A growing Edina family was ready to remodel their forever home. What came next was a total reimagining.
This is the story of a growing family who embarked on a renovation to turn their home into their dream home—literally rebuilding the house from the ground up. The foundation is the lasting legacy from the original humble Edina rambler in a superb neighborhood near 50th & France.
When the homeowners first approached Jkath Design Build + Reinvent, they were a family of five, but soon learned they were expecting one more. With the birth approaching and a 6- to 8-month estimated relocation time, they waited until the baby was born and settled to actually begin the demolition.
“A big project requires a lot of thought and time and redrafts—selecting and reselecting,” says Jkath designer Katie Miller. “It was a good 18 months getting there in the design—and another year of making that happen.” Together, they took the 1,000-square-foot rambler with three bedrooms on the main level to a four-bedroom, two-bathroom two-story home—about 2,300 square feet, all told—with bedrooms and bathrooms upstairs and living space downstairs. “She had a really specific vision of what she wanted,” Miller says of the client’s vision for a modern farmhouse build.
“She made quick decisions and moved on to the next thing—probably a product of being a mom with four young kids! She doesn’t have a ton of time!” Besides time, the family was also short on square footage and storage—needing an efficient layout that would allow for both an aesthetically pleasing interior and a livable one.
“She really prioritized an open floor plan on the main floor,” Miller says. Jkath designers were able to completely reconfigure the first floor, creating an open kitchen and adding a mudroom and pantry, a powder bathroom, and a three-season porch in a flow that made sense for coming in with groceries and shepherding kids through the house.
“Having those capabilities to be human in your home, but also have a beautiful home at the same time was a real win,” Miller says.
Jkath used their in-house cabinet shop to create custom detailing throughout the home but examples abound on the first floor, beginning with the mantel-style hood over the range in the kitchen—which is paired with easy-reach shelving for go-to spices. (A fireplace mantel in the living room matches.) A unique bi-fold door in the pantry allows for the hinges to disappear into the wall when open. Cubbies in the mudroom help stow kid gear in any season. Custom paneling and a perfectly fitting vanity in the powder bath warm the space.
“Storage, storage, storage,” says Miller, laughing. “Everything has as much purpose as possible, as well as good looks on the outside.” While some companies outsource the design aspects, Miller says that having both in-house means “everyone speaks the same language,” which allows them to overdeliver on their design promises. Finally, engineered white-oak flooring creates continuity underfoot, and a mix of brass finishes add sparkle to a sophisticated, neutral background.
Upstairs, Jkath created an airy oasis of an owners’ bedroom and bathroom, with a large walk-in closet to cut clutter. A custom chevron-patterned track door opens into a soothing gray-and-white marble tile bathroom, with a custom double vanity painted in grey. In keeping with the first floor, touches of brass hardware and lighting fixtures add sparkle.
Natural light was a top priority throughout the house, which is framed by black grid Marvin windows and helped along with a mix of tone-on-tone white and light gray paints. The black grid windows stand in a pretty, graphic contrast to the white walls throughout the first floor, and French doors open out onto the front porch from the dining room, providing an almost al fresco dining option. Choosing furniture with a variety of fabrics in a variety of colors and textures keeps the space from washing out.
But the single decision the client is happiest with? The exterior, a James Hardie siding that can weather the Minnesota climate extremes—in sweet basil, a mellow green that stands out—but not against—the rest of the neighborhood’s homes.
“We took a chance and ordered it, and she’s thrilled with the color,” says Miller. “Even the neighbors have mentioned they like it.” Additionally, oversize windows, a covered porch, and vertical siding add dimension and depth to the front of the home.
And now that all the pieces are in place—inside and out—the family has moved back in.
“It really exceeded even our expectations,” Miller says. “We were really excited watching the details coming together on paper, but at the end of the day, you can’t actually visualize it until you can touch, see, pull things out, run your hands over the countertops, and relish all the different finishes that come together.”
After daily site visits from the family, this huge passion project has come to fruition.
Photography by Spacecrafting | Written by Katie Dohman