2012 was, I think, the year of “epic”. We saw Cullen’s epic Brooklyn apartment. Which inspired my crazy office remodel. The time capsule houses were wonderful. The woddities were wodder than ever. But, one reader who had us all beat: Bizarro Twin Pam — who gave us her serial renovation stories involving six kitchens. Her latest, 2012 project: Buying a gorgeous, vintage St. Charles kitchen from a time capsule house that we featured here on the blog, and transporting and reconfiguring it into her new/old home. Bizarro Twin Pam, you are a force of nature to be reckoned with. Congratulations, you are Retro Renovation’s The Hard Way Award Winner — 2012! Read on for the runners up!
In 2010 I instituted “The Hard Way Award”, honoring one reader each year who chose the path less traveled: Pursuing a Retro Renovation that, on the main, bypasses off-the-shelf big box supplies in favor of a more arduous period-inspired renovation using hard-to-find and/or salvaged material. A renovation that truly shows the passion for… doing things the hard way. This year’s winners: Janice and her husband Greg, who on their own gut-renovated a remuddled bathroom in their 1954 house — and install, in its place, a Mamie pink bathroom trimmed in black and white.
I decided to make an annual award. It’s the Retro Renovation “The Hard Way Award,” and the 2010 honor goes to: Sue for her kitchen renovation — and the fact that she documented the seven-month journey in chilling detail. Do you have what it takes to overcome the obstacles of home renovation, doubled yet again when trying to go period-retro including using vintage materials? Read Susan’s story about creating a vintage style kitchen to find out. You rock, girl!
We know about taking the road less traveled. To me, doing things the hard way has the same allure. The hunt for the perfect estate sale light fixture, the set of vintage cabinets that are just right, the document wallpaper that pulls things all together.
Honestly, the reason this blog even exists is that after completing big projects, I had so much info in my mental hard drive about the retro renovation alternatives available — all obsessively and endlessly researched — that it seemed a shame to simply be done with it when my projects were completed.
But the dangers of the hard way came into focus this week, when I pulled Palm Springs Stephan into the vortex.