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Anna G. Larson, Published September 07 2013

Remodel gives old home in north Fargo a new look

FARGO - On the outside, Joyce Rude’s marigold-yellow house looks like any other in her north Fargo neighborhood. Inside, her home has a surprisingly streamlined and modern look. The cathedral ceiling that’s always impressed people looks even more dramatic since the home’s renovation late last year. “My mail lady stepped in and said, ‘Wow!’ She didn’t expect it to look like it looks. That’s the typical reaction,” Rude says.

After 48 years in the midcentury abode, Rude decided it was time for change when cracks in the basement started leading to other issues.

For its latest facelift, the yellow rambler was gutted down to its studs and concrete, and Rude was present for most of the remodel, watching her home transform nearly every day.

In five months, gone was the home’s cramped floor plan, sunken living room, abundance of orange-y fruitwood oak and dated carpet. In its place is a sleek, airy interior where form meets function.

“Our goal was to make it as livable as possible on one level,” says Mike Arnold of Accent Kitchen & Bath in Fargo. “It’s certainly a more open feeling because of eliminating one wall. It’s hard to believe one wall could make a difference.”

With the wall gone, Rude can cook dinner while watching her favorite TV show or, when she has guests, everyone can interact whether they’re sitting at the kitchen banquette or lounging on the couch.

Cozy spots

In her remodeled home, everything has its place.

Built-ins create ample storage and space for a desk, fireplace and TV. Shelves show off Rude’s collectables and family photos. The space-saving kitchen banquette creates a cozy spot for dining and gathering,

The coziness of the modern space can be attributed to its earthy colors and natural textures, says designer Sylvia Lunski of Design Direction in Fargo. Lunski helped Rude choose the window treatments and select other design elements like paint colors, lighting and flooring.

“The whole area feels kind of organic,” Lunski says, adding that Roman shades and stationary drapery panels further the organic feel and soften the dark wood tones and ceramic tile.

The drapery fabric with curved vertical lines and touches of blue, gray and tan pulls together the colors used throughout the space, Lunski says.

The wood-looking flooring adds rustic appeal to the otherwise modern space. The vinyl plank resembles hardwood flooring, but unlike real wood, it doesn’t expand and contract with the temperatures, Arnold explains.

“It’s very realistic but comes without the upkeep and maintenance,” he says.

Low maintenance

Rude says her remodeled home has minimal maintenance, adding with a laugh that the most time-consuming maintenance is dusting the dark wood.

In the kitchen, stainless steel appliances and shiny quartz counter tops continue the low-maintenance, maximum effect trend. The white cabinets and tiled espresso backsplash add to the kitchen’s current feel, while vintage-modern pendant lights polish off the room.

The same lights are used in the entry above the staircase, and Arnold and Rude agree that lighting was one of the most difficult elements to get just right.

In a remodel or any home design project, it’s important to do things right the first time, Arnold says.

“Do it right. Here, the woods are going to be timeless. The large light fixtures have a big impact,” he says.

Bathroom appeal

Another room with major appeal is the main-level bathroom. It was transformed into an open spa-like retreat with heated tile flooring, a deep soaker tub and tiled shower. The laundry room connects to the bathroom so Rude doesn’t have to travel up and down stairs, Arnold says.

The special touches that Rude chose for her remodel make it unique, and that’s common with home revamps, he says.

“People go further in their choices in what they select. It’s whatever they want,” Arnold says.

Rude is proud to show people her remodeled home, remarking that she likes to see how people react and “just loves it.” Arnold thinks her abode is impeccable, too.

“It’s really like a brand-new house in an established neighborhood,” he says. “Definitely, it’s perfect.”

If you go

• WHAT: Second Annual Home Builders Association of Fargo-Moorhead Remodeled Home Tour, featuring Rude’s home and others in the Fargo-Moorhead area.

• WHEN: Noon to 5 p.m. Sept. 14-15

• WHERE: Various locations. Check the Fall Parade of Homes magazine at Hornbacher’s locations for more information.

• INFO: The tour is free. More information is available online

at www.hbafm.com.


Readers can reach Forum reporter Anna G. Larson at (701) 241-5525