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Farm Fresh
A new Mequon home has a modern farmhouse look blended with an Asian feel

By GUY FIORITA
Photos by Doug Edmunds

March 2015

The built-in shelving in the office uses white exterior and walnut stained interior to provide contrast to the striking custom-made desk, which works perfectly with the white office chair.

Before construction ever began, the owners of a new home in Mequon made two things very clear. The style should be modern farmhouse, and they wanted it to incorporate some of their favorite furnishings. Achieving that look started with the design of the exterior. "We broke the house up into several distinct parts so it looks like a true farmhouse, which normally have additions built over time to help the home adapt to changing needs and lifestyles. We then modernized it by adding clean lines and simple geometric shapes," says Todd A. Rabidoux, director of architecture at Lakeside Development Company.

A multifunctional entertaining space for the whole family, the Edison bulb fixtures and the red powder-coated metal stools at the bar were chosen to satisfy the homeowners’ desire to add some industrial elements to the space. The owners’ grandkids can gather all the way around the bar, which doubles as a game table.

 

Inside, the open concept offers a comfortable balance of space for entertaining with an integrated kitchen, great room and dining area, while a separate office and master suite lend needed privacy for work and retreat. The difficulty of giving proper definition to individual spaces within an open floor plan is solved through a use of color, materials and light fixtures to bring attention and definition to each of the spaces.

The homeowners chose light cabinetry in the kitchen to maintain the modern feel throughout the home while not overpowering the space between the kitchen and living room. The large, purple chairs anchoring each end of the dining table draw the eye to the expanse of windows overlooking the backyard. The concrete table top ties in nicely with the concrete pendant lights above the island.

According to interior designer Karen Kempf of Karen Kempf Interiors, part of the challenge included incorporating some of the homeowners’ traditional and Asian-style furniture and accessories into the new plan. "We found ways to freshen up the look of those pieces and have them blend into the new surroundings. For example, in the living room, the owner wanted to use a traditional-style rug she already owned. The color palette of the room and the furnishings were all chosen to complement and contrast the rug. Also, in the master bathroom and powder room, the vanities are made from converted Asian altar tables. They add an unexpected and fun element to the spaces."

The room’s color palette of reds, oranges and purple tones is drawn from the traditional rug the owners brought from their previous home.

 

Kempf says the homeowners took design risks and were brave with their selections. "I always say, no guts, no glory, when it comes to design. That made the difference here. This could have been a very ordinary home but their gutsiness took it to another level and gives the home a look that is uniquely their own." 

Perfect for a kid’s bathroom, the trough sink is functional, low maintenance and has a paintable bottom that coordinates the color with the space. The Royal Porthole Medicine Cabinet gives the room a nautical appeal while providing needed storage space due to the lack of countertops.
In the powder room, an Asian altar table is repurposed into the sink vanity while the walls are covered in stunning stacked slate floor to ceiling. The window inset lends a farmhouse feel to the space.

 

 












 


This story ran in the March 2015 issue of: