Sunday, August 24, 2008

Fireplace history

Before we cover it all up, here are some things we discovered about the past look of our fireplace.


The old hearths were the odd green marble/glass squares that we took off (held in place by the gray thinset in the upper left) and bricks before that. You can see the outline of the bricks along the bottom.

Unrelated, gratuitous cuteness from the 50 pound lap dog:

Saturday, August 23, 2008


If you are a preservationist who thinks all old houses should be restored to their original condition (except for the concession of bathrooms) may want to look away now.

Our fireplace when we moved in:

We discovered the mantle is not original - there was old wallpaper underneath it and the brackets don't quite match the exterior ones. So we don't feel too guilty about taking it down. Applying thinset to the floors and then drilling in monster screws took a lot of willpower though. I apologize to any future owners of this house who may (inexplicably) wish to replace the hearth we are working on. Really, really sorry. :(

But look how hot this is:

Grout to be applied tomorrow and slate facing up the chimney in September, after our new woodstove is installed. Progress makes Bill happy:

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Our new fireplace!!! still in boxes.

We've been distracted by mini beach vacations and the gorgeous summer weather, but our chimney sweep is coming in a few weeks to install our new woodstove and, you know, line the chimney so it meets basic common safety sense. So, we're going to get started on that building a hearth thing real soon.

Back when we were deciding to buy an old house, we enjoyed reading old house restoration blogs. Sometimes on those blogs folks would write about having to make a decision between 1) fixing-up something that has been neglected about the home for ages or 2) eating. Bill and I used to think that was funny. Then we went to the tile shop and fell in love with...everything.

These are the architectural tiles that have had us eating like college students for the past month. Eventually, they'll go up the entire chimney.

This is another distraction that has helped the hearth-laying procrastination. Yarn dyed with black walnut husks:

Sunday, August 10, 2008


This is Sugar when she is being cute and staying out of trouble.

This is Sugar when she runs away on a Friday morning before work and hops around the tall grass and burdock plants:

Took us two days to get them all out.