April 2010: Updating a Historical Home…
The Portland bungalow is one of the most common and popular pre World War II home styles in the Northwest. The first bungalows appeared in California around 1900. Following the close of the 1905 Lewis and Clark Exhibition, bungalows began to spring up all over Portland. Many of these newer homes were concentrated in the new East Side neighborhoods. This style continued to be popular until the 1920’s, when the revival styles slowly took precedence.
We are fortunate to live in a time period where historical structures are becoming more valued. Our history in the Northwest may be much younger than our East Coast counterparts, but our structures are no less valued. Here in the Northwest, within older neighborhoods, one can find at least one, if not many, pre-WWII homes. Many of our clients want to know how they can update their surfaces without ruining the overall feel and age of the home.
There are many different products that can be used in these older gems, from carpet to tile to hardwood and vinyl. Flooring manufacturers are beginning to create long-lasting products with a touch of history. One of the most popular products we see in older homes is the standard gloss white subway tile. These tiles can easily refresh an outdated bathroom without taking away the charm of the home. When paired with hexagon tiles, the look becomes complete. One can also add splashes of colorful glass and other accents without spoiling the overall feel of the home.
Another product that can be used in our Portland treasures is Marmoleum. This product is very similar to the original linoleum, which one finds in older homes, without the harmful additives like asbestos. Marmoleum comes in a range of different colors, textures, and patterns. Again, it is one of those products sustains the charm and character to an older home.
Carpet is one of those products that can either enhance or detract from the historical feel of the home. Carpet comes in so many patterns, textures, and colors; it can be hard to know what will work in an older home. Pick colors and textures that will blend with the overall feel of the home. If you choose a patterned carpet, make sure that it does not become the focal point of the room.
In general, pick colors and textures that blend with the feel of your home, and keep as many original features as possible. The more you can blend with the historical structure, the more your home will retain its original charm.