Every detail of this 1919 Dutch Colonial has been thoughtfully considered and meticulously implemented by the present owners in the two years since they purchased it. The result is a deeply satisfying impression of both cheerfulness and tranquility. The soft yellow of the exterior is reflected in the predominant colors of the English gardens, set off by the white picket fence enclosing the back yard and the matching gate at the front walk.
The young owners have been meticulous about maintaining the character of the house. Rather than installing new double-pane windows, for example, they found someone to fit double panes into the existing windows in the dining room, the hall by the front door and on the third floor, maintaining the original frames and mullions. Replacements for the rest of the windows, which could not be saved, are in the same style as the others.
Throughout the house there are allusions to the couples' backgrounds. The patterned tin ceilings in kitchen, lavatory and front vestibule are "Brooklyn imports," and the antique bed in the attic is from Wales. In the basement den the watercolor of the house was painted by an artist from the Cayman Islands, with the background adding a touch of the tropics to Cleveland Heights.
The long bookcase along one living room wall is new, as is the dining room chandelier. The previous owners added the sunroom. It is an entirely new structure that replaces an outside porch that was no longer usable. The exposed brick of the back of the fireplace plus the obviously exterior window into the living room reveals the room's earlier history. The solid wall along the neighboring driveway adds privacy. In the kitchen the refrigerator was moved from the hallway/pantry to a more convenient location and was replaced with additional cupboards. The recessed ceiling lights have been repositioned.
Upstairs there are two bedrooms and a study. The bathroom has been redone, with new tile and tub. The attic — by the addition of two skylights, insulation, air conditioning, window restoration, and new decor -- has been transformed into an attractive and comfortable living space.