Sunday, October 28, 2018

House Update


Someone was kind enough to nominate me on Modenus as Top Design Blog/Social Media
influencer so I thought it would a good time to update the blog with more recent photos
of what I've been posting in Instagram this past year.   

I'd be honored if you'd vote for me.  When I last looked, I was at number 29!

I hear all the time that you miss the blog and while it was fun sharing the renovations while
they were in full swing, there's just not enough time or material to keep it up on a regular basis.
I know that many of you follow me on Instagram, but if you're not an iPhone app kind of person,
here's some images of what'S of been going on around the house.





The entryway hasn't changed at all.  I'd really like to paint the trim darker gray but
there are so many coats of paint on the trim, I can't bring myself to just slap another
coat on.  It really needs to be stripped before I paint again.

But how do I strip the baseboards without messing up the finish on the stair treads?


When I first moved in to the house, I furnished it with a lot of second-hand furniture 
that allowed me to save of improvements and I'm slowly starting to replaced it with a
mix of antique pieces that I've had reupholstered and...


...more modern pieces that I've slipcovered in white so I can swap out
pillows, throws and artwork that change up the look very easily.

In summer, I pare down even more and go without a rug on the floor.
I struggle with collecting and acquiring but I love this photo of the living room
where I've edited down to only a few favorite things.


 

The former dining room room has been turned in to a study.  I found an old mantel
which creates a great focal point for the room and added a few comfy club chairs upholstered
in a neutral herringbone fabric and a more modern footstool covered in steel blue velvet where
I can pile up books and magazines waiting to be read.


I had a bumper crop of Annabelle hydrangreas this year.  So fun to make a huge arrangement.
  


I love how cozy this room has become.



I absolutely love my kitchen.   In a historical house, I think it's hard to create a space
that has all the modern conveniences while respecting the age of the house.
I was so, so lucky to find the old store counter that provided the bin drawers and
column details that make up the base cabinets.  Everyone that comes in and sees
this kitchen comments on how warm and homey it is.  That makes me happy,



Back when I did the open shelves, there were a lot of people that felt the open
shelves would allow the dishes to get dirty and greasy.  By displaying items
that are used all the time, I haven't found that to be a problem at all.  And from what
I've seen in magazines and other media, open shelves have stood the test of time.



I'm still cooking and baking, trying to perfect my pie crust.



And I love making whole meals on the grill.  



Upstairs hasn't changed a lot.  I still have the wallpaper that I glazed with 
watered down paint to downplay the pattern.



If you're a long-time reader, you'll remember that the upstairs of my house was turned into 
an apartment around 1900, so doors were opened up between the three bedrooms that allow
you a view from the back to the front of the house.   It's kind of odd quality to
have bedrooms open up to each other but I do love the open feeling it allows. 
I've considered closing them up but there's no rush to do this.  


I still adore this old green painted cabinet.  I'm seeing a lot of reproduction 
furniture from Asia that has similarly distressed painted surfaces,
but nothing beats the real thing.



I did a lot of work on my garden this year.  The garden needs constant tweaking
as some things suffer and other things grow out of control.  I hired a landscape
architect to help me develop a longer term plan for my little outdoor space.
I would like to establish more privacy and move to plants and shrubs that look 
good for a longer portion of the season.

The grid at the end of my porch will eventually be covered in climbing hydrangea
and will provide a screen between by space and my neighbor's living room window.

 That's a quick little update.  I'm interested to know if anyone still visits so let
me know if you were here.  I've love to hear from you.

And if you voted for me on Mondeus, THANK YOU!

54 comments:

  1. I love the update, your keeping room is fantastic! I hope you continue to update us as things change, or even if you just want to say hi! :)

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  2. Thank you for the update! I love what you've done with the place and, even though I follow you on Instagram, it's nice seeing all the pictures together and having a sense of how the rooms connect. Your place has certainly been a labor of love and you have a wonderful eye. I love the warmth that comes through the pictures. I hope you'll share your holiday decor with us as we get closer to the end of the year. Best, Susan

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    1. Thanks for following on Instagram! Even though I love showing a variety of things on Instagram, I always get a biggest response to posts of the house. And the way Instagram works now, it' s easy to miss a lot.

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  3. LOVE your house - it's timeless and you've done such a wonderful job keeping true to its original spirit.

    Question - where did you get the trellis for the climbing hydrangea? I have one and really need a trellis for it - thanks!

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    1. The trellis is actually two vertical trellises I screwed together to fit that space. It came from a local nursery Mahoney's but it's made by a company in Maine. I can't remember the name of the company but I'll check the next time I'm there. I'm pretty sure you can buy it online.

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  4. I'll do one better, I had a dream about your blog last night!! It was about the hinges and how you refinished them! Surprise! Here you are! Thank you for the update, everything looks wonderful. I wondered how the kitchen turned out. Denise

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  5. Well, I've missed you a lot! (Don't do Instagram.) The house looks wonderful and I just love all the little details. Think of you everyday when I see the lovely pillow cover from your friend. All the best!

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    1. Thanks, Webb. It's so nice to see your name. I hope you've been well!

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  6. Steve! it's almost 9:00 a.m and now you're number 10!!! (I still check my old blog list every morning as there are a few farms I follow that still blog. So happy to see this post. Good luck!

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  7. So happy to see a blog post and update. Your house looks as gorgeous as ever. I love your kitchen, and loved following along as you made design decisions, and then executed them. voted for you on Mondeus, and will vote again. You deserve the win.

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  8. I'm with Susan B! I love the Instagram pictures, but it's nice to hear your voice too. If you have time at some point, I'd be very interested in hearing more about the garden: the process of hiring and working with a landscape architect, the long term plans and goals, and the plants that work (and don't) over time. (BTW, Marvin owes you a commission. It was thanks to your blog posts about Marvin windows and the beautiful windows they made for you that we replaced the horrible, falling out windows in our 1920s house with Marvin windows. We love them!! Thank you for the tip!)

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    1. Yeah, it was interesting working with a landscape architect. That would actually make a good blog post. So glad you love your Marvins!

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  9. I follow you on Instagram but nice to see you here. I love your kitchen ( and I generally am not a fan of the open shelving, but you do make it look good).

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    1. Open shelving is equally form and function. Some of things are there just to be pretty, others are used every day. I think it's a great option for small spaces because it keeps the space more open but I can see shy they're not for everyone.

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  10. I've missed seeing your beautiful house so much! I'll find you on Instagram now to follow your pictures and see how everything turned out. I remember the days of planning the front porch, redoing the kitchen, and all the rest. I'm so happy you posted today!

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    1. The legal process on that porch was a killer. Not sure I'd want to go through that again. Worth it in the end, though. Thanks for commenting, Gayle!

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  11. I had to look a few times at the date above..thought for sure it had to be an old post! I also follow on Instagram, but have missed your blog. My daughter just bought a 1730 house in the old Salem Village section of Danvers, and yesterday we bought her a housewarming gift of a Betsy Ross flag as you have on the railing. Love your home, (and your pottery addiction). Voting!

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    1. Congratulations to your daughter! Wow, that's really old. Do they need to do a lot of renovations? I love your gift; it's perfect!

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    2. The house was a tear total tear down, condemned, rotting and filled with racoons and squatters. It was saved by historian Richard Trask. Unfortunately, when they renovated it, they also took away all the original features and integrity. The summer beams are gone. The remains of the original 6-8 ft fireplace in the keeping room, has been turned into a bathroom. Very sad.


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  12. Hi Steve, well it certainly is nice to see you blogging and to see your lovely home again, although I still see it on Instagram. I am happy to say that I just cast the 100th vote for you. Good luck!

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    1. Thank you so much! Hi to your sweet puppy!

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  13. I was so happy when your blog post arrived in my inbox! I love your house and enjoyed seeing what you've done with it. Would you consider more blogging as you redesign your garden? I miss An Urban Cottage! Thanks for checking in with your readers. Best wishes. Jill, Sacramento, CA

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    1. Maybe. I'm so surprised that so many people have checked in that I'm feeling very inspired.

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  14. Holie Molie...it IS weird...I was looking at my windows ( which need washin...) and wondered how you proceeded w/ yours!! You've come a long way, baby!! That's a commercial..and, everything looks...just as it should!! BEST wishes!! franki

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    1. Franki! So nice to see your name pop up!!!

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  15. What a delightful surprise! Almost as welcomed as the Sox winning the World Series!!

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    1. Not much could top winning the World Series!

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  16. We miss your blog so much! I miss a lot on Instagram but try to keep up as best I can. Your house is so charming. You have exceptional taste. I will vote ! Gladly!!

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  17. Long time follower, happy to see this post. Love your blog and that shot of the living room with the gorgeous green pillow! Wondering where you got the modern paintings? Just voted.

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    1. Thank you for following! The paintings are by a Rhode Island artist by the name of Ron Ehrlich. I had a friend that knew him and I was able to visit his studio/storage space and purchase a few of his paintings. His painting is very different now. Not to diminish the artist's talent, I think it would be possible to pull of something similar to "get the look."

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  18. Hi Steve,

    So happy to see you doing so well on the Modenus list! You deserve it! And yes, I voted for you. But, then I remembered that you sent me some gorgeous photos and I'm pretty sure that I forgot to thank you which was rude, but not intentional. Please accept my apologies. Love your home! xoxo ~ Laurel

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  19. So nice to see your update. The house looks wonderful. Be very careful of the climbing hydrangea - it has those little sucker feet that will grab onto your house and leave marks if you take it off the wood - like ivy does. I had it on a concrete block shed and was very sorry. It may also get out of hand once it starts taking off.

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    1. Thanks for the warning. Yes, I had it at a previous place. I fully expect it will need regular maintenance. I have ivy too and pull it out on a regular basis to keep it under control.

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  20. You popped up on my feed. The house is looking good. Thanks for the update

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  21. Surprise, Surprise . . .
    Loved seeing you today, Urban Cottage . . .
    My Bloglovin reader was very happy . . .
    Annabelle Hydrangeas . . . . LOVED that full, full vase!
    (I have many in my gardens . . . they seem to like it here.)
    I love your cottage, your design, personal, style, treasures, comfort, age, modern, vintage.
    Paint glaze over wallpaper . . . amazing . . .
    You have my vote!

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  22. WOW!! Saw your post - welcome back! Love your home...so many fabulous treasures.

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  23. So happy to have an update. I much prefer a blog, must be cuz I'm old! Please keep posting, even if it's only your kitties.

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    1. You don't look that old! I think the kitties would get boring pretty quickly. They're getting really old and pretty grumpy.

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  24. So happy to see the blog update. First time commenter here. I follow on Instagram but the blog seems to offer more depth. Love seeing what you have done/do with your house. I especially like your mini travel logs. I’m from Saratoga Springs, NY but often visit Maine and have stopped at several of your recommended points of interest. Especially liked Snug Harbor Farm. They recognized your name right away. Have you ever stopped at Simon Pearce Antiques on Rt. 1 just outside York? I think you would like it. I voted. Good luck and hope you keep posting. You are an inspiration!

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    1. Oh, thank you so much for comment. I'm glad you like the places in Maine I've visited. I think I know the place you're talking about in York. It's a big barn with many levels that has a Simon Pearce store attached to it. They have really good stuff there. It's also fun to stop at Stonewall Kitchen. There's lots of good food to sample.

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  25. Hooray! I follow on Instagram, but kept the blog in my favorites and check now and then, hoping for a new view. Love everything, especially your garden. And you got my vote on Modenus!

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  26. I followed your blog for years and now follow you on instagram. I find you an inspiration!

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  27. I was so pleased to see a new post! I've been checking back and had rather given up on seeing additional posts. Your house and garden are lovely. I hope you will be able to post again as life permits.

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  28. SO happy to see a post from you; I have missed you. The house looks as lovely as ever.

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