Category Archives: retro

Mid-Century Bathroom Refresh #2

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The original minty aqua tiled counter top in my 1952 bathroom was finally beyond saving. The previous owners had used a paint stick to make the grout look good in order to sell the house. Several pieces of that tile had cracks or chips and with the grout in such bad condition we decided to take it out. As all of you readers know, tearing out original features in an old house always ends of being full of surprises and thus more cost than you ever anticipated.

You remember our first refresh in this bathroom from 2015:

The Original Tiled Hall Bath is (almost) Done!

What to do? Because of budget and lack of sources for replacement tiles (that would match the original) we decided on the new “retro” line of laminate from Wilsonart. We picked Daisy in Apricot Glow because the colors are an exact match to the original wall tiles. I special ordered it through Home Depot and had it delivered to the store. Super simple. Here is a sample piece next to the tiles:

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The wall tiles in this bath match the Universal Rundle Desert Tan fixtures. Since the minty aqua tiles on the counter top were not used anywhere else, I decided to eliminate that color from the new decorating theme. You might remember the color from this older photo.

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The counter top had a deep tiled edge so we had the new laminate made the same way.

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The first order of business was to take out the counter top and sink. As most know, these old tile jobs are set in cement with wire lathe and black tar paper. What a mess. I managed to save a few tiles which I will probably throw on eBay for someone else trying to save their original bath.

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Of course all that hammering and chiseling knocked a few pieces of wall tile lose. There was #1 of unexpected issues. Those tiles seemed to be attached to NOTHING.

It was then decided that the counter top would now require a back splash (and more $$$) to hide that issue.

The original sink was made to be “tiled in” and since I was going with laminate I had to have a different sink. I found an oval sink that accepts a (period perfect) Hudee ring and special ordered it though our local Menards store. The Hudee ring was picked up on Amazon.

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I kept my faucet since it was in great condition and fully functional.

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And while we were at it, I had the contractor re-grout the wall tile around the sink area. It now looks so good (and clean!) we are going to have him continue on and do the whole bathroom.

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I am tickled pink (or peach) with this new project. The white sink and bright counter top have really brightened up this bath.

While we had the mess, the walls and ceiling got a new coat of paint. All I have to do now is shop for towels!

 

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More Kitsch for a Mid-Century Christmas

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Sorry for this post-holiday entry; life seemed to get in the way this holiday season and spare time was not something I had much of.

There are a just a few new kitschy Christmas things that were added to the ranch this year. Although I am trying to take a more “sparse” approach to decorating, I am obviously unable to follow through.

This vintage Continental aluminum “pom pom” style wall tree found a place of honor in my kitchen. It was made by Metal Trees Corporation in Chicago in the early 60’s. I got it for a great price on eBay in October. It seems this company also made a plain style (non pom pom) wall hung tree that was called the “Holiday”.

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I also purchased another aluminum tree from a local resale shop at a price I could not turn down. It is a 7 foot fountain style. It came without the original box, so I am unsure of the brand. I decided to use it this year in my basement rumpus room instead of the pom pom one I had been using. I trimmed it with (mostly) plastic Jewel Brite and Bradford ornaments. The light up Santa head behind the tree is also new this year.

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This newly acquired light up lantern was also used in the basement.

101_7491For the holidays it replaced this old AMI jukebox speaker we picked up last summer at a garage sale.

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I think I have finally completed my collection of Firestone albums that were released in the 1960’s. Here are 5 of them.

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There are also a few new Christmas albums this year to display in the living room.

101_7478We are still using the gold aluminum/ white vinyl tree in the living room. I found out (through a very helpful gentleman in a Christmas facebook group) that it is called a Gold Queen Star and was made by the Stainless Metal Craft Inc. in Chicago.

Here are a few of my favorite ornaments on that sparkly gold beauty:

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The little felt Santa band ornaments were from a kit in the 60’s.

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I picked up some great retro wrapping paper this year. I have to admit that wrapping is one of my favorite things about Christmas. Oh, and the food.

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This little display was in my hall bath. I have had that Smiling Santa soap box set forever.

101_7482Check back soon for more updates here at the ranch. We have some projects on the horizon for the basement and the original tiled hall bath. As with any retro renovation project, it will probably won’t be simple. But I am up to the task!

Happy New Year!

 

Shut the (Mid-Century) Front Door

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Here it is! After 6 years of this project getting pushed aside for more pressing matters (roof, landscaping, gutters, water heater, kitchen and bathroom remodels, backyard shed, etc.) we finally have a period appropriate front door on our ranch.

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It is a Builders Choice fiberglass door that we special ordered through Home Depot. They have a few other retro styles and can be ordered either primed white or finished in several colors. We chose a primed one and painted it this great minty green. The color is called Haven from Sherwin Williams.

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The Schlage brass escutcheon was NOS that I purchased on eBay.

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Since we were focusing on the outside this spring, I thought we needed some new planters to amp up the curb appeal. These match our new garage door colors: Holiday Turquoise and Haven by Sherwin Williams.

101_6212We also painted the undersides of the large overhangs on the house using the Holiday Turquoise. It is from the Suburban Modern collection.

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I have also been changing things up on the inside. This bark cloth tablecloth was scooped off of Etsy with a Mothers Day gift card. It coordinates nicely with my drapes.

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I think Judy Jetson would be proud.

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The new Goodwill store in my town has been a treasure trove lately. I am keeping the Vegas tray. Everything else will go in my Etsy shop.

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I found this plant (?) stand at Goodwill also. With a Home Depot bowl planter I think it looks good with my turquoise hoop chairs.

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This chaise was picked up last summer and sports a new coat of paint and colorful cushion. I also spray painted those little plant stands in new colors.

101_6197 I picked up a new umbrella for the patio table. We are still searching for a different patio dining table.

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Check back soon to see the newly painted cupola and weather vane on top of the garage!