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Selby and Blake McDowell fell in love with a two-bedroom bungalow just outside downtown Bentonville, Arkansas, because of its location. It is not only within walking distance to shops and restaurants but also just a few doors from Selby’s parents, a convenient setup for the young couple whose daughter, Phoebe, can grow up ensconced in her extended family.
The couple loves the historic nature of the home — it was built in 1929 — and wanted any changes to honor the original design. Dave and Jenny Marrs of Marrs Developing, which renovates and restores old homes in northwest Arkansas, turned to exterior products from Ply Gem® for aesthetics that reflect the home’s authentic character and provide durability to last a lifetime.
“This little home felt unanchored in a large yard,” said Jenny, whose unerring design sense leads the couple’s restoration projects. “New luxury vinyl siding, a picket fence and brick veneer foundation skirting pulled everything together. We couldn’t be happier with this clean, classic look.”
Rotting wood siding with peeling lead paint, worn roof shingles, and dilapidated front and back porches made exterior upgrades a priority. And while the home had an expansive yard, it was overgrown and lacked a connection to the house.
Inside, the couple wanted to make changes to open up small rooms and create a light and bright appearance.
For the exterior renovation, Mastic EverPlank Luxury Vinyl Siding by Ply Gem checked all the boxes. It has a true-to-wood look that mirrors the home’s original wood siding, and its palette of a dozen timeless colors suits any design. Jenny chose White for a classic look. Mastic EverPlank’s patent-pending technology allows it to be installed end to end with no exposed nails or unsightly overlaps of traditional vinyl, elevating the home’s appearance. It’s also water resistant, won’t warp, and comes with a lifetime warranty.
And, because EverPlank doesn’t require painting, Dave and Jenny’s cladding choice gives the McDowell family the gift of time.
“This is vinyl siding but with rigidity and texture that gives it the look of real wood siding,” said Dave, a general contractor and craftsman. “Plus, it’s no-maintenance siding, which means Selby and Blake can focus on their family and not on painting and cleaning their home’s exterior.”
Ply Gem Trim and Vinyl Soffits provide a clean, crisp look. Simple to install and durable, Ply Gem trim and soffits make it easy for exterior renovators to create cohesive and long-lasting curb appeal. The trim can also be painted to match the siding color.
To add to the historic charm, the team selected Ply Gem Stone Tumbled Brick Veneer in Chester as an accent skirting around the home’s foundation. A lightweight alternative to traditional brick, this thin brick’s textured surface and irregular edges create a timeless aesthetic that will never peel, chip or blister.
To anchor the home’s expansive property, Dave and Jenny opted for a Ply Gem Fence and Railing Wide Scalloped Picket Fence, bringing the yard and home together for a cohesive and traditional look. Durable and eye-catching, the fence features a unique scalloped design.
“With a young child who will soon be old enough to play in the yard, we wanted a fence that would be both aesthetically pleasing and safe,” Jenny said. “The scalloped shape is a playful take on the traditional picket design and, combined with the new siding and trim, creates an inviting curb appeal.”
“You know what’s amazing to me is how the addition of a fence can make such a big difference,” Dave said. “For the renovation team, there were no splinters, and it went in so easy. For the McDowells, they don’t have to worry about their daughter getting out into the street.”
Inside, the McDowells prioritized upgrades — white paint, vaulted ceilings and natural wood accents — that help small spaces feel larger. In an unexpected find, Dave uncovered an existing brick chimney that serves as a rustic design accent and visually connects with the Ply Gem Stone Tumbled Brick used on the home’s exterior foundation.
“From Mastic siding and trim to the stone brick and vinyl fence, every exterior upgrade will serve this family well into the future,” Dave said. “They won’t need to worry about maintenance or painting and can rest assured their home’s exterior is protected from the elements.”
“I love that we could be part of the McDowells’ first home,” Jenny said. “And I love that it came together so perfectly. Ply Gem and Mastic provide an expansive collection of exterior products that make it easy for us to create complete exterior designs that meet all of the homeowner’s needs: eye-catching aesthetics, low-maintenance upkeep and long-lasting durability.”
Dave and Jenny featured the McDowell home in the fifth season of their HGTV show Fixer to Fabulous. Watch the episode, “Small Historic Home Meets Full Potential,” to see how it came together. And if you’re curious how your home would look in Mastic EverPlank, try our visualizer tool to explore color and finish options.