Marilyn and Clarence Turner immediately put in a bid for their 1920s bungalow in St. Paul after gushing over the handsome oak built-in buffet and bookcases flanking the fireplace. But they knew that the kitchen, with four layers of vinyl flooring and just one set of cupboards, was ripe for a makeover.
The Turners’ remodeled kitchen by David Heide Design Studio is clearly a recent update. But the cutouts in the inset cabinet doors, white subway tile and open shelves give it a vintage vibe.
“We have the best of both worlds,” said Marilyn. “A kitchen that works for us today, but has all the bungalow qualities we love.”
The Turner residence is one of six homes that will be open to the public during the Twin Cities Bungalow Club Home Tour on Saturday. Bungalow enthusiasts can gather ideas on rehabbing and updating as well as paint colors, furniture and lamps that complement the Craftsman characteristics of this architectural style, said Tim Counts, president of the Twin Cities Bungalow Club. The group was launched in 1994 and has more than 200 members who live in and appreciate these modest-sized stucco homes that are big on vintage charm.
Bungalows typically don’t have a lot of storage space, said Counts, so some tour homes will show how resourceful owners finished off attic rooms and basements to create more space for day-to-day living and storage. Bungalow fans also can marvel at stained glass, vintage light fixtures and Arts and Crafts details.
The club advocates preservation of these vintage gems, built in the Twin Cities between 1910 and 1929, said Counts. “But we’ve always understood that these homes must adapt in order to survive.” he added. “We just encourage owners to proceed carefully and thoughtfully with alterations and updates.”
Sue and Bill Roberts refreshed their timeworn bungalow kitchen, which is also open for the tour. They installed new granite countertops and modern appliances. But they decided to refurbish the upper cabinets, and add custom-built new lower cabinets that replicate the original door style. Luckily, the couple didn’t have to touch one of the home’s Craftsman treasures: an oak breakfast nook with built-in booths that seat four.
Sue admits she didn’t know much about bungalows when the couple moved from their nondescript suburban home to their Minneapolis stucco-and-brick abode built in 1920. She joined the Twin Cities Bungalow Club, and was won over by bungalows’ simplicity and endearing qualities.
“Bungalows are small, but they’re well done, and everything works together,” said Sue. “I think they are just charming.”