Kibler & Kirch Nostalgic Wild West Wyoming Cabin Makeover Featured in New Book "Cabin Style"
Montana design house Kibler & Kirch has transformed a plain-Jane Big Horn, Wyoming, cabin with painstaking handcrafted detail, capturing the vintage Wild West spirit of famed cowboy furniture designer Thomas Molesworth and winning space in the new coffee table book “Cabin Style” as well as Mountain Living magazine. Kibler & Kirch owner and creative director Jeremiah Young, known for his facility with authentic and timeless Western design, calls the resulting home “entirely original and handmade,” including every screw, light fixture and piece of hardware.
A low-slung bunkhouse-like structure built over 50 years ago on a large piece of land in scenic Big Horn, Wyoming, was at one point declared a teardown. However, a Texas couple, ranchers and horse breeders looking to relocate, thought otherwise, opting to recreate the structure as the vintage Western cabin of their dreams, embracing their love for classic dude-ranch styling of the ’30s and ’40s. Cue Jeremiah Young, owner of Montana interior design firm Kibler & Kirch, with a well-earned reputation for understanding the nuances of real-West charm grounded in a deep knowledge of history and craftsmanship and an unparalleled eye for detail.
The timeless appeal of the resulting residence earned a chapter in the new design book “Cabin Style” (Gibbs Smith) by Chase Reynolds Ewald with photography by Audrey Hall, just named one of Western Art & Architecture’s “Things We Love” for December 2019. The Big Horn cabin also recently graced the pages of Mountain Living magazine’s popular annual “Rustic” issue.
The acclaim for this Wild West jewel box of a house didn’t surprise designer Young. The home, he says, “is modest from a certain perspective. But everything is made by hand—every screw, every light fixture, all the hardware. The house is small, but no expense was spared, no corners were cut. The approach was entirely original and handmade.”
To achieve the goal of a beautifully functioning house that fit the homeowners’ appreciation for the historic cowboy-and-burlwood creations of iconic Cody craftsman Thomas Molesworth, Kibler & Kirch joined a team that included architect Dennis Deppmeier of 2north, who brought his background in historic preservation to bear. Structurally, the roof was replaced and the upper level rebuilt with two cozy bedrooms and a bathroom. Reclaimed wood and river rock treatments were added to the exterior and the porch was removed and reconstructed with standing dead logs to support it.
Meanwhile, Kibler & Kirch sourced a variety of handmade elements for the interior, including Old Hickory Furniture Company classics and Molesworth reproductions by Marc Taggart of Cody, Wyoming. The preferred Molesworth style guided many choices from lighting to furniture to materials used within the home such as iron, leather, applied poles, Navajo rugs, Pendleton blankets, brass nailheads, fringe, burl and beadwork.
An extraordinary level of detail both in the exteriors and the interiors helps to create the strong sense of authenticity in the home with custom cabinets built from reclaimed wood, doors and floors crafted from reclaimed fir, and handmade floor tiles in the mud/laundry room. And pieces such as a built-in wooden bed, distressed leather chairs and antique and new rugs – combined with an impressive art collection featuring Ansel Adams photographs, a stunning Glenn Dean oil painting and a collection of Edward Borein etchings – all contribute to the home’s immersive quality.
“It’s hard to know what year it is when you step into this home,” says designer Young. “It’s amazing to have the chance to create such a feast of authenticity and timeless appeal.”
About Jeremiah Young’s Kibler & Kirch:
Annually recognized on Mountain Living magazine’s Top Mountain Designers list, Kibler & Kirch resonates with a distinctive – and distinctly Western – style through the various branches of the business. Its Billings showroom represents more than 100 companies – a carefully curated collection of furnishings and décor ranging from rustic to refined. And the talented design staff brings those resources – and deep connections with regional artists and artisans – to bear on crafting interiors for clients who range from young professionals and just-marrieds to second-home owners creating luxurious turn-key Rocky Mountain dream home projects. Always, Young and his Kibler & Kirch team create comfortably tasteful living where the spirit of the West meets modern treasures that are built to last. Follow Kibler & Kirch on Instagram and for more information, visit https://www.kiblerandkirch.com.