Words by Tracy Nicholson
Photography by Travis Beauchene, Studio Three Beau
After living in their South Fargo home for 12 years, Tanja and Ryan Goellner decided it was time to weigh their options; either remodel their outdated floor plan or move on and build new. Eventually, the couple decided to keep their roots planted and let Showplace Cabinetry Design Center in Fargo recreate the heart of their home. Working with cabinetry designers Michaela Fischer and Aubrey Costello, and contractor Chris Denman, the Goellners settled into a modern farmhouse, with functional flow designed for family. Interested in touring the Goellner’s remodel for yourself? Make sure to attend the HBA’s Remodeled Home Tour on October
Investing in Improvement
Built in 1993, the Goellners loved their home within a well-established neighborhood, complete with mature trees and a convenient South Fargo location. What they didn’t love was their golden oak cabinetry and outdated layout, which included too many dark, underutilized and closed-in spaces. At the heart of their home, the family decided on a complete kitchen overhaul, mudroom/laundry room upgrade and remodel to the adjoining formal dining room which rarely got used.
“Instead of throwing money towards specials, we decided to update our home and treat it as an investment,” explained Tanja Goellner. “If we were to buy new, we’d have those specials, along with a lot of other expenses like new window treatments and landscaping; all of those things add up far beyond what the cost of the remodel was.”
Readying for a Remodel
When the Goellner’s started their search for a contractor and designer, they reached out to quite a few different sources, but it wasn’t until they met with South Fargo’s Showplace Cabinetry Design Center that they felt they had a plan they could happily live with.
“Showplace had the best design when I came in and they had a great price point. I had priced out a few different people and the one thing that stood out in my mind the most was that the contractor called me back the next day and showed up at my house. That really kind of sealed the deal for me,” laughed Goellner.
To get the project started, the Goellners had an initial planning meeting to collect each of the room’s measurements with Lead Designer, Michaela Fischer, and Showplace Cabinetry Manager, Aubrey Costello. “We asked for two different designs because my husband really wanted a second option,” said Goellner. “I thought they did a great job of getting us two floor plans to choose from. This design just seemed to make the most sense, based on the room’s flow, our limited space and door openings.”
At the Heart of the Home
For the kitchen’s overhaul, Tanja Goellner already had a couple of finishes in mind; charcoal grey, glass subway tile and white cabinetry for a more modern farmhouse design. Her golden oak was demoed, walls painted and her existing grey-toned flooring was replaced with a new vinyl plank in warmer tones. To brighten up the space, the ceiling was scraped and recessed can lights were added.
The Goellners kept their existing dishwasher and fridge, only opting to upgrade to a gas stove and drawer microwave in the island. With the help of Fischer, Goellner chose a stunning Carrara Graniti granite for the perimeter and island countertops, along with hidden features like a pull-out knife and utensil organizer, door spice rack, and custom cutlery divider. The original eat-in dining area was then converted to a convenient pantry. To avoid wasted space at the end of the cabinetry, Showplace Cabinetry created a coffee nook and drop zone with a double charging station, using a wrap-around design and decorative doors.
Providing the perfect complement to the crisp white and cooler grey tones, Fischer and Goellner chose a cherry wood island in Tawny stain to anchor the space. The island’s layout was specifically designed with an angle to direct the heavy kitchen traffic and create easy flow. With seating for six, the island became even more functional with a lower microwave, positioned in a convenient location so their two teenagers can warm up a snack and not obstruct the everyday flow.
The biggest change came with the removal of a wall that had once been the separation between the kitchen and dining. To make this happen, they included a wider beam at the top of the wall where the HVAC would then be relocated. The new accent wall was given a rustic shiplap finish with reclaimed wood sourced from Dakota Timber Company.
“Taking out that wall gave the space a lot more natural light,” said Costello. “I love how open and bright it is and how you can really see the whole space now. Scraping the ceiling texture and adding in the recessed can lights also made a huge difference.”
Designed to Dine
Removing the wall granted the Goellners newfound access to their once unused, formal dining room. This would be the perfect opportunity to convert the space into a more casual dining area with a closer connection to the kitchen.
In the new dining room, Fischer and Goellner chose Pure White, built-in cabinetry with seeded glass accents, the same charcoal grey subway tile and symmetrical wine storage. “I knew I wanted a buffet in the dining room because you can see how the two walls notch out on each side – so there’s this goofy space there; filling that was one of the goals,” said Goellner. “I was originally thinking just lower cabinets for this space, but I’m glad Michaela and Aubrey had suggested the upper cabinetry and wine storage, tying in the finishes from the kitchen.”
With two teenagers at home, the Goellner’s mudroom and laundry room combo had become a major family problem. Fischer’s challenge would be to create a more functional space with custom cabinetry, coat hooks and a bench in the mudroom area – then multifunctional storage between the entry and laundry. The space came with a linen and coat closet, but with piles of clothes residing near the door, it was not readily used.
“Where you see the laundry baskets now, that was where the closet was, but it didn’t provide the ease of use like the open basket system,” said Goellner. “There was a huge folding table that came out of the closet and took up half of the entry with cupboards above it.” Creating a more appealing space, Fischer tied in the kitchen cabinetry finishes within the new bench and mudroom system, giving the room a seamless flow from either space.
Ahead of Schedule
Based on past construction projects, the Goellners had assumed this project, including all three rooms, would take anywhere from six to eight weeks. To their surprise, the Showplace Cabinetry team and C&N Remodeling were able to complete all three ahead of schedule. “Everything happened pretty quickly, we were only out of our kitchen for about five weeks – that was it,” said Goellner. “Their process was amazing. Michaela and Aubrey were great to work with and the contractor would take extra time to make sure everything was getting done; he’d ask every morning and end of the day if I had any questions or concerns,” said Goellner. “It was really reassuring for us to know his schedule and what was going on throughout the entire process.”
Find the Finishes:
Kitchen Designer – Michaela Fischer, Showplace Cabinetry Design Center
Contractor – Chris Denman, C&N Remodeling
Cabinetry – Showplace Cabinetry
Flooring – Armstrong Rigid Core Farmhouse Plank, Carpet Garage
Lighting, sink & plumbing fixtures – Ferguson’s Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery
Reclaimed wood wall – Dakota Timber Company
Wall paint – March Winds, Sherwin Williams
Finishes from Showplace Cabinetry Design Center:
Countertops – Carrara Graniti granite
Island & laundry room wood top – Pendelton, Cherry Tawny
Perimeter bar & laundry – Pendleton Wide, Paint Grade Pure White
Hardware – Hafele in brushed nickel, Cosmopolitan Collection
Backsplash Tile – American Olean Color Appeal in Charcoal Gray 3×6
For more information, contact:
Showplace Cabinetry Design Center
Michaela Fischer, Design & Sales
2553 Kirsten Lane South, Suite 201, Fargo
To tour the Goellner’s Remodel:
HBA Remodeled Home Tour / October 6-7, 2018
Noon – 5:00 p.m. Saturday & Sunday