How to Cozy up for the Colder Months: Design Tips for Fall & Winter | HENDEL Homes Custom Home Builders Twin Cities MN

September is here and fall is on it’s way! In Minnesota that means we need to adjust quickly from heat and humidity to long sleeves and hot tea. Inside your home you’ll want to make a few style tweaks as well, to keep things cozy as the colder months come on.

Here are a few tips to gracefully welcome the cooler seasons:

1.  Warm It Up: Go ahead — dig in that linen closet and feel the warmth it has to offer. Add those thicker throws to the sofa and chairs, and imagine curling up with a good book, warm blanket at your side.


2.  Go for the Glow: Set the mood of your home for warmth and comfort by displaying a wide range of candles — and then actually lighting them during the evening hours. Candle holders in mercury glass, antique brass, silver, or wood-tones, are all beautifully refined finishes that will help create a stylish fall and winter setting.


3.  Mix up Metallics: Adding metal accessories to accent your more rustic ones (think antique brass next to earthy woods), will add a richness to your space and give off an underlying fall and winter feel. These reflective surfaces will also reflect more light in the winter months when we need a little more of it in our homes!


4.  Get Rich: With your color palette that is. We all need some color in the fall and winter, but selecting rich, jewel tones as your accent colors (instead of brighter summer ones) is a better fit for the seasons ahead. Change out your pillows, rugs, and throws to jades, purples, sapphires, and other deep colors and you’ll feel the richness of this spectacular season in your home.

Beautiful living room with large windows and view of countryside


5.  Keep Nature Near: The grass might be dying outside, but inside you can still keep the connection to nature strong. Displaying some fresh fall foliage on the table or counter is an elegant way to add a sense of the cooler months to come.


Here at HENDEL Homes we know a cozy home often means cozy hearts. If you’re ready to enjoy your autumns (& all of your seasons) in a custom home built perfectly for you, connect with us about our upcoming projects and custom design planning. We would love to hear from you!

The Do’s & Don’ts of Building a New Home: Preparing for the Home Building Process | Award Winning Home Builders Twin Cities MN

Building a new home is an exhilarating process. Sometimes it’s glamorous, sometimes not-so-much. Most often, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime event. So start your home building experience off right by keeping these do’s and don’ts in mind. Planning well and aligning your expectations with the actual experience of building your dream home will make for a much smoother experience all around.


1.) Don’t rush the design stage. Starting with a well-developed plan is crucial. Don’t rush this part along. Spend as much time on the planning and design stage as necessary to make sure a complete plan is in place.


2.) Do choose your team wisely. Select a design and building team whose expertise you feel confident with. We highly recommend not making your decision by “bidding it out.” If everything is bid with honesty and accuracy from the very beginning, there will be very minimal difference in cost. Going through the home building process with a team that you trust will by far be your most valuable asset.


3.) Do seek visual inspiration. Do not expect words to communicate entirely what you want. Find as many photos as you can that speak to different aspects of what home features you like and dislike. Find rooms that inspire you and share these with your designer. Using online tools like can be a helpful way to find photos and organize your ideas.


4.) Do focus on the main features of your home. You will spend more time in the kitchen and living areas than in other areas of your new home. These spaces also include more details and finishes. Make sure to spend enough time evaluating all of your options for these rooms to make sure you get what you truly want in the end.


5.) Don’t expect everything to go perfectly. There are 100,000 components that go into building a new home, and dozens of craftsman who play their part in making things come together. Don’t be surprised when problems occur. Rather than expect things to go 100% perfectly, prepare yourself for the emotional ups and downs you are sure to face — from frustration to sheer joy. Be patient, trust your team of experts to handle mishaps with integrity, and go with the flow. As the final selections find their way into your new home, you’ll experience excitement like non-other.


6.) Do view your home as a living thing, adapting to it’s new surroundings. In the first year you might notice that your home will settle a little, and this is normal. Also, as the wood finishes in your home face humidity, they may expand and contract minimally. While you get used to your new home, it will be preparing to provide you with a steadfast place to make a life for many years to come.


HENDEL Homes builds quality, luxury homes with integrity and craftsmanship in the Twin Cities area. If you are interested in learning more about how the HENDEL team approaches the new home building process, please get in touch! We would be happy to share our vision with you.

5 Home Tips that Make a Big Impact: Creating a Beautiful and Organized Home

Winter is a great time to organize and beautify your home with small projects that can make an inspiring impact.  Here are 5 little tips that just might make a huge difference in the way your home looks, feels, and functions.

1. A Beautiful Glow — For all of those recessed lights in your home, switch to a halogen light bulb.  You won’t believe the world of difference it makes in the feel of your home, casting a soft, warm light that is still very crisp in color!  Try the PAR30 Halogen Indoor Floodlight for instance, and we bet you won’t go back.

Home Tips | Hendel Homes Twin Cities MN

2.  Cardboard Be Gone — If your family uses a lot of pre-packaged food items, don’t rely on the cardboard packaging for storage.  Take individual snacks (granola bars, bags of crackers, etc) out of their boxes and place the snacks in beautiful wicker baskets or vintage tin buckets by type of food.  Reduce space while adding some custom beauty to your pantry as well!


3.  The Spotless Solution —  If you haven’t found a solution for taking water spots off your metals, look no further!  Cape Cod Cleaner Metal Polishing Cloths work on aluminum, brass, bronze, copper, gold, nickel, pewter, and silver.  We love how easily they remove water spots from polished nickel!  Truly, these cloths are the only solution we’ve found that really works.


4.  Perfect Timing — Fill your home with candlelight ambiance using timer candles.  They turn on automatically and add character to any room as the day turns to night.  Choose the ones made of real wax, like these, for a natural look without any of the work or mess.


5.  Music to Your Ears — If you don’t have in-home audio in every room yet, then the Bose mini speaker is the way to go.  It pairs to any device and voila! — the sound of a symphony in the convenience of your own home.


Bonus Winter tip from HENDEL Homes: Make sure your humidistat is set for winter.  This will lessen the chance of dew forming on the inside corners of your windows on extra cold days. 

Hendel Homes builds custom, architecturally-exciting homes in the Twin Cities MN area.  Check out our home gallery for inspiration or click here to connect with us.

Can a Home Really Be Timeless in a World of Changing Trends?  |   Award Winning Architectural Designer and Home Builder: 2014 BATC Builder of the Year

In a world where our minds are captured from one minute to the next — new ideas, new styles emerging left and right — is it possible to create a home with timeless appeal?  We think so.  Here’s how we see a timeless homecoming together:

Include historical elements.  Historical elements have withstood the test of time for a reason.  They are not part of a fleeting style experiment that will eventually be pushed aside.  Including some elements reminiscent of history will help set the tone for a timeless home.


Create a solid exterior.  Materials like stone, cast stone, and even cedar shake siding, are used because they last.  Combine sturdy materials with high-quality touches (think wood garage door over aluminum) and timeless begins to come together.  As you make decisions, consider how the roof pitch, proportions, trim details, and front door effect the look of the home and what type of appeal they will bring in the long-run.


Emphasize interior detailing.  From the crown moulding to the base trim, these simple but consistent touches play a major role in the feel of a home.  Including built-in cabinetry and furniture is a practical artistry that brings with it long-withstanding value.  Using natural elements, like brick or stone on the walls or near fireplaces, is also a way to include timeless interior appeal.


Decorate in a classic way.  Though your color of choice may change, certain elements of classic style remain.  Pieces with architectural detailing and strong bones work in many different styles of home, but always offer timeless appeal.  Using woods and natural fibers also brings in classic touches.  Don’t shy away from layers and patterns, but use them in a way that emphasizes simplicity and elegance.

Timeless Home Design | Award Winning Builder HENDEL Homes Twin Cities MN

Timeless doesn’t have to look the same every time, and it certainly can be suited to your own custom style and lifestyle needs.  But a timeless design will emphasize these elements to create a space that is sophisticated and tasteful, yet not easily outdated.


We are excited to announce that HENDEL Homes was recently recognized by the Builders Association of the Twin Cities ( as the 2014 Builder of the Year!  We are so humbled that our peers, in addition to our homeowners, would recognize the workmanship and high quality design that goes into each of our homes, and award us such a prestigious honor.  Read more about the award here!



What Does Custom REALLY Mean? | Custom Home Building Options, Twin Cities MN

In a world full of capabilities and options, the word custom gets thrown around quite often, especially within the home building community. But what does custom really mean? And are builders delivering on their promise to offer you a custom experience?

Custom Home Builder | HENDEL HOMES Twin Cities MN

Here’s what “custom” means to us:

1. Custom building means anything you want to happen can happen! Any feature you’d like to see in your new home is a possibility, any layout can be creatively achieved. Unlike many home builders who offer you the choice of three options and then charge you an excessive amount to make additional changes, we think a custom builder is someone who can make anything and everything inside- or outside-the-box happen.


2. Custom means unique. A custom builder should truly want your project to be one-of-a-kind, set apart from the rest. A custom builder and their team appreciate design and architecture and are excited to take a unique approach with each home they work on.


3. Custom means collaboration. Custom builders collaborate with homeowners, as opposed to being “order takers” from a pre-set order form. When building a custom home, you should understand how the building and design selection process works and have a hand in every decision. You should be in the loop about which details you’re selecting, the possibilities for finishes, and how each of these design elements can be incorporated into any given room.


4. Custom means knowledge across the board. A custom design and build team has a cohesive knowledge of products, materials, and finishes, and an extensive grasp on how designing a home works, not just how to sell a pre-designed home. Knowing their options allows them to communicate with their client, helping the client make well-educated decisions as they create a one-of-a-kind home suited to their personal taste.


Take a peek at more of the elegant, unique homes created by the HENDEL team in our gallery here. And if you’re looking for a truly custom home building situation, connect with us here at HENDEL Homes today!

Custom Home Building Priorities: Which Selections Should You Put The Most Focus On

As we shared last month, designing and building a home involves thousands of decisions, each one layered upon the decision before it.  Which ones should you focus the most time on?  —  Here’s what we think:

Custom Home Builder Twin Cities MN | HENDEL Homes

Exterior Detailing — Why go to all the trouble of building a home if it’s not going to make a statement?  Exterior detailing gives your home the custom beauty that makes it one of a kind, as unique as your family and your name.  Consider accentuating your windows with beautifully styled transoms and mullions, or adding architectural interest with corbels, arches, and a front entryway that coveys the heart of your home.


Cabinetry / Millwork –  Your cabinetry and millwork, whether it’s in your kitchen or as part of built-in features in other areas of the home, should have a specialty feel that is akin to a second-skin for the home.  But beware of the term custom when it comes to cabinetry.  While many so-called custom cabinet makers will create to your taste, the quality of work is often well below even off-the-shelf cabinetry.  What your home needs is high-quality cabinetry that is as artisan as the pieces you’ll put in it.  Additionally, don’t neglect the need for detailed built-in features in the dining area and great room.  Including pieces that appear like purchased armoires for instance, but that are built specifically for the space, takes all of the complicated guesswork out of finding the right furniture for the room later and become part of the triumph of the home.


Flooring – When weighing wood floor options you’ll need to consider not only the wood species you want to use, but also the floorboard width.  And in the case of wood floors, the finish can make all the difference in the appeal of a room.  So spend a lot of time visualizing different finishes with your designer.  The wide range of tile and carpets too mean you’ll want to ensure you select a material and style that will stand the test of time.


Lighting — What might seem like one of the most simplistic decisions can have a huge effect in the ambiance of your new home.  Though recessed lights are ever-popular, the placement of utilizing them is a key factor.  Ideally, each room will feature a mix of lighting options, from can-lights to pendants to lamps, that will coordinate intricately with the furniture and layout of the room.


With these features in mind, the specific rooms that you want to bring the most attention to are:

  • the kitchen
  • master bedroom and bath combo
  • great room


Pour more of your resources into these inviting spaces rather than try to spread them out evenly amongst every room.  Not only are these rooms where you’ll spend most of your time enjoying your home, they’re also the spaces that guests will likely appreciate as well.

With that said, a well-designed home with exquisite features is nothing without quality bones.  Selecting a builder that values structure and high-quality building materials is always the key start.


Decisions must be made, but with the right designer at-hand and a list of priorities, you’ll be well on your way to creating a one-of-a-kind home that suits your lifestyle and exemplifies long withstanding beauty and strength.


HENDEL Homes is a an architectural home design and build team in the Twin Cities MN that focuses on home building with customization and detail.  With personal care and collaboration, we are with each client throughout the entire process, from initial design plans to finish details, and we remain a resource to them for years to come.  Contact us today!

Don’t be Afraid!  Building a Home Doesn’t Need to be Overwhelming  |  Inspiration and Organization for Building or Remodeling a Home


Building a new home is an amazing, exciting process!  It can also be a tedious process, in which thousands and thousands of decisions need to get made.  But don’t be intimidated — be prepared!

Here are a few key points that will help you break down the process as you prepare to build or remodel a home:

Home Builder Twin Cities MN | Hendel Homes

Here the color of the kitchen cabinetry was selected first and the rest of the room designed around that starting point.

  • Take it one step at a time.  Rather than letting your mind rush ahead, focus on the beginning.  Alongside your builder or designer, create a schedule of decisions that have to be made in order, and then allow yourself to be concerned with only what’s immediately ahead, rather than overwhelmed by the whole list.
  • Hire a designer.  Share your style and priorities with the designer and then let them take the lead, doing what they do best.  A designer will fill in the gaps you’re not familiar with and also have processes and connections for doing things more efficiently than you would on your own.  Choose a designer that you connect well with and you’ll develop a sense of trust that will ease a lot of weight off of you.

  • Become familiar with your style. It’s one thing to tell your architect that you love “french country;” it’s another to point out specific moulding styes or ceiling silhouettes that you consider must-haves.  Spend time browsing sites like Pinterest and Houzz, pin-pointing features you are continually drawn to.  This will help you communicate more clearly the breadth of style you want to evoke in your new home.
  • Make it your own.  Don’t lose sight of who you are just because you’re looking at lots of examples of well-designed rooms.  This is your chance to create a home of beauty and functionality that is custom to you.  Write down what makes your lifestyle unique, where your family spends the most time, and which features are most important to you, and then find ways to put your own stamp on this new home.

  • Choose select items of inspiration and work around them.  A room doesn’t magically come together all at once.  Choose a select number of items you have fallen in love with — a chair, wallpaper design, sink, family heirloom, etc — and share this with your designer.  A single piece of inspiration can be the building block for a room that’s all you.

When you face the home building process with excitement, an organized plan, and an effective way to communicate, the project will come together more smoothly and with greater reflection of your own style — one little step at a time!

HENDEL Homes builds distinctive homes with meticulous planning and the very best workmanship.  With trust and customer care at the core, the HENDEL team prioritizes the desires and needs of the client, gently guiding them through the home building process.  Connect with HENDEL Homes today!

Strength from the Start: Why a Home Should Never Need to be Torn Down

In Europe it’s not uncommon that homes hundreds of years old are still standing and occupied.  Why?  For one, they’re valued for their look and their heritage.  And two, they were built right the first time.


We too believe that a home should be built right the first time.  A solid foundation is important not only physically, but also as the heart of history yet to unfold.  A home may age, and renovation may become necessary, but the bones should stay strong.  Tearing down a home is like tearing out the pages of a book — a story goes missing.


The marks of a home built to last include:

1. Strength and quality.  High standard construction in the bones of a home keep it strong, able to endure age and weather.  There is a significant difference in the materials that a mass producing home builder uses versus what a custom builder selects.  A builder who knows their product well understands and values the nuances of insulation quality, spray foam vs fiberglass, material thickness and more.


2. Details and planning.  Uniqueness shows up in the well-planned details, and storage space doesn’t go out of style.  Implementing built-in cabinetry and fitted furniture is a resource for the long-run.  Woodworking and crown or cove moulding are important details that give a home depth.  Creating a plan that gives a home originality is important in building a home that will live on.



3.  Character and beauty.  Designing a home with layers creates beauty worth holding onto.  Using exterior design aspects, such as a slate roof and stone or brick accents, will take the home beyond cookie-cutter and turn it into a piece of art.  Small distinctions add up, filling a home with character and a story of its own.

Strength from the Start: Why a Home Should Never Need to be Torn Down | by Hendel Homes Twin Cities MN

If you’re ready to design a new home — one worth holding on to for years to come — connect with us here at HENDEL Homes.  Building fine homes since 1997 in the Wayzata, Minnetonka, and western Twin Cities area.

HENDEL Homes Owners Visit 2014 Kips Bay Decorator Showhouse in New York

Every year dedicated supporters of the Boys & Girls Club in the Kips Bay area of New York do something extraordinary — host the Kips Bay Decorator Showhouse Sought-after interior designers collaborate to transform a luxury Manhattan home into a magnificent example of elaborate design — featuring fine furnishings, art, and cutting edge technology — and then open the doors for visitors during the month of May.

This year Rick & Amy Hendel, owners of HENDEL Homes, made the trip to NY to be inspired by this amazing feat and support the great cause, which helps raise critical funds for enrichment programs in New York City.

2014-05-16 16.16.16

So what did they think?  “It was amazing,” says Amy who was awed by seeing so many designers and their work in one home.  Not only was the home inspirational, but the city as well,  “NY has so much great design in general.”


Their favorite parts?  Anything they were inspired to use in their own home designs.  “The kitchen had so many ideas:  bleached walnut, metal details on the cabinets and banding, amazing features in the cabinet armoire doors, kitchen hood detailing, and butler’s pantry inspiration.  Also the tile and flooring details throughout the home were so unique and well done.”


One highlight that stands out?  “The pink closet was fun!  But maybe a different color for our homes.”

Some of the distinctive elements they plan on implementing in their own homes include the wine wall, windows with metal detailing, and the cabinet hardware they fell in love with.

All in all their trip to New York’s Kips Bay Showhouse was an exhilarating travel experience that left them with the inspiration to fuel new designs and give their clients an even more outstanding custom home building experience.


HENDEL Homes is a distinguished design-build custom home builder in the Wayzata area of the Twin Cities MN.  With artful details, they create elaborate custom homes that their clients love.

Design Blogs We Love: Our Top 6 Favorite Design Blogs and Websites + Minneapolis Artisan Home Tour News

When we crave design inspiration, the blogs below are our go-to staples.  But if you’re ready for more than just a good read, the Artisan Home Tour here in Minneapolis is not to be missed!  Sponsored by the Parade of Homes, the tour starts next week and runs June 7th-15th.

Artisan Home Tour Parade of Homes 2014

Read all about the stunning HENDEL Homes’  tour entry here, and check out this fact sheet that will answer all of your Artisan Home Tour questions.  Looking forward to seeing you there!


A good design blog is not only inspiring, its tantalizing.  Which is why were hooked on these top 6 favorites that leave us wanting even more:

1. Design Sponge

Contemporary and whimsical, this blog spotlights the products and decorating details that make our homes unique.  From quirky notecards to luxurious bed canopies, this blog is a plethora of artistic, fun, and unexpected touches.

2.    Things that Inspire

Driven by a love of art and architecture, this blog is filled with thoughtfully written posts and well done project features, made even better by stories of fond childhood memories and whimsical home accents.  With a flair for French European style alongside more contemporary ideas too, this blog is an inspiring and enjoyable read.

3.    Cote de Texas

Boasting “French design on the Texas Coast” this blog features amazing photos, great stories, and a keen search engine that will help you find images on a whim.  With an ornate sense of style that ranges from Victorian to Southern Charm, this coastal Texas blog is an eyeful of beauty.


4.    The Inspired Room

This warm and inviting blog features lifestyle ideas, recipes, and decor inspiration for indoors and out.  From dream homes to artisan meals, you can walk away not only inspired but with doable projects that will add a touch of elegance to your everyday life.  Recently voted a 2014 Favorite Decorating Blog by Better Homes & Garden’s readers, we’re not the only ones who like it!

5.    Dering Hall

With a search engine framework similar to that of houzz, this site not only features inspiring articles on up-and-coming decorators, celebrity homes, and exquisite interior decor, it also allows you a convenient way to shop for fine home furnishings and search for top design professionals.


6.   A Library of Design

Inspired by gardens, literature, travel, and French style, this colorful blog features interior design photos and ideas that are intriguing and viable.  Written by a published author and magazine editor, this vibrant collection of inspiration is worth visiting.


HENDEL HOMES builds custom homes with unique architectural features in the Minneapolis area. We begin with careful project planning and follow through with sound construction.  Stop by our Artisan Home Tour home next week to see our work in person!