A modern couple refreshes a Sun Prairie home built in 1894

Ryan and Chloe Homan ended up with was a farmhouse that was surrounded by not one, but nearly seven acres of land in Sun Prairie.
Chloe and Ryan Homan on the steps of their home
Ryan and Chloe Homan ended up with was a farmhouse that was surrounded by not one, but nearly seven acres of land in Sun Prairie. (October 2021)
Photo by Nikki Hansen

Ryan and Chloe Homan were outgrowing their first home.

Well, to be more accurate, their social media business, Frizz & Frillzz, was outgrowing their Sun Prairie home. The online brand with a curly hair care focus — Chloe Homan is the founder, face (and hair) of the social handles — has more than 203,200 followers on TikTok, 137,000 on Instagram and 19,100 on YouTube. By the time you read this, those numbers will have likely ticked higher. The growing business has become so successful that Ryan Homan retired from his corporate career to help full time behind the scenes.

But how does an online brand outgrow a house?

It was mostly the hair care products taking up space. “We had totes full of stuff; it was just a nightmare,” Ryan Homan says.

The mousses, shampoos, oils, deep conditioners, gels and the like that Chloe Homan features in reviews and tutorials were piling up. She’s also amassed a considerable amount of video equipment that needed a permanent studio. They also wanted a house with a bit more outdoor space for him. So they went house hunting for something in their neighborhood, with the idea that an acre of land would be ideal.

chicken in the front yard of a farmhouse

Photo by Nikki Hansen

What they ended up with was a farmhouse that was built in 1894 surrounded by not one, but nearly seven acres of land in Sun Prairie.

“We got probably more than we bargained for because originally we were looking into building, but realized with the cost of building right now and me starting my business, it just wasn’t really at that right spot for us,” Chloe Homan says.

Red siding and white window trim seem like a barn-themed homage to the home’s former life. While the Homans’ plot is surrounded by neighboring farms’ cornfields, their land hasn’t been a working farm for at least six decades. In September 2020 they moved into the house, which has undergone several renovations and additions, and they say they’re still excitedly exploring the home and land.

Chloe in front of her mirror

Chloe Homan now has a light-filled studio to create content for her online brand, Frizz & Frillzz. Photo by Nikki Hansen

Photo by Nikki Hansen

“We’re still learning so much about the property,” Chloe Homan says.

The deal included quite a bit more than the two-story house. In addition to marshy woodlands; willow, maple, apple and cherry trees; wild raspberry bushes; rhubarb plants; and diverse wildflowers, the Homans added a few new animals to the family.

“The house came with chickens,” Chloe Homan says.

Their two dogs, Tinley and Louis, and their cat, Gucci, are now siblings to Scarlett Johenson, Hennifer Aniston and Feather Locklear, who have their own chicken coop built by the former owner.

products all along a wall

Chloe Homan repurposed a built-in bookshelf to house a growing collection of beauty products, shoes and handbags (center). Photo by Nikki Hansen

It’s not exactly the forever home the Homans envisioned, but in addition to the outside areas, what ultimately sold them was the upstairs room that would make a perfect studio space (for her) and the detached, heated shed (for him).

The Frizz & Frillzz headquarters is now a large, sun-filled space upstairs that’s outfitted for video shoots. Camera stands, light diffusers, colored backdrops and blackout blinds allow Chloe Homan to create content with just the right lighting. A custom mural by Madison artist Julie Vornholt can be seen in the background of many Frizz & Frillzz posts. And the built-in, floor-to-ceiling bookshelf is now where those beauty products are organized and displayed, sharing space with her shoe collection and a few handbags.

The couple has tackled several DIY projects already, including a hand-painted refresh on the wood-burning fireplace and a painted and wallpapered drink and board game hutch for the upstairs media room that they’ve also updated. They also turned the front room, which wasn’t being used, into a workout area. There’s still a lot on the list — like building out a walk-in closet downstairs, updating the kitchen, tending to the garden and maybe adding a pool or hot tub someday — but the Homans remind themselves that they can only do so many projects at a time, especially since contractors are hard to find and building material costs are high right now.

All it takes is a walk along the mowed trails in their marshy woods to calm their homeowner anxiety. “During the fall, I just couldn’t believe how magical it looked,” Chloe Homan says. “It all turns to oranges and yellows and reds, and it turns into this beautiful path where you’re just enveloped in fall colors. It’s so pretty.”

They’re falling more and more in love with their rural homestead, spotty Wi-Fi and all. Just another funny juxtaposition of a modern couple living “on the farm.”

Read more home features here.

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