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Tudor Today

Bria Hammel Interiors gives this suburban Twin Cities home the character of a traditional Tudor with livability for a modern family

Written by Sally Finder Weepie
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    Tudor style is easy to fall in love with—and hard to leave when you’ve lived in one of these classic homes. Luckily for this family, they didn’t have to say goodbye to Tudor details when they made the move into a new home.

    Bria Hammel Interiors worked as a team with architect David Charlez Designs and builder SD Custom Homes to craft this new home with an old soul.

    Outside, a steep multi-gabled roof harks back to charming, historic Tudor style, as do tall multipaned windows and exterior walls partially clad in brick.

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    Inside, a stained-wood banister speaks to Tudor past while its rich, dark tones mesh seamlessly with the modern aesthetic of black-framed windows and doors. Art from Hong Kong and a vintage rug from India tell tales of the husband’s extensive travels.

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    The homeowners wanted a privacy wall to block views from the entry to the living room—but not just any privacy wall. “We wanted to make it Zen,” Hammel says. She and her team, including designer Katie Pieper, came up with the idea of a leaded-glass partition detailed with custom dentil molding, a sophisticated solution that once again nods to Tudor authenticity.

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    Tudor heritage continues in the living room in the form of exposed ceiling beams and a focal-point fireplace. Instead of brick, this fireplace surround is constructed of Eldorado Stone. Its gray hue adds warmth as it contrasts the primarily white envelope of the room. “We wanted to keep things simple with color,” Hammel says.

    Striated fabric on the sofa hides the inevitable stains that come with two young boys. An aged-wood coffee table already bears a few nicks and dings. “There are no worries when the boys use it for their Lego construction sessions,” Hammel says. “This design is life-friendly.”

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    The kitchen is a similar blend of Tudor sophistication and modern practicality. Dentil molding graces the tops of upper cabinets. Iron-framed pendants over the island bring in the form and weightiness of a past era, as does a white-painted brick backsplash. 

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    The island, however, speaks clearly to today: Made of Cambria natural stone, its waterfall design is all about contemporary sophistication and durability. A stained-wood island base connects to the home’s exposed beams and echoes the tones seen in aged-oak pocket doors that separate the kitchen from the butler’s pantry.

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    The pantry is much more than storage space. It’s outfitted with pro-grade ovens, a sink, and the countertop space to handle baking out of sight of the living areas. Hammel also included a handy desk nook. Wood shelves display an assemblage of pretty things that make PTA planning time more enjoyable. A floor made of handmade tile offers durability and a time-honored look.

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    The high-contrast black-and-white thread that runs through the house softens in the dining room, where Hammel clad walls in an olive green grass cloth. Black velvet draperies, dentil molding, and a brass chandelier and drapery hardware layer in warm glamour.

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    Warmth in the sunroom, however, comes straight from nature. Walls of windows welcome in light and views that make this the wife’s favorite spot. “She calls it her garden room,” Hammel says. “Since she loves to spend time here, we brought in a bit of pink for her.” Soft and pretty pillows juxtapose the marble tile floor, laid in a classic checkerboard pattern.

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    While the sunroom offers a touch of feminine flair, the office is purely masculine. A menswear-inspired wallpaper sets a dapper backdrop for gray-painted cabinets and moldings and a herringbone floor. 

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    Built-in shelving units hold a smattering of collected treasures.

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    Upstairs, the master bath pleases both masculine and feminine sensibilities with a spacious wetroom that includes both a freestanding tub and a shower wall. “It has the same feel as the luxury hotels where the husband stays during his travels,” Hammel says.

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    Brass fittings and oak cabinetry warm the expanse of marble that covers walls and floors in the wetroom. The vanities feature toe-kick lighting that illuminates the way for the couple at night.

     

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    Even work-a-day tasks take on a hint of luxury in the high-function laundry room. Ceramic tile brings in pretty pattern and ties to painted trim and cabinetry. A mini-washer in the base of the washer unit makes life a little easier for a mom of two.

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    When it's playtime, a basement bar serves up elegance with a hammered-brass sink. A brick backsplash echoes the one seen in the kitchen.

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    Even the kids get a refined play space. Their loft area boasts a striking teal built-in that puts a fresh twist on the blue boys' room. The youngsters love to curl up in the window seat to read. The table and chairs, meanwhile, offer a prime spot for games and TV-watching. It's the cherry on top of a home that celebrates family without forgetting character and luxury.

    “We ensured we were consistent through the house, incorporating traditional elements to keep it from feeling too modern and to keep it very balanced,” Hammel says. “Working with the architect and builder to carry the aesthetic and hand-built details inside makes this home special.”