When a mid-century house influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright is up for sale, you dig your way through three feet of snow just to get to it. At least this is what and Daren Granger did when they were determined to find the perfect home for their new family in Warsaw, IN. Despite their realtor begging the young couple not to look at the outdated house that had stood vacant for over a year, Andrea and Daren knew they had to see it. When they first walked in, it wasn’t the foyer’s orange woven blinds or the unpleasant brown carpet that caught their attention. Andrea and Daren saw beyond the ugly and outdated and were struck by the vaulted ceiling, full-height windows, upstairs catwalk and numerous other stunning architectural details. As well as they knew the house, designed by Donald Scholz, was a rarity in their rural area, they also knew it was the right one for them. The much-needed updates and renovations didn’t scare them — when you know, you know.
Going on eight years, Andrea and Daren are as much in love with their mid-century home now as they were when they first walked through the door. Numerous renovations, struggles and budget conundrums later, they still wouldn’t change a thing. With creative and adventurous mindsets, the couple set out to transform their unique Indiana home little by little. The two of them make up a dream team when it comes to projects around the house. What Andrea, an artist and stay-at-home mom, comes up with, Daren, a Product Development Engineer, plans down to the detail and skillfully executes, mindful of their budget. “Someone once said that he and I are where art meets technology, and… that pretty much sums us up!” Andrea says.
Originally built by an affluent family in 1964, the Grangers’ house features custom-made details throughout, from doors and cabinets down to hardware. Whenever an update has been necessary, Andrea and Daren have tried to honor the iconic mid-century style and craftsmanship. Plenty of era-appropriate fixtures have been sourced from mid-century homes being modernized and stripped of their original details. Adding the family’s own flair to the house has in turn meant scouring thrift stores and antique shops for quirky treasures, which now make visiting the family’s home a truly memorable and uplifting experience.
When it comes to decorating, Andrea tries to avoid major trends and prefers to follow her own intuition. She and Daren have gone above and beyond to spark their children’s creativity and imaginations at home — “we try to encourage an environment that nurtures the drive for them to create and think outside of the box,” Andrea explains. With thrifted finds and bold details, the family’s home has turned into an inspiring environment boasting art, history, humor and eccentric curiosities. “If it doesn’t make you laugh or slightly quirk your brow, it’s not worth it,” Andrea describes her one design rule. A perfect example of Andrea’s playful style is the black and white dot pattern that she painted on a whim in the foyer and dining room. The idea for these oversized dots, now a distinctive design statement in the family’s home, was born after eating a frozen pizza — proof that inspiration has no limits!
Together with their children Matilda and Magnus, Andrea and Daren have infused their exceptional house with playfulness and personality. With lots of elbow grease, the home has been transformed — although never finished and ever-changing, it now serves as an enticing sanctuary for all artistic forms of expression that the family holds dear. “Some may say we gifted new life to this home, but we feel it has given us more in return,” Andrea and Daren say. Scroll down for a peek into this creative family’s captivating home, where bohemian decor, art and architectural details intertwine. —
Photography by and Daren Granger
Image above: The architectural details of the house are perfectly portrayed in the foyer, where a vaulted ceiling and upstairs catwalk never cease to impress. A first glimpse into this home shows the family’s love for all things artistic and creative.
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