A flickering gas lantern mounted on a bracketed shelf outside the front door of Brandon and Robin Bodell’s Draper home looks as if Robin casually set it there to guide her way indoors after horse riding in the neighboring pasture. The charming feature speaks volumes about the character of the couple’s newly built house, as well as the family’s lifestyle and their love of home.

A wall of doors folds away to open the living room to a covered patio and large pool beyond. Photo by Joshua Caldwell

As the principal of Brandon Bodell Construction, Brandon makes a living by building dream homes for select clients in northern Utah. To create the same for his own family, he and Robin purchased a dilapidated 1800s house on land that borders a horse property in Draper. While the dwelling was derelict, its site was heaven-sent for Robin. She’d grown up on an Idaho ranch and dreamt of one day riding her own horse in a pasture only a stone’s throw away from her family home. This property provided exactly that, so the Bodells removed the ramshackle house, making way for their new residence.

Farm Raised.  Bodell family
Homeowners Brandon and Robin Bodell with their children Sam, Ty, Isabel and Gracie (left to right). Photo by Joshua Caldwell
living room, Bradford Houston, painted beamed ceiling, vertical poplar planks, poplar beadboard, Christie Lewis interior design, mixed fabrics, blue-gray color palette, Seth Winergar
The light-filled living room is conveniently located off the kitchen and features masterful finish carpentry and trim details. The painted beamed ceiling matches the unpainted version in the neighboring kitchen. Vertical poplar planks dress the room’s upper walls while poplar beadboard runs horizontally across the lower portions. To create the room’s comfortable, collected style, interior designer Christie Lewis chose low-profile, relaxed furnishings and mixed assorted fabrics and patterns in shades of blue and warm gray. “After Rain” by artist Seth Winegar hangs above the fireplace. Photo by Joshua Caldwell

Brandon and Robin created a long list of the features they wanted in the house and had preliminary architectural drawings created to include them. The drafts were disappointing, but the couple couldn’t identify why. They turned to architect Bradford Houston for help.

Farm Raised.  entry, ipe slats, climate-friendly porch, Bevolo gas lanterns, Bodell's
The entry was deliberately placed off-center to foster the home’s traditional farmhouse style. Brandon used ipe slats to create a climate-friendly version of the wooden front porch Robin recalls from her childhood ranch home. The gas lanterns are by Bevolo. Photo by Joshua Caldwell

“I told him 200 things we wanted in the house and explained that, while these plans have them all, they just don’t work,” Brandon recalls. Houston placed tracing paper over the drawings and began sketching, lightly tweaking the floor plan and fully reworking the exterior to bring forth coveted character. “The original drawings had all of the requested components, but the soul of the house was missing,” explains Houston, whose versions rejected many of the couple’s must-haves. The transformative tracings transfixed Brandon. “The best thing an architect can tell you is ‘no, it’s not good for the house,’” he says.

kitchen, oak plank floors, Tabarka tile backsplash, fumed oak beamed ceiling, plaster hood, white custom cabinets, gold hardware, built-in nook table, Benjamin Blackwelder Cabinetry, Bodell's
Oak plank flooring of varied widths grounds the kitchen, where a hand-painted Tabarka tile backsplash, fumed oak beamed ceiling, custom plaster hood, and custom cabinets infuse the room with comfort and character. “Like Robin, this room makes you feel welcomed, loved and at ease,” Lewis says. The cabinets and built-in nook table were crafted by Benjamin Blackwelder Cabinetry. Photo by Joshua Caldwell
Farm Raised butler's pantry, blue Dutch door, white cabinets, gold hardware, faucet by Waterworks, sconces by Visual Comfort, Bodell's
The butler’s pantry sits behind the kitchen and features a farmhouse sink and charming Dutch door. The faucet is by Waterworks, and the sconces are by Visual Comfort. Photo by Joshua Caldwell
Bodell's, hand-painted Tabarka tile backsplash, La Cornue range, Calacatta Caldia marble countertops, plaster stove hood, gold hardware
Hand-painted Tabarka tiles dresses the wall above a La Cornue range and cabinets topped with honed Calacatta Caldia marble. Photo by Joshua Caldwell

Houston looked to the pasture-sided property, mountain views and Draper’s rural past for architectural inspiration. “When I saw the property for the first time and I realized it sat facing a horse paddock, the style of the home just seemed to reveal itself,” says Houston, envisioning a traditional farmhouse. Robin’s love of horses and a childhood spent on a farm reinforced his concept. Dismissing thoughts of a modern farmhouse, Houston looked to historic precedence for guidance, including ideas derived from an old home in Park City. It was characterized by clapboard siding, an off-center entry, a forward gable and a picket fence. “While it isn’t a farmhouse, it presented the sense of homeyness and nostalgia we wanted to create,” says Houston, a self-proclaimed classicist with a preference for traditional styles.

powder room, Thibaut wallpaper, brick floors, marble countertop, hand-made washstand by Benjamin Blackwelder Cabinetry, Rohl faucet, Visual Comfort, woven basket storage
“It may be small, but we packed it with personality and traditional details,” says Lewis, describing a powder room finished with Thibaut wallpaper, brick floors and a marble-topped, hand-made washstand crafted by Benjamin Blackwelder Cabinetry. The faucet is by Rohl; the pendant by Visual Comfort. Photo by Joshua Caldwell
Farm Raised
Brick flooring adds durability and charm to the combined mudroom/laundry room, where custom cabinets store coats and backpacks for each family member. Farrow & Ball De Nimes paint dresses the room in a grounding blue, and a lantern-style pendant by Visual Comfort adds a shot of gleaming brass. Flooring is by Brick Design Co. Photo by Joshua Caldwell

Houston researched and conceived the new home’s exterior before addressing the final floor plans. “I spend a lot of time initially determining what the clients want the home to look and feel like, so there is consistency inside and out,” he says. Rejecting formal symmetry and materials at odds with a traditional farmhouse, Houston devised an asymmetric dwelling with a tucked-in, off-center entry, clapboard siding and broken-up structural massing that suggests an attached barn that serves as a garage.

dining room, china cabinet, custom hutch, Visual Comfort chandelier, slatted planks, exposed rafters, Restoration hardware table set, Pottery Barn rug
Robin displays her grandmother’s china in the dining room’s beautifully crafted custom hutch. A Visual Comfort chandelier hangs from a ceiling detailed with slatted planks and exposed rafters. The table and chairs are from RH; the rug is from Pottery Barn. Photo by Joshua Caldwell
master bedroom, Bodell's, pine slats, exposed rafters, herringbone pattern, brick fireplace,  built-in window seats, tufted upholstered bed, swivel chairs, elegant tiered chandelier, white-gray-blue color scheme
Pine slats and exposed rafters dress the master bedroom with immeasurable charm. A herringbone pattern draws the eye to the brick-detailed fireplace framed by built-in window seats. “I wanted this space to be traditional, but not formal,” says Lewis, who chose a tufted upholstered bed, cozy swivel chairs, mixed pillows and an elegant tiered chandelier to furnish the spacious room. Photo by Joshua Caldwell

Exacting the same level of authenticity and detail inside the home, Houston worked with the Bodells and interior designer Christie Lewis to create living spaces that look and feel consistent with the exterior’s style and materiality. In the handsomely paneled entry, for example, Houston rejected the owners’ idea of an exposed brick wall, explaining that while brick would appear authentic on a fireplace, using it to form an interior wall inside a wood structure would look out of place. For the same reason, he favored simple butt-jointed planking rather than a refined tongue-and-groove design for the wall and ceiling treatments. Houston’s discerning eye considered everything from proper door and ceiling heights to the ideal material flow to unique details including exposed rafters, transoms and gas lantern lighting.

Farm Raised. Master bathroom, honed clacatta marble, brass accents, freestanding tub, hand-painted floor tiles, cream-white color palette, Bodell's
Honed Calacatta marble, brass accents and a sleek freestanding tub team with wood-planked surfaces and hand-painted floor tiles to create the master bathroom’s sophisticated farmhouse style. A neutral palette of creams and whites helps establish the light, tranquil décor. Photo by Joshua Caldwell
vanity, brass mirrors, brass-and-lucite sconces, un-lacquered brass hardware
Brass mirrors, brass-and-lucite sconces and un-lacquered brass plumbing fixtures and hardware deliver elegance and timeless beauty to the bathroom. Photo by Joshua Caldwell

Lewis curated the interior’s decorative elements with similar scrutiny. “A lot of thought went into creating a traditional farmhouse feel,” says Lewis, who worked closely with the Bodells to foster a feeling of integrity and comfort. Brandon’s masterful carpentry and construction created the ideal stage for the design. In the kitchen, for example, a fumed white-oak ceiling and a backsplash dressed in handmade Tabarka tile creates a compelling backdrop for a plastered hood, mixed painted and exposed grain finishes and flickering Bevolo gas lanterns. In the adjoining living room, anchored by a brick-trimmed, planked fireplace wall, Lewis paired a slipcovered linen sofa with cognac leather chairs and mixed contrasting fabrics and patterns to promote an informal, collected décor.

Farm Raised. Brandon Houston, hallway, built-in cabinets, Visual Comfort lanterns, brass hardware, blue plant pots, wood planked walls
Houston devised a row of windows to fill the upper hall with light and mountain views. Below, built-in cabinets store Robin’s books. The lanterns are from Visual Comfort. Photo by Joshua Caldwell
stairwell, exposed oak handrail, Bodell's, horizontal wood plank walls
A simple handrail and exposed ends of oak treads and risers foster the home’s farmhouse style. Brandon cleverly transitioned the lower staircase’s stacked wall planks to vertical versions as they reach the upper level. Photo by Joshua Caldwell

Lewis also chose a grounding blue paint for the handsomely trimmed mudroom and laundry. “The color not only adds personality, but it also complements the charming brick floors,” she says. The designer draped Thibaut fabric beneath the mudroom’s sink and repeated its pattern on the powder room’s walls for continuity. Other elements of note include the dining room’s custom hutch crafted by Benjamin Blackwelder, the spacious master bedroom’s pillow-laden window seats framing a soaring fireplace, and the master bathroom’s exposed rafter ceiling, planked walls and handmade tile floor.

Farm Raised
As featured in the powder room, Brandon incorporated charming push-button switches throughout the home to add another layer of vintage charm. Photo by Joshua Caldwell.
Farm Raised mudroom, built-in cabinetry, doggie pen, woven storage baskets, Rejuvenation hardware, brick floor
The mudroom’s built-in cabinetry includes a doggie pen replete with a small door that opens to the yard. Large cubbies hold baskets that serve the room’s laundry area. The hardware is from Rejuvenation. Photo by Joshua Caldwell

In the end, the Bodells built the dream home they always wanted but hadn’t completely envisioned at the start. “We didn’t say we wanted a farmhouse; we said we wanted a family house,” Brandon recalls. By working closely with their talented team, Brandon and Robin created exactly that both for themselves and their four kids.

A fence-lined pasture fronts the Draper home built by owner Brandon Bodell and designed by architect Bradford Houston. To capture the authenticity of a traditional farmhouse, the team created an asymmetric design and incorporated distinctive details that include exposed rafter tails, gas lanterns, a shake roof and painted clapboard and board-and-batten siding. Photo by Joshua Caldwell

For more House Tours, click here.

Previous articleStylemakers Spring 2021: Curate to the Trade
Next articleFinely Taylored
Brad Mee
Brad Mee is the Editor-in-Chief of Utah Style & Design Magazine.