Some renovation projects are spurred by the purchase of a home and others are the fruit of years of scheming and dreaming about how a house could be. After living in this home for twenty years and raising two children, the homeowners justly decided it was time for a big renovation. This Greek Revival home was built in 1848 and is one of a handful of original farmhouses from Burlington’s agrarian past.
When we started working with the delightful homeowners, it was clear that they trusted us to make their house shine. There were some design challenges to figure out, however, before the process of restoring the original character and charm could begin.
Luckily, humor permeates this house because when our Lead Carpenter first met the homeowners, he walked into the kitchen and exclaimed, “Nice carpet!” After years of cooking, child-rearing, and entertaining; it was time for the pink shag, wall-to-wall carpeting in the kitchen to go! As part of this project, the kitchen layout was changed and the ceiling of the kitchen was lofted to create a dramatic, airy feeling. A small addition was added that simultaneously created the perfect spot for the kitchen table while also cleaning up the lines of the West exterior wall. The original wide-plank pine boards in the living room were carefully salvaged, squared, reinstalled, and sanded. It was a labor of love, but everyone involved in the project agrees it was well worth it. The first floor guest room and bath were also updated in order to accommodate aging guests more easily. Lastly, a new mudroom, laundry room and home office nook were built in the space adjoining the garage. As a finishing touch, the mud room bench was built using recycled building materials from the project.
This was not just a “paint and polish” style renovation job. In order to update the home for the twenty-first century, the entire electrical and plumbing systems within the first floor were reworked and brought up to code. Given the limitations of a typical rough cut 2×4 wall, spray foam insulation was installed in all of the exposed walls on the first floor. The insulation continued into the roof of the addition as well as the basement walls. Moreover, new Marvin six-over-six windows were installed to replace the worn out vinyl replacement windows, thus returning this important period detail to the exterior façade of the house.
In the end, it was a wonderful project and the homeowners were so thrilled with their new space, they insisted on throwing a holiday party for everyone involved. A delightful Derway time was had by all!
For more information about the history of the house, see Preservation Burlington’s Article “Behind the Green Marker”