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Friday, June 11, 2010

Show & Tell Friday: Front Entry Hall

One of the rooms here at Le Beau Paon that has remained virtually untouched since we bought the house is our front entry hall.

One of the 3 fireplaces in the house is located in the front hall. The yellow/gold mustard color of this room was chosen by the previous owners.
The mirror I purchased many years ago at an estate sale and it sat in storage with all my other antique things, for more than ten years, until I had a house to put them in. The fireplace mantel has it's original finish, which has darkened and crackled with age (except for one place in front where a previous owner must have spilled paint thinner and the finish came off).
I do like dark, Gothic Revival Victorian style, so I am not opposed to dark colored woods. I know that my Fu Dogs on the mantel are Chinese in style, but I like that they remind me of gargoyles, which is very Gothic.
Unfortunately, previous owners didn't like the dark colored wood and all the molding in the house is painted white, including the front staircase in the entry hall. (There are actually about 6 layers of paint on all the woodwork--I found that out when trying to remove paint from hardware.)

Anaglypta was also applied to the staircase before it was painted. We would like to remove all the white paint, but given the many layers of paint (some of them no doubt enamel) we're not sure it could be done and it would definitely have to be a job for a professional.
In the meantime, we live with it as best we can. I love our little "cupboard under the stairs". It's a handy place to store games.(We have lots of board games and party games).
I love chairs and this one is my favorite of all my chairs. I bought this chair at an auction years ago. It seems like it was made for this room.
I just love the decorative woodwork on this chair. It also has it's original upholstery, which is a stamped velvet. The seat cushion is stuffed with horsehair and excelsior.
This little table I bought at an auction many years ago. It cost me a whopping $5.
This cast iron French Bulldog doorstop is not vintage; I bought this a couple of years ago at Bastille Days in Milwaukee.
My 'kitty collage" hangs next to the front doors. I took photos of our four cats, then changed the color pictures  to sepia tone on my computer. I bought this frame at Target; it was perfect! These are the only pictures of our "furry children" that I display in the house and I wanted it to look sort of arty. It's nice to look at and I'm glad to have it, especially since we lost two of our cats ( Little and Baby, the two on the bottom) to cancer last year.
Anyone remember these?? These are push button light switches; the only ones still in the house. All the rest of the light switches have been modernized, but these were left untouched. As far as we can tell, our house may not have been electrified until the 1920s. Originally it was gas-lit and although electricity came to our town in the 1890s, many gas lit houses did not 'convert' until later.  The switch on the far right we call the 'mystery button' because it's not hooked up to anything and we don't know what it might have been hooked up to. I believe there might have once been a light fixture in the stair well, on the wall, that was removed and then covered over with plaster.

I'll be linking this up with Cindy at My Romantic Home for Show & Tell Friday!

Thanks for stopping by!


GrannySue said...

I think your entry is lovely. I, too, inherited white molding -- lots of white cabinetry and doors. I just put my dark wood with it and it really seems to make the pieces stand out well. I, too decided to just live with the white moulding, etc because of the expense of having it redone.

And those button light switches! Love 'em, and you even have a "Harry Potter" door under the stairs. Beautiful. Can't wait to see more!!

Debbie@Debbie-Dabble said...

I just love your entry and I love the color!!
Too bad that the wood work was painted but I thinks it still looks lovely.
Thanks for sharing these great photos of your beautiful home!!


susan said...

Your $5 table is gorgeous--what a deal! I agree-you are going to have to live with the white paint--but I like it!

kim said...

Love your old home and you have some pretty antiques. I like white trim, but a period house like that should have the natural wood. It's ashamed someone painted all that. Maybe one day you can restore it back to what it was. What a great deal on that little table. Thanks for coming by.

Bella said...

Hi Katie.. I love your stairs that floral pattern is so unique. I enjoy seeing your white woodwork because I am so tired of my dark, we should trade:-)) That chair is perfect for that room.. made to be! I have a couple sets of those push button switches downstairs... I love them, but still after 10 years find myself pushing the flip switches and flipping the push switches:-))
Have a Great Weekend!

The Blackwood Cottage said...

I'm so glad I found you! The blog is beautiful, the furniture, the home...everything...beautiful! I'm going to follow!!

Eastlake Victorian said...


Your home's details are really wonderful. I love the little door under the stairs. We have one, too, and use it for the cats' litter box. :-)