features (think internal LED drawer lights and touchless faucets)
combine with more practical ones, like a butlerís pantry that
dually functions as a mini prep kitchen. "I love that we can
put everything away, close the cabinets and donít see
anything," says the homeowner. "We donít like clutter
in our lives and try to keep everything well organized, which is
tough with two kids and two dogs." The homeownersí
daughter, as seen here peeking out from a cabinet door, is clearly
a fan of the roomís vast storage space, too. Plain & Fancy
cabinetry sourced from Tad Hellmann of Tad Hellmann Design,
Milwaukee, is used throughout the kitchen and laundry room.
Itís been nearly
two years since the Meredith Corporation, a publishing giant whose
subsidiaries include Better Homes & Gardens magazine, initially
contacted Lakeside Development Company of Mequon. Meredith recruited the
local design and construction firm to create its 2015 Innovation Home, a
project that would later be published in Better Homes & Gardens.
Marie Kaysen, Lakesideís vice president of business development, says
the magazine actively polled its readers, asking what innovative
features theyíd like to see if they were building a home. "We
started with that list of things they wanted and began the design
process from that aspect," explains Kaysen. "It was a
constantly evolving process."
the inside of the home to the outdoors was a foremost design
element, says architect Todd Rabidoux. The space functions as a
natural extension of the 3,200-square-foot home, and a
eco-friendly fireplace adds warmth during the colder months.
Rabidoux, AIA, served as the Innovation Homeís architect and designer.
Many features, he says, can be adjusted via tablet or remote control,
from closing the great roomís blinds to controlling its sound system.
"You also have the ability to operate each room
independently," adds Rabidoux. "Thereís a remote control
within each of the rooms. If you can operate a tablet or a remote
control, you can basically do anything within this home."
Additional highlights include a Wi-Fi-equipped showerhead in the master
bathroom, touch-flush toilets throughout the home, and LED TVs installed
within the master bathroomís vanity mirror.
was an important space from the very beginning of this
project," explains Rabidoux, adding that the roomís open
concept design was deliberate. "Itís a multiuse room, not
just a laundry room." Additional uses include an arts and
crafts area for the coupleís two children as well as office
open-concept, kid-friendly floorplan was designed to accommodate busy
lifestyles. "All the spaces are usable," says Kaysen.
"There isnít something that gets decorated and then no one sits
there or uses the room." Yet, high design was kept top of mind.
"Even though all the rooms are open to each other, we did something
different with each ceiling so there is still some definition from one
space to another," Rabidoux says.
The homeowners and
their two children relocated to Milwaukee from Indianapolis in late
August ó a process that afforded little flexibility when it came to
finding the right home. Fortunately, after months of searching remotely,
they stumbled upon the Innovation Homeís listing, were drawn to its
features and design, and set up an appointment to tour the home. By
Labor Day weekend, the family of four was officially moved in. "Itís
what we would have designed and styled had we built it," says the
owner. "Because we were relocating, we didnít have the luxury of
taking the time to build."