Wednesday, December 8, 2010

In the beginning....again
I'm re-capping for those who may not have read the blog from the beginning. This is only the bare essentials though.
In April last year (2009) we purchased our house, Euphemia. She was a graceful old wreck that we had admired from afar for years, afterall, we had lived next door to her for nearly ten years.
Euphemia was built by a family in 1904 and by 2009, only the baby of the family was surviving. He is now 90. It was Mr Baby who sold us the house lock, stock and barrel - 105 years worth of clutter.
This is what she looked like from the outside.
Inside the house was dark and dank and full of treasures. Every dresser and chest of drawers seemed to be bursting with 'domestic debris'.

Even in all that mess, her gorgeous bone structure was still visible.

The ceilings are 12 and a half feet high.

The first day of clearing out we had twelve people helping us. At the end of the day, after lots of chicken sandwiches and champagne,  we had unearthed some weird and wonderful things.

Euphemia had absolutely everything left; china, cutlery, make-up in the bathroom, clothes, shoes, handbags, personal papers, photos and postcards, old linen, even food still in the kitchen. It's taken so long to clean her out that I still have boxes unsorted, 18 months later.

There was even things under the house....the really old stuff! This metal trunk had family photos inside that were too decayed to see properly, an old broken chandelier (still in pieces) and children's fancy dress-ups.

While our story is interesting, it's not unique. It's not that unusual for houses to be sold with contents. We know people just around the corner from us who received all the furniture as well when they bought their house. My mother had a friend who bought a house with contents in the 1960s. It included everything right down to the Bentley in the garage apparently.
When I first started my blog I had a comment left from a lady who had purchased a house in the Victorian goldfields. She found out all the furniture had been taken out of the house before she moved in and thrown down an old mine. The former owner thought it was all just old junk!!!!
I don't feel I've scratched the surface, but you get the idea?


  1. Must have been fun to rummage through Euphemia's contents but I believe it would have done my head in Madam!
    Did you keep the bedroom dresser (3rd photo)? Mine is very similar and while it's not exactly suitable for the next house I don't think I can part with her.

  2. No we didn't keep the dresser. It had a wardrobe which matched, but unfortunately they got split up. The old wardrobes are lovely, but they really don't fit enough in them to warrant the amount of space they take up.

  3. Wow! I love your before and after shots.How did you sleep at night knowing there were rooms of goodies to explore?I would find it hard to part with anything.

  4. The month before we took possession involved many sleepless nights, either because I was thinking of all the 'things' or because I was stressing about the mammoth task of renovation ahead.

  5. Oh, I do hope you're getting Mr Baby over for lunch or tea ... is he able to?

    I think it'd be lovely for him to see what you've done.