Monday, June 22, 2009

The Joys of Orange

It seems there's little that can bring some "boink" to a 1950s house better than a little orange. Maybe it's partly reminiscent of the Jetsons, with all those bright colours on mid-century modern lines, or maybe it's just the warmth, but it sure does work.
Here's one wall of the way-too-small vestibule. One thing they didn't give any thought to when they built this place in 1951 was boots. Hello! It's Montreal, and it snows. A lot! My first notion was to smash down the wall and extend the little hallway to incorporate an open closet, but that would have ruined the symmetry of the livingroom on the other side of the wall, so I opted for something much more diabolically clever.

I took full advantage of some unused space between the floor and the ceiling of the stairs going down to the basement, and cut an opening at knee-level for kicking off slushy boots and getting them out of the way. An added benefit that I hadn't even considered was that by leaving the back of the boot closet open, there's a convenient opening over the basement stairs which allows light to pass in both directions, as well as cartons of tuna from Costco:)

The floor was a dog's breakfast of different strata, a bit like an archaeological dig. In the end, what could better suit a house of this era than good old linoleum? Back to the future! Orange, of course.

The wall in the kitchen that divides the fireplace from the cooking area had an ugly sheet of drywall on it, replete with some hideous mdf moulding. That was quickly rectified with a new build capped off with some homemade oak trim and some lovely textured

The centerpiece of the kitchen is this old 1947 Kitchenaid-Hobart that I picked up for a song at a barn in Vermont. It needed a bit of repair to get it working again, but mostly the problem was that it was ugly. Decades of neglect along with dreadful paint jobs turned it into the ugly duckling of kitchen appliances.
I disassembled it, stripped it down, and gave it a whole new lease on life with a slick, shimmering coat of enamel. It should be good for another 60 years, easily.

Here's what it looked like before!

Next instalment: My handmade cherrywood kitchen!


  1. The orange looks amazing! How neat you could enamel the appliance!

  2. wow i can't believe you painted your own mixer it looks store bought...amazing.

  3. Hey! I really, REALLY admire your photography. I gave you a little award at!

  4. great mixer


  5. I love orange!! Wow, I can't believe how you transformed that mixer. Lovely!


About Me

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A blog mostly about my photography, my etsy shop, travel, and other assorted addictions and predilections. I've been passionate about photography for just about as long as I can remember, right from that very first 1960s Kodak Brownie around my wrist at Upper Canada Village... A great deal of my adult life has been spent travelling the world for extended periods, always with cameras in tow. My photographic interests run the gamut from intimate portraits to landscapes to ephemera to street life. Although firmly entrenched in the digital age, I have a weakness for film and for old cameras.