Dated Log Cabin Turns Forever Home | Season 4

Written by Jenny Marrs on . Posted in .

Jim and Wendy Robinson are a fun-loving couple who moved to Bella Vista, Arkansas from Spring, Texas. They love to dance and go biking together. After researching and visiting Northwest Arkansas, they were ecstatic to find this area just outside of Bentonville. It had everything they wanted, a great sense of community, lakefront living, hiking/biking trails and many wonderful places to visit. They knew this unique lakefront cabin was where they wanted to call home.  

When they purchased this log cabin deep in the heart of the Ozark mountains, they came to us wanting to transform the previously dark and dated interior into a modern and bright Nordic-inspired cabin. What you didn’t get to hear on the episode (for the sake of time, these conversations were cut), is that this family has relatives from and an affinity for Sweden and the minimalistic design style of that beautiful country.

Outside, we kept the gorgeous, traditional logs on the cabin and then I leaned into a classic Nordic cabin inside with plenty of natural light, wood accents and a “less is more” approach. 



Since Dave grew up in a log home in Colorado, this project was right up his alley. He couldn’t wait to get to work on restoring the beautiful wood of this unique home. The first thing he did was call up a specialist from Colorado to blast off the old wax and grime and bring it back to its original, natural wood. After that, a clear coat finish was added to protect the wood and make the house pop. We also painted the garage door and the soffit to make it all look more natural and blend everything together seamlessly. 

The Robinsons weren’t huge fans of the lady of the fountain (same here), but they were big fans of the two women in the stained-glass front door (me too!). We had some fun repurposing the original fountain – watch the episode to see us prank my sister – before we replaced it with a modern water element that is as peaceful as its surroundings. And, as far as the door, Wendy had fallen in love with the door to this home which the previous owners had brought in from a demolished Mexican church. The stained glass, which features a pregnant Mary and a pregnant Elizabeth talking together, was warped and bowing in the middle. We took it to a specialist who was able to restore the glass and reinforce it. 

Lastly, we cleaned up all the landscaping at the front of the house, and added new post lights and sconces. 



Exterior Light Post | Kichler

Exterior Sconce | Kichler

Flag | Allegiance Flag Supply

Fountain | River Rock Water Gardens 

Log Siding – Sanding, Repair & Staining | Jeffus Stain & Service 

Log Siding – Blasting | American Log Home Blasting 

Stained Glass Restoration | Olde World Door and Sunshine Glass

Landscape | Christy Lamers Blossom Landscape & Design

Garage Door & Soffit Paint Color | Benjamin Moore Kendall Charcoal

Living Room


Inside this cabin, I wanted to bring the modern Scandinavian style with plenty of natural light, wood accents and a “less is more” approach. We kept the unfaced logs natural and painted the faced, flattened logs in order to brighten up the living areas. 

The massive stone fireplace in the living room compliments the style of the house perfectly, so all we had to do was update it with a new mantle. A strategy I like to use when you have a big room like this one is to break it up into zones. We created a cozy seating area by the fireplace and other little gathering spots throughout the large room. 



Furniture, Rug & Art | Howse

Runner Rug | Turkish Trunk

Floors | Audacity Flooring LVT (Light Oak) 

Walls and Trim Paint Color | Benjamin Moore White Dove

Kitchen and Dining


I’m so happy with the way the kitchen turned out. The house had a good-sized kitchen to begin with, but its layout was a bit awkward. We were able to fix that by taking away the double doors that led to the main bedroom and moving the bedroom’s entrance to another spot in the house. Then, we were able to connect the kitchen to a coffee bar and to a dining area beyond that. The dining space used to be a hidden room, and now, it flows beautifully from the kitchen and allows easy access to the gorgeous view of the woods below. I wanted this space to have a Scandinavian vibe that feels organic, so I incorporated some natural elements into its design. We brought in a super long cut of quartz for the island countertop and installed the gorgeous white oak cabinets around the large window to frame the beautiful view. The green paint on the coffee bar ties in with the greenery from outside and the vertical slats detail on the wooden hood add an earthy warmth. 



Kitchen Sink | Overstock

Kitchen Faucet | Overstock

Island Light| Build

Appliances | Metro

Kitchen Knobs | Amazon

Kitchen Pulls 10 inch | Amazon

Kitchen Pulls 7 inch | Amazon

Kitchen Pulls 5 inch | Amazon

Bar Hardware  | Amazon

Countertops Template & Install | Arkansas Granite & Marble 

Countertop Material | Fabstone

Runner Rug | Turkish Trunk

Cabinets | Premier Concepts

Kitchen Bar Paint Color | Benjamin Moore Dark Olive

Kitchen Cabinets Paint Color | Sealed with a Clear Coat

Main Suite


Before we got to work on the main bedroom, it had a strange entrance where you had to walk through the kitchen to get to the bedroom. We created a new entrance with a small hallway off the living room. This allowed us to give them two large closets. We squared off the entry wall to create a spot for the bed. That enabled us to add a little sitting area at the front window with a view of the fountain. The mint green paint and muted colors in this room give it a soothing, serene feel. 

We continued this natural and calming theme into the bathroom by choosing lighter colors in here as well. Jim and Wendy had requested we remove the bathtub to give them a standup shower, water closet and a new vanity. With the new fixtures, new shower door, new pendant lights and the warmth of the wood on the cabinetry the look is completely updated with a clean Swiss-inspired style.   



Bedroom Furniture | Howse

Rugs | Turkish Trunk

Bedroom Chandelier | CB2 

Bathroom Light Pendant | Joss and Main 

Bathroom Hardware | Amazon

Bathroom Floor Tile | Lowes

Shower Wall Tile | Lowes

Shower Floor Tile | Home Depot

Bedroom Wall Paint Color | Farrow and Ball Blue Grey



We were so lucky with this loft! Underneath the carpet, there was a beautiful pine floor that only needed to be refinished. Since Wendy and Jim love to ballroom dance, this area became the perfect space for them to practice their steps – and since we brought those dangerously low railings up higher – now they can do it safely. On one side, we replaced the old railing with a pony wall to keep the loft from looking like a strange catwalk. On the other side, we replaced the old railing with a modern horizontal steel handrail that Dave welded. When you look up from downstairs, it looks bright and open, and when you’re upstairs, it feels cozy. We also added a little workspace nook up there as they requested and surprised them with a large window that lets in a ton of natural light while framing the beautiful view outside. But what I think made the most difference here was taking out the old spiral staircase. It was outdated and not functional at all. We replaced it with four-foot-wide steps. Now, the Robinsons have a wide staircase to walk (or dance) down when they want to make a grand entrance into the living room.