Tastefully Traditional

A rich redesign infuses a strong sense of personal style into this refined gentleman’s suite

Photos by Spacecrafting

The owner had specific notions when he approached interior designer Bruce Kading about his master suite. He wanted something more masculine, dramatic, and personal. He envisioned a haberdashery-feel for the closet. Most of all, he wanted something different from what everyone else was doing.

The haberdashery feel of the dressing room is refined by its cloverleaf-shaped lights, dark pilasters, and cherry wood.

The rooms had bothered him for 10 years, ever since he’d added them to his cottage-style home in Wayzata. “I wouldn’t say I was cutting corners, but I didn’t get the result I was after,” he says. “It was nice, but pretty sterile. It was conventional.”

The assignment was right up Kading’s alley. “It’s kind of my aesthetic,” says the designer. “I give a strong traditional background to everything, but then put in modern elements for accent, to play off of things.”

Kading says his process is “pretty much intuitive” and that ideas come when he finds something that excites him. Here are some aspects of this suite that especially excite us.

Furniture-Inspired Design

A mix of modern and traditional styles ushers visual interest and a timeless aesthetic into the suite’s bath and bed rooms.

The sculptural bronze legs holding up the sinks in the master bath are like no others. That’s because Kading designed them, recalling a sofa table he’d once seen. Kading based his designs for the cabinets in the dressing room and bathroom on pieces of furniture as well. Because of his involvement, each perfectly fits its intended space and serves the owner’s needs (note the shoe shelving). The darker pilasters accenting the cherry wood are also Kading’s doing, as are the rich leather and bronze pulls on the doors and drawers.

Light Touches

Look up in the bedroom and you’ll see how Kading plays with styles. In the center of the classic coffered ceiling is a fan with blades that almost look like airplane propellers. “We wanted a contemporary one that has an updated feel,” he says. Similarly, cloverleaf-shaped light fixtures further refine the haberdashery feel in the dressing room, and contemporary sconces in the master bath play against the very traditional faucets and towel bars. “You need to mix in those modern elements,” he says. “Otherwise, you might feel like you’re living in a museum.”

Mixed Materials

The bathroom illustrates what Kading’s organic design process can yield. The stone shower tile led to the darker stone floor and the marble countertops. With bronze, hammered copper, glass, and cherry wood, you have a sensual mix of textures and tones that lends the room a timeless feel. The owner is happy with the result, which is a suite that is anything but sterile or conventional. “I’m a bit of a perfectionist,” he admits, “so I appreciate when someone else shares the same attention to detail.”

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