Monday, December 3, 2012

Corbels At Last

Here is a pictorial history of the opening between the living room and the front hall of the Cheney Cottage.

This shows the front hall of the Cheney Cottage, circa 1962.  Although all the woodwork had been painted white, the front hall was basically untouched. Note the triple corbels in the arch - this is the only picture we have that showed them.

by the time we bought the house, in 2009, the front hall had been altered by building a wall and adding a doorway.  So the same view looked like this:

It is interesting to note that the two base walls were still visible - the University had built the wall around them, but the caps and the sides are clearly still showing.

Once we bought the house, we started preparing it for the move.  One of the things we did was remove the wall that the University had installed.

Although we were glad to tear down the wall and remove the hollow core door that was there, we were sad that the corbels were gone.  We knew that we'd replace them one day.

Here is a view of the doorway when the house was sitting in Albany under a tarp:

Then, once we got the house put back together, and a new roof on it, we started working on stripping paint.  Here are a couple photos of the opening and the paint being removed from ceiling and woodwork:

 Finally, all the woodwork has been stripped, scraped and sanded, and is ready for refinishing.  So we called Tom Pedemonte, the incredible artist who does our woodworking.  Tom refinished all the wood in the Parker Street houses (the dining room and the back parlor) and has done incredible work for us before.  So we asked him to re-create the corbels.

Tom found "the last clear redwood blocks in the state" and made up the corbels for the opening.  Last week, he installed them in place in the Cheney Cottage living room:

The beautiful woodwork, with the background of the restored plaster walls and refinished floors, is nothing short of stunning.

The house is almost done - we hope to finish it this month.  Our labor of love is coming to an end, and the results speak for themselves.

We plan to have an Open House to let everyone come see the completed house, sometime during the last week of December.  We hope to have the house rented to a family by January 1st.

It's been an amazing road, and we're getting close to the finish line.


  1. I'm jealous of the people that will finally get to live in the house that you have so lovingly restored!

  2. Simply gorgeous! Can't wait for the open house.

  3. I've just downloaded iStripper, and now I can watch the sexiest virtual strippers on my desktop.