“Faith can unlock doors you never even knew existed.”― Gift Gugu Mona, The Essence of Faith: Daily
The last few weeks have been a lot about faith when it comes to our sweet little home. As now 10 months have passed, I have to say the process is wearing on me but there is hope in that process and slowly the house is taking shape. Insulation has been sprayed in, all the dry wall is in, and the first coat of builder’s grade paint applied. It is beginning to look like a home again.
The month of June brought a bit of adventure for Jim and me. We have really wanted vintage doors and decided to make it our mission to find ones that would fit our home. There are quite a few places to explore in the Detroit area, so we started there. Our first stop was Architectural Salvage Warehouse of Detroit. Located at 230 Piquette Ave in Detroit, the founders are dedicated to gathering materials from deconstruction and making these materials available for sale. Jim and I spent a few hours digging through the hundreds of doors that they had, only to come up empty. Although they had absolutely gorgeous doors, they were much too large for the door frames that we have in the house. Too large to cut down as cutting them down would either damage the structure or place the doorknob in a poor location we left emptied handed.
Our next stop was Woodward Throwbacks at 11500 Joseph Campau Ave in Hamtramck, MI. What a unique place to explore. So many doors, cataloged with where they came from and the era from which they came. We found so many that we fell in love with but had the same realization – they were too tall and/or too wide. This theme began to show itself again and again. Soon we realized that the style of doors that we wanted to use as interior doors were actually exterior doors. We also realized that homes with the doors that we were gravitating to had tall ceilings, way taller than what we have. The adventure had started to become frustrating. The age-old question of why EVERYTHING takes way longer than what I think it should, began to edge its way to the forefront of my brain. We left Woodward Throwbacks with a better picture of the style of door that we wanted but nonetheless without any doors.
Our last stop on this particular day took us to Ypsilanti, MI. To a quaint little shop by the name of Materials Unlimited located at 2 W Michigan Ave. Not only did they have beautiful doors, both restored and yet to be restored, they also had vintage lighting, furniture and much more, making it difficult to concentrate on just doors. They had cataloged each door by era and place of origin. It was like heaven for beautiful vintage doors. Again, however we were met with the size issue when we found the style that we were looking to purchase. This was a hard store to leave empty handed from. The doors were unbelievably beautiful and just what we were looking for….minus the size, which is a big detail to overlook.
Then a friend mentioned Facebook marketplace as a possible place for vintage doors to purchase. Although at first there was nothing much to look at that fit our style and those that did still had the size issue, it was an easy enough site to check on every day and even multiple times a day. Ultimately, this is where we have found our doors. We found a beautiful pair of 1890’s sixteen light doors for our living room in Plymouth, MI
and an early 1900’s farmhouse door for our den from Ferndale, MI.
We traveled to just outside of Cleveland for a salvaged door from an old elementary school that will take the guest bathroom spot. This past weekend we picked up a beautifully carved door from Bremen, IN, that will hopefully fit the mudroom.
We are still on the lookout for a few more and will combine what we find with the doors original to our own house that were salvaged before demolition. All the doors that we have found will need refinished and I am sure that will be a process all on its own.
This next month will bring a lot of finishes to the interior of the house. Cabinetry is slotted to come in this week and the beams for the kitchen next week. The wood ceiling in the living room is being restored and prepared for painting and the trim work for all the doorways should be installed over the next couple of weeks.
Now that July 4 has passed, we are setting our sites on a September move in date, but time will tell. For now, I am happy that it is beginning to look like my home once more.
Hope everyone is enjoying this beautiful summer!