Prequel Episode One

Here we are… our first prequel episode of Vintage Home Charm. In this episode we will introduce our three long-term project houses being restored for our full-length episodes to come.

In this episode we will also visit Carla Emin in the Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia.  Carla, is truly the embodiment of living the Canadian dream – an old house junkie that has a passion for all things old, antique and vintage.  She bought a house that needed much repair, on a rural highway that has that perfect situation with several outbuildings to open a successful business.

 

Vintage Home Charm Television is here!

Vintage Home.png

Our New Television Series!

Hello to all our terrific Vintage Home Charm Television and Magazine followers and viewers! We have a big announcement! We have just completed our trailer (see below) for the new television series “Vintage Home Charm.” The show will follow every aspect of the restoration process for our three project houses when it airs next fall/winter.  In the meantime, we will be bringing you shorts which will be a prequel to the full 30-minute episodes, starting March 9th, 2018.


We would love to hear from you! Email Us Today


 

Repairing Antique Hinges

Hinge Sag 2

Many wooden doors that have given faithful service for a century or two suffer from sagging because of screw holes which have become, after literally thousands of sharp shocks with closing and opening, too large for the screws. The whole door binds and sags, making it difficult to shut.

Many people are of the misconception that the hinges, or even the entire door, must be replaced. A simple epoxy repair can quickly and permanently repair worn hinge holes. Many original hinges are part of the historic fabric of your old house. Many hinges dating from the Eastlake/Queen Anne Revival period are richly ornamental and are works of art themselves. Some antique hinges can be worth well into the several hundreds of dollars and are highly sought after by collectors.

One of the worst things that can be perpetrated to an antique hinge is to drive new “larger” Robertson or Phillips screws into it. The original slot screws, most of them hand-made until the mid-nineteenth century, are as important an historical feature of an antique door as the hinges themselves!

The Restoration Process:

A door should always be repaired off the hinges with the screws backed-out carefully and the hinges and screws cleaned and bagged. A couple of shims should be propped under the door to absorb the stress from the hinges when the screws are removed (see image 1). Using a drill with a 5/16” brad-point drill bit, drill out the old screw holes, in both the frame and the door, to a depth a ¼” longer than the original screws (see image 2).

Hinge Sag 3

Clean the holes thoroughly with the suction from a shop vacuum. Mix-up a small batch of Rhino Wood Repair liquid two-part epoxy and apply a liberal coat in the holes paying special attention to the sides (see image 3). The liquid epoxy will act as a good hold for the next step of paste epoxy by chemically bonding both epoxies to the wood itself.

Hinge Sag 4

Then mix a small batch of Rhino Wood Repair two-part paste epoxy and pack the drilled-out holes just slightly below the surface (see image 4). Once set, a furniture-quality coloured wax can be used to blend the holes into the surrounding area (see image 5).

Hinge Sag 5

The door is then placed back into position with the hinges attached, again using the shims to prop, and the original hinge housings to locate the hinge. With the aid of a gimlet, (a small hole starter, smaller than the original screws), the screw holes are run through and the original slotted screws are driven home (see images 6 & 7). The epoxy repair is permanent and structurally superior to the original wood frame and door thereby allowing your door to give another several centuries of faithful service.

Stockist:

Hinge Sag 6

VHC Magazine recommends Rhino Wood Repair – available online or at Home Hardware stores across Canada!

The Queen Anne Revival Style Guide

Queen Anne Revival 3

Photography, Illustrations and Editorial by: Dr Christopher Cooper

The Queen Anne Revival house style made its first appearance in North America when the British Government displayed several examples of the style at the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia. It has no real connection with the architecture of Queen Anne herself, however, who reigned from 1702 to 1714.

The style, first appearing in Canada and the United States around 1880, is highly decorative and utilizes a variety of building materials. Often wood frame versions were painted with as many as five or six different colours to bring out all the different textures and trim. The fashion utilized fairly dark colours, similar to what we now call “Earth Tones” – sienna red, hunter green, burnt yellow, muddy brown, etc. Interior and exterior surfaces were almost never left unadorned by some sort of ornamentation. The expansion of the railway system in North America gave architects and builders the ability to create elaborate residential masterpieces. Doors, windows, roofing, siding and decorative detailing were, for the first time, mass-produced in factories for a reasonable price and made easily accessible by shipping by rail.

Queen Anne Revival 5

The homes were generally built with an unbalanced or asymmetrical arrangement of building parts. The windows were a mixture of sizes and shapes including, one-over-one double-hung sash, bay, stained glass, and round arched. The Queen Anne window was also common. It was a large pane of glass surrounded by smaller panes, often of coloured glass. The houses have hipped, steeply pitched roofs with one or more lower cross gables covered with decorative patterned wood or slate shingles. The shingle patterns were arranged and referred to as “fish scale”. Several different wall surfaces were used. Brick on the ground storey, and shingles or horizontal boards above was a common practice. Elaborate chimneys with decorated caps were also among its trademarks.

The Queen Anne Revival movement became the style of choice for domestic architecture, and achieved unprecedented popularity across Canada. It caught on quickly, with numerous architectural pattern books providing the designs, not unlike modern home plan magazines.

Queen Anne Revival 6

Queen Anne style houses are also sometimes called “bric-a-brack”, “gingerbread”, “painted ladies” and “stepdaughters of the gilded age” or “high Victorian”. The Queen Anne style became lofty, sometimes fanciful, expressions of the machine age and was a sign of prosperity. Ironically, the very qualities that made Queen Anne architecture so regal also made it fragile. These expansive and expressive buildings proved expensive and difficult to maintain. With the arrival of the 1900’s the intricate details of the Queen Anne fell out of favour and most of the colourful structures were painted over in conservative whites. Today, however, many of the monochromatic Queens are being brought back to their status as Painted Ladies of the gilded age.

Queen Anne Revival 4

Queen Anne Revival 2

Queen Anne Revival 7

Queen Anne Revival 8

Queen Anne Revival 9