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Old House Journal

Old House Journal September 2019

The Original Restoration Magazine for people who are passionate about old houses to repair, rehabilitate, update, and decorate their homes; covering all classic American architectural styles,—from the earliest Colonial-era buildings to grand Victorians of every variety to Arts & Crafts bungalows and mid-century ranches.

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United States
Active Interest Media
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8 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
the comfortable house

There’s a tendency to think of America’s “old houses” as falling into three big categories: Colonial, Victorian, and Craftsman. An over-simplification, of course: “Colonial” might encompass everything from First Period through Greek Revival; “Victorian” runs from Gothic Revival through Second Empire and Queen Anne; “Craftsman” enfolds California bungalows and the Prairie School. Some people insist that an old-house designation ends with the Second World War, as building technology changed so much during the 1940s. Others are ready to add a fourth broad category, Modern, bringing Cli. May ranches and Wright’s Usonian houses into the fold. What’s been overlooked? I’d say it’s the large number of historical revival houses built from ca. 1915 through about 1950. Nostalgic, nicely detailed, familiarly modern, and carpenter-built, these are the American Foursquares, Dutch Colonials, Tudors, and…

2 min.
infusing with arts & crafts

1. FAIRYLAND TRUNK The Strawberry Thief steamer trunk is part of a collaboration between Morris & Co. and another British heritage brand. Lined with a chromatic version of the same Morris pattern, the trunk is covered in a water-resistant, high-performance fabric laminated for protection; $1,198.50. Selamat Designs, (800) 395-8760, selamatdesigns.com 2. CUSTOM PORTIERES This custom portiere (door curtain) panel is crafted of heavyweight Craftsman linen in Olive, hand-appliquéd and-embroidered with ginkgo leaves, a favorite Arts & Crafts motif. The panel measures 40" wide x 82" long, $750. From Arts & Crafts Period Textiles, (510) 654-1645, textilestudio.com 3. WEAVING A NEST This juried textile artist incorporates stories into intricately stitched works like the Nest floor pillows. Embroidered on Belgian linen, each 26" x 26" pillow evokes a stylized bird’s nest. $850. Juliarose Triebes, (928) 814-2041, instagram.com/juliarosetriebes 4.…

1 min.
burnished & gleaming

1. SALTY LINES The Nautical is reminiscent of the riveted copper bracket lanterns that once illuminated seagoing vessels. The smallest of the three sizes is 15" tall x 9 ½" wide x 9 ½"deep. (Largest is 24" tall.) Electric or gas, $600 to $800. Bevolo, (504) 522-9485, bevolo.com 2. PENNY BRIGHT The Avila hand-hammered, undermount has a pleasing, semi-circular sloped basin. Measuring 21" long x 15" wide x 4 ½" deep, it comes in brushed nickel or antique or polished copper (shown); optional protective coating. $945. Native Trails, (800) 786-0862, nativetrails.net 3. COPPER-TOPPED Copper makes a luxurious, antimicrobial, long-lasting countertop surface. Tops are hand-built from 14-gauge copper, with an antique matte finish that develops patina over time. $150 to $300 per sq. ft. Specialty Stainless, (800) 836-8015, specialtystainless.com 4. ICEBOX UPDATE Drawing inspiration from early-20thcentury iceboxes, the…

1 min.
bigger than a bungalow

SEATTLE, WA / $1,158,000 This unusual, tri-roofed Craftsman built in 1904 is loaded with Arts & Crafts details and restored wood trim, including leaded-glass windows, a spindled staircase, pocket doors, and, in the dining room, a colonnade, built-in buffet, and natural wood French doors. HOUSTON, TX / $920,000 Tapered porch columns on brick piers, an expansive verandah, lattice casement windows, and bracketed eaves welcome you to this 1910 American Foursquare with bungalow details. Inside: the original staircase, mantels, door and window trim, and a clawfoot tub. ST. PAUL, MN / $159,900 Leaning into Prairie Style, this stucco twin house built in 1910 draws us with a pedimented porch entry mirrored in the third-storey dormer. The interior retains much original woodwork, including plate rail-height paneling and a leaded-glass buffet. MOUNTAIN LAKES, NJ / $927,000 Developer Herbert Hapgood stole…

5 min.
taking a chance on an old house

This is the story of a real-estate flip—our first. It has been financially successful, but even better, it rescued a 1910 house headed for demolition while adding curb appeal to the whole street. It all started with a group email from Jason to Garrett and me: “Hey Guys, I work with a realtor, Linda Tracy–Ryburn, who lists a lot of houses in the Oklahoma City Historic District. She’s looking for renovated houses to sell. I think we ought to go in together, buy this house, and sell it. Linda says it’s a great deal!” I opened the email attachment and looked at the pictures. My first thought was, “Is this a joke?” The place was a dump; it didn’t need renovation, it needed a bulldozer! Then again, I trust my friends. Jason…

1 min.
interpreting period built-ins today

The quest for storage that gained momentum in the late 19th century continues unabated. If only we could order from one of the many builders’ catalogs popular in the 1920s! For just a few dollars, you could buy virtually any built-in, from a china cupboard or buffet to an entire staircase, delivered straight to the site of your house. • No such luck now. Good stock built-ins are hard to come by, but custom ones are not. It’s a matter of finding a period-sympathetic carpenter, cabinetmaker, or design–build team that shares your vision and aesthetic taste, then following through on the details.…