Meet Melanie Anderson—a custom home designer, labor & delivery nurse and mom to 3 boys. The Frazee, MN native graduated from NDSU in 2009 with a degree in Nursing and Psychology. Her husband Ben (the builder) needed a designer to assist him with clients in making their dream home become a reality; that’s when Mel stepped in; her love for design only continues to grow with each project.
Mel specializes in both interior and exterior design. Everything you can see and touch on a new home she has a hand in selecting.
As a designers, Mel is given access to endless amounts of products to choose from. “I balance my decisions on cost and overall design outcome for the project,” she said. “I have our clients prioritize where they prefer to spend more on and what features don’t matter as much to them. Always being open to alternatives is key!”
Mel works directly with her in-house drafter, Kara. Together, they design on a program called Chief Architect. The sky is the limit with this software and they can make anything come to life. For example, they can change siding textures, add wall color, and make sure furniture fits in your rooms to your dimensions. The software creates a full walk-through of the home that clients can load onto their own phones, or Mel can provide a 3D virtual walk-through with an Oculus headset. “Clients are able to have a great idea of what they are building before the hole has been put in the ground!”
Inspiration, Colors & Trends
Mel loves playing with lines, textures, nature and geometry. Softened simplistic arches, lightly stained white oak, mixed lighting elements (i.e. back-lighting with LED mixed with lighting fixtures), plants, dramatic stone, calm monochrome spaces and specialty trim gets her excited!
For inspiration, Mel’s eyes are always wandering. She loves to travel and get design inspiration from different places she stays and explores as well as the different design elements nature provides in color pallets, landscapes, and shapes. She also often attends the International Builder’s show to find the latest in products and trends.
Ultimately, Mel wants people to know a home is built Benjamin Custom Homes only by the level of quality, not on a specific style or repeat of style. “I want to form-fit each home I design to the family living in it,” she said. “I MELANIE ANDERSON want to create unique and one-of-a-kind artwork.