Dream Home Is a True Labor of Love for Local Family

The road to life in their lovely, open, modern farmhouse in Bucyrus, Kansas, has been paved with adventure and love, making the experience rewarding. Colleen Payne, her husband, Chris, and their 11-year-old daughter, Layla, moved from their hometown of St. Louis in 2017 for Chris’ job with Protiviti. They began at the Residences at Park Place in Leawood, then found the 12 acres of farmland and knew they wanted to build their own home. They even spent time in their Airstream along the way! July 2020 was their move-in date.

Colleen did the design herself, utilizing her more than 20 years of experience in interior design and real estate. She installed all the cabinets in the kitchen and mudroom, minus the custom island and vanities made by Wes Edwin Design.

“Since my dad was a carpenter and painter, I was lucky enough to pick up so many skills from him,” she says. “We love how open and comfortable our home is and enjoy ending our day on the couch in front of our fireplace, constructed with driftwood and beach pebbles.”

Colleen wanted the color scheme to be predominantly black and white so she could play with décor and change her art, pillows, bedding and other accent pieces easily without worrying about wall color.

“White walls give you such a great backdrop for designing. You can do whatever you like, and it won’t clash,” she says. “It gives you so much more freedom to change it up!”

Colleen shares she has always had a little bit of an eclectic aspect to her design aesthetic in all her homes and has scattered antique pieces around amid new, modern ones. 

“Good design and comfort are my priorities, and this doesn’t have to be expensive,” she says. “We were on a very tight budget with this house, and I chose where I could splurge to make the space come together.”

She has always loved the Scandinavian construction style and incorporated that into their build. She sketched the layout and design and had an architect and engineer finalize the drawings. There is a lot of oak, high ceilings, exposed steel beams and tie-rods, black windows and white walls. The white oak floors were installed by friends at Vaz Hardwood Floors in Stilwell, Kansas, and the custom white oak kitchen island, white oak benches that flank the fireplace, white oak shelves and white oak/painted vanities in all four bathrooms were also made locally by Wes Edwin Design and Erica Kay Design.

“We wanted lots of windows to take in the gorgeous sunrises and sunset views, so we decided to do a commercial storefront look of large glass windows and triple sliding door on the side,” she says. “The basement design was all about family and friends and is the hub for guests, so we widened the oak staircase to the basement and have a nine-foot clearance throughout.”

The outdoor living spaces add so much to their family time, with comfy couches, a dipping pool and swing.

A passion they have is their FarmStrong Flower farm, where they offer flowers at the Park Place Farmers Market in Leawood Saturdays, May through October. She also does private events, sells custom arrangements, offers DIY Bride/Groom buckets and more. 

Visit @farmstrongflowers on Instagram for more information.

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