Design & Living Magazine February 2018

Page 1




A Little Bit


We did end up putting a few things in our storage unit, but that's okay because most people don't become minimalists overnight. Even the men and women that I had the pleasure of meeting this month have taken some time to get to where they are now. There is no recipe for becoming a minimalist, but if there was, I'm pretty sure it would sound like this quote from Danyel Moe, "If it does not bring joy, function or make our lives better, then why do we own it?" It might be hard to get on board, but less really is the new more. If you think about it, investing in fewer pieces allows you to unapologetically splurge on the things that matter most to you. For some, that might


DESIGN & LIVING | F E B R U A R Y 2 01 8

PHOTO BY Hillary Ehlen


hen I first started working at Design & Living Magazine, I lived on the second floor of a 115-year-old house that I absolutely loved. It had so many nooks and crannies and coat closets where I could hide all of my clutter. However, I recently downsized to a 600-square-foot apartment in Downtown Fargo that I share with my significant other and our two cats, Match and Rose. In order to make everything fit into our new space, both he and I had to pare down our possessions.

be local art or even experiences. Whatever it means for you, I hope that reading this issue will inspire you to simplify or declutter your own daily routine. Cheers to becoming a little bit more minimalist!

Becca Opp Editor Your feedback is always welcome! If there is anything you'd like to share with us, please reach out to

DESIGN & LIVING TEAM At Design & Living, our goal is to create a publication that is just as much fun to read as it is to view. Here are the writers, designers, photographers and contributors who so affably use their time and talents to tell a story and give our pages purpose.




Ehlen is an editorial photographer for Spotlight Media and owner of Hillary Ehlen Photography. She is a native of Fargo and attended North Dakota State University for visual arts with an emphasis in photography.

Hoorelbeke is a former professional baseball player turned photographer. He is the owner of J.Alan Paul Photography in Fargo, N.D. and our veteran, lead editorial photographer for Spotlight Media. Hoorelbeke specializes in editorial, commercial, architectural and landscape photography.

Moe is a Fargo-native and Concordia College graduate. She studied marketing and art and one year ago, began her career as a Marketing Content Specialist at the Concordia College Communications and Marketing Department. She loves to travel, create art, make good vegan food and spend time with her husband, Gavin Moe.



Johnson has been with the HBA of F-M for 25 years, serving as its executive officer over the past 19 years.

Burgum is an entrepreneur and community builder who is committed to making Fargo one of the greatest cities on earth. He is currently serving as President of the Hawthorne Neighborhood Association.








42 Minimalism

Minimalism is not about getting rid of the things you love; it's about loving the things you own. This month, we met with Fargo minimalists to see how they have made the most of living with less.

Photo by Hillary Ehlen Danyel & Gavin Moe Apartment

Behind Closed 33 Ecce Doors Part II: The Shafer Home

Home 84 AnwithAffordable High-End

Ecce Behind Closed Doors is a series demonstrates how anyone can purchase local art, regardless of space and budget. This month, Ellen and Rod Shafer share the non-period specific artwork on display in their historic home, including a few mustsee, high-impact pieces. Join us as we discuss the importance of choosing art with personal meaning over art that was massproduced.


Small business Urban Prairie Homes has been building houses in the FM area for the past five years. If you aren't familiar with them, it might be because you haven't been looking in the right price range. Now, you can take a tour of their three-story model with farmhouse elements that will also be on the 2018 Spring Parade of Homes.

Silobration 81 Red Preview

'There are limited things to do in Fargo during the winter.' At least, that is the sentiment that Bobbi Jo and Todd Cody are trying to disprove. This March, they will be hosting a new conference, Red Silobration Retreat. To learn more, we met with Bobbi Jo to discuss the details of the upcoming event.



Danyel & Gavin Moe Apartment

Get ready to be inspired by local DIYers. Also in this issue, find out how to decide when it is time to contact a professional and meet the new faces of our local renovation industry.

72 Paring Down

Imagine trying to fit the contents of a four-bedroom house into a one-bedroom apartment. We sat down withMS. Simplicity, who recently had to pare down her own belongings to avoid a situation like the one you just pictured. While visiting, she shared her tips for "letting go."

For more exclusive, original content,

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FEBRUARY 2018 Design & Living Magazine is a free publication distributed 12 times a year. Our mission is to showcase all that the Red River Valley has to offer in terms of interior design, architecture and landscaping, profiling the people that make these possible. We also strive to provide a quality and fun reading experience and improve the way of life in our community. The publication is mailed to homes across the US and has stand distribution throughout North Dakota and Minnesota.

Publisher Mike Dragosavich

CREATIVE Editorial Director Andrew Jason

Editor Becca Opp

Designers Sarah Geiger, Matt Anderson Photographers J. Alan Paul Photography, Hillary Ehlen, HBA, HNA, Ecce Gallery, Dusty Bias, Chris Hawley Architects, Kayla CotĂŠ-van Rensburg, Urban Prairie Homes, The Red Silo Contributors Becca Opp, HBA, HNA, Danyel Moe Andrew Jason, Kara Jeffers Social Media Becca Opp, Samantha Stark Web Team Samantha Stark, Huong Tran

ADVERTISING Sales Manager Layne Hanson

Senior Sales Executive Ryan Courneya

Sales Executives Paul Hoefer

Scott Rorvig

Dan Helm

Chris Cates

Client Relations Manager Jenny Johnson Sales Administrative Assistant Pam Mjoness Business Operations Assistant Larissa Kunde

DISTRIBUTION Distribution & Circulation Manager Nick Hackl

Design & Living Magazine is published by Spotlight Media, LLC. Copyright 2018 Design & Living Magazine & All rights reserved. No parts of this periodical may be reproduced or distributed without written permission of Design & Living Magazine and Spotlight Media, LLC is not responsible for, and expressly disclaims all liability for, damages of any kind arising out of use, reference to, or reliance on such information. Spotlight Media, LLC accepts no liability for the accuracy of statements made by the advertisers.

ADVERTISING: 701-478-SPOT (7768) Send change of address information and other correspondence to: Spotlight Media, LLC 15 Broadway N. Suite 500, Fargo, ND 58102 or

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TAKE A LOOK AT Spotlight Media's Other Magazines

When David Batcheller took over for his father, Barry, as Appareo's president and CEO last fall, it represented a changing of the guard at the electronicsand-software company not just in name but in philosophy. In this installation of "CEO Conversations," Fargo INC! sat down with both Batchellers to talk about the company's new business model, recruiting and economic development, growth advice, and what it's been like for father and son to work alongside one another for the past 15 years.

The Bison football dynasty continues! The Commemorative Championship Edition of Bison Illustrated will have everything Bison fans need to relive a magical 2017 season of NDSU football. Chris Klieman and company climbed to the top of the FCS mountain again, and now it's your turn to complete you championship collection with the sixth championship installment of the magazine.

Block 9 has been discussed for years. Once complete with 18 stories, it will be Fargo's tallest building. From a surface parking lot to multi-purpose use, it'll include office space, retail, residential condos, an attached parking garage and a hotel, in addition to a new public plaza. Learn more about this project, set to break ground later this year.


Photos by Hillary Ehlen and J. Alan Paul Photography


Design & Living Magazine

Sarah Huckle Social Media Coordinator North Dakota Interior Designers

Melissa Rademacher President & CEO Downtown Community Partnership

Rich Lahren Hardscape Committee Member, Past Board Member & Past President North Dakota Nursery, Greenhouse & Landscape Association

Chris Hawley Licensed Architect/Member American Institute of Architects

Editorial Advisory Board We at Design & Living Magazine want to make sure that our content is accurate, unbiased and reflects the local home industry. That is why we meet with our Editorial Advisory Board, which is made up of representatives from local, statewide and national organizations. Each month, we listen to their feedback and discuss innovations in local art, architecture, home decor, interior design and landscaping.

Krista Mund Executive Vice President Home Builders Association of Fargo-Moorhead

Dayna Del Val President & CEO The Arts Partnership 19


By Bryce Johnson Chief Executive Officer

Summer Dreams at the Home & Garden Show

For nearly 60 years, the HBA of F-M has been organizing this premiere show that has something for everyone. Most importantly, it has local home building, home buying and home remodeling experts under one roof. You can find all the details at or by downloading our mobile app, but here are four highlights you won't want to forget:


Get crafty with wood and concrete. We have five different workshops, but these two topics appeal to those who like to work with their hands. Dakota Timber Company will discuss reclaimed wood and how it can bring character to your home and Beyond Concrete will show you how to make sturdy, rectangular concrete planters. The other three workshops are on home design by Accent Kitchen & Bath, home buying by Gate City


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ust as certainly as winter will soon give way to springtime, February will conclude with the Red River Valley Home & Garden Show Feb. 23-25 at the Fargodome. Not only can you get out, stretch your legs and dream about summer, you can treat your kids to a treasure hunt, learn something at our workshops or sample the goodness of Fargo Brewing Company beers! Bank and home brewing by Prairie Homebrewing Companions.


Not all treasure is silver and gold, matey! Children age 12 and under will love our Kids' Treasure Hunt, back for its third year. Pick up a map and special drawstring backpack for your kids to carry all their finds scattered amongst booths at the show. Just a few examples of items they can pick up include a tape measure, water bottle, hard hat, hacky sack and fidget spinner.


Sample craft beer from Fargo Brewing Company at the Home Builders Care of F-M Foundation Beer Walk, sponsored by BlackRidgeBANK. During the last two hours of the show Friday and Saturday, pay just $5 to sample five beers or $8 to sample ten beers.


Regular admission to the show is $10, but there are several ways to save. Please note that these offers cannot be combined. • Advance tickets for just $6 are available at the Fargodome and at Feb. 1 - 22. • $2-off coupons will be available in the show guides and at starting Feb. 19. • A two-for-one admission special will be all day Sunday. If you are interested in exhibiting, there are limited booths available. Contact Allison Weckman at 701-232-5846, See you at the show!

Bryce Johnson has been with the HBA of F-M for 25 years, serving as its executive officer over the past 19 years.

The Home Builders Association of FargoMoorhead promotes an environment in which members and their businesses can prosper.

For more information, contact: HBAFargoMoorhead Blog: homebuildersassociation.

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©2018 Ferguson Enterprises, Inc. 0118 716173 ©2018 Ferguson Enterprises, 716173 ©2018 Ferguson Enterprises, Inc.Inc. 01180118 716173



Built fOr The Historic Hawthorne Home Series is an installment in Design & Living Magazine that will give you a glimpse into some incredible Hawthorne Neighborhood restorations and will inform you about the historic significance of these well-loved homes. If you've ever taken a walk down 8th Street South, you have probably passed this craftsman style home with a wrap-around, front porch. Current owners, Keith and Rachel Leier, used the original abstract, or a compilation of legal documents, to learn more about its interesting history. RESEARCH BY Simone Wai PHOTOS BY Hillary Ehlen and the NDSU archives


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Year Built 1890 Architectural Style Traditional Craftsman with Queen Anne elements Square Feet 2,255 Owners Keith and Rachel Leier

The Leier Family


Joe Burgum HNA President

The Hawthorne Neighborhood Association brings together neighbors and business owners to create a strong and vibrant community. Join them for neighborhood socials, quarterly meetings and their biennial Historic Home Tour.

This 1890 home was originally built and owned by a carpenter, Joseph Trumble. Today, you can still see the extra care and attention to detail that he must have invested into the property. The current owners, Keith and Rachel Leier, like to joke that the residence was 'built for boys' because it once housed the original owner's six sons and is now home to their three young boys. Self-proclaimed old-house-people, the Leiers love that their home has its own identity. While staying true to the

home's original design, they updated the kitchen and upstairs bath and made a few cosmetic changes including painting and refinishing the floors. However, they have found the 1890 layout of the home to be quite modern. The Leiers truly appreciate the deep roots that their home has within this community. “My grandpa immigrated to America and lived in a sod house in 1908. By then, this house had been standing for nearly 20 years,” said Keith Leier.

This 1917 photo was sourced from Digital Horizons and the NDSU archives. “916 - 8 St. S. #5414, 8 R, Modern fireplace, Garage, $700" - Handwritten on front of print.

The Historic Hawthorne Neighborhood is part of Fargo’s original townsite and contains a dynamic mix of housing types that radiate down from the downtown commercial area and Island Park. The Red River makes up the eastern border while historic 8th Street, known for its street lighting, commerce, homes and trees, runs north and south through the center. This neighborhood is at the core of the National Register Southside Historic District and was named after Hawthorne Elementary School, located on 6th Street and 8th Avenue South.

Learn more and become a member at



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A Contemporary Cottage Lower Level Transformation


fter buying a new home, you always want to decorate it and make it your own. Years later, you may find yourself yearning for a change, but that doesn't mean it's time to move. Cosmetic updates can completely change the way you feel about a space. For example, Traci Pantzke of South Fargo hired local interior decorator Trever Hill to take her lower level from cabin-themed to contemporary cottage dream. We spoke with this dĂŠcor guru to discover how he achieved this luxurious transformation. BY Becca Opp | PHOTOS BY Hillary Ehlen





New flooring can make you feel like you're in a different space.

Pantzke's pup, Lucy, showed us the space. 26

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A Project with Many Levels Hill was already familiar with Pantzke's style because she hired him to redecorate the main level of her home. Through this process, Hill learned that her taste is contemporary, which was surprising because her style used to be much more rustic. After he updated the main level, Pantzke asked Hill to refresh the lower level as well. "She loved the lodge feel but knew it was outdated and wanted something fresh. "She didn't want it to feel like a basement anymore," Hill explained.

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"She didn't want it to feel like a basement anymore." Trever Hill

A Balancing Act For the lower level, Hill and Pantzke were going for a cozy cottage look. However, Hill did not want it to feel too different from the main level. "It was a balancing act of finding just the right amount of contemporary mixed with the right amount of country cottage," Hill said.

Get the Look Wall Art - SCHEELS Home & Hardware

TREVER'S CONTEMPORARY COTTAGE TIP Shop at a variety of stores to find furniture and accessories that speak to you.



A Coat of Paint First, they had new carpet installed, then had the knotty pine wood paneling painted white to create a faux-shiplap effect. Hill also had the honey oak cabinets painted a dark grey. He then had the hunter green countertop replaced with a new countertop from Northern Stone. Hill also brought the electronics down into the cabinetry behind a glass panel, which is functional because Pantzke can use a remote control through the glass. To create symmetry, he added a glass panel to the other side as well. The only thing that they kept original was the fieldstone fireplace because it would look right at home in any cottage. With the furniture selections, Hill wanted to make sure that they would transition well into any space. "Any of these could be transplanted into a really contemporary home or a country cottage," he said. 30

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Paint outdated wood paneling and cabinets for a cottage/ farmhouse refresh.

Get the Look Pillows - McNeal & Friends Ottoman - Unclaimed Freight Lamp - HomeGoods

For more information, contact: Trever Hill 701-715-3077


DESIGN & LIVING | F E B R U A R Y 2 01 8





The Shafer Home Ecce Behind Closed Doors is a series that demonstrates how anyone can purchase local art, regardless of space and budget. This month, we met Ellen and Rod Shafer. Because their home sits on Historic 8th Street, the Shafer family is used to opening up their doors for tours. However, this time they weren't answering questions about the period-appropriate wallpaper. Instead, the Shafers showed us local and regional artwork that they've collected over the years.

BY Becca Opp PHOTOGRAPHY BY Hillary Ehlen


ART DESIGN&LIVING The Shafers commissioned Walter Piehl to paint this original piece.

The Shafers Married couple Ellen and Rod Shafer purchased their 1905 home in 2002, where they currently live with their two sons Ethan and Angus. Ellen Shafer is originally from Kindred, North Dakota, while her husband is from Roseglen, North Dakota. We were introduced to the Shafers through Mark Weiler, director of Ecce Gallery. Their Artwork The Shafers' collection includes everything from an original Walter Piehl to folk art. However, they hesitate to identify as collectors because they don't want to give the impression that you have to be an expert to own original artwork. When selecting a new piece, the Shafers' only criteria is that they must like it. "Art doesn't have to be period specific to your home. Your art should be anything that inspires you," Ellen Shafer explained. "Your art doesn't have to match your sofa," Rod Shafer added.

"A photograph is a literal representation of where you were, but your artwork gives a sense of what emotions you were going through at the time." - Ellen Shafer

Marathon Day by Dan Jones The Shafers have a portrait of their home on one of their favorite days in Fargo painted by their neighbor, local artist Dan Jones.


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DESIGN&LIVING ART "The Bull" by Paul Berg Beneath their Walter Piehl painting, the Shafers have a barbed-wire sculpture handmade by Ellen Shafer's father, Paul Berg, who is a local folk artist.

On the mantle, the Shafers display blown glass sculptures by Jon Offutt that they have purchased at annual FMVA studio crawls.

This corner features various works by Randy Rick, Steve Knutson, Darcy Simonson, and John Borge. The Shafers have acquired a number of pieces, including the piece by Steve Knutson through the Community Sponsored Art (CSA) program, which is organized by The Arts Partnership.


ART DESIGN&LIVING The dining room features a large winter scene by Dan Jones (left), a piece by an unknown artist (top right), and "The Commuters" by Deborah Mae Broad (bottom right).

In the piano room, the Shafers have a print by Eric Johnson (left), a piece by Deane Colin Fay (topright), a photo by Terry Gydesen (bottom-right) and a sculpture by Guillermo Guardia. Ellen Shafer said that she is fond of the sculpture because it reminds her of her two sons.

Similar, but Different Taste Ellen and Rod Shafer have similar taste when it comes to art. In fact, they once unknowingly bid against each other at an auction. However, Ellen Shafer is drawn toward pure abstract, while Rod Shafer sometimes prefers realism. "Our paths cross, but I gained a lot of my appreciation for art from traveling and going to museums, while Ellen's was really cultivated out of the local art experience," Rod explained. This corner of the dining room includes a CSA collaboration by Kent Kapplinger and Eric Johnson (center bottom) as well as two fine art photographs by unknown artists.


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In the kitchen, the Shafers feature a metal piece by Jeff Johnson.

"Art collection locally is how we, as a community, will grow. You can live anywhere, but if you truly want to have a sense of community, your art and culture lets you know who you are, gives you a sense of place, gives you an identity and that's the same thing that art will do in your house." - Ellen Shafer

Behind their stovetop, the Shafers commissioned a backsplash featuring pounded tin by Elizabeth Shwankl and tile from Brad Bachmeier.



Stairway Undeniably the most high-impact piece in the Shafer's collection is a cardboard gun suspended above their staircase. This senior project by former NDSU art student, Kelly Cantrell, was originally displayed at the Plains Art Museum. Though Cantrell herself has no stance on the issue, she wanted her sculpture to be a platform for the community to start having conversations about gun control. When the exhibition closed, Cantrell had planned to dispose of the large sculpture. "She called and said, 'I'm moving to Omaha, and I'm going to burn it unless you want it,'" Ellen Shafer explained. The Shafers did not want to see the sculpture burn and happened to have the perfect space for it, so they came to an agreement with the artist. Before they had it installed in their house though, they had to make sure that its hanging apparatus would be secure. "It hung out in the garage all summer," Ellen Shafer said. After the cardboard gun sculpture passed this test, it took two people on a ladder to hang it in the stairwell. "I wouldn't be here because I didn't want to see them go through the glass or the railing," Rod Shafer joked.

Also above the staircase, the Shafers have pieces by various artists including Sheila Reenders, Julia Suits and Marjorie Schlossman. They even have a few framed posters from Rod Shafer's travels. "I went to museums and got posters, but I didn't buy a real piece until after we got married," Rod Shafer explained.


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Next to the gun sculpture, the Shafers decided to hang a photograph by Yvonne Dennault. "Because of the heaviness of the piece, Rod had the great idea to hang Sabrina next to it to add some levity," Ellen Shafer said.

While attending their wedding, Dan Jones sketched the couple's wedding cake on a piece of scrap paper, which they now have framed.


DESIGN&LIVING ART In the master suite, the Shafers have four pieces by Eric Johnson that show his evolution as an artist.

Tips from Ellen and Rod To this family, their art collection is a representation of their life. By sharing their story, the Shafers want to communicate that you don't have to be an expert to purchase local art. You just have to know what you like and what your budget is. "It all comes down to what you like," Ellen Shafer said. "Buy what you like. Then you'll always be happy with your investment," Rod Shafer added.

Ellen Shafer received this Garfield piggy bank at her bridal shower from her coworkers at the Plains Art Museum where she worked at the time. For many years, the Shafers used it to collect change, which they would then put toward a piece of art. "Rod and I decided that we would never keep change. The change would go in there and then we would put it toward a piece of art. When we first got married and money was tight, we stayed true to that for years. Now we buy it when we see it," Ellen Shafer explained.

In the master bath, the Shafers commissioned Ann Leclerc and Sheila Sornsin to create a mosaic installation around the standing shower.

For more information, contact: Ecce Gallery 64 4 Street North, Suite 100 701-361-7067 41


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MINIMALISM Less is more. Without a doubt, you have probably heard this statement at some point in your life. However, minimalism is not about getting rid of the things you love; it's about loving the things you own. This month, we met with Fargo minimalists to see how they have made the most of living with less. Now, let us take you on a tour of their intentionally uncluttered spaces with immense style.


Danyel and Gavin Moe

LESS IS 'MOE' My name is Danyel Moe. I am a Fargo-native and 2017 Concordia College graduate. I studied Marketing and Art and began my career as a Marketing Content Specialist at the Concordia College Communications and Marketing Department one year ago. This past June, I got married to my college sweet-heart, Gavin Moe (we met in art class). We love to travel, create art, make good vegan food and hang out at home with our kitten, Nori Moe.


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By Danyel Moe Photos by Hillary Ehlen

OU R STYLE Our style is timeless, simple and clean, but we like adding earthy elements through plants and warm tones. I love the juxtaposition of modern shapes with vintage colors, textures and patterns. I think most would say that our style is mid-century modern. Though midmod is trendy at the moment, I think it will carry into our future styles quite nicely.

Nori kindly shares her apartment with Gavin and I. (No really, she has quickly claimed it as her kingdom). We have lived in the newly renovated Woodrow Apartments for about six months.

Sofa, ottoman & Chairs - Scan Design Rug - Target Floor Lamp - Target TV Stand - Thrifted Foot Stool - Thrifted Table - Target Chair - Amazon


HOW I BE C A ME A MIN IMA L IST I did not realize until I started dating Gavin that all of the junk I owned made me feel stressed and overwhelmed. He kindly challenged my belongings and purchases, and I found a new freedom in owning less and only keeping items I truly love and that bring me joy. Now, I’m the one wanting to get rid of more and more. He’s a good influence, to say the least.


The majority of the things in our home are essential and have a direct purpose or function. That being said, art, plants and flowers bring us too much joy to consider living without them. Minimalist isn’t about just owning less. It isn’t a number of items, a certain color scheme or amount of square feet. There are no rules. It is simply stepping back and saying, “What do I love, what do I value and what do I need?”

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HOW W E PA R E D D OW N O UR P O SS E SS IO N S After spending the past two years slowly refining our belongings, we look back and ask ourselves, ‘Which objects have we gotten rid of that we wish we hadn’t?’ We find it hard to name anything. This reassures us that objects are not that important. If it does not bring joy, function or make our lives better, then why do we own it? Also, if a possession has sentimental value, a photo can bring back that cherished memory just as easily as the actual object.


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W HERE W E SHOP I would say about a fourth of our pieces are thrifted from areas around town such as Saver’s, The Arc, Now and Then Shoppe (my personal favorite), Reed and Taylor Antiques, The Boy’s Ranch, Goodwill or from my parents’ basement. Our investment pieces such as our bed-frame and living room set that we know we will have for a lifetime are from Scan Design in Fargo and West Elm.

HOW I T H R IF T Don’t be intimated! Thrifting is a fun and creative hobby for me now. My thrifted pieces have quickly become my favorite items in our apartment. They add an unexpected flair to our otherwise simplistic home. I like to make mood boards of rooms, trends and designs I

love and then identify the reoccurring shapes, styles, textures and color schemes. When I go out to the thrift stores, I keep those in mind as I rummage through. If a vintage piece doesn’t fit those qualifications, it’s a no-go. When I find a piece that ticks all the marks, I take it home and try it out.

Plant Stand - Now & Then Shoppe


OU R CO LO RS Gavin and I definitely appreciate neutrals, because they are timeless. My favorite color is burnt orange and his is forest green. We have added hints of those colors throughout to add comfort and warmth to the otherwise gray, brown and white palette.


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FO R N O R I We bought Nori a collection of plush vegetable toys that we call “Nori’s Garden." To hide away the toys when the day is done, we put them in a wicker basket. We never thought we would own a cat castle, but once we realized how active and playful Nori was, we began to search the internet for something that fit our style. We found a modern, geometric wooden cat castle that we love, and most importantly, Nori loves too.

Cat Castle - Vesper Cat Furniture

OU R A PPROACH TO ART We love Scandinavian inspired ceramics, woodgrain, and the occasional wild piece, such as one of my own abstract paintings, a Laura Berger feminist print or a Group Partner face pot. It’s what makes us happy and somehow, it all ends up going together (at least we would like to think so). We have a lot of our own art throughout the space, though we received a beautiful Charles Beck piece called “Branches” as a wedding gift from Gavin’s parents. It is very special to us.


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HOW W E DEA L W I T H LI VI NG I N A SMA LL SPACE Our best apartment “hack” is that Gavin’s gaming station is actually built into our closet. It maximizes our space and allows us to close away all of the cords and tech that come with being a committed gamer. Before we started designing our space, we thought a lot about what we like to do with our time and how our space can accommodate that. Then, we proceeded to decorate and arrange according to our everyday lives. To learn more about the Moes' lifestyle, favorite products and travels, you can follow Danyel Moe on Instagram at @ danyelmoe.

A week after this photoshoot, Nori Moe passed away unexpectedly in spay surgery. This was her home. She is so loved and so missed. Rest peacefully, Nori.


A DUTCHMINIMALIST APARTMENT IN DOWNTOWN FARGO You may know Kayla Cotévan Rensburg and Piet van Rensburg from their local lifestyle brand, Dak & Co. Now you can peek inside of their Dutch-minimalist-style apartment in Downtown Fargo. After searching for a place with lots of natural light, they found and helped put the finishing touches on this space.


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By Becca Opp Photos by Jesse Hoorelbeke and Kayla Coté-van Rensburg

CONVI NCI NG PI ET Last spring, this couple was ready to sign the lease on a different apartment. Yet, they were not in love with its north-facing windows and lack of natural light. "In the winters, I struggle with that," CotĂŠ-van Rensburg said. She was also having trouble contacting the leasing agent. CotĂŠvan-Rensburg then remembered that her husband had given her the contact information for an apartment south of Main, so she called to set up a showing. "If I have a feeling that something is not quite right, I like to explore other options to see if something else was meant to be," she explained.



Even though it was unfinished, CotĂŠ-van Rensburg immediately fell in love with the potential of the space. However, "Convincing Piet was something different," she laughed. "I hated the idea because nothing was set up and ready," van-Rensburg said. It was true. The unit did not have any flooring and was missing a wall, but van Rensburg trusted her vision. "I trusted my wife's designer eye," he said.

D I N I N G AR EA Dutch-minimalism is characterized by clean, simple lines and light wood finishes.


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"I trusted my wife's designer eye." - Piet van Rensburg

Glassware - The White House Co. Floral Arrangement - Erika with a K Designs Chair - Salvaged

Throughout their apartment, Coté-van Rensburg and van Rensburg showcase local art. For example, the ceramic pieces on their bar cart were made by Spencer R. Johannes who they met through APT, a Creative Incubator.

Wood Harvested from the Coté family farm.

After getting to know the building owner, Joel Jagger, van Rensburg helped complete the finishing work for the apartment. Then, one of the first projects that Coté-van Rensburg and van Rensburg tackled was to build a dining table out of reclaimed wood from her family farm to help them remember her father after his passing. The end result was a Dutchminimalist-inspired design that represents van-Rensburg's heritage as well.

Coté-van Rensburg took this photo of her husband working with reclaimed wood from her parents' farm.


Sofa - West Elm/HomeGoods Wall Art - Dak & Co.


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As you can see, Cotevan Rensburg and van Rensburg are selective about what they bring into their space. Before they buy a piece of furniture, van Rensburg tries to find out if he can make it himself. Meanwhile, Kayla is excellent at finding quality thrifted items. The couple also likes to support local artists and businesses. For example, they have glass gourds from Jon Offutt on display in their living area.

Because their apartment does not come with a garage, van Rensburg built this Dutchminimalist-inspired media console in a borrowed workshop.




OFFICE AR EA Van Rensburg transformed his wife's old art desk into a home-office worthy of a small-business owner and entrepreneur. On the wall are photos from van Rensburg's home country, South Africa.

KI TCHEN Even though it needed a lot of work, CotĂŠ-van Rensburg and van Rensburg have finally settled into their SOMA space. "We thank God every day for the skills he's given us to take on any challenge that comes our way and turn it into something beautiful," van Rensburg said. Each day, they enjoy each other's company and appreciate the natural light that streams in through the large windows of their apartment. Next, the couple looks forward to entertaining friends and family in their new place. 61

A MODERN, MINIMALIST LAKE DWELLING It's still a little too early to go to the beach, but this minimalist dwelling on Lake Pickerel, S.D. will have you longing for warmer weather. Conceptualized with three generations in mind by Jackson Strom of Chris Hawley Architects, this 4,720-square-foot lake home does not have any unnecessary bells or whistles, and that is what makes it stand out. We spoke with Strom to find out how they infused minimalism into this grandscale design. 62

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T HE PROJECT The homeowners had spent more than 20 years in their previous lake home, but they wanted to be able to comfortably accommodate their grown children, who are now starting families of their own. During a boat ride, they noticed a recently-finished cabin on the same lake and were inspired by its modern exterior and large masses of glass. They wanted to build a new lake home that would bring in as much natural light as possible, as well as views of the lake. It was then that the couple reached out to Strom. "Through the grapevine, they learned I was the designer and being that they knew me from their home community, Aberdeen, S.D., they reached out," Strom said. He began working with Quest Construction in October 2015 and, together, they completed the project in May 2016.

By Becca Opp Photos by Dusty Bias provided by Chris Hawley Architects



301 Center Street, West Fargo, ND 58078

Tel: 701.532.3212 Fax: 701.532.3213

EXT ERI OR The structure of this home consists of three main forms, each with its own color and material. The exterior features Dryvit in burnt orange, vertical metal panels in black and horizontal lap siding in dark grey, which create contrast for visual interest. Even the house number is visually appealing, yet functional. "The house number is cut into a metal panel to creatively incorporate a necessary item into a shield placed over the window well railing with the ladder hidden behind," Strom said.


Appliances - Lang’s TV & appliance

KI TC H E N & D IN IN G ROO M This home features a consistent palette of materials, selections and colors throughout. Strom explained, "To me, minimalism is shaking a design until all the frosting falls off and polishing what remains." For example, all of the hardware and lighting is black. Even the accent cabinetry in the kitchen matches the exterior siding and screen porch. Otherwise, the cabinetry is the same throughout. Likewise, Strom only made one tile selection, which he used in two different backsplash locations. He also used clear cedar tongue and groove in the covered entry soffit, great room ceiling and screen porch ceiling. In the kitchen, an enormous window with a downdraft hood eliminates all upper cabinetry at the kitchen allows natural light to flow into the space.


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"To me, minimalism is shaking a design until all the frosting falls off and polishing what remains." - Jackson Strom


STA IR W AY This stair screen wall starts at the basement floor and continuously extends up through all three levels. "Due to the difficulty of the screen wall construction, the builder joked that they didn’t ever want to build another one, but they agreed it was worth the effort," Strom said.


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Because the homeowners approached Strom a year prior to construction, it gave him plenty of time to prepare drawings and specs. It also allowed him to work hand-in-hand with the construction manager throughout the build. Not only were these homeowners thinking ahead, they were also open-minded when it came to the design. "They gave us their list of wants and needs, sat back and allowed us to help select everything from countertops to vent covers," Strom said.


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Due to the requests of a neighbor, the property lines were narrowed just one week prior to construction. This ultimately resulted in moving the cabin closer to the lake and allowed Strom to incorporate a walk-out basement into his design.

For more information, contact: Chris Hawley Architects 2534 University Drive S. #3, Fargo 701-478-7600


Meet Melissa Schmalenberger



magine trying to fit the contents of a four-bedroom house into a one-bedroom apartment. At best, the result would be a cluttered space with little room left to live around. We sat down with local organizer MS. Simplicity, who recently had to pare down her own belongings to avoid a situation like the one you just pictured. While visiting, she explained why we tend to hold on to our possessions and shared her tips for "letting go." BY Becca Opp PHOTOS BY Hillary Ehlen, Melissa Schmalenberger and Chris Larson Photography


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Melissa Schmalenberger, also known as MS. Simplicity, is a former attorney turned professional organizer. Up until recently, she and her husband, Ray Ridl, lived in Fargo. Unfortunately, Ridl's job was eliminated in August 2017, which coincided with their youngest son leaving for college. Schmalenberger explained, "I always wanted to live in Seattle, and he wanted our children to be raised in Fargo. His job was eliminated nine days before our youngest son left for college. We joke that I got to pick where we move, and he got to pick when we move." Ridl then took a job with Microsoft that required the new empty-nesters to move to Seattle.

MS. Simplicity on the Move

TIPS FOR Paring Down

1. Start with things that are broken that have no purpose. 2. When bringing something into your home, be conscious of how you are going to dispose of it someday. Former home of Melissa Schmalenberger and Ray Ridl

For them, relocating meant downsizing from a four-bedroom house to a one-bedroom apartment. "We knew we didn't want to have a house. We love to travel, we don't want maintenance, we just want to be able to lock our doors and be gone for two weeks," Schmalenberger said. They also knew that their possessions wouldn't fit into their new lifestyle. By midJanuary, Schmalenberger had let go of 80 percent of their belongings. The remainder fit into two U-Haul pods. This process was meaningful for Schmalenberger because it really allowed her to empathize with her clients. When it comes to her clients, Schmalenberger often finds that people have personal stories tied to their possessions. That's why we have a hard time letting go. For example, Schmalenberger held onto the bicycle that all three of her sons used when learning how to ride a bike. She imagined that someday, her grandkids would learn how to ride on it as well. However, she realized that this was based on the assumptions that her sons would have kids and that those kids would learn how to ride a bike at their grandparents' house or even want to learn in the first place. Instead, Schmalenberger decided to donate the bike to another child who would be able to use it right now.

3. When you're done using something, bless and release. Pass it on to somebody else. 4. Donate from your heart and find a cause that speaks to you. 5. Digitize scrapbooks and photo albums.

Schmalenberger encourages her clients to figure out their lifestyles and what is truly essential. For Schmalenberger and Ridl, that was their king-sized bed. Even though it takes up most of the space in their new master bedroom, they decided to take it with to Seattle. Other things that she found easier to let go of included mismatched glasses, storage containers, an iron, old electronics and more. Even if a cross-country move is not in your future, Schmalenberger suggests challenging yourself by walking through your home and imagining that you can only keep what fits in the space or by getting rid of something old every time you buy something new. For more information, you can visit






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Inside of his studio, you can see what Jones has been working on recently.



Inside of his studio, you can see what Jones has been working on recently.


Red Silobration Retreat MARCH 10


'There are limited things to do in Fargo during the winter.' At least, that is the sentiment that Bobbi Jo and Todd Cody are trying to disprove. On March 10, they will be hosting a new affair, Red Silobration Retreat. To learn more, we met with Bobbi Jo to discuss the details of the upcoming event.

We met with Bobbi Jo in her brand new office inside of The Red Silo.

Q. When and where is the event going to take place? A. The date of the Red Silobration Retreat is Saturday, March 10. The doors will open at 8:30 a.m. and close at 2:30 p.m. for this daylong event. It will take place at the Fargo Civic Center. You may visit for information on free weekend parking in Downtown Fargo.

Q. What can you tell us about the event? A. I want to give folks the opportunity to get pepped up for spring after the long winter. My vision is to provide guests with a day filled with self-compassion, wellness, and lots of laughter. We will have shopping, a fashion show and delicious food included in the ticket price, along with keynote Rebecca Undem, an inspirational speaker and author of the book “How Mommy Got Her Groove Back.�


A Milk Made creation

The daylong event will include demonstrations by Megan Lewis, of Milk Made Cheese Platters, Thunder Coffee will show us how to do a better brew at home and Deb Moen of To the Core will ask for volunteers from the crowd to share the art of wellness drumming. Lacy Guck, a local singer-songwriter will entertain with live music during lunch. AJ Robert and Charmed Boutique will give us a sneak peek of their spring lines with a fashion show. Many vendors will be available for home décor, wellness, gardening, clothing and much more to shop for! Much too often we say we need a day out with friends, but time rarely allows this to happen. This is the perfect opportunity to put yourself and friends first. Our guests will be sure to enjoy all these activities while sipping on a coffee or cocktail. Q. When did you first come up with the idea for the event? A. Honestly, it was over my winter break from teaching. I had a few days off and when things get quiet, my creative juices start to flow. I wanted to host a positive event that would make others feel good. I told myself, ‘I’m going to do this. It’s going to be great.’ Then it just took off.


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Some people might call me crazy, but here we are. Q. Why the Fargo Civic Center? A. What attracted me to the Fargo Civic Center was that it’s close to our store. I love Downtown Fargo, and there aren't a lot of options for venues for an event this size. We’ll have about 750 tickets for sale. We didn’t want anything too big, but not too small either. We want to make sure everybody has a good experience and can move around, park and get through lines quickly. Q. How much are tickets? A. We have a VIP seating area, which will be on the floor level at tables. VIP tickets are $68 and include a meal, book, and swag bag with some fun goodies in it. We also have general admission tickets which is stadium seating around the Civic Center. General Admission tickets are $48 and include a meal. Tickets are available by calling the Fargo Civic Center at 1-800-745-3000 or by visiting You can also purchase your tickets at the Civic Auditorium office between noon and 4:30 p.m. on weekdays.

Originally from Lisbon, N.D., Bobbi Jo Cody owns The Red Silo, located on Broadway in Downtown Fargo with her husband, Todd Cody. This local entrepreneur likes to keep busy because by day, she is also an elementary school teacher at Fargo Public Schools.

ARebecca Undem is an inspirational speaker and author of "How Mommy Got Her Groove Back."

Q. Is there a ticket that allows you to just come in and walk the floor? A. No, but each of the event vendors involved is going to have a ticket available to win. You can see the list of vendors on our website silobration. Follow the vendors on their social media spaces for your chance to win a ticket. Q. How did you go about Rebecca Undem as your speaker? A. Rebecca was highly recommended by several friends. She offers her fans online group coaching, a blog and of course, her book. I gave her a call and she was excited to learn about our retreat. I felt her enthusiasm and knew she was the perfect fit. She is actually living in the town I was born in, which was also a sign. We grew up in the same kind of small town/farming communities. We are so grateful to have her joining us. Q. What have you been doing to prepare for the event? A. I've been fortunate to have had many vendor experiences myself. I have gotten to be friends with people who are in Pride of Dakota, members of the Red River Market and the local art community. It has just been a matter of lots of calling and emails. It has been

wonderful to reconnect with many friends that I haven’t talked to in a while. Q. I’ve been trying to figure out how you managed to put all of this together on top of being an elementary school teacher. How is that even possible? A. There’s a lot of calls between four and five o’clock and on the weekend. We get emails back and forth whenever we can. I enjoy organizing and planning, so it’s been fun. It just feels like I’ve been blessed. I haven’t had any bumps in the road, knock on wood.

For more information, contact: The Red Silo 12 Broadway N Fargo 701-478-3822 March 10 from 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.



An Affordable Home with

High-End Appeal 84

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ocal design builder Urban Prairie Homes has been building houses in the FM area for the past five years. If you aren't familiar with them, it might be because you haven't been looking in the right price range. When Joe Richards founded the company in 2011, his goal was to offer an affordable, customizable home. Join us as we tour his model that will be in the 2018 Spring Parade of homes. BY Becca Opp PHOTOS BY J. Alan Paul Photography



ABOUT JOE RICHARDS Richards has been involved in the construction industry since he was young and went on to cofound A&R Drywall. In 2011, he finally fulfilled his dream of becoming a builder. He has three kids (aged 14, 12 and 7) with his wife, who loves to help with the staging for Urban Prairie Homes.

TOUR THE MODEL This three-level home features three bedrooms (four bedroom potential), three bathrooms and a three-car garage, located in The Wilds 7th Edition. Construction started in the spring 2017 and was completed in the fall of the same year. Laminate Flooring - Carpet World Lighting - Valley Lights



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LIVING ROOM The living room includes a gas fireplace with thin brick and a metal-wrapped mantle. Richards incorporates thin brick into many of his builds because it's easy to install and gives a great asthetic edge. "It's an affordable way of getting a higher end look," he said. Richards also revealed that the metal-wrapped mantle was inspired by one of his previous clients who chose to wrap all of their windows in steel to achieve an ultra- urban feel in the home. With his background in drywall, Richards has typically incorporated sheetrock “clouds” in the ceiling that have become quite popular. However, in this model he decided to do something different by using shiplap as a finishing touch. This has been one of the stand out features in this home. “We try to always stay on the front end of new trends. Keeping the prices down and offering something different in that price point has been our goal from day one,” Richards explained.


DINING ROOM & KITCHEN When it comes to subcontractors, Richards likes to work with other smaller, owner-operator businesses. For example, these knotty alder kitchen cabinets were made by a father-son business where the owner's wife helps out with the stain work.

Silestone Countertop -Stone Countertop Outlet Appliances - Rigels Lighting - Valley Lights


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POWDER ROOM The main level also features a powder room with shiplap accents. However, Urban Prairie Homes' floor plans are customizable so this area could be converted into a pantry if the future homeowner desired.

Lighting - Valley Lights

LOWER LEVEL The lower level of this home features a wet bar, bonus area, one bedroom and one bathroom.

Flooring - Carpet World


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Because Richards likes to be present on the job site, he teamed up with realtor Jenny Schuster of Park Co. Realtors who helps manage client relations. "He operates a little bit differently because he's very hands-on. He is involved from the start to the finish and his clients end up becoming raving fans," Schuster explained.

BATHROOM The second floor features a master bedroom, additional bedroom and large bathroom.


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Although Richards is proud of his model home in The Wilds 7th Edition, it does not necessarily represent a typical build for Urban Prairie Homes. In the past, their style has been influenced by mid-century modern design. However, Richards has recently started offering farmhouse-inspired, customizable models as well. If you'd like to visit this home in person, you can see it on the 2018 Spring Parade of Homes. This year, Richards is celebrating five years of business by offering $5,000 off of this $324,900 home to anyone who decides to build with Urban Prairie Homes while attending the parade.

For more information, please contact: Jenny Schuster Park Co. Realtors 28 10th St. N. Fargo 701-729-5851 Joe Richards Urban Prairie Homes 1841 43rd St. N. Ste. A, Fargo 701-866-7419


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