Suzy found a collection of factory molds, which were used to form steel into various objects before the days of plastic. The pieces now grace the living room above the fireplace, along with some old railroad pieces. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

Suzy found a collection of factory molds, which were used to form steel into various objects before the days of plastic. The pieces now grace the living room above the fireplace, along with some old railroad pieces. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

Top/The kitchen is the same size as it was before the remodel, which is unusual for a house built in 1952, so they didn’t have to rework the plumbing. Suzy did, however, manage to squeeze in a coveted walk-in pantry. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

The kitchen is the same size as it was before the remodel, which is unusual for a house built in 1952, so they didn’t have to rework the plumbing. Suzy did, however, manage to squeeze in a coveted walk-in pantry. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

If you drove by Rob and Suzy Renz’s house in 2008 and then drove by today, you’d probably do a double take.

In 2009, the Renz house was stripped down to the floors and rebuilt with a refreshing new look by Bella Vista Company.

But as remarkable as the complete remodel is, the most noteworthy thing about the Renz home is the way they’ve finished it.

Suzy and Rob are pack rats at heart.

“We’ve been married 30 years, so we’ve been collecting a long, long time,” Suzy says. “We go to antique stores all the time. Wherever we are, if we’re in a small town somewhere, we’ll go find the antique stores and look around. Rob likes to do that stuff with me, which is nice.”

Fortunately, they have the vision and talent to use the items they find as tasteful decor or repurpose them into custom-made furniture. “My architect calls it Texas eclectic,” Suzy says of her style. “It used to be called country, but when I think of country, I think of doilies and lace, and that’s not me at all. This is more Hill Country mixed with craftsman.”

They also incorporated quirky finds into the finish-out of the house while it was being rebuilt.

“I found a guy who goes to Hungary several times a year, and he imports containers full of furniture and architectural salvage,” Suzy says. “So we bought a lot of that. Once the plans were drawn, we spent a day at his warehouse picking stuff out.”

For the parts of the house that aren’t actually old, the Renzes paid a faux-finisher to make them look that way, such as the island in their kitchen. “The island is new,” Suzy says. “Everyone thinks it’s old, but it’s faux-finished.”

“A lot of the matchbooks are from when we were first dating,” Suzy says, “and maps from places we’ve traveled, so it was fun putting this together. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

“A lot of the matchbooks are from when we were first dating,” Suzy says, “and maps from places we’ve traveled, so it was fun putting this together. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

They designed a “scrapbook countertop” where they used acrylic to freeze various sentimental items such as matchbooks, bottle caps, photos, maps and patches into the counter. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

They designed a “scrapbook countertop” where they used acrylic to freeze various sentimental items such as matchbooks, bottle caps, photos, maps and patches into the counter. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

 For years, the Renzes have been collecting antique bottles, particularly large, colorful Seltzer bottles. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

For years, the Renzes have been collecting antique bottles, particularly large, colorful Seltzer bottles.
Photo by Danny Fulgencio

The Renzes enjoy watching the TV show “American Pickers,” where they’ve picked up some helpful hints. “Did you know stop signs were yellow until the 1930s, and they turned red? We learned that on ‘American Pickers,’ so when I saw that stop sign in Round Top, Texas, I immediately bought it.” Photo by Danny Fulgencio

The Renzes enjoy watching the TV show “American Pickers,” where they’ve picked up some helpful hints. “Did you know stop signs were yellow until the 1930s, and they turned red? We learned that on ‘American Pickers,’ so when I saw that stop sign in Round Top, Texas, I immediately bought it.” Photo by Danny Fulgencio

Photo by Danny Fulgencio

Photo by Danny Fulgencio

One day Suzy had the idea to use a collection of old wine corks to create a mural as the backsplash of the wet bar, and she asked a friend to design it for her. “We really did drink all the wine,” she says, laughing. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

One day Suzy had the idea to use a collection of old wine corks to create a mural as the backsplash of the wet bar, and she asked a friend to design it for her. “We really did drink all the wine,” she says, laughing. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

“We like old stuff,” Suzy explains, “which is funny because I was raised in a house with a bunch of fine antiques and we could never put our feet up on anything, and we are so not that way. We just think, if it gets gauged or if there’s a water spot on it, so what? Because everything we have is old anyways.”Photo by Danny Fulgencio

“We like old stuff,” Suzy explains, “which is funny because I was raised in a house with a bunch of fine antiques and we could never put our feet up on anything, and we are so not that way. We just think, if it gets gauged or if there’s a water spot on it, so what? Because everything we have is old anyways.”Photo by Danny Fulgencio

Photo by Danny Fulgencio

Photo by Danny Fulgencio

The Renzes’ house was featured on the Dallas County Master Gardener annual garden tour in October 2009 and 2013, the Lakewood Home Tour in November 2010, and the Nate Berkus Show in January 2011. Photo by Danny Fulgencio

The Renzes’ house was featured on the Dallas County Master Gardener annual garden tour in October 2009 and 2013, the Lakewood Home Tour in November 2010, and the Nate Berkus Show in January 2011. Photo by Danny Fulgencio


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