Retirement is a time for re-evaluation for Kent and Priscilla Anderson. The couple loved living in their 1960s rambler on Lake George, but it was time for a change.
While they loved their location, the house itself had major issues. “There were so many things needed to be redone,” Anderson says.
So the Andersons started over with the help of Dolezal Creative Design + Build. This Edina-based, woman-owned company is run by contractor, Jessica Dolezal. She is a third-generation builder with 20 years of experience in remodeling and has been a licensed contractor for seven years. She took over Dolezal Creative Renovations from her father and renamed it. Dolezal is one of the few female contractors in the state.
“I was worried about how I would be received as a female contractor. It was a little intimidating for me,” she says. “When I go to take my classes and when I went in for the testing, I walked into a room full of men and they’re looking at me like I was in the wrong room because it’s so unusual. I still run into a little bit of struggle because it is such a male dominated area. Frequently, when I call to talk to a [tradesperson], they say, ‘Well, who’s your contractor?’ I say, ‘I’m the contractor.’”
Anderson says, “[Dolezal] came out and visited and just told us about her company and what she did. She sounded so knowledgeable. I didn’t think, ‘She’s not a man she probably can’t to that.’ So I felt comfortable with her from the beginning.”
Demolishing stereotypes is Dolezal’s forte. “[Sometimes people] say, ‘Oh, is it a husband and wife team?’ Because usually that’s what it is: a husband and wife team. But it’s just me,” Dolezal says.
But it’s not just Dolezal. “When I meet with a client, I bring my interior designer with me because she is hearing style, she’s hearing functionality, space planning,” she says. “I’m hearing structural, ‘How do we do it? How do we build it?’ It’s helpful because that’s how we know our homeowners are really heard. And those details are tended to.”
Anderson appreciates that attention to detail. “That was really nice to have her bring the whole team in at the beginning,” Anderson says.
Dolezal’s collaborative interior designer then dedicates their time to the entire project. It makes the homeowner feel special because they have a designer assigned to them. They get to do that shopping. They sleep well at night knowing it’s all going to look good.
Since the Andersons wanted their lake house to be transformed into their forever home, Dolezal did everything she could to make that a reality.
“They’d get their dream home and everything that they desired: the one-level living, the basement for their kids and grandkids. They have the most perfect lake lot. We were able to keep them inside of that home so they could continue to develop their years there,” she says.
The first step was to transform the basement from an unusable space to a walkout basement. On the main level, Dolezal reorganized the layout to improve the flow, added a few rooms and a main floor laundry, and also incorporated something special for the Andersons.
“[Priscilla’s] mother, who has passed, handcrafted stained glass and we’re going to incorporate that into the home,” Dolezal says.
Dolezal is proud of her work.
“This is where I’m supposed to be,” Dolezal says. “I’m enjoying every single day. I love the challenges that it brings and the collaboration with everybody involved. I have so much gratitude for the homeowners who entrust me with their vision and their dream and that whole process of construction ... That house that's finished, that’s the reward. That smile. That home that you built.”
Dolezal Creative Design & Build