By Guy Holmes

They had a dream to move to the country and build their forever home in the quaint town of Coburg. With an ever-present shortage of buildable land, the new owners of this beautiful Northwest craftsman-style home had to get creative. 

After months of searching and waiting for vacant land to become available, the opportunity arose to buy a 100-year old farmhouse that was adjacent to a horse pasture. With a little homework and a property line adjustment, they were able to create a 3.75-acre parcel to build their new home. 

With the search for land finished, the next step in creating the couple’s dream home was selecting a builder. The couple interviewed several reputable builders in town and visited a few of their current projects.

After stopping by a Nordic Homes job site to discuss the couple’s project in further detail, the husband found Shallum Bivens ripping up an improperly poured concrete porch. He asked why in the world he was doing that. Shallum responded: “It wasn’t done correctly, it needs to be redone.” This solidified their decision to hire Shallum and Danielle Bivens of Nordic Homes to build their new home. They knew they wanted a builder that wouldn’t cut any corners and would create a quality home for them to grow into. 

With an open ear to their client’s desires, Nordic Homes began the project and transformed the vacant land into a picturesque home site for this family. 

Once the land was found and the builder was chosen, the next step was to start the design process. The homeowners had hired a local drafter/home designer to create the open-living concept they desired. On paper, it looked perfect. However, when the walls began going up they soon realized the kitchen layout was not quite what they had envisioned. Because Nordic Homes designs most of their own floor plans, they were no strangers to the design process. They listened to their client’s desires and made some modifications to the floor plan that would better suit the family and give them the open feel they wanted between the kitchen and dining room.

They eliminated a peninsula that separated the flow of the two rooms and created a large island that serves as a prep space and gathering area when entertaining. The kitchen is a chef’s dream! In addition to the large island, this kitchen includes a 48-inch Wolf range and farm-style cast iron sink, ample counter space, and a large walk-in pantry.  

A guest walking through the front door into the great room will immediately notice the warmth of this 4,750 square foot home. This Northwest-style home boasts wood throughout. The custom cabinetry, solid wood doors, trim, base, and mounding are made predominantly of alder species. The floors are complemented with hand-scrapped solid oak. Warm wall colors and rustic light fixtures finish the interior space and create a perfect sense of cozy. 

Danielle, Nordic Homes’ in-house designer, worked very closely with the homeowners to keep the home’s interior design cohesive and helped select special pieces that would be focal points of interest in the home. Large barn doors were created with reclaimed barn wood, as well as a large reclaimed wood mantle that softens the stone on the wood burning fireplace. Counters, tile, carpets, hardware, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures—every detail was carefully selected. “The process was so easy with the help of Danielle,” says the wife. 

The open-concept living floor plan was designed with the master bedroom on the first level. The “parent’s wing” includes a master bedroom, large unsuited, and dreamy walk-in closet complete with chandelier and separate washer and dryer along with a large study/office.

The homeowners wanted a separation of space from the rest of the home. Builder Shallum added sound board insulation to help with sound transfers from the main living space. That’s the kind of thing that helped Shallum earn Builder of the Year for 2011 and 2013 by the Home Builders Association of Lane County. This year he was also named nationally as one of Professional Builder magazine’s 40 under 40. 

The upstairs was created as a kid’s space—“Kids upstairs, parents downstairs,” says mom—with three additional bedrooms upstairs along with a playroom and library space for the youngsters. The three bedrooms are tailored specifically to each child’s preferences. The Jill and Jill bedrooms for their two daughters have girly features with crystal chandeliers and knobs on the cabinetry. Built-in storage and custom window seats create a special area for each child to engage in their love of books. Their son’s room includes a unique airplane light fixture for a whimsical feel. 

The homeowners are so pleased with the outcome of their home: “It’s our forever home, a place to raise our kids and retire in!” 

Nordic Homes



Advance Concrete Experts



Chalus Construction

(finish trim)


Eldon Terry Construction

(finish trim)


 Emerald Door & Glass

(doors, windows, wood trim, door hardware)


(appliances, plumbing fixtures, lighting fixtures, water heaters, cabinet pulls/knobs, bath hardware)

Harding Electric Incorporated


Imperial Floors

(hardwood and carpet)

Integrity Home Heating

(HVAC and fireplace installation)


J.M. Haugland Construction 

(foundation installation)


Mckenzie Stone and Tile

(countertops and tile) 

Overhead Door Company

(garage doors)

Roofline Supply & Delivery

(roofing materials)

Streamline Paintworks

(painting and staining)


T & S plumbing


Viable Solutions Roofing

(roofing installation)


Voorhees Masonry


Willamette Graystone

(interior and exterior stone)