An Old Farmhouse—and Barn—Becomes a Gathering Spot
Two old-house lovers rework a couple of 19th-century relics into a comfortable, convivial retreat for family and friends
An 1896 Queen Anne, Updated
Some projects quickly fade from memory, while others remain so fresh they can be summoned by two choice words. "Oyster crackers," says builder Lloyd Bennett, recalling his crew's shorthand for work on a certain farmhouse. "We had 'em in our tool belts for months after."
Not the edible ones—the little porcelain hex tiles used for floors. Bennett and his crew spent days trimming and laying them in Marc and Shelly Kennedy Strang's kitchen, where they joined a hunky hutch as signifiers of period style. "Shelly's very artistic—she had us make 'rugs' with strips of black inlaid in the middle of white," Bennett continues. "It was tricky for sure, especially in an old, lumpy house."
Shown: The Strang family's updated 1896 Queen Anne.
Designer and general contractor: Marc and Shelly Kennedy Strang; construction and carpentry: Lloyd E. Bennett Construction, Skaneateles, NY; red throw: Woolrich; porch plants and landscaping: Dickman Farms, Auburn, NY.