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Historic Cottage Renewed as Grandmother’s Home

DaytonPainted Urban StoneFlorence GOrono, MN

It was a 100-year old house near the shores of Lake Minnetonka, owned by a family in the lumber business and marked by beautiful raised panel walls and millwork. But after decades of decay, the house and adjoining guest cottage were marked for destruction.

Modern gray kitchen featuring CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.

The 100-year old guest cottage presented challenges with sloping ceilings and odd windows. Modern, carefully placed new cabinets and windows update the space.

CliqStudios Orono guest house remodel project

Historic Guest Cottage

Had the heirs of that lumber family not saved the house from oblivion in the 1990s, Florence Gropel would not have stood in the great room of the guest cottage in 2015 and wondered how to turn an ancient catering galley into a modern kitchen. A few years earlier, her daughter’s family had purchased the property but had never fully used the guest house. Although the main residence had been updated, the guest house remained much as it did in 1940 when it was built.


Wishing to be closer to her children and grandchildren, Florence accepted an invitation to move into the guesthouse in the spring. It had almost all the amenities she needed. However, it had a very tiny kitchenette that would not work with her love of cooking and entertaining. So in partnership with CliqStudios, Florence set out to create a gleaming modern kitchen in place of the old one.

Homeowner Florence and designer Jayelynn in Florence’s modern kitchen.

CliqStudios designer Jayelynn Carlson worked with Florence throughout the transformation. They overcame architectural issues such as sloping ceilings, odd windows and an open stairwell to the basement. “Jayelynn was very warm and responsive,” says Florence. “She helped organize each elevation so the balance of cabinets and appliances was perfect.”

CliqStudios Dayton cabinets in painted urban stone

The range hood reaching the tall ceiling fits the room’s architecture perfectly.

Cabinet Storage

Jayelynn helped with Florence’s special requests. She incorporated the Wolf cooktop Florence brought from a previous home and designed more cabinet storage space. “The Super Susan sits on a shelf on the bottom of the corner cabinet,” says Jayelynn, “so you get full access without having to work around a pole.” Also, since microwaves hinge on the left, Jayelynn switched walls with the TV, placing the appliance on the wall opposite from the one Florence suggested for easier access.

“I was amazed how quickly Jayelynn responded with the changes I gave to her plans,” says Florence. “Though there weren’t all that many changes!” Florence was also happy to hear her contractors approve of CliqStudios’ quality cabinets. They said they were as good or better than custom cabinets from a nearby kitchen center.

Modern gray kitchen featuring CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.

The restored and renovated cottage is attached with a breezeway to the main house. Now Florence can cook for her daughter, son-in-law and grandchildren any time.

A Dream Kitchen

Now the sloped ceiling is neatly trimmed with cove moldings. The stairwell is hidden cleverly behind the wall of the refrigerator. Florence can entertain both friends and grandchildren who live thirty feet away in the main house in a kitchen she describes with a single word: “Wow.”

A dream kitchen for the future in a guesthouse recaptured from history.

CliqStudios Dayton painted carbon wine storage cabinets

A wine storage bar in the living room features Dayton cabinets in Carbon. The hardwood floor in the new kitchen matches the original hardwood floors in the connected spaces. The raised panel woodwork and crown molding are preserved to look like when the cottage was built in the 1940s.

More Before & After Photos
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Before & After Photos

Modern gray kitchen featuring CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.
Modern gray kitchen featuring CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.
Modern gray kitchen featuring CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.
Modern gray kitchen featuring CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.
Modern gray kitchen featuring CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.
Modern gray kitchen featuring CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.
Pull-out spice rack offers convenient storage. Shown in CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.
Angled end cabinet eases into passageway. Shown in CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.
Loads of storage in a Super Susan corner shown in CliqStudios Dayton Cabinet style in Painted Urban Stone gray.
Angled ceiling with attractive coved crown molding treatment in CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style painted Urban Stone gray.
Modern wine storage bar in CliqStudios Dayton cabinet style painted carbon.

Showing 13 comments

  1. Sean Reply

    Hello, I might be in the market for assistance with kitchen remodel. I was wondering how to go about contacting CliqStudios about putting together a design.

    • CliqStudios Social Media Reply

      Wonderful! Call 888-350-1242 to get started with our design team.

  2. Chin Reply

    The designer has a very creative mind and beautiful sense of colors. Using the simplest of colors the place is looking awesome.

  3. Evelyn Grueninger Reply

    I love the kitchen…all of it. Belongs in my dream house… one day.

  4. Mrs. Brown Reply

    Are the cabinets wood or plywood?

  5. Cesar Aguero Reply

    I really love this kitchen!

  6. Leslie Reply

    I really like this style are they built or need assembling?

    • Tom Majewski Reply

      Hello Leslie, and thanks for the great question. All of our cabinets arrive fully assembled and ready to go! 😀

  7. LRachel Reply

    This might be a stretch- but do you know what color/brand counter top was used? I’ve just ordered my urban stone cabinets, and I’m having a heck of a time finding a counter to match! This one looks amazing, and is exactly what I’m hoping for. Thank you!

    • Tom Majewski Reply

      Hello Loren! Thanks for the great question. Since we only supply cabinets for the renovation projects you see on our site, we usually do not have any information regarding any other materials or fittings used. However, you’re in luck! This kitchen was done by a member of the CliqStudios staff.

      The countertops featured in this kitchen are “Torquay” by Cambria.

      Best of luck with your kitchen. We can’t wait to see the pictures!!

  8. Reni Reply

    Love this kitchen – but where are the ovens?

    • Tom Majewski Reply

      Great question! This kitchen has wall ovens. They are on the opposite wall from the sink and windows.

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