Minneapolis designer and realtor Katie Kurtz’s renovated kitchen space.
02 October 2020

Katie Kurtz’s Kitchen Renovation Creates a Seamless Connection to the Outdoors

Minneapolis realtor and designer Katie Kurtz fully transformed her kitchen space into a natural light-filled dream.

Katie Kurtz’s dream kitchen was two years in the making. The main goals of the renovation were to create unobstructed views to the outdoors and an abundance of natural light, which required some reconfiguring based on the original design. Now that the family has had a chance to live in their beautiful new space, we caught up with them to find out how they’re enjoying it.

One of the major obstacles of redesigning the space for better views was removing a large post connecting the kitchen island to the ceiling.

“The [post] was off center and obstructing the view of the backyard while cooking,” Kurtz said.

The family chose to reconfigure the placement of the kitchen island to remove the post and create a more open-concept space. But removing the post was no easy feat—it supported all the weight of the floor above and the roof, meaning a 1,500-pound steel beam had to be installed to support the design change. In the end, the overhaul was well worth it for the abundance of natural light and outdoor view it brings to this space.

“The natural light also allowed us to get a super bright kitchen without doing all white cabinets,” Kurtz said. “We chose a medium-stained oak mixed with white countertops and backsplash. The oak hides more dirt and fingerprints from our little one!”

The second obstacle was the two sets of patio doors separated by two casement windows. The windows felt awkward and interrupted the continuous flow of glass across the wall. These were replaced with Marvin Elevate Swinging French Doors to truly open the space to the outdoors and achieve those coveted unobstructed views.

“I had a vision of the patio door wall being wall-to-wall windows so the view of the backwoods felt like it was part of the room even in the winter,” Kurtz said. “Plus, the old wood doors were rotten, warped, and leaked a ton of cold air. The right side of each door was also non-functional so I wanted the new doors to be able to open up completely on nice days!”

The durability and low-maintenance qualities of Marvin Elevate fiberglass products make them an easy choice for a busy family. Even in the most extreme weather in Minnesota, the products maintain shape and performance.

It was important to renovate this space because the family spends most of their time there. They gather and cook at the island, relax at a built-in bench, and play games at the table. Now that the renovation is complete, they’ve doubled their space for much of the year and maximized the natural light. Plus, the Kurtz’s young daughter and bulldog can safely wander from the kitchen out to deck and still be seen.

“The amount of natural light in this space is crazy,” Kurtz said. “It’s a perfect place for live plants and our dog to nap in the sunshine during the winter.”

You can read more about Katie Kurtz’s renovation journey on her blog, Adorned Homes.

Photos by Chelsie Lopez Production