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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

All in the Name of "Progress"

When we first began house hunting 6 years ago, we loved this brick cape cod.  It was a good size, about 3500 sf, but it needed updates and was out of our budget. 


Two houses down was a more reasonably priced house, slightly smaller but already updated.  We eventually bought that house, and it has become the home where we are raising our family. 

I love our house and have no regrets.  But it was always sad to watch the cape cod sitting empty, for sale, and watching the price come down down down to less than 50% of where it was when we were looking (of course).

Well, someone bought it.  A builder.  And he is tearing it down and building 3 houses in its place (it sits on 2.5 acres).  I was so upset to see the "demo" permit on a tree in the front yard last week. (Admittedly my little boy is LOVING the bulldozers in the front yard).

Yesterday the wrecking crew was there starting the demo, so I asked if I could peek inside before they destroyed the house.  They obliged, so I grabbed my camera and ran inside before they could change their minds. I had heard that the lady of the house, also named Sarah, had a flair for decorating.  She and her husband raised their children in the house, and she passed away 6 years ago.   I had heard that the house hadn't been touched since the 1960's, so I thought it might be fabulous.

And I wasn't disappointed.

When I walked in, the first thing I saw was a stack of doors (removed by the demo team), painted kelly green with white trim. 

The dining room walls are covered in AMAZING coral wallpaper with coral wainscotting below.



Check out the modern border around the windows and mouldings.  I love this idea when using wallpaper!  And doesn't the wallpaper pattern look familiar?  Proof that timeless design is classic. 


They told me I could take the curtains, and I was tempted because of the fab 2-inch trim, but I opted against it because I am short on storage space.

Just past the dining room was the kitchen.  Eye popping.  Many leftovers from the 60's are timeless and chic.  Green kitchens are not.

BUT, I absolutely love the wallpaper (just not for a kitchen).  I believe it is a Brunschwig and Fils pattern.  It has delicate peas painted on it.

Apparently painted moulding is nothing new!  I am going to use it in a project one day!

Upstairs, the master bedroom has a fireplace.  How lovely is that?!

More painted trim and wallpaper in a hall bathroom!

After a rain day yesterday, the wrecking crews are back and are tearing down the house today.  They are razing the 2 acres of woods around the house, too, so I guess the deer, owls, squirrels and birds who live there will have to find new homes.  I just feel sad about the whole thing, thinking that Miss Sarah's pretty house is being destroyed and will be replaced by 3 builder homes staged with Pottery Barn furnishings.  I am glad she isn't around to see it and am sad that our neighborhood is losing its second-oldest home.  But I guess this is "progress," right?



24 comments:

bryn alexandra interiors said...

oh no!!! I just HATE reading this!! Such a bummer :(

Holly Phillips @ The English Room said...

I officially do not like progress. That is so sad to lose that house. I know they will build some huge monstrosity with no architectural style at all.

Nicole said...

Vomit.

My Crafty Home Life said...

What a shame. Keep us posted with their progress. I would like to see what they think people want. When my son was younger, we would need to stop at every construction site we passed. He could smell a bulldozer.

Katharine @ SouthernBourbonMountains said...

Such a great post Sarah! I HATE change so I would have been upset too! And if you ever need more storage use my attic! You should never turn down free curtains or kelley green doors!!! xoxoxoxo

Anonymous said...

Capturing the interior of this house brings it to a personal level. You took a wonderful opportunity to get to know this "Sarah" We appreciate the look inside her home.

Betsy said...

It's hard to lose a house like that in your neighborhood, but what a treat getting to look inside. Wow! Great find and great post.

Julie said...

Sad.

Nancy said...

It is a sad event, and it was such a darling house. Isn't that decor interesting and how so much of it has come back! Love that coral wallpaper..you really should go get those fab drapes..and resell them!
xo Nancy
Powellbrowerhome.com

Ashley said...

This makes me so, so sad. Those windows! That wallpaper! Though some might have looked at that house and thought "dated"--many, like your readers, see thse pictures and think "potential". Sarah MUST have loved her home. Such a shame that this home will be replaced with a house with much less character.

Lauren said...

Oh no, I HATE to hear this. I remember that house well and just can't bear to think what it is going to do the neighborhood in the long run...much less the peace and quiet during the next years of construction! On another note, isn't it so satisfying to finally get a peak inside?? Wow!

Little Bitty Damn Houze said...

Great Post! Another testament to live YOUR life while you are living! If you want green peas in your kitchen, then have green peas!!

Thanks for sharing!

Katie Waddell said...

That is really sad! What an awesome home! So glad that you got to share it with the world before it was torn down!

Anonymous said...

Sad indeed. But it does hearten me so much that there are many others out there who see beauty in it and don't feel that "progress" really is. Thank you for sharing Sarah's home, and thank you for not making me feel quite so alone in seeing that "old" things (even that fabulous green kitchen--who could ever have a tired morning in THAT kitchen!) are wonderful.

Loucinda said...

"Progress" is usually highly overrated! I love this post. It's sad, but good for you for getting in there and taking these great pictures.

Lobster meets Peach said...

I would have been heartbroken too!

Meredith M. said...

This makes me incredibly sad and I'm glad to see so many others feel the same. What a shame to lose an adorable house with so much character!

Meredith M. said...

This makes me incredibly sad, but I'm glad to see that so many others feel the same. What a shame to lose a house with so much character!

andrea said...

Oh , that is so incredibly heartbreaking. I do hate to see that. There's so much that could have been salvaged! And to think of the memories, moments and holidays that were celebrated in that house.
This is why I love vintage anything - for the story, the connection that flows through time. And the fact that you had wanted to live there! How dissapointing.
I would've grabbed those curtains and the green door!!
As sad as it is, thank you for sharing. I'm sure Miss Sarah is happy someone could appreciate it's beauty, even now.

goheels83 said...

So sad. I am going to miss that house. How many times have we sneaked over to peek in the windows?? I am so glad you finally got to go inside.

goheels83 said...

So sad. I am going to miss that house. How many times have we sneaked over to peek in the windows?? I am so glad you finally got to go inside.

Anonymous said...

SO SAD! What a fabulous house... I'm heartbroken to hear they are tearing it down. I live in an older neighborhood in Columbia (Shandon) and we recently received a "Historic Neighborhood" designation... now builders have to go through a review process before tearing down an older home and "in-filling".

Debra said...

So sad. Thank you for the thoughtful images and words, at least we can all appreciate what was.
The worst part was the future pottery barn staging in the new houses, ugh!!!

Melissa said...

Horrible. I hate new stuff:-(
BTW-- I sold 14 yards of the Brunschwig and Fils fabric (it's "Toiles des Petites Pois) in the same pattern as the wallpaper via MoS last year:-) Timeless!

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