FRESH START
DesignSTL|November/December 2020
Whitney Kenter finds Zen in a remodeled Midcentury ranch.
AMY BURGER
When Whitney Kenter finally moved into her remodeled 1950s brick ranch in the heart of Glendale, last December, she couldn’t have foreseen just how much time she’d be spending there in the coming year.

Kenter purchased the home in November 2018 and in January 2019 embarked on a complete remodel and addition with friend and interior designer Annie Brahler of Euro Trash. The house has become a serene haven for the single mother of three during this challenging time.

With two teenage sons and a preteen daughter, Kenter needed a house that gave her family room to both gather and escape. Most of all, she wanted a space that really suited her personality.

“The house I moved into after I got divorced didn’t really reflect me,” Kenter says. “It was new construction, and it just didn’t feel right. It was a good lesson in figuring out what I like as a person. This house was me coming into me.”

Collaborating with a close friend with whom she had experience on past projects made the process much easier. Kenter mostly stepped back and let Brahler do her thing.

“She knows me and gets me,” Kenter says. “It was kind of special for both of us because I would come over and I would say, ‘This is amazing,’ and she’d get giddy because she was surprising me.”

Finding the house was itself an achievement. Kenter was convinced she’d never find what she wanted in the Kirkwood/Glendale area, where she was hoping to live. She dreamed of a house with a large lot that was also secluded, surrounded by nature and up on a hill. It seemed too good to be true when she stumbled upon the home’s listing online.

Then she and Brahler went to see it. Kenter was immediately drawn to the acre lot on a hill, with a creek running through the front yard and woods on three sides. It was in a neighborhood, yet felt tucked away. She loved the brick and Midcentury look. The next step was figuring out how to make the house work for her family.

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