Stepping into LouAnn Berglund’s cozy cottage home, it’s easy to see that she has more than a little flair for the arts – from the eclectic mix of furnishings, to the bold interplay of textures, to the art pieces on the walls that exude rock and roll energy.
As a longtime editor in chief of Cambria Style, LouAnn is no stranger to the power of an artful remodel. But this remodeled cottage is more than an expression of LouAnn’s background in art and design – it was a necessity that began, of course, in the middle of the pandemic.
We all remember how home prices began their historic skyward soar; at that time, LouAnn was renting the home with her children, and became concerned that her family’s home would be sold out from underneath her. “I didn’t want the kids to have to move, we’re super close to school. So I bit the bullet and purchased it,” says LouAnn.
As happy as she was to have secured her home, LouAnn had to admit it wasn’t the house that she would have chosen out of a line-up. The 1950s cottage home had its quirks left over from its original use, and desperately needed some updates.
“It’s actually the servants’ quarters to the large farmhouse across the alley – this used to be a large farm – and this cottage is where all the farmhands lived,” LouAnn explains.
As such, the house had great bones. But windows, appliances, counters, cabinetry all needed some TLC. And so LouAnn began the remodeling process, ready to face the challenges posed by the pandemic, head-on. One of the ways LouAnn navigated the challenges posed by Covid-19 was to use only American-made products in her remodel. Interestingly enough, what began out of necessity became a boon to the entire process.
“I think a lot of times consumers get overwhelmed with the comparison of so many products on the market,” she says. “But choosing American-made products really narrows your scope, so that was refreshing and unexpected.”
And of course, this decision led her to Pella. “For the remodel, I did a lot of replacement windows,” LouAnn explains. “When Chris from Pella came out we made our selections, it was really nice to have somebody to bounce ideas off of, and the window installation process was absolutely seamless.”
For example, LouAnn’s small utilitarian kitchen lacked functionality. And the lack of light just made the space, in LouAnn’s words, sad. “But Chris ended up showing me the Pella 250 series awning window that opens up and cranks out from the bottom, and we installed it over the kitchen sink,” she remembers. “It just lights up the whole kitchen.”
At the back of the cottage, LouAnn has a lovely sun porch that she wanted to turn into a four-season porch. “It initially had a really awful sliding glass door between the space and the rest of the house, so we replaced it with a custom Pella Reserve - Traditional Hinged Patio door that instantly opened up the space,” says LouAnn. With a laugh, she adds, “I love opening up the doors… It’s like angels singing, hallelujah!”
Aside from the improvements in lighting and aesthetics, LouAnn’s replacement windows offer her more functionality and a much higher quality of temperature control. “My bathroom was so freezing, I’d get ice build up around the sashes. Pella’s 250 Series Single Hung window keeps the warmth in – and it opens! It was instant gratification.”
With all the necessary window installations and replacements made, including a 250 Series Direct Set window at the front of the cottage, the additional renovations LouAnn made could have their day in the sun – literally.
Features like the thoughtful kitchen peninsula with a slab of gleaming Cambria Ella; the handpicked American-made furnishings; the beautiful, rusty terra cotta brick in various patterns throughout the home… All were allowed room to breathe with the new and improved window replacements.
“Before, the kitchen and dining room space was just a bottlenecked, congested area,” says LouAnn. “The kitchen window, the big patio window, and the french doors literally opened up the whole space.”
With the pandemic in mind, Pella’s window installation team made sure to give LouAnn the space she needed during installation. “When the guys came on site they were respectful, very clean, and super fast,” she recalls, adding, “And, they all pet the dog – super important!”
With her brand new replacement windows, LouAnn feels like she’s instantly added value to her home. And though she isn’t quite finished with her remodel, LouAnn says the progress so far has completely changed the way she and her family live in their cottage home.
“It’s a very beautiful aesthetic now, and it feels more cozy,” she shares. “It allows for better togetherness — beautiful togetherness.”