composite of four vintage restoration projects done during the toh tv los angeles house project remodel
Photo: Mark Lohman

Keep the Character

"Not all houses like ours still have so many original details," says Kurt Albrecht, pointing to the inlaid hardwood floors, ceiling medallions, Art Deco tile, and ornamental plasterwork that give personality to the current This Old House TV project, a 1933 Spanish Colonial Revival in the Silver Lake neighborhood of Los Angeles. Kurt and his wife, Mary Blee, are grafting a two-story addition onto the back of their 1,500-square-foot single-story home, including an enlarged kitchen, a family room, two additional bathrooms, and two bedrooms.

As much as they look forward to having some breathing room for their growing family, they're also insistent that the new spaces blend in seamlessly with the older ones, some of which will remain essentially intact. "Our house is a classic Spanish Revival—and we want to keep it that way," says Mary. To do so, the TOH crew is working closely with Los Angeles–based Home Front Design + Build to replicate the period details and finishing touches that make this house so special in the first place. Read on to learn how they're doing it.
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