By Denise DePaolo
Images by Emily Swan Photography
Matt Keck and Sandi Vojta like to keep things simple. They like quality, craftsmanship, and clean lines. That’s why they are so happy in their new home on Rapid City’s West Boulevard.
The couple, who own Prairie Berry Winey and Miner Brewing Company in nearby Hill City, viewed dozens of homes before falling in love with this 1930s English Tudor. Known as the Swander House, this historic home was originally owned by a local baker. Sandi and Matt are its fifth owners, and although much of its original charm remains, they have already made it their own.
Matt says the curb appeal was a big selling point for them. The brick masonry was done by the same craftsman who built the nearby Alex Johnson Hotel. And in addition to looking great, it serves as an excellent sound barrier from the traffic of the busy central neighborhood.
It is the couple’s fourth home in the area. When they sold the last one, they left all of the furniture behind and started from scratch.
“The style fits the house,” explained Matt. “It’s not taking your personal style and forcing it into the house. It’s letting the house guide you to what it should be. Each of our houses, if you were to go look at them, they’re all different colors on the inside and outside. All different kinds of furniture. We don’t bring our style per se to each house. We look for something that’s different.”
Immediately upon entering the home, it is apparent that it has been decorated with an extraordinary level of care. The palette, cool and cohesive. The vibe, easy and uncluttered, which Sandi says is by design. “We’re very simple. We don’t want a lot of things, a lot of clutter. We are very busy at work, so the last thing we want is to come home to something busy.
To the right is a sitting room done in greys, with cozy chairs flanking the fireplace and a large embossed area rug covering most of the oak planks, which are original to the home. A narrow table done in a weathered-looking grey wood displays a collection of pottery in varying sizes. The room’s art pieces reflect the couple’s affinity for nature. One wall holds an image of a dandelion, ready to shed its seeds. Opposite is a 3D piece made of driftwood and crocheted fibers. As one looks about the home, subtle architectural details reveal themselves.
“We love the coffered ceilings,” said Matt. “There’s a lot of cool details you don’t see anymore. Before buying this house, we looked at dozens of houses and we’re always drawn back to the older ones, because of the craftsmanship and the details. The character.”
Across the entryway is the formal dining room. Atop another large rug, this one bearing an intricate white and indigo design, is a table for eight in a soft brownish-grey with turned bannister-style legs. A runner, striped in white and deep blue, echoes the rug below. The room’s greatest adornments come in the form of illumination: from the large windows looking out at the front lawn, and the rectangular pendant chandelier hanging above.
Sandi says she was very picky when selecting her dining room pieces, and that she’s particularly enamored with the chandelier. “It had to go with the table and it’s simple, yet elegant. It’s a combination, a hybrid. We didn’t want anything fancy-fancy, because we’re not fancy and it just needed to be pretty, yet functional.”
Read the full article in the November issue or click here. For more images, continue to scroll.