Old Town Home

Old Town Home is a blog dedicated to chronicling the successes and failures of an Historic Old Town Alexandria couple as they live in the charming historic district while attempting to completely renovate and appropriately restore an 1880s Victorian row house...almost entirely on their own.

Not All Subway Tile is Created Equal

Authors: Alex

I think the search for finish materials is possibly one of the more difficult aspects of a bathroom renovation.

Yes, in spite of all of the other complex, planning, and pain in the butt items, I'm totally serious. When you look at even a "simple" overhaul, you're still changing just about every major surface in a bathroom, and all of...

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The Decidedly Masculine Joys of New Clothing Storage

Authors: Alex

As a male living with a female in a two person, two pet household I'm facing a challenge, likely well known by many. This familiar challenge involves an apparent disparity in closet and clothing storage space between myself and my spouse.

Never mind the fact that our 1880s home was built with only a single original hallway closet, as a...

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Throw it Over the Transom and See What Happens

Authors: Alex

One of my absolute favorite aspects of our old home (and many old homes in general) is our house's period and restored architectural hardware.

Since moving into our home we've gone to great lengths to discover and restore period vintage hardware for our home. Whether that means scouring eBay or digging through the extras pile at a...

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A Toilet by Any Other Name Smells Just as Sweet

Authors: Alex

We've got ourselves a functional turlet!

Yes, that's right, an official and flushable lavatory! This is big news. No, no, actually, this is really big news.

Up until last night we've been without a second seat in our home for several years. We've endured visits from friends and family with sadly a single sanitarios. We've entertained...

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Custom Baseboards to Maintain the Soul of the Moulding

Authors: Alex

Trim and finish work of all kinds are typically major elements in every room we've undertaking in our home.

Whether we're talking about stripping original moulding...

...having reproduction moulding profiles created to match original elements...

...making major statements with custom and complex wainscoting elements...

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Turning the Tables on a Phone Scammer

Authors: Alex

There are few things I hate more in life than a scammer, liar, and a cheat.

Long ago, as a very young kid, I remember going to the video arcade at the mall with a $5 bill in hand. As I walked up to the exchange machine to get some tokens, an "old person" (he was probably in his 20s) approached me and said, "I have a whole bunch of...

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The Evolution of Nursery Design: All Grown Up

Authors: Wendy

It was 1982, and little did I know it but my world was about to be turned upside down. The days of being an only child (not the mention the only grandchild on my Dad's side) were numbered. I still distinctly remember the day when my parents sat down with me to let me know I was going to have a little brother or sister, and I was...

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The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Grouting

Authors: Alex

As with any major project, no matter how experienced you are, things don't necessarily go quite as planned.

Rather than just simply going with a big "Look at how awesome our floor looks, and it was so easy" blog post, I want to share our grouting process with you. And that include everything...The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.

Though our ...

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The Three Bears Go Back In Time for the Right Color Grout

Authors: Alex

Stop me if you've heard this story. The Three Bears jump into a time machine and waste a whole weekend in search of the grout color that was juuuuuuusssssstttt right...

No? Not familiar with this little DIY fairy tale? Well then, let me fill you in.

The selection of a grout color for a large bathroom is easy...said no one...ever. That's...

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IKEA Butcher Block Counters 2 Years Later - What Do We Think?

Authors: Alex

We get quite a few questions here on Old Town Home, but one of our blog's most frequently asked questions is:

"So, now that you've had your IKEA butcher block counters for a while now, what do you think?"

Whether its being asked by someone considering IKEA butcher block (or a butcher block counter of any type) that would like our take...

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