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Kevin’s Photo Album | It’s All in the Details

Stained-glass crests, plasterwork, and tile are only a few of the features in the Russell Woods home that encouraged the TOH TV team to check out its potential. Kevin O’Connor captures many of them here in the third chapter of his photo album.

A New Family Crest

Photo by Kevin O'Connor

The crest at the top of the leaded glass bay windows appears in a similar format throughout Frank and Tamiko Polk's Russell Woods home. Shield in shape, the design is made from about ten mosaic pieces of stained glass. A yellow ribbon-shaped piece wraps diagonally across the center, upwards from left to right (if you’re looking from inside the home) on the majority of the bay windows; the stripe on the far-left window is reversed, but will be flipped in the restoration to match the others. The remaining pieces are polygons in shades of red, purple, blue, and green, all varying slightly depending on the window.

It’s rare to find this level of craftsmanship in such great shape. Local glass artist Ann Baxter will assist with some repair, and the TOH TV team will address the damaged framing, a casualty of the water damage from above. The original homeowners could have had the design as a family crest of sorts, Kevin says, but there’s no way of confirming. “But Frank and Tamiko joked at one point that they may adopt it as their own family crest,” he says.

Why This House?

Photo by Kevin O'Connor

“To me, this one shows why you would want to go to work on this house,” Kevin says. Peering through the arched doorway framed with detailed molding, you can see part of the hearth and fireplace surround on the left, and another window with the same stained glass crests on the bay windows in the back of the room.

Intricate Plasterwork

Photo by Kevin O'Connor

Tom Silva will combine old-school plaster techniques with new 3-D printing technologies to restore this detailed molding, a highlight of the home.

Goodbye to the Built-In

The intricacies of the kitchen’s ceiling and built-in hutch (likely original to the house, Kevin says) won’t survive the renovation’s open floor plan for the kitchen, but are nonetheless an ode to the original builder’s care and attention.

The Kitchen Moves to an Open Plan

Photo by Kevin O'Connor

The other part of the kitchen – the hutch is in the eating area to the right – has original cabinets, which “have served their purpose, and now will go away,” Kevin says. The updated kitchen won’t lose the room’s great light, though.

Tiled Powder Room

Photo by Kevin O'Connor

Mustard and seafoam tile aren’t on bathroom design Pinterest boards today, but when this house was built in 1939, this powder room was high-quality and stylish. Unfortunately, while the home was abandoned, people smashed a hole in the tile to the right of the toilet, leaving with copper pipes and other valuable plumbing features.

A Bath with Colorful Character

Photo by Kevin O'Connor

Again, this blush and electric blue color scheme may not be top-choice today for a second-floor full bath, but the arched tub entry and custom tile are incredible features. The etched shower door might have been added later on, but adds character.

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Don't forget to check in weekly for new photo galleries from TOH TV host Kevin O'Connor! In the meantime, check him out at @kevinoconnorTOH on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for more photography.