating.com

For more information, contact:
Trever Hill Design
trever@treverhilldesign.com
treverhilldesign.com

Floor to Ceiling Carpet One

Rebecca Knutson, CID
360 36th Street South, Fargo
701.237.6601
rknutson@ftcc1.com
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The Starving Rooster [Minot & Bismarck]

Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by Scott Amundson Photography Most people know Chris Hawley as an award-winning architect of homes, but in Western North Dakota, he’s a jack-of-all-trades. Back in…

Words by Tracy Nicholson
Photography by Scott Amundson Photography

Most people know Chris Hawley as an award-winning architect of homes, but in Western North Dakota, he’s a jack-of-all-trades. Back in their hometown of Minot, Chris and his wife, Sarah Hawley, had ventured into developing and restoring old buildings when they struck a partnership to create a new restaurant concept, The Starving Rooster. See inside the Minot location inspired by the 1917 Aultman & Taylor Machinery Co. and the Bismarck location that just opened its doors last year. While their infamous, starved rooster logo was once known as a symbol of farm equipment efficiency, starving the rooster to better feed the farmer – it now symbolizes a fantastic, brick-oven dining experience with a respectful nod to their hometown heritage.

Restoration vs. Restaurant
Six years ago, Chris Hawley, his brother-in-law, Chad Thompson, and Thompson’s cousin, Joel Welstad, decided to buy the 1917 Minot building that was originally the home of the parts and distribution warehouse for Aultman & Taylor. Located in an industrial part of Minot, the team began their project by designing 21 units of funky, loft-style apartments on the top half of the building. “At the time, during the oil boom, Minot was in a housing shortage. As we got closer to the end and started discussing the street level, we realized that we had a lot of interest from others, so eventually, we decided to do our own restaurant concept,” said Hawley.

The Concept
The Aultman & Taylor Machinery Co. dates back to 1859 in Ohio, but the Minot building was completed in 1917. Employing a clever marketing tool, their starving rooster logo appealed to nearly every farmer in the Midwest. “The company built threshing machines, so their whole story was that they made a threshing machine that was so effective in sifting the grain that it didn’t leave even a spec of grain behind for the roosters to eat – so the roosters starved,” explained Hawley. This logo would soon become the inspiration behind The Starving Rooster restaurants which Hawley and his partners designed using a 1917 Aultman & Taylor catalog they found archived in Ohio.

Back then, catalogs were hand-drawn, black and white etchings or illustrations, so Hawley and his partners wanted to properly display them as the art they truly are. The original illustrations of farm equipment now grace the walls of the restaurant and tell the story of the building and tractor company. Taking it one step further, the partners opted to use reclaimed materials from the original Aultman & Taylor building as well as salvaged material and farm equipment parts from Welstad’s family farm.

In the midst of their restoration, Hawley and his partners brought in Jeremy Mahaney, another Minot native who was, at the time, operating restaurants in Minneapolis. Today, he runs both their Minot and Bismarck locations of The Starving Rooster. Their first location in Minot would open four years ago with a second, Bismarck location following just last year.

The Starving Rooster: Minot
Specializing in brick-oven pizzas and sandwiches, the Minot restaurant has a casual vibe fused with a rich history rooted in farming. Hawley and his partners kept as much of the original Aultman & Taylor building that they could. “We left the loading dock open, putting in garage doors that can open in the summer months. In 1917, people used to pull up in their Model-Ts, back their car in here, load up their parts and head back to the farm,” said Hawley. Nowadays, the garage doors open up to Main Street, providing front row access to local street fairs and street dances.

The partners kept much of the original paint and walls from 1917, salvaging every bit of the original building and repurposing whatever materials they found. To build the tap line running across the bar, the team recruited Larry Larson of P2 Industries to fabricate a large industrial pipe to hold the beer lines. Four of the bar stools are designed using old tractor seats and the dining chairs were custom-built for the restaurant.

“We actually used the old garage doors as the ceiling and up-lit them so they glow in the dining room area,” said Hawley. “We loved the raw floors, so what you see is the actual red paint from the old shop.”

Salvaging the hardwood floors from the upper level, the partners repurposed them into custom dining booths. “Joel built all of the wood booths and benches in place,” said Hawley. “He was the general contractor on this and Jeremy put in a lot of sweat equity as well doing the barn doors and all of those projects. I pulled the permit, Joel did the construction and Jeremy provided a ton of labor.”

Using the original drawing from Aultman & Taylor’s catalog, the partners had it printed on acrylic and mounted over the brick wall in the dining area. Look up and you’ll find a custom-designed, lathe and acoustic ceiling within the lighting. As the project’s general contractor, Welstad used salvaged finds from his family’s farm and recruited their welder and handyman to fabricated the railings in place. “They made all of the furniture and anything steel – so all of the chairs, railings and steel-top tables. The table bases are all cultivator disks,” said Hawley.

Head towards the heat and you’ll find the brick-oven pizza area, complete with a canopy based on one of Aultman & Taylor’s designs. This is a replication of an original tractor canopy that would have covered the cab.

Their ode to the building’s history doesn’t stop with the interior’s design – all of their brick oven pizzas are named after one of the Aultman & Taylor tractors – “Old Trusty”, “Yellow Fellow”, “The Triple Gear” and many more. “The Thai flatbread pizza is one of the most popular. We also do a pulled pork sandwich that everyone loves and a Sunday brunch with an amazing spread,” said Hawley.
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The Starving Rooster: Bismarck
After finding success at the Minot location, the team focused their efforts on opening a Bismarck location, also on Main Street. Instead of a farm equipment company, this space was once an automotive shop and car dealership. “It’s an old building, but it was so goofy that in the 80s and 90s they kind of put it back together. In the process, they took away all of the cool, old features,” said Hawley. “They had to cover up the brick and everything else to get the insulation to work. So, at the end of the day, it’s got an old front on it, but it’s really more of a new building. It was basically a vanilla shell, sheetrock box and we kind of had to make it cool again.” To complete the transformation, the partners brought in all of the brick and panels while the other materials were repurposed from the Welstad farm.

At the entrance, guests are greeted with the same ode to Aultman & Taylor displayed on red panels from the side of a combine that Welstad had sitting in a field. These panels feature a prominent image and text from the cover of Aultman & Taylor’s 1917 catalog, relayed on acrylic.

“This was made from a grain auger taken out of the trees at the Welstad farm. So, we are essentially augering beer out of the silo across this area and directing it to the taps,” said Hawley. “On one side of the silo, we have a door that leads to the liquor storage and on the other side, we have four taps. We also have wine and iced coffee on tap.”

“This wall is kind of fun – everyone asks, ‘What’s up with the cross?’”laughed Hawley.
“It’s actually an ‘x’. It’s like the ‘You are here.’ marking your spot on the map. So this is our map leading to the bathroom. At the other end, there’s an arrow pointing to the bathroom.”

In this area, the team used sifting panels from a grain dryer at the Welstad farm, then backlit them for more dimension. If the pendant lights look familiar, that’s because the shades are actually the teeth of a corn header.

Cultivator disks were once again repurposed into bases for the tables and the team reused the remaining windows left over from the Minot building. “Some of the elements from the Minot space show up again, but the Bismarck location is a totally different and reimagined space,” said Hawley.

If you’re ready to flock to one of their two locations, here’s where you can find them:
The Starving Rooster – Minot, N.D.
30 First Street Northeast
701.838.3030

The Starving Rooster – Bismarck, N.D.
512 East Main Avenue
701.425.0700

See their full menu and hours of operation at:
thestarvingrooster.com

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