Northwest Renovation Magazine

A Home Improvement Magazine

Vintage Houses

The American Gothic Revival movement began around 1840 and continued for about thirty years for houses, much longer for churches and schools. Though early Portland was once filled with Gothic Revival houses, none exist today. Gothic style houses, together with houses in the Greek Revival style, were built in those central city neighborhoods most likely to meet the wrecking ball from the ever-expanding downtown. Other cities in Oregon, those that did not experience Portland’s explosive growth, still... more

Known as the “Tiffany of the Northwest,” the Povey Brothers Studio has produced some of the most beautiful and lasting stained glass pieces in all of Oregon. For instance, David and John Povey’s artwork can be found in the First Presbyterian Church, the Atkinson Memorial Unitarian Church, and the Pittock Mansion, just to name a few. Their windows were known for having unequaled quality and beauty, which has allowed the windows to last for over 100 years. The art of stained glass was a family... more

The western slopes of Mt. Hood hold a myriad of recreational opportunities and scenic wonders. The area, clustered along Route 26 from Welches up-mountain to Government Camp, also contains dozens of artistically rustic “Steiner Cabins.” Between the late 1920s and 1940s, German immigrant carpenter/homebuilder Henry Steiner and his son, John, constructed as many as 100 of these one-of-a-kind log dwellings (the exact number is still a matter of speculation).Many cabins and houses were built on Mt.... more

“Prairie” is the name given to a style of house originated by Chicago architect Frank Lloyd Wright around 1900. The first use of the term “Prairie” occurred with Wright’s plan for “A House On the Prairie,” published in the Ladies’ Home Journal in 1901. The term “Prairie School of architecture” was later given to the informal group of architects who practiced in this style. Many of these later architects had worked for Wright himself, or for Wright’s mentor, Louis Sullivan.... more

Flipping through shelter magazines, you’d think “green” remodeling involves the installation of expensive energy-saving devices and a minimalist design that advertises the homeowner’s familiarity with the cutting edge. Or, conversely, an environmentally conscientious remodel might reflect a low-tech, salvage-focused approach, often at the expense of comfort and design. Preserving the original woodwork in the dining room not only saved resources, but also authenticates the home’s... more

The author of the above lines was expressing a yearning for an authentic sense of place, firmly rooted in the historical past. Much of America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was looking backward to a romanticized pre-industrial colonial past, where life seemed somehow less complicated and stressful, where a sense of community mattered more than the rush to industrial prominence. The Philadelphia Centennial Exposition of 1876 unleashed a wave of patriotism and pride in all things traditionally... more

So you are trying to achieve a more period look in your old house kitchen. At some point you will need to make the decision between using actual vintage appliances or reproduction appliances. When consulting with clients on their kitchen restoration projects, I carefully assess what their needs are and then advise accordingly. Big Chill replica refrigerator sports a 1950s vintage personality outside, but has modern functionality inside. The best of both worlds. Heartland vintage six burner... more

What do public structures like the Coquille River Lighthouse have to do with period homes? These public structures are important in and of themselves because of their age and important place in the architectural character of Oregon. Also, many of the techniques used to maintain and renovate public structures can help homeowners care for and improve their period and vintage houses. Coquille River Lighthouse All photos courtesy of Arciform LLC and Versatile Wood Products Ladd’s Carriage... more

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