A historic house can still have modern decor
Here in Milwaukee, many people who are searching for a house will make their decisions based on whether it has been updated recently. Signs of renovation in the kitchen, bathrooms and other parts of the house signify to many people the fact that a home has been taken care of very well through the years. However, when New York restaurateur and entrepreneur Andrew Tarlow and his wife Kate Hurling were in search of a new residence, this was exactly what they didn't want.
The couple was looking for the right place to raise their four children, and for them, this meant a historic home that didn't have any shoddy updates diminishing the charm that it once held. Finding such a home—even in a place with as many dwellings as New York City—proved to be a challenge, since they had high standards for the structure. The couple was house hunting for seven years before coming upon the ideal dwelling, a 150 year-old townhouse in the Fort Greene neighborhood of Brooklyn.
While many houses this old have been through multiple additions and renovations, this one was just as it had been when it was constructed, and the Tarlow-Hurlings got to be the first family to move into it after a long string of owners.
"The house was built by a seaman for his two unmarried nieces. They had no children and left it to their maid who lived here her whole life. She had no children and left it to her nephew, who sold it to a nun and priest who lived here for more than 40 years," Tarlow explained in a recent article on the home, which appeared in New York magazine.
This unique history, compared with the unspoiled good looks of the building, helped the family decide that they found the right one, and they've lived there ever since purchasing it in 2007. Upon moving in, they upgraded the kitchen, upstairs bathroom and backyard, but left the rest of the house just as it had been for more than a century. The family doesn't even have a TV anywhere in the six bedroom home.
Even though they've kept the improvements on the old school side, that doesn't mean that you'll find stuffy or old fashioned decor in this house. Instead, walking in, one could assume that they were looking into the pages of a home decor magazine. Indeed, the living room mixes a unique painted ceiling with a wood-burning fireplace, modern couch and invitingly fluffy throw for a modern twist on classic that looks very current by today's standards.
An inviting farm table makes the dining room feel like a cozy place to sit and enjoy a meal, in a nice environment that fosters plenty of conversation among people in the household. A project like this one demonstrates that by making use of the right items, any historic house can feel beautiful in a contemporary context.
Whether you make use of interesting colors and patterns, or choose to recover an antique piece of furniture so that it works in your newer home, mixing old and new in home decor is a great way to add interest to your interior. If you want to take advantage of this eclectic style through reupholstry, stop into our Milwaukee fabric store today. Bazaar Home Decorating has many patterns that will look great in almost any context.