Home Tour: This Target Designer's St. Paul Home Is a Nordic Dream
When you enter Madelynn Furlong's apartment, you'll most certainly fall in love. The assistant designer at Target -- who is also a Hackwith Design House stylist and the blogger behind Wide Eyed Legless -- lives in the St. Paul/Minneapolis area with her husband and adorable pup. Their home is a wonderful and refreshing mixture of light, wood, texture and minimalism. From the handmade wooden furniture to the sleek copper clothes rack, every detail in the abode is simply stunning, including the lovely full-wall window that lets in copious amounts of natural light.
Copy by Anne Mathias // Photography by Wing Ta for The Everygirl
Creating a beautiful space on a budget, Furlong frequents Craigslist, antique stores and warehouse sales, hunting for affordable pieces of furniture and decor that complement her home perfectly. And in order to transform her house into a home, she and her husband dove into numerous DIY projects—they built most of the wooden furniture by hand!
How did you find your current place, and what drew you to it? Do you rent or own it?
MF: Minneapolis is full of so many beautiful old homes, but when we moved back, we weren't ready to not live in the heart of the city, so we looked for lofts in downtown St. Paul, which is where our current loft is. Caylon and I tend to fall on the more minimalistic side of life, so we really wanted a place that felt airy and simple with lots of natural light. So when we walked into our now apartment and saw the massive windows, we basically signed the lease right then and there.
What did you do to keep the cost of creating your home budget-friendly?
MF: My husband and I literally made the furniture ourselves. It was inexpensive, because the cost of wood is very low, but it did require lots of time [since] we were doing it. We were not paying someone else for their time, so all of the furniture pieces we made cost us only a few hundred dollars, but if we hadn't built them on our own, they could've cost thousands.
What was the decorating process like? Did you encounter any challenges in making your apartment/house feel like a home?
MF: The biggest challenge in putting our home together was learning to work around existing elements that we couldn't change, like ugly light fixtures and counter tops. I swear, our kitchen cabinets have not been updated since the 80s—they are awful! But you work with what you get, right? So we built a lot of our own furniture and tried to really custom fit it all to the apartment and help mask the parts of it that we didn't love.
How would you describe your decorating style? Where did you find inspiration for your home?
MF: I would say my decorating style is pretty simple—lots of texture and neutral colors. To me, it's less about having a defined style and more about just going with your gut on something. Our goal in decorating our home was to bring the outdoors in and take most of our inspiration from nature. That way, our home would have a good sense of balance to it. We also love Nordic design, so we took a lot of inspiration from that -- especially the interior of the restaurant NOMA.
Did being a stylist or working in fashion influence how you decorate your home?
MF: Being a stylist and in fashion influenced my decorating choices pretty minimally, actually. It really only influenced the standard that I held myself too. What mainly influenced how I put my home together was how I wanted to live in my home. My husband is an amazing chef and has a strong passion for cocktails and bitters, so needless to say, we spend a lot of time hosting people, which we absolutely love doing. That said, our main priority was that our home felt warm and inviting -- a place that you would just want to linger in.
How did you create a home that was suitable for both you and your husband (and Benzel)? Do you two have a similar design aesthetic, or did you have to learn to compromise on decorating?
MF: Putting together a home suitable for us all was pretty natural. Having a clear vision of how we wanted our home to be used helped immensely. Caylon and I both are very opinionated when it comes to design and how we want something to look. Luckily, we do have very similar tastes, so that made putting our home together easy and enjoyable. Now puppy proofing is a whole different situation—let's just say I found out the hard way that Benzel loves shoes, especially expensive ones.
What is the one item a young woman should splurge on for her home?
MF: Hands down, a piece of beautiful art. A good piece of art always makes a room feel complete and elevated. Being an artist myself, I feel strongly that everyone should fill their homes with art that keeps their minds in a creative and imaginative spirit. I'm also a huge advocate for supporting young artists and makers. Plus art only increases in value over time, so it is well worth the splurge!
All images and copy courtesy of The Everygirl