Photography by Corey Gaffer

Careful and considerate. That’s how Charlie & Co. Design principal Colby Mattson describes the plans for this house in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. This thoughtful approach coupled with his innate ability to work with the region’s striking landscape resulted in a home that exudes warmth while remaining decidedly modern.

But not too modern — at least not until you get inside. Owners Kara and Nick Shawd live in a neighborhood with more traditional houses and wanted the exterior architecture to evoke a similar aesthetic. To bridge the gap, Mattson looked to the landscape. The home’s horizontal, plain-like lines reflect South Dakota flavor. Deep roof overhangs accentuate those lines while protecting doors and windows. And the structure’s orientation is ideally positioned to block the sun in the summer and capture it come winter. (This is the North, after all.)

Inside the 5,575-square-foot residence, a warm mix of natural woods is offset by polished concrete floors, floor-to-ceiling windows and attention-demanding artwork. “We wanted a simple design with clean lines,” Kara explains. “It has to function for us now and also when our children are grown and moved out. A large, separate closet for me, a main-floor workout room, and an open living room and kitchen were must-haves.”

Kara designed the interior, thoughtfully selecting every material, finish and work of art. She and Nick frequent Modern Arts Midtown in Omaha, Nebraska, and spent a day there picking out a few new pieces. The art collection dictated the positioning of some walls and windows — a large south-facing stunner in the living room, in particular — and necessitated the art wall that greets guests at the entryway. “It’s one of my favorite parts of the house,” notes Kara. “I love how you can see it from the street through the glass doors at night when the lights are on.” A walnut wall acts as a shield, concealing the interior from public eye.

But the artwork is just part of this home’s beauty. “We really thought about how the house feels as you move through it,” says Mattson. “We kept sightlines in mind so you can see the details throughout.” 

Even the garage is gorgeous, with its Fond du Lac limestone making a Prairie-style statement. Suddenly something so ordinary becomes a design detail to be appreciated.

The open floor plan and large expanses of glass allow for that appreciation of detail, both inside and out. A small deck behind the living room cantilevers outward, almost like a dock. It allows the Shawds to easily circulate around the house, while a covered porch off the kitchen makes the indoor-outdoor transition seamless.

The collaboration between the Shawds, Charlie & Co. Design, and Justin Skogen of Skogen Company was equally seamless. “One of the biggest compliments is when a client truly feels like part of the design process,” says Mattson. “Design ownership is reflected in the diversity of our projects, and the common thread is that the elements are personal.” 

Read this article as it appears in the magazine.