Local designers demonstrate how to add substance and
style to your utility spaces.
When Tom Czisny and Thom Bauldry decided to combine
their lives — and their belongings — into a single home, they had
multiple options to choose from.
When interior designer Nick Konzal of Nicholas Carl
Design bought his 1928 Craftsman home in Wauwatosa, he had big plans
for a renovation — as long as those renovations maintained the
integrity of the 90-year-old home, whose previous owners had lived
there for six decades.
Deck out your entryway
with these locally sourced holiday decorations.
and trips for dressing your home for the holidays and
entertaining your nearest and dearest.
Milwaukee’s new condo and apartment communities draw an
active, upscale clientele.
The Designer Edit
Three industry experts share their must-have products of
Makes the Dream Home Work
you’ve decided it’s time for a kitchen update or a
whole-house overhaul, home renovation is no small feat.
Unless you’re an ambitious (and confident) DIYer, you
don’t have to go at it alone.
For one Washington County couple, having their 1880s
farmhouse extended and remodeled came with a logical next step: An
8,000-square-foot barn to house vehicles and provide additional
Reimagining much of her
own home recently gave Lynn Tarrence, founding owner of
The Egg Design Group in Milwaukee, a whole new
appreciation for the lifestyle disruption that goes into
a home makeover. “Going through this has made it easier
to empathize with clients,” Tarrence admits. “It does
make you appreciate the inconveniences.”
Sculptor Carrie Chimenti talks studying abroad, working
with Italian plaster, and how she encourages clients to
just “go for it.”
Accents: Six ways to warm up your indoor and outdoor
spaces this fall
Fall is all about feeling
cozy. Inviting touches in coppery, creamy autumnal hues
set a harvest-time mood indoors, while a stylish and
functional outdoor fire pit extends evenings outside
beyond summer’s end.
Calming Oasis: How local design teams transformed this
River Hills home
A lushly peaceful Japanese garden blooms at a Bayside
home, thanks to the convergence of the homeowner’s reawakened
childhood passion and the skill of a local landscape company.
Backyard: How local design teams transformed this River
Jim Gleason paints a vivid picture of what he loves
about his newly renovated River Hills home.
“[There was] a doe walking through the backyard with her fawn who was on
wobbly legs, very young,” Gleason says. “She slowed down to let the fawn
catch up before moving on. It was a moment.”
Talk: Teresa Olson of Olson House
A chalkboard sign
outside the cute Shorewood store Olson House reads
“Where Nordic Design Meets Local Makers.”
List: What’s Trending in Home Interiors
spent time perusing real estate listings or binge
watching “Fixer Upper,” you know that hardwood floors
and kitchen islands are here to stay. But before you
take the plunge on bold ceramic tile or whimsical
wallpaper, we checked in with Milwaukee area design
experts to see which trends are on the rise and which
are due for retirement.
I have a friend, Frank, whose front door opens into his
kitchen, which features a tear-shaped bar, a large table
with seating for eight, a fireplace and more. “I think
traditional homes are designed backward,” he says. “The
kitchen is the heart of the house. It’s where I spend
most of my time with my family, so I want it to be front
and center, not hidden behind the living room.”
and accessories inspired by Ultra Violet, the 2018
Pantone Color of the Year.
For many new homeowners, the renovation process
provides the opportunity to transform an existing structure into a
space that is entirely their own. But for one couple, restoring and
remodeling their historic stone home, which was built in 1855, meant
honoring its former owners and preserving its storied past.
Instant Kitchen Updates
few fun touches to add character with no renovations.
A stunning kitchen is more than meets the
eye, but appearance definitely counts.
When a professional Mequon couple dreamed of having a
more casual lifestyle for family and friend gatherings within an
hour drive of their North Shore home, they set their sights on
building a farmhouse on an 80-acre prairie next to the Milwaukee
River in Random Lake.
Landscape inspiration is easily kick-started by
trends chronicled in national news sources. Area experts can help
shape those ideas with a local sensibility.
For a Cause
“One of the things that I have found is that houses
speak to you and rooms speak to you. Places speak to you,” says
Ellen Irion, board member for Wisconsin Breast Cancer Showhouse (WBCS)
and one of the many talented designers participating in this year’s
Trends to Watch in 2018
predict the year’s top trends for kitchens and
Before you take the pool plunge, it’s
important to understand what you’re signing up for. With
the help of Peter Kudlata at Flagstone Landscaping Inc.
in Cedarburg and Jeff Schuelke of Pool Park Inc. in
Menomonee Falls, we’ve broken down some of the options
available to homeowners looking to create an aquatic
oasis in their own backyards.
Jim Drzewiecki went to scope out a backyard in Cedarburg
for a landscape design project, he arrived to an
unusable patio and no landscaping at all, with the
exception of a single tree on the lawn. “It was a pretty
uninviting backyard,” says Drzewiecki, landscape
designer and owner of Ginkgo Leaf Studio in Cedarburg.
Homeowners renovate with their long-term house needs
top of mind, such as room for children to grow or home offices for
big job jumps. Architects and founding principals of Johnsen
Schmaling Architects, Brian Johnsen and Sebastian Schmaling, say
this 3,380-square-foot home with a 1,400-square-foot lower-level
walk-out was built from the ground up and designed with the
impending gloomy Wisconsin winters top of mind.
Add character and depth
to your home this spring by combining
various metallic hues.
Sunny Side of Things
A three- or four-season
room is a great way to bring a little bit of the outside
into your home. But which option is best for you, and
what are the most important considerations when
designing your dream sunroom?
After living all
over the world, from London and Paris to New York City,
Elizabeth Rees, founder and CEO of removable wallpaper
company Chasing Paper, says she’s ecstatic to be back in
her hometown of Milwaukee.
Located in the bustling Historic Third Ward, this newly
renovated penthouse proves that you can indeed have
privacy in the busiest area of the city. Nick Konzal of
Nicholas Carl Design worked closely with homeowners
Kathy and Rick Weatherly to completely redesign this
historic loft space to fit the family’s needs.
A recent addition to the Pewaukee Lake shoreline is a
sleekly crafted home that blends Scandinavian-modern and
Euro-contemporary sensibilities. The result is a nautically inspired
residence that emphasizes natural and enhanced light, specialized
furnishings, neutral hues, and an invitation for family and friends
to gather in an inviting, open-concept space.
What's hot in outdoor living for 2018
may seem far off, but summer is just
around the corner. It’s time to start planning for its
arrival now. From patios to plants and pools, here are
this year’s top five trends in backyard design.
Your Yard A Face-Lift
Last year I visited the local garden
center and bought everything I thought I needed to turn
my backyard into a flowering paradise. And, just like
every year since I’ve owned a home, the result didn’t
quite live up to my expectations. My backyard will once
again need a face-lift, but where to begin?
entryway with these locally sourced, modern
farmhouse-esque accessories and fixtures.
“First impressions count.” (Or so the saying goes.) And
that time-honored concept rings true throughout the home
building and home improvement industries too. Here two
local experts, Kate Schley, a project consultant with
Carmel Builders in Menomonee Falls, and Mike
Slawnikowski, owner of Mequon-based M Design Build, echo
the sentiment, weighing in on the latest trends in
exterior design, building materials and colors.
Sometimes the missing
piece of one’s dream home puzzle is found years later —
even after the picture seems perfect. Over the past 20
years, a Cedar Grove couple fell in love with a 7-acre
prairie property located along a semi-private road on
neutral-washed, spa-like environments are a favored
theme for today’s bathrooms, local designers say there
is plenty of room for bolder approaches — be it in
color, pattern, texture and even intent.
Six easy ways to
update a blah bathroom.
A recently supersized
lake home proves that one can reimagine a longtime
family residence for today’s needs. Jeremy
Hartline, studio manager of Wade Weissmann Architecture,
and Emily Winters, a senior interior designer with
Peabody’s Interiors, teamed up to convert a ranch
retreat in Lake Geneva into a two-story main residence
that maintains yesteryear’s weekend and holiday fun.
You Handle It?
Spruce up your
cabinetry with these locally
sourced knobs and pulls.
Three local experts reveal the most popular classic,
historic and contemporary design trends for 2018.
Interior designers are no strangers to relationship
building. Referrals become one-time clients, and one-time clients
become repeat clients. So when a young family of three sought
interior design assistance for their newly built Lake Country home,
they turned to Warren Barnett Interiors — and the staff they had
previously worked with: Director of Design Emily Ebben and interior
designer Mary Lewandowski, WRID — for help.
Move over, phones, televisions, audio and home security systems,
vehicles and a host of other “smart” items dotting our culture — space
planning has joined this clever club.
Ultra-luxe throws and
blankets to keep you warm this winter.
Interior Designer Spotlight
Emily Winters, Allied ASID
Six questions with the interior designer at Peabody’s
design and carefully curated interior selections shine
in this family-friendly River Hills abode.
Interior Designer Spotlight
Six questions with Randi
K. of Biltrite Furniture-Leather-Mattress.
Homeowners with small-space dilemmas need not fret:
You don’t have to give up on aesthetics to achieve functionality.
Here three industry professionals share recent, smaller-scale
projects, plus tips that can work for everyone.
Find the right home in a great location: check.
Secure a builder to convert the space into your version of
perfection: check. In DIY fashion, furnish and decorate the home for
the long haul: reset!
Minutes With: Lynnea Katz-Petted
2005, Lynnea Katz-Petted, CEO of Revitalize Milwaukee,
left a lucrative corporate career to take a part-time
job with the local nonprofit because, she says, “It was
what I needed in my life at that point.” At the time,
the organization was providing free repairs for 10 homes
a year, but she saw the potential to do so much more.
Interior Designer Spotlight
Q&A with Kristy Lombardo
Six questions with the senior designer of California
Closet Company Inc.
Who doesn’t love a dramatic makeover? A boring, dated
look gets updated with new hair, makeup, clothes and
accessories, and the result is a whole new person. That
same kind of dramatic change can happen in your kitchen,
and it’s one home improvement project that industry pros
agree is a great all-around investment.
A West Africa native, Amin Konkada moved to Milwaukee
— a city he now calls home — seven years ago. “I have family living
here, so I thought it would be good for me to be here,” Konkada says
of his decision to relocate from his hometown of Benin, a country in
West Africa, to Cream City.
In just seven years’ time, Konkada’s entrepreneurial side has
Almost seven years
after a Wauwatosa couple selected Elm Grove-based Amy
Carman Design to put a clean, modern touch on their
home’s lower level, they called on Carman again to
extend the look to a first-floor guest suite. The result
is a delicately airy space that emphasizes tone and
texture, playing well against an outdoor woodsy
landscape tucked along the Menomonee River.
Long-term relationships between a home design-build
company and its client can begin in myriad ways. It took a broken
ceiling pipe in an Elm Grove residence built in the 1930s to forge a
strong association between Mequon-based Ruvin Brothers Artisans &
Trades and homeowners Mike and Barb Lauer.
Despite having good bones, many homes require certain
tweaks or updates to accommodate their new owners’ wants and needs —
or, in the case of this Kohler area home, an extensive, whole-house
renovation spanning nearly a year’s time.
Interior Designer Spotlight
Q&A with Leslie Dohr, ASID
Six questions with the interior designer at Deep River
makeover provides interior and exterior gathering spaces
for both the homeowners and their guests. Designing an
outdoor space for a residence is as much about allowing
the home’s exterior to blossom to its full potential as
it is for the landscape to take hold.
The basic elements of good design for a remodel are
to create a space that meets the client’s lifestyle, functional and
budgetary requirements while establishing an aesthetic that honors
the architectural character of the home.
Upsize or Downsize?
Turn on HGTV on any given night, and you’re likely to
see someone either restoring a large house or building a
tiny one. Upsizing or downsizing — isn’t anyone
satisfied with the house they have?
Interior Designer Spotlight
Q&A with Betsy Hoke, ASID,
WRID, NARI CR
Six questions with the owner of Sturgeon Interiors
of the Woodwork
wabi-sabi-inspired craftsman celebrates the beauty in
his material’s imperfections.
custom-designed Historic Third Ward condo combines sleek
lines, high-end amenities and endless city views.
Layering rugs gives color, texture and warmth to a
room. This technique also provides a focal point and helps to define
a space. Ready to try the trend in your home?
Designer Spotlight: Q&A with Suzan Wemlinger
Six questions with the
interior designer at Suzan J. Designs — Decorating Den
A bathroom makeover in Wauwatosa is a testimonial to
the notion that high-tech encompasses craftsmanship as well as
From Fallen to Flipped
"It was in really dire shape,” says Milwaukeean Jenni
Radosevich of the 1,465-square-foot, Walker’s Point home she and
four friends — project manager and handyman Alan Damato, real estate
broker and contractor Mike Styke, and design team duo Mallory Davis
and Benji Bernhard — flipped last year.
Designer Spotlight: Q&A with Kim Streater
Interior Designer at
Boston Store Furniture Gallery
Three alluring projects
make the most of hardscaping, architecture and
Inspired by the home’s
history, designers behind the 20th-anniversary showhouse
created rooms made for lingering.
From kitchens and
bathrooms to master suites and basements, many people
are choosing to remodel their entire home instead of
moving to a new one. But converting an existing house
into a dream home can easily turn into a contracted
nightmare that drains your savings and drags on for
Designer Spotlight: Q&A with
Six questions with the
Haven Interiors, Ltd. interior designer.
Differing style preferences converged to
create a lofty outdoor living space for a Lake Country
couple who chose to upsize their empty nest.
As co-owner of QRS Group, a
Waukesha-based design-remodel firm, Jake Ruiz uses his
own refreshed Milwaukee area home as a model to showcase
his work, and most recently the designer added an
Designer Spotlight: Q&A with Sara Ryan
Six questions with
Sara Ryan, Interior Designer at McNabb & Risley Fine
Furniture and Interior Design
Accent your home
with these locally manufactured goods.
Decorating with greenery officially
became trendy earlier this year, when Pantone named
Greenery its 2017 Color of the Year. “Green is popping
up everywhere in interiors,” says Trish Johnson, a
Waukesha County-based interior designer and owner of
Trish Johnson Interiors. “It’s a great counterbalance to
all of the distressed, reclaimed wood and grays that are
so popular these days. It relates to the organic feel of
those materials and connects us to nature and the
Surely you decorate your
home with personal photos and mementos. But have you
chosen artwork for its walls, shelves and end tables
with the same care and emotional connection?
“People should feel the living essence of the person who
created the art,” says mary rose, owner of willows
gallery in Oconomowoc. “Original art has the energy
where you can feel the artist and you can explore it
yourself in the piece.”
For homeowners Jeff and
Alison Mays and their two children, two main colors —
orange and blue — drove the interior design selections
of their newly built Lake Country abode.
“They chose the colors and just let me run with it,”
says interior designer Jenny Carr of Warren Barnett
Interiors in Brookfield. “Orange and blue are their
IN THE DETAILS
While some folks escape to Lake Country
to slow down and unwind from the pace of city living,
others fall in love with the easygoing lifestyle and
make a permanent home here, where they entertain family
and friends. The husband and wife who recently built a
Midwestern shingle-style lake house on Oconomowoc Lake
fall into the latter category.
Milwaukee’s post-World War II real estate
market was marked by an exodus of residents. The freeway
system expanded, and urban sprawl and weekends at the
mall became a way of life.
Designer Spotlight: Q&A with John Edbauer, ASID
Six questions with
Fringe Interior Design and Home Furnishings Co-Owner.
Past Is Present Again
home has made a comeback of sorts — more than 60 years
past its heyday in the 1950s. Design authorities
nationwide have recently touted the popularity of
midcentury modern design and architecture, and closer to
home, local experts echo the resurgence.
Sometimes designing and building a home is all about
making the right connections. One such example is a
3,000-square-foot, modern jewel in Elm Grove, enveloped
by a mini forest of trees and hidden from the hustle and
bustle of nearby Bluemound Road.
Interior Design Trends
What's in for 2017.
Designer Spotlight: Q&A with Dawn Adamec
Six questions with the
Steinhafels Interior Designer.
Rooms That Pop
The moment she saw it, Nancy Lindenberg knew the red
Greek-key chest with the raised white geometric design
on the front would be the star of her Historic Third
Ward condo’s powder room. “I wanted it to be fun with a
feminine flair,” says the homeowner, who knew choosing
the furniture piece from Warren Barnett Interiors
instead of a traditional vanity would present some
A perfect blend of design and
organization emerged as the ideal solution for a busy
physician couple and their three young children as they
moved into their newly built, 8,000-square-foot modern
craftsman home in northeast Brookfield.
Designer Spotlight: Q&A with Emily Ebben
Six questions with
Warren Barnett Interiors' Director of Design and
Stories, Three Styles
has a backstory. Here’s a look at three kitchens, each
crafted with unique inspiration.
Some extensive home makeovers begin traditionally — a
homeowner meets with the design-build company to go over needs,
noodle ideas and work toward a plan to become reality. Other
projects have a different rhythm, percolating for years while the
family dreams, gets ideas through an out-of-town architect friend,
and then searches for a firm willing to take on the preconceived
extravagant features to those with more sentimental
meaning and value, local industry pros dish on their
most luxurious projects to date.
After almost a decade, homeowners Ed Fischer and
Julie Mokhtar still revel in their expansive home, tucked amid trees
and set atop a ridge, overlooking 60 acres in Jefferson. The
impressive, rustic setting fits a sensibility for each —
fun nuances for him, and a spectacular Christmas canvas for her.
a Second Home Right For You?
The choice between buying or renting a vacation home is
an important financial decision for many adults, but
now, with the advent of peer-to-peer rental sites, the
choice has gotten a little easier.
Business of Being Neat
Surely by now someone has told you how wonderful and
how truly life-changing “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” is.
The self-help book by Marie Kondo tapped into a shared feeling that
we are overwhelmed by clutter, and it sold more than 1.5 million
copies in the U.S. and more than 5 million copies worldwide,
according to her publisher.
Creating space in
any home remodeling project requires the ability to work
within boundaries and craft a sensible scale that fits
the big picture.
A family of four is not the Historic Third Ward’s
typical demographic, but for one Milwaukee area homeowner, his
fiancée and his two children, a 3,200-square-foot condo in the
trendy Cream City neighborhood is home.
New Rules In Interior Design
the conventional wisdom that small spaces appear larger only when awash
in light colors.
Today’s expertise suggests almost anything goes.
all home improvements are created equal. Fortunately for
us, local remodeling/renovation, appraisal and real estate
pros know which alterations make sense — and which don’t.
some projects, three minds are better than one.
Wangman of Forbes Design was approached by a Chicago area
couple to transform their second home, a nearly
8,000-square-foot retreat on Oconomowoc Lake, into an
oasis fit for the pair and their four children, she called
in Andre Walker and David Simmons of Walker Simmons Design
newcomer at the north end of Shorecliff Lane on Mequon’s
Lake Michigan bluff is a 4,500-square-foot, prairie-style
home with a midcentury, modern-influenced interior.
lies in the details
on the outside of this three-story, 6,700-square-foot
Hartland home, one might easily believe that its
inhabitants yield to the traditional. With its large stone
and stucco exterior, and adjacency to the marshland, the
newly constructed home seems more reminiscent of a lavish
just a pretty view
one of the most sought after types of property in our
market and holds its value better than any other kind
because they just don’t make it anymore. It is also a
big responsibility because ownership means you are
effectively an environmental steward as well as a property
owner," says Mike Ruzicka, president of the Greater
Milwaukee Association of Realtors.
front to back
homeowner and landscaper alike, meeting aesthetic and
functional needs is ultimately important. "The
key to a good landscape is listening and giving
advice," says Mike Manke, landscape architect for
LandCrafters in Wauwatosa and New Berlin. "You have
to look at the home’s architecture and also the
architecture of the neighborhood."
into a new house is like stepping onto a blank canvas.
With so many possibilities, where do you start? Luckily,
you can find a partner in an interior designer with
experience transforming client wishes into reality.
Talk: Can a zero-net-energy home be achieved in Milwaukee?
first thing to understand about ‘zero-energy homes,’"
says Steve Homa of Muskego-based PEA Builders Inc.,
"is that no home by itself can really ever be zero
energy. Whether it be (in) Wisconsin or Arizona, at some
point in time it will be too hot or too cold to sustain a
master bedroom should be a place to escape the haste of
everyday life, but for many homeowners the retreat often
resembles a bad hotel room: a bed, a picture above the
headboard, double nightstands with lamps, maybe a chair.
her condo’s vantage point, where the Historic Third and
Fifth wards meet, Nancy Lindenberg can view the city’s
active urban landscape, stretched out from the confluence
of the Milwaukee and Menomonee rivers.
the look: Easy Breezy
Veronica Sosa Agnoli and her husband, Robert Conley,
bought their Pewaukee home four years ago, its interior
was cast in red and gold hues, loud wallpaper covered the
walls, and honey-oak woodwork framed every window and
you’re looking for the perfect counter for your kitchen,
check out the profiles of these popular options.
kitchen makeovers just don’t work. That’s
what the new owners of a nearly 100-year-old home on
Milwaukee’s East Side discovered with their kitchen.
Despite recent remodeling, the kitchen was neither
functional nor beautiful. It did not match the character
of the rest of the home.
the status quo
between spec colonials along the Lower Nemahbin Lake
shoreline is a private residence roused to challenge the
status quo. In an area branded for its sprawling
suburbanism, the contemporary pied-à-terre both
acknowledges and defies its surroundings. But that doesn’t
mean this dwelling sticks out like a sore thumb.
residential landscape is potentially a feast for the eyes,
especially in its blend of color and texture throughout
hardscapes and plantings.
wanted to create a perfect relaxing getaway space for easy
lakeside living," say Jessica Forston and John
Edbauer of Fringe Interior Design & Home Furnishings,
designers participating in Wisconsin Breast Cancer
Showhouse Inc.’s annual Showhouse for a Cure. In fact,
it seems most of the designers shared that goal for this
year’s home on Oconomowoc Lake.
Paul Apfelbach of Mequon, restoring historic homes is more
than just a day job — it’s a passion. "I have a
passion to resolve nonroutine solutions versus everything
being prepackaged the way new construction is," says
Apfelbach, whose many hats include real estate developer,
residential broker and home-restoration expert.
great landscape begins with a plan. While
the amount of space is an obvious parameter to any design,
three local designers point to other factors. Peter
Kudlata, principal of Flagstone in Cedarburg, Wendy Wiza,
a staff designer at Hartland-based Century Landscaping,
and Steve Brown, president of Outdoor Accents in
Thiensville, emphasize architecture/spatial relationships,
function, focal points and municipal codes over lot size.
a need to elevate an outdoor living environment to match a
newly created interior, Whitefish Bay homeowners conquered
the challenge with
the help of local landscape and architectural experts who
know their way around creating seamless transitions.
homeowners Dawn and Cameron Knuth bought their property in
Nashotah, the couple instantly knew the nearly 1-acre lot
adjacent to a bounty of woods and wildlife would make the
ultimate backyard paradise.
the late 19th century, the splendor of the Gilded Age was
in full effect as rapid industrialization and economic
growth propelled the country forward. Much of the growth
happened in the northern United States, including in
Milwaukee — a bustling beacon during an era of grace and
Pamela Coleman and her husband moved into their
20th-century Classic Georgian Fox Point home, the living
room wasn’t exactly inviting. With red walls, inadequate
seating and insufficient lighting, it had all the stuffy
feelings of an antiquated parlor. Far from reflective of
Coleman’s warm personality, the room went virtually
unused for years.
are few design essentials that transcend interior styles
as effortlessly as the subway tile. It is as equally at
home in a contemporary bathroom as it is in a traditional
country kitchen. But to say subway tile is making a
comeback may be disregarding its endurance
throughout a century of American design.
a Menomonee Falls family enlisted David J. Frank Landscape
Contracting Inc. to make over their existing backyard
patio, they had one goal — to create
a place where they could come together as
landscape project completed during a new home construction
in Mequon achieved a twofold purpose: providing necessary
drainage for a structure designed without gutters and
well as crafting attractive, multifaceted outdoor
modern tree house
a Milwaukee architect helped a Portage-based couple move
to Madison to better suit their careers, he also assisted
in their transition from an 1880s Victorian/Italianate to
a new millennium modern.
the power of color
it comes to choosing the right hues for your home, heeding
the practice of color psychology probably isn’t the
first thing to come to mind. Yet between all those fan
decks, paint samples and fabric swatches is a world of
emotion waiting to be tapped into — and it could
significantly change the feel of your home.
to a survey conducted by the American Society of Landscape
Architects, the top three most requested outdoor design
elements for 2015 were fire pits, lighting and grills.
Other popular choices were pergolas and decks and spa
features like hot tubs, saunas and swimming pools.
open floor plans and clean lines still dominate local home
design, Milwaukee area designers are seeing homeowners
increasingly embrace design trends that may once have been
outside their comfort zone.
array of 20th century modern chairs exhibited since Nov.
24 at the Milwaukee Art Museum is more than a revealing
window into past design — it is a study in various
materials and shapes that some local designers say
repurposed home intersects with a repurposed life in
Whitefish Bay, where build and design professionals
created a rustic, modern gem.
and white resurgence
European design scene has been experiencing a resurgence
of black and white home décor as of late, and it appears
the enduring duo is making its way stateside.
designer Carol Johnson of AB&K in Greenfield tackled a
master bathroom remodel in Mequon, she knew it would
require a higher level of design for a taller-than-average
couple. That included removing soffits to expose a vaulted
ceiling and providing pivoting mirrors at the double
North Shore couple with a colorful business portfolio
discovered how to put their home life in neutral (no pun
intended) with the help of a local interior designer, who
is ironically now part of their corporate family.
space extends the possibilities. That notion was put into
practice by Terri Schmidt, owner-designer of Delafield’s
Dream House Dream Kitchens, when she helped an Elm Grove
family expand the capabilities of their midcentury modern
Bill Koehnlein of Waukesha-based Collaborative Design,
completing the bowling alley renovation of this Milwaukee
area home was the final piece of the project puzzle. The
house was built three years ago, but Koehnlein and the
homeowners toyed with how to customize the bowling alley
before deciding on a final design concept.
Cameron and Dawn Knuth, building and moving into a new
home meant more than fulfilling a lifestyle need for their
family, which includes two children and two dogs. It also
meant meeting that need with very specific style.
is making a comeback. But if memories of Grandma’s house,
"Dynasty" and shoulder pads come to mind, think again.
Contrary to the shiny, polished variations popular in the past,
this brass is set to complement any room — not to overwhelm it.
gather around the fireplace. "Have
you ever sat in front of a fire in the morning on a cold winter
day?" asked Dennis Forston, owner of Forston Construction in
a village of artisans to help a Whitefish Bay family make its 1929
home practical for today’s lifestyle without losing yesteryear’s
been nearly two years since the Meredith Corporation, a publishing
giant whose subsidiaries include Better Homes & Gardens
magazine, initially contacted Lakeside Development Company of
to style a console table
tables are among the most versatile pieces of furniture in a home.
Because they are shallow, they are great for spaces like a foyer.
A console table in your home’s entryway welcomes guests and adds
personality and function to your front hall.
has been set higher than ever. Homeowners seeking a convivial
space to enjoy a beverage and much more are turning to design
pros. Bill Koehnlein, president of Collaborative Design Inc. in
Waukesha, and Tara Wilke, owner of McNabb & Risley Fine
Furniture and Interior Design in Thiensville, served up their home
homeowners Jim and Sue Marriott more than refreshed their home’s
1995 contemporary interior. They reset the look and the impressive
space to reflect their current life as well as their modern taste.
A sense of
designer and fine arts expert Timothy Whealon credits his Midwest
upbringing with influencing his approach to interior design.
in Wisconsin, I developed an appreciation for wide open spaces,"
says the Fox Point native, who now calls New York City home. Downtown
Milwaukee landmarks and nearby Lake Michigan have also had a lasting
impact on Whealon’s style.
discussing trends in home remodeling, industry experts agree —
quality is trumping quantity. "In the past, the most
important thing was, ‘How big can I afford to make it?’"
says Chris Egner, a member of the Milwaukee/National Association
of the Remodeling Industry board of directors and owner of
Design-Build-Remodel in New Berlin.
with a purpose
remodeling the basement of a Washington Highlands home, Matthew
Jahns of Refined Renovations, Wauwatosa, understood the homeowners’
desire to have an adult space to call their own.
with a view
Whitefish Bay homeowners and a local architectural
designer/engineer spent a decade transforming a near-teardown home
into a contemporary gem that takes advantage of Lake Michigan
views and incorporates a plethora of building materials.
meets mancave in a 6,500-square-foot contemporary home nestled in
the wooded wonder of Delafield’s Kettle Moraine State Forest.
The updated domicile
came together from 2011 to 2014 in a collaboration between Lisa
Minneti, an interior designer with Peabody’s Interiors, and
longtime partners Christine and Rob.
before the green movement took root in interior design, La Lune
Collection has been quietly crafting its environmentally friendly
furniture in its Riverwest workshop for more than 35 years.
of a feather
accessories and decor influenced by our feather-laden friends.
13 years, the beauty, elegance and historic significance of living
on Oconomowoc Lake is not lost on Dean and Tammy Laing.
comes to color, Bill Koehnlein of Collaborative Design in Waukesha
doesn’t like to follow trends. "I
like the unexpected," he says. His
room designs often incorporate blocks of color or ceilings painted
a bold hue in contrast to the rest of the room.
designer Linda Carver of Thiensville-based McNabb & Risley
collaborated with the owners of this River Hills estate to create
an environment radiating with comfort and warmth. "They live
in each one of these rooms with their children, family and
friends," she says of the homeowners’ lifestyle.
Boardman-Miller built her design business, Lime Chandelier, on the
premise of one simple question: "Can you do drapes?"
clutter-free kitchen counter might sound like an impossible dream.
After all, the kitchen is a high-traffic area and, let’s face
it, a dumping ground. But there is a way to avoid clutter. Here
are some suggestions of what to keep and what to let go of from
Cheryl Ryan of Kitchens by Design in Elm Grove.
family members get their space
long ago, dogs lived in dog houses. But as we increasingly treat
our pets like one of the family, we want to make space for them
inside the house.
to Las Vegas is not generally described as inspirational, but for
Dave Belman of Waukesha-based Belman Homes, it was just that.
comes to designing kitchen spaces, installing leather cabinetry
isn’t likely to top the list. Generally more enduring materials,
such as wood, metals and glass, are considered. Leather, on the
other hand, has long been viewed as extravagant or excessive.
your "roommates" include a husband and three boys,
having a place to call your own is a welcomed luxury. Such was the
case for a Mequon mother, homeowner and longtime client of
interior designer Lisa Anne Minetti of Peabody’s Interiors,
Brown Deer. "She refers to her kitchen as her own
apartment," says Minetti.
are interested in building a contemporary style home but are
concerned about blending into a traditional neighborhood, Stephen
Betts, an interior designer with SGB Designs Ltd. and Penny
Mustard Furniture in Menomonee Falls, says you need not worry.
Jenni Radosevich, restoring a vintage rotary telephone and turning
it into a trendy succulent planter is just another day at the
office. The Wisconsin-raised designer turned DIY lifestyle blogger
is the embodiment of a thousand Pinterest do’s, and she doesn’t
appear to be slowing down anytime soon.
headboards first hit the design market years ago, but like any
trend, they too have evolved. It was only until recently that
manufacturers and designers began seeking inspiration from the
more traditional headboards of the past, incorporating sleigh bed
styles and wooden trim into their designs.
a slab of Statuary marble that served as Robin Swernoff’s
inspiration behind the bathroom renovation in her Bayside home.
Swernoff and her husband own Lakeside Stoneworks in Brown Deer, so
it seems only fitting that her creativity spawned from a piece of
its 18th year, the annual Showhouse for a Cure is traditionally
held in a historic East Side home, but its presenting
organization, WBCS Inc., took a new approach this year, instead
selecting a newer home as its 2015 showhouse location.
seeing this 1952 River Hills Colonial for the first time, designer
Anne Wangman knew it was special. "The moldings, doors and
trim were intact, so it was important that the design of the
interiors complement the millwork, not compete with it."
they serve a practical purpose, window treatments can also make a
huge aesthetic impact. Whether you’re partial to drapes or
blinds, a stylish window covering will easily elevate the design
of any room.
the public’s general aversion to wallpaper, Suzan Wemlinger,
owner of Decorating Den Interiors/Suzan J. Designs in Milwaukee,
says that wallpaper is "coming back in a big way." And
tearing down the existing home on their Elm Grove lot, homeowners
Madan and Gwen Kandula wanted their new house to blend into the
established feel of the surrounding neighborhood. The couple hired
John Van Rooy of John Van Rooy Architecture, Milwaukee, to take on
and build pros worked together swimmingly well to redefine outdoor
residential life for a Mequon family.
transplant from California, I’m not a fan of long Wisconsin
winters. I do, however, love experiencing the dramatic change of
seasons. When it comes to interior décor, spring and summer call
for a home refresh.
you double the size of a home, use its original foundation and
salvage a crumbling wood ceiling without taking anything away from
the natural beauty of the setting? That was the challenge faced by
architect Bruce Wydeven and builder Erik Knuth of EarthRite
Construction on a large-scale renovation project of a Lake
Kim and Owen Sullivan of Wauwatosa found themselves on the brink
of an empty nest, the parents of four wanted to find a home to
emanate the next phase of their life. They mulled over a move west
to Lake Country, then east to downtown Milwaukee, but ultimately
realized they wanted to stay near and dear to their beloved Tosa
Rockton, Ill., couple turned to a Milwaukee architect to make
their dream of living on the Rock River a reality. The result is a
modern three-bedroom structure — a "bird" the owners
named Kingfisher that takes flight, showcasing natural beauty and
melding the river’s shimmering surface and the sloping,
sometimes rugged, terrain above.
home trend forecast
TV and film could easily lead one to believe that the modern home
is loaded with enough high-tech, glossy amenities to make the
Jetsons envious. Yet for all the world’s technological
advancements, home designers say Milwaukee’s high-end property
owners are striving to preserve a more traditional aesthetic.
art of Oriental rugs
matter what its color, scale, origin or pattern, a good-quality
Oriental rug never goes out of style, and it works with just about
the owners of a home on the Root River in Franklin debated the
idea of building a cabin in northern Wisconsin, but the setting of
their own property made them change their minds.
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.
metallics, especially copper, is a hot trend in home decor. With
its reflective sheen and rich tone, the metal instantly injects
warmth into a space. From light pendants and furnishings to
accessories, hints of copper add a touch of glamour to any room.
Hubertus-based mother of two Ann Schellinger and her husband,
Brian, building a third home together meant the chance to
incorporate their family’s favorite pastime — exploring and
enjoying nature — into the home’s design.
Nick Blavat and Richard Scherer of Deep River Partners, Milwaukee,
encountered a unique experience when recently remodeling a Gothic
Victorian on Milwaukee’s East Side — one in which the
homeowner served as the project’s general contractor.
a chef's kitchen
rising popularity of television cooking shows has upped the ante
in today’s residential kitchen design, with homeowners seeking
kitchen renovations fit for a professional chef.
a powder room in the middle of the kitchen might have been de
rigueur in home design in the 1940s, but it’s squarely out of
fashion in 2015.
Dr. Madan and Gwen Kandula began conceptualizing their new home in
Elm Grove’s Indian Hills neighborhood, they knew they wanted
their kitchen to be both kid-friendly and conducive to
With it's classic
symmetry, Cream City brick and black shutters, the Georgian
revival brick home along Lake Michigan in Fox Point looks as if it
has been there for decades.
a holiday get-together doesn’t have to be elaborate and
time-consuming — you can be holiday ready for an impromptu
affair or a more formal soiree with these simple preparations.
Mark Hackbarth and Eric Nelson purchased their 1891 Victorian 10
years ago, it had good bones but no style, Hackbarth says.
used to be about the only reason anyone considered moving to a
condo. It was the option of choice for empty-nesters tired
of cutting the grass, raking the leaves and shoveling snow. Today
the market is no longer limited to retirees.
financial adviser who primarily consults clients who are retired
or nearing retirement age, Karen Ellenbecker routinely sees
retirees build their dream homes only to be disappointed when
suburban living falls short of their lifestyle expectations.
in the sky
off the elevator on the 30th floor of the Kilbourn Tower and you
might think you’ve entered an art gallery. In a way you’d be
right. But this is no ordinary art gallery. This is the home of
Peggy Ann, and what you see around you is the product of a
lifetime of collecting.
from a stylist: How to decorate your fireplace mantle
make natural focal points in a home. Yet, it seems to be a
decorating dilemma for many a homeowner. How much stuff is too
much? Is art a must? Should it feel balanced or more playful?
of the 2013 fire that destroyed their 1800s farmhouse are
scattered throughout the rebuilt Burlington home of Richard and
wouldn’t think the words "refined" and
"laid-back" could be used together in the same sentence.
Yet, they perfectly describe Timothy Corrigan. One of the most
sought-after designers in the world, he has made a career out of
bringing easy elegance to home decor.
some drive hours to an Up North getaway, one Waukesha County
family can leave it all behind simply by walking across the
you create a home that’s big enough to entertain 50 people yet
feels warm and cozy for two? That’s the challenge architect John
Vetter faced when he was commissioned to build a Waukesha County
whole house remodel of a Fox Point 1960s contemporary, curves are
used sparingly. "A strong emphasis on line and form — two
essentials of good contemporary design — gives this particular
style its energy," says Terri Schmidt, owner and director of
design at DreamHouse/DreamKitchens, who headed up the project.
nonconforming traditionalists and modern design diehards can agree
that dining tables are still a necessary component in today’s
searching for an older character home in a walkable community,
Sharath and Nirmal Raja narrowed in on a 1920s English-inspired
white brick house on a double lot in Whitefish Bay.
from a stylist
you ever walked into a home and immediately felt enveloped by your
surroundings? You couldn’t put your finger on it, but you were
drawn in by the home’s effortless design.
family friendly spaces to spa-like retreats to swanky business
interiors, area designers showcase their work
first time interior designer Emily Winters set foot in the cottage
she designed was to set it up prior to the client’s arrival.
artist father, Ariel Steinke grew up surrounded by creativity. She
began sewing in eighth grade — blankets, pillows, etc. — and
after a visit senior year in high school to Waukesha County
Technical College, she was headed toward a career in interior
though it seems as if people started talking about universal
design only recently, the concept of adaptability was developed in
Pamela Anderson was designing her kitchen, she thought there was a
lack of appealing handles and pulls for cabinets. "I wanted
something stunning, but everything was ho-hum," the artist
Lives Here: David and Molly Madsen, owners of AB&K Remodeling,
and their two boys, Joe, 14, and Ryan, 13. This is the fifth house
the kitchen and bath pros have built.
terms of kitchen design, it’s time to retire the styles of the
1990s. Homeowners are seeking an openness and functionality in the
hub of the home dictated by busy lifestyles.
bold at home
summer! Introduce some color and some fun into your home interiors
with these big-impact pieces.
Art of Hardscaping
more to a dazzling garden or a serene patio than a lush lawn and
fragrant flowers. Hardscape elements, from stone retaining walls
to brick fire pits, are making outdoor spaces more enjoyable and
views of Lake Michigan are an impressive feature of the 2014
Wisconsin Breast Cancer Showhouse for a Cure, but the architecture
of the Classical Revival Georgian home on East Lafayette Place has
secured its standing in one of Milwaukee’s most distinguished
neighborhoods for more than 100 years.
beauty of boathouses
lakes in the area have at least a few historic "wet"
boathouses that reside on the shore. Boathouses that were
completely or partially built below the ordinary high water mark
are called wet boathouses.
towering woodland as his backdrop and environmental restrictions
dictating the footprint of the project, landscape designer Peter
Kudlata created a resort-worthy backyard for an Ozaukee County
time. There’s a Norman Rockwell painting for that. A scene in
which family members gather around the table, eagerly sharing the
adventures of their day, with smiles as wide as their faces.
in for green
property development, sustainability has become the industry
buzzword. Many developers are claiming to be eco-friendly, but not
all can back up their words with brick and mortar.
Elements of design
Algiers has been written up in the New York Times, ICON and
Contract magazines, among numerous other publications.
it or leave it
pursuit to own a dream home, families must determine if their
current house can be remodeled or if new construction is a better
route. Both options require careful consideration.
Paul and Natalia Hackbarth sought decorating help for their house
on the East Side, they knew just where to find it.
their daughter going off to college, Lisa and Jim Gleason decided
the time was right to spruce up their Whitefish Bay home.
Swiontek loves the North Woods and frequently travels there to
relax and unwind. One day it occurred to him that instead of
relying on these trips to de-stress, he could bring the North
Woods to his five wooded acres in River Hills.
architect Stephen Bruns visited the piece of land on which he was
commissioned to design Fieldstone House, one thing was clear: The
driving force behind the project would be the two glacial kettles
on the property.
was never any question William Koehnlein would join the family
design business. While
other kids were no doubt idling away their after-school hours, the
young Koehnlein was learning woodcarving.
architectural historian Chris Szczesny-Adams and her husband were
buying an 1899 home on Milwaukee’s East Side, she called her
dissertation adviser to see if he knew of its architect, Elmer
Grey. "‘You mean Elmer Grey of Pasadena?’" Szczesny-Adams
recalls him saying. "From then on, I knew I had found
something that was going to be very interesting."
for a luxury property? You’ll be hard-pressed to find one in the
Milwaukee area. There’s a historically low supply of high-end
ago, on a trip to Colorado, a house featured in a newspaper home
section caught the eye of the traveler. He carried that newspaper
home with him to Wisconsin, and when he and his wife began to
concept their family dream home, that house influenced the design.
comes to designing a home office, form and function share equal
roles. Here are three designs that promote productivity and look
matter where you fall on the topic of color, choosing the right
color for your bedroom is more than just personal preference.
Color affects restfulness, and romance, too, say local design
Ann Matter of Elm Grove combines industrial chic with antiques in
her master suite. She worked with Theresa Vaughan of Forte
Interior Design to help execute her vision. The high wingback
upholstered bed by Lee Industries is trendy but gives off an
retailer Land of Nod’s Lottie Dots Decal set contains 48 3-inch
dot decals in silver, gold or white. Paste them in uniform rows,
rainbow shapes or randomly for just the right amount of whimsy.
comes to home design, white is always popular among homeowners. It’s
a color that never really goes out of style, yet easily lends
itself to reinvention.
Quinn of Modern Edge Design visited the downtown Milwaukee condo of a
potential client, she saw a kitchen that, while functional, needed an
Hollywood, with Love
would have guessed that Milwaukee has its finger on the pulse of what’s
hot in Hollywood?
Russell Levin and his staff at Argosy, a distinctive home accessories
store in Brookfield, have been selecting birthday and holiday gifts
for the staff and stars of the AMC network.
Only one thing
could tear Teresa Manns away from a globe-trotting design career in
New York City working for the renowned Steven Gambrel — true love.
After marrying her former high school classmate whom she met at their
20-year reunion and commuting from Wauwatosa to NYC for two-plus
years, Manns decided to make Milwaukee her home base at Peabody’s
Interiors in Brown Deer.
guests may be known to congregate in the kitchen but they will
also migrate toward the bar if you have it set for holiday
before they were married, Dave and Linda McFadden scoured flea
markets, estate sales and antique shops. "I like old
things," Linda McFadden says. "I like them even more
when they are a little bit rustic."
from a stylist
expensive taste, far beyond my budget. As a movie set and photo
stylist in California and now in Wisconsin, I’ve learned some
trade secrets on how to satisfy my designer tastes without
sacrificing budget or style.
basement in a Wauwatosa home became a high-style yet comfortable
space for work and play. The lower-level redesign includes a home
office and a large open area for dancing and game playing, along
with a movie room.
designers are feeling the love on Houzz.com, the online platform
for ideas about architecture, interior design, landscape design
and home improvement.
scene right out of an HGTV design show, Dr. Michael and Mary Ellen
McCormick walked into their renovated condo greeted by their
design team for the big reveal.
of the box
15 years of building for other people, Craig and Georgia Rakowski
finally built a home for themselves. "I’ve taken bits and
pieces from all the models I’ve built and put them all
together," says Craig Rakowski, owner of James Craig
Builders. "It took three years to design my house," he
the feeling gray walls bring to a space. To me, gray is and will
continue to be a "hot neutral" by creating a wonderful
palate or backdrop to work from. It’s the perfect showcase for
bold fabrics, a trend I am happy to see continue.
its comfortable and dreamy exterior, this outdoor getaway is tough
as nails, from the heavy duty drapery fabric to the PVC potted
faux wheat grass. "We made sure everything was designed and
manufactured to withstand the elements," says interior
designer Nicholas Konzal of Nicholas Carl Design.
of the West
Victorian home on Fowler Lake in Oconomowoc certainly lives up to
the adage of standing the test of time. It
has been home to generations of families, converted to apartments
and recently restored to a single-family home by Chris and Frank
stories through design
A background in the performing arts helps
Polish-born interior designer Aga Artka of Aga Artka Interior
Design, Milwaukee, create spaces that reflect her clients’
unique stories. "Growing up I spent a lot of time on stage
acting, singing and dancing.
grew up watching the animated series "The Jetsons," then
you’re already familiar with its visionary predictions of modern
life: Piloted in 1962, the show’s creators imagined a life
chock-full of leisure, with homes flanked by technology in every
room, from flat-screen televisions to mobile devices, and remote
controls and push buttons for every household task in between.
design, beautiful landscapes and meaningful possessions are, by
themselves, not what makes a house a home. As editors of this
magazine’s home section, we have seen hundreds of wonderfully
appointed homes through the years.
is not your typical 20-something. The Whitefish Bay native has
traveled across the globe, and, after coming back to the United
States, started her own business.
into Mary Ann Matter’s Elm Grove condo is a little like walking
into a homey Iron Horse Hotel. "I absolutely love the
hotel," says Matter. "When we came here we wanted to
capture that vibe." To fulfill her dream, Matter hired
Theresa Vaughan of Forte Design, John McWilliam, owner of Scathain
Collective, and Jennifer Espenscheid of Soma Gallery.
approaching the whole house remodel of their Mequon home, Rob and
Amy Prellwitz wanted first to bring in more natural light,
particularly in the kitchen. Architect Rory Palubiski of Fein
Design brightened up the north-facing room with lots of glass and
to Punk Tour
need to be decked out in Steampunk to participate in this year’s
Historic Concordia Neighborhood’s Steamtrunk to Steampunk home
tour June 15, but they’ll waive the admission if you do.
its picturesque and historic setting on one of America’s Great
Streets, "The Castle on Newberry" is ready to welcome
visitors as the 2013 Wisconsin Breast Cancer Showhouse for a Cure
from June 1 through 16.
and Lisa Pereles’ Whitefish Bay master bathroom was a cramped
and "strictly functional" space before a remodel by SJ
Janis Co., says Nathan Wachtl, senior design consultant.
is how Nicholas Konzal describes his design abilities, which
include working with organic materials (floral design), textiles
(interior design) and manmade materials (furniture design).
"Good designers can work in different mediums," says the
Feider is building a business based on a simple question: Who
doesn’t love tree houses? "It immediately draws people back
to their childhoods," says Feider, owner of O2 Treehouse.
"People love to tell their tree house stories."
the warm weather finally arrives, Dana and Tom Schreibel don’t
waste a minute of it. From their home on Lake Keesus they have
views of Marshall Bay and two outdoor living spaces from which to
enjoy it. "We entertain quite a bit. We actually hosted a
wedding two years ago," Dana Schreibel says.
Pool Party: Fox Point Edition
Point’s tree-lined streets and quiet neighborhoods now disguise
its former status as a social hub during the early 20th century
when a popular golf club attracted socialites to the area. Though
golf ended in the 1930s, reminders of the country club remain,
such as the beach house, swimming pool and tennis courts.
Halquist didn’t want to be a slave to his garden, so when he
hired Ginkgo Leaf Studios, Cedarburg, to renovate the landscape at
his Menomonee Falls home, he made that point very clear.
knew right away," recalls the owner of the 1950s Bayside
home, about the day she first saw it. The 3,000-square-foot Frank
Lloyd Wright-inspired home is at the end of a winding driveway and
tucked into a wooded landscape. After a walk-through with the
Realtor — during which she saw past the dated décor — she was
even more smitten.
inside the suburban Cedarburg home and prepare to be surprised.
Peabody’s Interiors interior designer Emily Winters helped a
young couple create an urban sophisticated space to showcase their
extensive art collection. "I feel so strongly that your home
should reflect you and your personality," Winters says.
might say fate led Gwen Adair-Strangohr and her husband, Jim
Strangohr, to the doorstep of their Lake Keesus home in 2007.
After the tragic death
of their friend, the couple purchased the home where their friend
had lived. "I think she always wanted me to have this
house," Adair-Strangohr says.
trends: Bold colors, patterns prevail
make our surroundings beautiful, and they do it with aplomb, ease
and wit. They take an idea and whip it into a space that
flourishes with vibrant personality and charm. That’s why we
tapped a few of the area’s interior designers to share their
choices of the latest home design trends.
Barrett is doing something no other Milwaukee developer has ever done.
He’s building a high-rise development in downtown Chicago.