Restore ‘N More’s second ever project, and a first in a long, long line of historic restorations now spanning more than 25 years.
The owners had met us at a restoration show in York and quickly determined we were capable of performing the restoration of their prized springhouse. Although it was structurally sound, the entire building needed tender loving care – repairs and restoration – from the foundation to the roof. Additionally, the owners were quite conscientious about how the work and the materials used on it might affect the immediate environment, particularly the pure spring water that flowed from within the building. After all, the new stucco that was being applied to the interior walls would come into contact with the water. The craftsman applying the stucco assured her of its safety, explaining that the mixture was custom made of safe, natural materials because we, too, didn’t want anything harmful coming in contact with the spring water. He then promptly put some in his mouth and swallowed it to prove his claims!
We certainly don’t recommend that practice – ever! – but we’re happy to report that he never reported even so much as a little indigestion from that stunt. And we’re happy to report also that the spring water remained flowing pure as ever.
At historic Daniel Lady Farm, owned by the Gettysburg Battlefield Preservation Association, the 1842 large barn had survived years of dormancy, but the elements had caused even this superior built structure to eventually deteriorate. GBPA contracted Restore ‘N More to replace the old tin roof with wood shingles and repair the soffit and fascia, as well as install three very large custom-built cupolas. With cupolas flying above, timing, scheduling, and a quick pace were the order of the day to keep everyone and everything working safely and without interruption.
Gaping holes in the roof, doors busted off their hinges, and small trees growing out of the foundation made for a pretty sad picture for this once-grand Maryland barn. But, the owner-artist saw the inherent beauty, and the Restore ‘N More crew knew there were many more years of service inside the structure. Her vision and Restore ‘N More’s expertise brought about a spectacular transformation, creatively adapting this barn into an artist’s studio and living quarters.
Deteriorated and missing roof coverings, missing siding on the forebay, no gutters, and improper soil grading had contributed heavily to the structural damage of this bank (or Swisser) barn. In addition, several sheds, accessory buildings, and other structures had been built onto the barn. In removing those additions, we found even more damage than anticipated. Restore ‘N More’s carpenters replaced hand-hewn rafters, roof plates, purlins, floor joists, and forebay posts and sills; roofers installed a new wood shake roof; and, masons re-built entire sections of stone walls, including the stone and earthen ramps. New board-&-batten doors duplicate the originals, including the wrought nails used for clinching in the battens.
New porches, built. Old porches, restored. And every porch, diminutive or grandiose, should be anchored by a patio or walkway that, together with the porch, invites visitors to come in or beckon the inhabitants to come out.
Utilitarian rooms such as the laundry room, the mudroom (often called “the back door”), and corners of a back room used by the resident gardner are often looked upon as bland and boring. Admit it, we usually shut the door on those rooms when company is coming. But these projects prove that those utilitarian rooms can be anything but bland and boring.
From the humble cooking-fireplace mantle to the stately room-end, each one started with the homeowners requesting us to construct something that would appear original or showing us a picture from a book of historic interiors and asking, “Do you think you can duplicate that for us?”
It’s the place where… you hang out with family and friends, or you curl up on a comfy chair or sofa with a favorite book, or the youngest members can invite their friends – real or imaginary – to join them for playtime. They are the spaces where we can kick back, relax, and simply enjoy. Every home needs such spaces, and it doesn’t matter how little space is available. Even the otherwise unused space beneath the stairs is a springboard for one little girl’s vibrant imagination.
Master bathroom renovations are particularly interesting because they are so highly personalized, reflecting the owner’s inclination more so than any other room in the house. Sometimes, these bathroom renovations are particularly challenging,as in the case of this one near Lancaster.
Everyone thought this was going to be a simple addition project until the old siding was removed. That’s when we discovered that the only thing holding up the rear of the old log house was the siding: Termites had skeletonized those logs from sill plate to roofline! Our crews switched into emergency mode in order to save the structure, and the owners decided to switch the project into a whole-house renovation. Every room is a winner, but one of our favorites is the master bathroom.
The four kitchens featured here all share some common ingredients. The homeowners spent considerable time thinking about all they wanted in their new kitchens, prioritizing their wish lists, and seeing it all come together on paper first. And all reaped the rewards of working with a hard-working, effective, and efficient team: a creative kitchen designer, architects with a love of the historic as well as the modern, reputable and respected cabinet manufacturers, and a contractor that masters the art and science of construction management.