When we started the project, folks said the house was haunted. That it was used for satanic rituals. I guess we should have been concerned, as we heard that same story over and over. But we weren’t – we had so much work to do that we were too tired to worry about anything paranormal. But I think about that now, from a different viewpoint. I think about the woman who hung this wallpaper a hundred or so years ago. Did she pick it out from a catalog or buy it from a local store in Alexandria? Did her husband help her hang it? Did they love how it looked once it was up? Did she choose this stylish pattern specifically, or is that all that was available at the time? What did their furniture look like?
We found horseshoes all over the place in the dirt, in fact, we still do from time to time. A daughter of a previous resident told us her dad loved horses and always kept good ones that he was very proud of. Are we finding so many shoes because they kept a LOT of horses over the years? Did they neglect the feet, or did they have a bad farrier? Maybe the spirits of previous residents decided not to haunt with us living here because they don’t want to answer all my questions…
But, there was that problem to do with the cabinets. The existing cabinets were made of the same knotty pine as the walls. They were decidedly nasty and did not fit at all with my plan to move the sink from below the window, to an island that would replace the tall bar structure. The whole kitchen was dark-dark-DARK. And all that wood didn’t help matters.
We had so many other things to work on that the paneling had to stay; all it needed was a good cleaning, unlike most of the rest of the walls that couldn’t be salvaged at all. These days, the first thing anyone facing this stuff would do… is paint it white. OMG what a relief that there was no Pinterest back then, because I might very well have been tempted to do the same thing, to try and brighten things up.
It’s almost like Paul Detlefsen painted the colorful Horse and Buggy Days with my kitchen and dishes in mind. The bucolic blacksmith shop scene is a favorite and has been for years. This is an old version and the frame matches the paneling perfectly. HoofPrints has a 12″x16″ (new) print available here