A Glass House on the Water
How architects and builders solved the challenge of crafting a structurally sound glass house.
When you hear “Swedish Country House,” a myriad of things might come to mind, ranging from calming Scandi minimalism to charming red Dala horses. For a young family imagining a new home in Minnesota, it was something entirely different.
He grew up in Sweden. She in Minnesota, a state known for its Scandinavian heritage. So, to them, the notion of “Swedish-inspired” ran deeper than a set aesthetic. It evoked a feeling of familiarity. Of comfort. Of home.
Translating sentiment into a blueprint.
When pulling up the home’s winding drive or when wandering its soft, sunny, neutral halls punctuated with bold colors, it all appears so effortless—but it required years of relentless collaboration to complete. During COVID.
“The most consistent element to successful projects is trust. It’s not budget,” said Bill Costello, CCO of Streeter Custom Builder, who built the home. “If you have trust, it always goes well.”
“We have a very steeply pitched roof, and it also slopes to help give it a little bit more of a soft feel,” Simmons said. “The steeper the pitch of the roof, the more the snow falls off and doesn’t sit and cause any kind of structural damage.”
With the architectural choices to the interior design decisions, the team walked a tightrope between modern and traditional. Ultimately, they arrived at an understated transitional style, which strikes a wholly unique tension through a mix of textures, hues, eras, and influences. It’s not predictable, yet it’s oh-so approachable. That’s why an antique clock fits so well alongside a plush, modern ottoman.
“Are we going Swedish enough?”
While the goal was to veer from the expected, the team arrived at a turning point midway through the project.
“My gut was that we’re not pushing this enough into Scandinavian,” Engler said. “I thought, ‘the architecture needs a little push. And the interiors need a little push.’ I feel like we’re kind of tiptoeing with it.”
So, they went back to the architectural renderings and mood boards to make a few shifts, including swapping the black window exteriors for Cadet Gray in the Marvin Ultimate product line.
Rolling Hills. Horse Barns. A Happy Family.
“One of the things that was really important for our client was to feel at one with nature,” Simmons said. “There’s a reason why somebody buys a lot of land among rolling horse fields.”
So, how did the family feel upon walking into the space for the first time? “They really felt like they were home,” Simmons said.
Watch the case study video now to take a closer look at this one-of-a-kind home.
Architect: Charlie Simmons, Founding Principal, Charlie & Co Design Ltd.
“Marvin stands out in the industry as not only giving us the tools to create these wonderful spaces, but also backs it up with the various aftermarket help.”
Interior Design: Linda Engler, Founder of Engler Studio Interior Design
“There’s not one way to do it, and Marvin is so adept at offering options and saying, you know, you dream it up and we’ll come up with approaches to make that happen and make it a reality.”
Builder: Bill Castello, Streeter Custom Builder
“Part of why we like using Marvin is that we can always count on them for a high-quality product. Clients love it and it looks great.”