Why we buy old

Scrappy Girl asked today about buying real/knock-off vintage furniture, and it got me thinking about why we love old things. Ben and I are true suckers for old music, houses, furniture…You name it. Our wedding song was “I’m Old Fashioned.” The (big) band played only standards—the music Ben also plays on the piano. So of course when we started apartment hunting we focused on things built before 1940, and especially before 1920. The apartment we ended up with was built around the turn of the 20th century, and it shows. The layout is long and narrow, with the kitchen and maid’s room (my study!) at the back. The exterior doorknobs are brass, with beading details around each one. The inside knobs are either brass of painted wood, depending on where they’re located. The double crown molding ends in picture rails around every room, so I can hang art with picture hooks instead of making holes in the wall, if I want (the inspector was impressed that I knew what they were). And then there is that pantry that I already posted pics of… All those details are what make a house feel special to us, and we feel really lucky that we found something that is nearly perfectly intact.

At the home inspection on Tuesday, I took a closer look at the fireplace, which I was already in love with:


That is….not a great photo. But the gorgeous mantel aside, the fireplace is surrounded with narrow green subway tiles, and a border of white ones. Tuesday I actually leaned into look at the interior, and here is what I found:

fp inside

Ooooh. I think it’s a cast iron liner? I cannot wait to see it with a fire lit!

5 thoughts on “Why we buy old”

  1. So freaking jealous! And I can’t wait until you decorate it as you want. This is so exciting, love. SO exciting.

    I can’t wait to come up and visit! When do you close?

  2. Aargh… There were some of these cast iron fireplace backs in the alley near my house and I kept seeing them for months when walking the dog. I knew they were super heavy and with a 60+ lb dog tugging, I couldn’t get them. Then last week… they were gone. I was heartbroken I hadn’t acted.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *