Kelsey Rasco and Shawn Shackle have a beautifully blended family, including two sons from Shackle’s previous marriage and a new son and daughter together. Within their Moorhead rambler home, purchased in fall 2018, they echo this idea of being beautifully blended by tackling bite-sized renovation projects. The home that stands today has parts of the original home intermixed with new additions and fixes, creating a distinctly unique space.
Upon moving into the home, they immediately got started with a few “must haves,” like tearing up the carpet and changing up the paint colors. Once the home turned into a somewhat-blank slate they could work with, the piece-by- piece projects started to happen.
Rasco’s eye for design and impeccable taste guide these renovation projects. And it only makes sense, as she is the owner of mid-century, fun-loving home decor store Dash & White. Her mission with Dash & White is to spread joy and personality within the home. She is a firm believer in “treating yourself” and knows how important it is that you love the space you live in.
Whether embarking on a complete renovation or taking it step-by-step, Rasco offers this advice:
Fall in love with your home.
Design with purpose.
That being said, let’s take a look at some of the Rasco-Shackle family refreshes.
A FUNKY LITTLE BAR CABINET
What was once a $25 Facebook Marketplace purchase is now a sophisticated bar cabinet, thanks to $75 in paint, hardware and led lights… and some sweat equity. Rasco noted that she and her husband don’t typically embark on furniture rehabs, but a mix of quarantine restlessness and being eight- months pregnant made her talk herself into the idea.
“We were looking for a funky piece of furniture to fill a corner. So we found this armoire and turned it into a bar cabinet,” she said. Rasco had visions of slapping some paint on it and calling it a day, but Shackle wanted to do things right. This meant taking apart the whole piece and painting every nook and corner. Rasco joked that this project drove her crazy, but that makes for a good story, right?
No matter what the “during” process looked like, the “after” is a mid-century modern showstopper in a delicious navy blue with brushed gold and leather accents. On the inside, Shackle insisted on adding lights to illuminate the otherwise dark interior. Now, the various glasses and mixology tools are given the right attention they deserve, with the lights automatically turning on when you open the cabinet doors.
Wine glass holders were installed to maximize storage and shelves were adjusted to ensure all sizes of bottles could be accommodated (yes, including Costco-sized bottles). Much of the barware inside and the decor adorning the top of the cabinet are from Rasco’s store, Dash & White.
Not in the cabinet itself, but certainly helping draw attention to the area is a stunning kudu skull. The kudu is a woodland antelope, typically found throughout eastern and southern Africa. While Rasco herself isn’t a fan of game hunting, she had long been enamored by kudu skulls and their dramatic, gorgeous horns. After searching, she finally came across this one and knew she had to have it. Mixing a rustic animal skull with a modern environment makes for a unique, one-of-a-kind look.
Perhaps one of the most impactful and sentimental additions to the home is this custom built-in shadowbox. Originally, the home had a built-in shelving nook that Shackle loved and Rasco despised. Between deciding to sheetrock over it or keep it as-is, Rasco decided to surprise her husband with this magnificent shadowbox that showcases his Army career.
“I used to be a custom picture framer for about 12 years, so I’ve worked on collages like this for a while,” said Rasco. With this experience, she brought to life a keepsake that includes Shackle’s old dress blues jacket, a framed letter from the senator, his dog tags, some of his metals and awards and even an acrylic brick encasing bullet rounds from his second Afghanistan deployment.
All these artifacts are stored safely away behind a Plexiglass covering. This covering is conveniently removable so that the family can still access what is behind it and can add to the collection if wanted.
Beyond being a beautiful piece of decor, it serves an educational purpose too. “Shawn was overseas when his kids were infants, and there will be a time when they learn that he wasn’t around during their infancy and I just really want them to be educated on where he was and what’s was doing,” said Rasco. She believes it is important to have these types of things in the home.
This bathroom remodel was intended to be a weekend project, but of course, it extended beyond that. This process included tearing out the existing large mirror, removing a bizarre built-in scale, replacing the lights and fan, new paint on the walls and vanity, a poured epoxy counter, a new backsplash and new faucets. Phew!
While the big things like new counters of faucets are exciting, it’s the little details that make this space uniquely Rasco- Shackle. “I love oddities. And frankly, that’s what I promote at my store. Just to fall in love and enjoy your art and your home and your accessories,” said Rasco about the fun nesting dolls and packets of old teeth that serve as decorations in the new bathroom.
A MOODY & SOPHISTICATED SUNROOM
The family bid a cheerful goodbye to the primary-colored, sports-themed sunroom once overlooked their swimming pool. When summer rolled around after they purchased the home in the fall, it was time to turn this juvenile spot into a sophisticated lounge.
A perfect shade of dark charcoal replaced the yellow, blue and red beadboard. This color played well with the existing pine ceiling, giving it that desirable mid-century modern aesthetic. They played up the wood accents and also added a live edge wood bar to serve up food, drinks and style on. Add in some string lights, Sono’s speakers and greenery and they had themselves one cool hangout spot.