Today's blog comes from David Ramsay, Central Library staff:
Are you renovating an old house? I mean older than 1980 – much older. This might include removing the tasteful broadloom to reveal authentic flooring, be it oak, fir or linoleum, or stripping the velour wallpaper. Would you like to see what interiors from bygone eras looked like?
You can find books of old European or American interiors, but if you are restoring an Alberta house, local examples would certainly be more helpful.
An Edmonton author, Johanne Yakula, has come to the rescue. She has had plenty of experience with her own restoration business and 1912 home, as well as lecturing and blogging on the topic.
In Historical Interiors of Alberta-A Guide to Restoring and Decorating Your Heritage Home, she covers a lot of design ground, going back to the era before Alberta even became a province. Chapters include Victorian, Edwardian, Arts and Crafts, and Modernist eras. Each chapter presents a sample house from a variety of locations both large and small and gives the history of owners and changes and details of different rooms. You can learn how various design components, such as paint colour, wood trim, window covering, lighting and flooring, were treated at the time. The author also shows how you can add to or modify areas and still stay true to the era’s identity. Illustrations from the era and the present are included.
Finally there is a section to help you plan your own renovation (no excuses now!) This book is a good resource for house restorers, or those curious about local design history.