the hillside house

our bungalow on the hill

the kitchen

If your going to have an old house, you better have an old kitchen! why remodel and go with the current trends that will look dated when the next greatest thing comes along! Using vintage appliances and furniture in an old home just feels right, and looks old like it should! walking through the back door of our house  brings back the memories of coming into your grandmas house {if your of a certain vintage yourself!} first up is the six hundred pound 1928 glenwood gas range, which takes up alot of one wall.

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I bought it off ebay and dragged it out of a farmhouse in the catskills, brought it home, dissasembled it in the barn, cleaned, and refinished each piece, then put it back together in the kitchen one piece at a time because of its weight!

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that gives some idea of what was involved! you might ask what is it like to cook on an old range? one word, fantastic!

four burners, plus two simmer burners on the upper shelf, a warming oven on top, an oven with a simple mechanical thermostat that holds temperatures closer to the setting than any new oven{the old stoves like this wouldn't shut off when they reached temperature, they would simply lower the flame on the burner to a very low setting so you don't get any drop or rise in oven temps, set it at 350f, and its going to hold it right there!} to be honest the oven is small, a full sheet pan won't fit, but I've cooked a sixteen pound turkey in it more than once.

archived pics 080 thats a 1942 ge refrigerator keeping the beer cold!

actually the fridge came to me via a good friend who sell antiques, and was perfect in appearance but needed some rewiring to make it reliable, you have to defrost it a few times a year,{somewhat of a lost art in todays modern times!} its somewhat of a rare unit because by 1942 production of most household goods had been put on hold as factories switched over to war time production. the icebox in these fridges are small, a couple of ice cube trays and your full so we do cheat and have a small modern refrigerator in the basement for our frozen foods! These vintage refrigerators have low speed compressors, which aren't stressed hard like modern units and without a defrost cycle can cost less to run than many of the energy star appliances out there today {not to mention how many new ones will still be running 60-80 years from now?} can't beat these old appliances with quality materials and over engineered components!

archived pics 079 how about a hoosier cabinet from the 1930's

hoosiers like this one were once the workhorse cabinetry of the kitchen, with a porcelain worktop, lots of storage, and a fold out flour sifter {remember grandmas homemade bread?} this unit was restored by my friend Bob who does wonderful work on these, and it has on the back of it the original nra tag {national recovery act} a goverment program in place during the depression basically paying for the factories to continue to produce goods even though there was no demand, helping to keep some people working, even if it wasn't a full weeks wages it was better than the nothing!}

archived pics 078 a porcelain top kitchen set, had to strip the chairs and table base, recover them, and hey just like what ralphie sat at while daydreaming about his red ryder!

archived pics 082 two things here, note the push button light switches, found a company that reproduces them, so i had to have them, i mean i went this far right? and of course the vintage phone which while it does work, in sort of an ironic twist to my love of all things old, I now am totally cellullar, having no landline! owning such a mix of vintage auto's as i have, a cell phone is a nice piece of mind so a home phone was kind of redundant, well one point for the modern era ! the picture above the phone is a page from the bristol press newspaper from 1938, roasting chickens for 25 cents a pound!

 

archived pics 093 vintage steel cabinets and a cast iron sink!

these cabinets and sink were in the house when we bought it but had been brush painted many times over, so one by one down they came ,stripped to metal and sprayed with an automotive finish, i constructed wood counters and have cabintry that will outlast me. the toaster on the counter is a 1936 toastmaster and it also works! truth be told these cabinets date to the late forties and don't reflect the era we are trying to portray, but the quality of them is something i couldn't pass on and being sixty plus years old, they still qualify as old in my book.

There are various other trinkets which I didn't touch on , the mixer, oxydol boxes, even the calander on the wall is from the thirties!