Teaser

The YouTube Channel is up and running now.  It will have videos that I will link to throughout the construction process, design tips, as well as before-and-afters eventually (when we have an “after”)!

Be sure to check out the first video my talented brother, Trevor Frets, made as a short teaser of the house in it’s “before” state.

Check out more of Trevor’s work at www.trevorfrets.com!

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We’re Crazy…

Let me first start off by saying: we’re crazy.

It all started when a bright orange and gray house (same colors as ours) down the street went on the market.  I admit my guilty pleasure is perusing the real estate market for fun to see what’s out there.  When this particular house became available it got me thinking.  It had some pros and cons compared to our home, but I realized how much they could get out of it and how the market was climbing.

We were perfectly happy in our house.  It served us well, we’d improved it a bunch, and we came to love it.  Unfortunately, we knew it wouldn’t be a long-term home for us.  It was 3 bedroom/1 bath/1 garage, and we already had 2 little kids.  So we were torn on trying to take advantage of the market to hopefully make a larger profit, or staying and practicing the art of contentment.  I didn’t really feel like there was a wrong choice.  One was cumfy and predictable, and the other was scary as well as exciting.  I felt like God was saying, “either be grateful and content with what I have given you, or have faith and trust that I will provide – I am there regardless.”

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Our previous home lovingly called the “Kersten Haus”

Needless to say, we decided to jump.  We up-rooted our family from our routine and moved in with my parents.  Luckily, they were our saving grace for deciding to even move this direction.  We knew in this market we would have to have no contingencies when we did find a home, and would need to sell first.  Then we searched, and searched, and searched.  Not unlike many people today in the same predicament.  Our gift was time.  Living with my mom and dad bought us time to look, but our downfall was budget and style.  Let’s just say we are extra picky.  Thankfully, we had the best realtor that was patient, but persistent.  Lindsey Haymond and her sister Kelsey Bradley went on this wild adventure with us enthusiastically… and boy do we have some stories!  We didn’t want this scary free-fall to feel like we were settling for something that wasn’t worth the headache.  We were particularly looking for the lower roof lines of mid-century architecture, but also wanted a project to make our own.  We looked at homes worth demolishing, foreclosures, as well as scary vacant hoarder-like homes that looked more like a storage unit for furniture and spiders.

That aforementioned house is a whole other blog post in and of itself.  Needless to say, we eventually found one with the potential needed to create the vision we have.  It backed up to the creek, had a 2 car garage, vaulted ceilings, a larger yard, and another bathroom.  It just needed style and a tiny bit more space.

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Our new adventure

Born in the Wrong Era?

I guess you could say I’ve always been drawn to an American “retro” or “mid-century” style.  When I was a kid I would ask for things like the Kit-cat clock (where it’s tail swings back and forth), a neon light telephone, or brightly colored band posters reminiscent of Andy Warhol paintings for birthday gifts; all considered “novelty” now.  Funny, in retrospect, that the things I wanted were all some sort of home decor.

I grew up with a mom and grandparents that love to entertain.  Parties, small or grand are definitely our thing.  Not because we love to put on a show (although, I love to sing show tunes to my kids off key), but because having lots of people we love (as well as new friends) in one place makes us happy.  We are happy to plan ahead for what the needs of our guests might be.  We like to think about the set-up, traffic flow, how to lay out the drinks and food, making areas of seating for conversation easily accessible, making sure there is always a spot to sit a drink or plate, but most of all: what contributes to our guests having the most enjoyable experience.  Maybe we are good at this, not because we over-exert ourselves the days before with over-the-top prep work in pinterest decor or cuisine, but because we don’t easily get stressed by it.  We, ourselves, want to have a great time and enjoy our own party!  We don’t want to hide behind the kitchen door (like people have doors to their kitchen anymore! ha!) but because we want to be social too.  Luckily, my husband enjoys it too.

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1st Annual Oktoberfest Party

 

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2nd Annual

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3rd Annual

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4th Annual

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5th Annual

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6th Annual

My favorite thing about the stereo-typical Palm Springs mid-century design is the lifestyle it is created around.  The cocktail parties, swimming pool day-time gatherings, relaxed lifestyle outdoors in the sun, maybe a song or two sung by your buddy Frank Sinatra while you sip your gin martini?  It may be mid-western dreaming, but I’m the kinda gal that loves a party (clearly illustrated in our Annual Oktoberfest photos above)!

I sorta love imagining Dad driving up to the succulent-surrounded carport from work in his aqua blue Chevrolet convertible.  It was the time of muscle cars; my favorite car always was the Shelby Mustang.  Technologies were advanced during the Industrial Revolution and after World War II that influenced cars as well as homes.  Suburbs were booming (it was the time of the economic boom and baby boom) and homes were needing to be built quickly, and affordably.  The design aesthetics evoked a sense of hope and openness.  More open public areas of the home (open floor plans), connections between the indoors and outdoors (large floor-to-ceiling glass windows), construction styles that were exposed (post and beam), and authentic materials (steel, wood, concrete block) became more common.  I’ve always been drawn to this style of architecture, but graduating from architecture school at Kansas State University definitely reinforced my existing love by adding an appreciation factor.

It only makes sense that I’ve been wanting my own modern version of a mid-century home to become my next project.  As with all things in life, there are limitations; budget mainly.  So while we couldn’t afford an awesome Drummond Contemporary in KC, we finally found a great little Prairie Village ranch that hit the needed check marks for our family.  Come with us on our journey to redeem and transform our home’s body and soul into a colorful Palm Springs-esque Kansas oasis.