The Cross House was built in 1894. It is located at 526 Union Street, in Emporia, Kansas. I purchased the house in March 2014.
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My blog posts about the restoration are below.
The goal is to create a stunning kitchen an a $1.98 budget. Another factor is just is, well, just basic decency. Throwing away the Home Depot cabinets is environmentally irresponsible. Ditto for the old-growth T&G. Can I make cheap cabinets look good? Can I make heavily overpainted wood…Continue Reading
This is the kitchen of the carriage house. Remember this image. For, it might look really different in about six weeks. After much progress in the basement regarding rewiring, redoing the HVAC, and cleaning, everything just halted. Justin has been unable to work on the house for almost three weeks now. And while I…Continue Reading
The left shelf revealed…to my great surprise, as previously detailed…a seeming faux bois (painted wood) finish, as is common throughout the Cross House. But why would the pantry have such an expensive finish? The right shelf revealed…to my great surprise…exactly what I expected: under numerous layers of white paint there was an original shellacked…Continue Reading
Today at the Cross House I did something…unexpected. I had not planned to embark upon this small adventure but curiosity overtook me. Soon, I was in the basement shop, working away. When….I encountered something unexpected. Something annoying. Something which made me mad. While driving home I knew, of course, that I would blog about this….Continue Reading
You are likely thinking: And why is a fully restored window sash extraordinary and wondrous? Because…drum roll, please…this sash is the very first part of the carriage house to be restored. The very first. The poor structure has been in bad shape for a very long time. And…the horror…the structure has actually gotten worse…Continue Reading
After I blogged about the Kenny chair, Lynn contacted me. She thought she had…drum roll, please…a matching chair in storage! I gasped! I exalted! Lynn wrote: “My father told me that this was his great grandfather’s chair and it came with him from Germany. I hesitate to say this is factual because other…Continue Reading
The Cross House vacuums up money. Every year. For seven years now. Massive amounts of money. With no end in sight. So, you might imagine my…particular thrill when the house spits up some cash. With the Great Cleaning now almost complete, a lot of metal, aluminum, and copper was hauled off and transformed into…Continue Reading
Directly across the street from the Cross House, to the west, is an unattractive 1970s one-story building behind a parking lot. When I purchased the house in 2014, the building (originally a restaurant) was being used by the local historical society. I stopped by often. But the building looked rather desperate. The historical society then…Continue Reading
I have restored a number of houses over the decades and one thing I endeavor for is being a good neighbor. Nobody likes to spend years looking at construction debris across the street, or old toilers and tubs sitting outside for ages on end. Yet…yet…over the past seven years of owning the Cross House small…Continue Reading
This is the story of the never-ending mantel shelf. I have previously posted about the Octagon Room mantel. It was in very poor condition due to a chronic roof leak above. The finish had flaked off, and the mantel shelf had warped on one end. Months of leaving the shelf in the sun eventually fixed…Continue Reading
Did Ross just replace the broken glass and stick the sash back in place? Nope. And why not? Because Ross is nuts. As such, Ross had to strip the sash down to bare wood, both sides. Then apply three coats of amber shellac on the inside. And only then put in new glass. When…Continue Reading