Home & Garden

Designing and building kitchen was Amana couple's favorite part of building process

The kitchen at Ryan and Kylie Mausser's home in Amana, Iowa, on Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. The couple contracted Forever
The kitchen at Ryan and Kylie Mausser’s home in Amana, Iowa, on Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. The couple contracted Forever Cabinets of Edgewood, Iowa, to design and build their kitchen. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
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Solid wood cabinets topped the list of items that Kylie and Ryan Mausser wanted for the kitchen in the home they built last spring in the Amanas.

“We’re thinking of this as our ‘forever home,’ so we wanted things we wouldn’t plan to change again,” said Kylie, 40, who home schools the couple’s four children, ages 9, 7, 5 and 2.

Ryan, 36, who works on HVAC systems for AAA Mechanical in Coralville, acted as general contractor for building the new house.

Price was a key factor in their decision-making process, including the kitchen cabinets for their home.

“Some friends of ours used Forever Cabinets,” Kylie said. “And so we went and saw their cabinets, and we really love that they’re local.”

The couple priced solid wood cabinets at local big box stores and found Forever Cabinet prices to be closely aligned. They traveled to Edgewood and toured the mill in northeast Iowa. They liked seeing where everything came from, including the trees used to make the cabinetry.

Several visits to the Minneapolis Parade of Homes and research on Instagram and Pinterest helped the Maussers determine the look and feel they wanted for their kitchen.

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“We liked the two-tone look,” Kylie said, of mixing stained wood with painted finishes and dark and light countertops. “We tried to make it so we’d always like it, whether it’s trendy or not.”

Design consultant Jacqueline Oleson at Forever Cabinets helped Kylie visualize the kitchen’s workspace.

“It was hard for me, trying to imagine how I’d use it,” Kylie said. “I would call her or send her pictures of my ideas, and that’s how she put together the plan. She felt like a friend with knowledge.”

The kitchen features the couple loves the most include the rich, stained wood range hood and the X molding detail on the side of the kitchen island and on the cabinets’ upper glass doors.

Deep, large drawers provide great storage, with room for even large platters.

“The spice drawer is my favorite drawer,” Kylie added. “You can see all of the spices.”

The open floor plan kitchen and living area feature 10-foot ceilings. The kitchen cabinets rise to 9 feet, with the upper shelves providing storage for seasonal items. Kylie likes having those items stored in the kitchen rather than tucked away in the basement.

She said she appreciated her husband’s detail-oriented mind-set and his double- and triple-checking measurements and other details.

“When you build a house, it’s easy to get things wrong,” Kylie said.

Designing and building the kitchen was their favorite part of the entire process.

“Jackie helped with everything” related to the kitchen, Kylie said. “It was a great experience.”

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