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A First-Floor Remodel for Comfortable Living

Living in an older home can sometimes feel choppy and disjointed due to outdated layouts—a common concern among our clients. In our latest project, we completed a first-floor remodel in Highland Park, St. Paul. Remodeling multiple rooms in a single project allows homeowners the opportunity to start fresh and make holistic changes for a more suitable, comfortable living space. We love the sense of openness in the final design without being entirely open-concept. This way, you can enjoy sightlines and an open flow, while each room still maintains its character and independence.

Before

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One of the main problems was that the den was located between the living and dining areas, disrupting the flow and posing privacy issues. Additionally, the kitchen’s layout was inefficient, and the overall space was interrupted by the placement of windows and the powder room.

After

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Now there’s a wonderful connection between the kitchen, dining, and living areas. The office has been relocated to a spot where it can be closed off for privacy. This decision allowed us to borrow a bit of space to enhance the powder room and the area off of the hallway.

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Maximizing Space with a Clever Shift

In its original location, the kitchen was awkward and had limited counter space. By relocating the kitchen to the former dining room and closing off a wall, we were able to maximize the use of full walls and incorporate an island.

What used to be the dining room is now the kitchen.

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Dining and Beyond

The kitchen flows into a spacious dining area, thanks to a wider doorway casing. Newly installed French doors lead to the outdoor patio, allowing ample natural light and enhancing the sense of openness on the main floor. The connection between these rooms creates a fantastic entertaining space!

What used to be the den is now the dining room which opens up to the kitchen.

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Remodeling While Preserving Elegance

A comfortable and private office that honors the house’s existing style by repurposing the mahogany wood from the old office. We used it to craft wainscoting, which was tricky due to the material’s soft nature. Achieving an exact match with the shellac finish required careful attention, resulting in a successful outcome!

What used to be the back corner of the kitchen is now the office.

A Focus on Functionality

Move the slider to see the transformation.

Clutter-Free Zone

At every point of entry, you’ll want to have a designated area for dropping bags, groceries, keys, or anything else you may be carrying in. Otherwise, the space in front of the door becomes the ‘drop zone,’ adding clutter and frustration. The addition of cabinetry and seating on the opposite end helps maintain a clean and tidy entryway.

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Bright & Inviting

Enter through the back entrance and be greeted by a welcoming hallway that sets the tone for the rest of the home. It is inviting and well-lit, creating a spacious feel. On the opposite wall from the cabinetry, you’ll find dedicated seating accompanied by hooks for convenience.

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A Fresh Approach

Previously, the toilet and sink were tightly arranged, making them difficult to use. By utilizing the square footage of the new office, we improved the layout. Now, a spacious vanity is positioned on one wall, and the toilet is centered on the other wall.

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Salvaged Bricks for a Unified Look

Salvaged bricks, along with closely matched new ones, were used to fill in gaps, ensuring they blended seamlessly with the existing ones. As part of the brick repair, we closed off a window. Additionally, the coursing of the brick above the window matches that of the other windows.

Team Credits


Project Manager:
Paul Gorton
Lead Carpenter:
Wayne Holmberg
Design: LNA Design
Photos:  Troy Theis

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TESTIMONIALS

Craftsmanship and Character

Working with Ben Quie & Sons on our remodeling project exceeded our expectations! We are completely satisfied with both their solid craftsmanship and character.

Cari and Mike Jaro