Rest in Peace at West Webster Cemetery

Last year ReHouse was asked to salvage the 100+ year old wrought iron fence and gates from the West Webster Cemetery.  The fence was being replaced bot because of damage or any issue with its functionality, but because of a demand by the insurance company.  So, we salvaged it.  And now we have over 100 pieces available for your home project.

From the Cemetery’s website In 1790, shortly after Oliver Phelps opened a land office in Canandaigua, New York, the Phelps and Gorham Purchase set aside one-half acre of land specifically for burials. Located at the corner of what are now Ridge Road and Maple Drive, this parcel eventually would be known as the West Webster Cemetery and the earliest cemetery in what would become the town of Webster, New York.

“On April 12, 1878, the cemetery was incorporated under the name of West Webster Cemetery Association. In 1908 an iron fence, which remains today, was erected along Ridge Road and north on, what was then, Cemetery Road. The vault was constructed in 1912. Through the years, parcels of land were acquired from adjoining property owners enlarging the cemetery to its present size of 5.10 acres.

“Throughout its history, West Webster Cemetery has become a final resting place for many men and women in uniform who proudly served their community and country.”

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One Front Door from Salvage to Spectacular

Have you visited our Instagram feed @rehousearchitecturalsalvage? We try to regularly post some of the more interesting treasures we have in the store and share posts from others that showcase great reuse projects labeled with #reusewithrehouse.  We also follow a great selection of like-minded and local feeds including the one I would like to share today, @vintagewalnut.

Lisa’s feed @vintagewalnut features her family’s restoration of a 1850s farmhouse.  One series of recent posts really intrigued me because it focused on her home’s “new” front door which she mentioned was purchased right here at ReHouse.  I am excited to share with you Lisa’s photos and process info for her front door restoration.  I hope you find her projects encouraging and inspiring too.


Here is the completely boring front door that was on the house when Lisa bought it 10 years ago.  I think you agree with her that it is not quite right for a 1850s anything.


“Very excited to be giving my old house a proper exterior door (previous owners removed the original 🤔). Finally found what I was looking for @rehousearchitecturalsalvage. Now if spring would get here already 🏡🙏 … Just basking in the good find glory before the work starts” – March 28, 2018


Once spring had sprung and turned into summer Lisa and her husband Ben were finally able to begin work on their front door.  “To strip the finish we used a combination of Citrastrip and sanding and scraping (using cabinet scraper).”


Taking 60+ years of finish off this beautiful salvaged door. Can’t wait for the finished result! Its only taken me 10 years to find this gem (it basically looks exactly like the door that was here before the previous owner removed it) 😆 Shout out to the simple cabinet scraper- perfect thing for getting those tough angles.” – July 1, 2018


“We used a tinted wood filler (water based that hardens to protect wood from water penetration) to fill in the gouges, cracks and any old nail holes in the door.  Then we applied three coats of tongue oil cut with turpentine and tinted with a dark oak stain. Then Behlen rock hard urethane varnish to the inside.  To the outside we applied several coats of the tongue oil stain mixture.  That will need to get reapplied for maintenance as needed going forward (doesn’t require stripping).”


“Almost done refinishing 🙌 I think deciding on a privacy solution for the window has been the hardest part.😆” – July 24, 2018

“We used the original brass hardware and found additional unlaquered brass hardware to match including lock set, hand pull, and hydraulic door closer. We had to have a carpenter build a new frame door and then my husband Ben custom built the exterior moldings.”


“Installed ✔️ Our new old door was salvaged from the College at Brockport, from this awesome building 👉 It only took me 10 years to find it 😄 Now it’s time to start on the moldings! .” – August 5, 2018


The Visual Studies Workshop building that Lisa’s door was salvaged from in 2013.  At ReHouse we try to retain the provenance of items to share with the next owners.  Obviously, Lisa found this info interesting as well.


I just LOVE the way Lisa and Ben transformed this commercial door with its brass kick plate and chicken wire safety glass into an inviting front door to their historic home.  Great job you 2, and keep on sharing your projects!

Salvage Job in Brighton

The owners of #25 have decided to rebuild, but before they do ReHouse went in to salvage what we could.  This is the (mostly visual) story of what we saved from this 1960s Brighton home.


The rosettes in the corners of the front door frame really have roses on them.  We were able to get them out beautifully.  These are 9.5″ square and $23 each.

Some great outdoor lights in the front and rear of the home.  Right photo: sturdy wrought iron carriage lantern style in 2 sizes. 7x13x8 (quantity 1, $40) or 9x18x12 (quantity 2, $80 each).

Double sliding patio doors with full windows on each side.  The frame for this is one very big piece.  The 2 doors and 2 windows all fit in the one frame.  It is about 16 feet long and about 7 feet high.

Darius and Jacob carry them out to the truck one at a time where David is waiting to help load and stow them carefully.

Throughout the house there is nice top nail hardwoods.  We salvaged as much as we had time to remove and load.  Soon it will be denailed, measured, bundled, and priced at $2.25 per square foot.

The small mud room had built in cubbies and coat racks for easy storage of coats, boots, gardening supplies, dog leashes, and more.  I couldn’t fit in the mud room to take photos of the deconstruction but I could look in through the window opening.  This piece has not been put back together yet, but let us know if you are interested in it.  It measures approximately 95.75w x 95h.  It could be shorter if you did not use the toe kick or the top molding.

Each of the 2 bathrooms had stylish, next-to-new vanities.  The first is dark grey with 4 drawers and one center door, all with chrome knobs, Moen faucet, Quartz top with under-mount white ceramic sink, and matching backsplashes on rear and right side. 43x36x22. $395

The second bathroom vanity is dark coffee color, 4 drawers with glass knobs, 1 lower shelf, and tan stone like top with white under-mount sink and brushed nickel faucet.  36x34x21. $355.


The homeowners are saving the beautiful kitchen cabinets and appliances for their new home.

Here is what was left when we got there.  We are so glad that everything in the kitchen will be reused.

A few more interior spaces: cubbies, built-ins, cedar closets, hardware salvaging, and the creepy basement (there was no electricity and it was dark) with a lot of shelves for all your preserves.

Some fun and interesting exterior shots.  It was strange to be in a house with no actual windows.




Decorating like a Maine Airbnb

photo by Lynn Miller

Every summer we take our kids to Maine to visit my parents who spend their summers there.  They live in the quintessential Maine town with a general store, a post office, a library, and not a single traffic light.  Within 10 minutes you can see a Civil War era coastal defense fort, at least one lighthouse, and a Maine State Park beach.  My parents live on one of the small dirt driveways off the main road that are marked “Private Drive” in a house designed by my step-brother.  It is just the right size for two so we always spend our nights somewhere else.  There are cabins nearby, in the forest or on the beachfront, a great campground on a private island, and even a few well-known chain hotels in the larger town of Bath about 15 minutes north.  We have gone the way of cabins and campgrounds in prior years but this time wanted a little more home-comfort.


Emily, a co-worker at ReHouse, suggested Airbnb, a website and app that allows homeowners to rent out space to travelers.  This can range from a room with a bed to an entire home, and she has found their prices to be very reasonable.  I gave it a try and found just the right place for our family, Historic Greek Revival with a Kick, at the south end of Bath.  I knew the space would be great by the number of fantastic reviews and Alice’s Superhost status, but I was unprepared for the actual decor and atmosphere of the place.  It reminded me of all the projects that ReHouse customers dream of.  That is why I am telling you about it.  I know you will love it as much as I do.

Visitors stay in the front half of the house, and Alice’s family lives in the back half.  You enter into a long narrow room with stone floors, unique hooks to hang your hats and coats, a bench covered in animal hide, and the first signs of architectural salvage.  A small antique crystal and silver chandelier hangs from the bead-board ceiling, and I wonder if it is original, a reproduction, or whether Alice has made it from a silver candy dish and loose crystals found at a flea market.  A salvaged door header painted white tops a frameless mirror which hangs over a small table that could be made from a single kitchen cabinet with a marble counter and found furniture legs.  On this sits a simple display of glass bottles in a short wooden crate, perhaps once used for local blueberries.


An antique secretary’s desk is a perfect hiding place for outdoor essentials or to set your keys on as you walk in the door.  The interior door still has its original bell which the visitor would “Turn and Release” as instructed on the front.


The small kitchen has everything you need tucked behind a narrow island built of weathered natural barn wood.  This is reflected in the grey washed wood accent wall nearby.  This wall sports a few wood shelves held by cast iron brackets.  Below is a sturdy wood crate painted cream attached to the wall by its base.  This creates 2 more shelves to hold your coffee maker and all your coffee making essentials.  It feels beachy and transitions perfectly from the browns of the entryway to the greys of the dining room beyond.


The dining room is bright and light.  The table seats 4-5 with 2 chairs painted cream and built in benches with storage underneath.  The tops of the benches are dark stained wood which is simple but effective.  On the left wall storage is created with 4 base cabinets that match the bench bases and topped with grey washed wood.  This antique half-circle window is the feature accent with an elegant arrangement of candle holders and glass balls with the look of antique silvered mirrors sitting in a cream ceramic bowl.


How clever is this little display at the bottom of the stairs?  It is a narrow piece of weathered wood on some simple brackets.  On the shelf is an antique dresser mirror in its original harp.  I never thought of putting one of these on anything but a dresser!


At the top of the stairs there is an inviting little space with a leather loveseat and crystal table lamp.  The bead board on the walls mirrors the planks on the “barn doors” at the other end of the hall.  I started thinking about making over my own ugly sliding closet doors like this.  That shouldn’t be too hard.  Should it?  Alice also incorporated two divided lite windows, one to hide a pipe and the other as a display case for some old area newspaper clippings.  The unexpected piece that I just love here is the baby or doll cradle with a cozy blanket and small throw pillow.


Here is an example of the simple yet sophisticated lighting found throughout the house.  This ceiling is small and not overpowering.  When turned on it sparkles and sends light dancing around the room just like the one in the above photo.


One of the best parts about Alice’s house for us was that is has 3 bedrooms.  That means my kids didn’t have to share a room let alone a bed.  You can’t go anywhere and get 3 bedrooms for such a great price.  You can see photos of the whole rooms on the Airbnb site, but I want to feature some of the vignettes that we could easily make using items in the store.  One little side table has an arrangement of bottles and candles on it but check out the dresser scarf; it’s a vintage money bag from a bank.  I bet you could use one of these flour sacks for the same type of eclectic feel.


In another bedroom there is another one of Alice’s signature narrow shelves.  This one has a doll tricycle and an antique certificate from the Board of Examiners in Optometry.  Again, so simple but intriguing.  If you can’t find a certificate like this one we have one from Calvin Coolidge confirming a man to the position of Postmaster in Pittsford.


Another lovely arrangement with bead board behind it mixes the new with the old.  Tall candle holders, an accent lamp and a small cabinet create an appealing trio.  On closer inspection the cabinet it is a lot like the vintage wood medicine cabinets that we often have in the store.


How about this for wall art?  This is a piece of antique tin ceiling with its original chipping paint and rough edges.  Mounted in front is a small wrought iron display shelf holding dirty old terracotta pots.  Can you believe I just used the words chipping, rough, dirty, and old to describe such fantastic decor?


These pieces really made me think about how difficult it must be to fill space when you aren’t using personal photographs or mementos which most of us do in our own homes.  The decor we love in magazines and on vacation doesn’t usually have these things.  I wonder if it is harder to decorate with those things or without them.  What do you think?

Whatever your thoughts, you can decorate like Alice too.  Here is your shopping list for you next trip to ReHouse if you want to try her style.  These specific items are in stock as of 8.15.18, but we may have similar items at any time.  See you soon, and don’t be afraid of old and chipping for your next decorating project.


New Hampshire Farmhouse, Part 2

Welcome back to Temple, NH!  Today I would like to show you around the brickwork in the home.  This home originally had at least 3 fireplaces plus the beehive oven and other brickwork in the kitchen relating to cooking.

Here is the Amity wood stove (circa 1984) in the kitchen with the smoke directed up a chimney that might have been for an open hearth in earlier days.  The stove is available for sale at ReHouse for $295. It measures 23x30x20 and includes the original owner’s manual and a few extra pieces but no stovepipe.

kitchen wood stove
photo by Deconstruction Works

There is also a small oven door to the right which houses the beehive oven and below that a door to clean out the ashes.  You can see that the slate under the cast iron stove is relatively modern and the floor to the right of it has been patched.  This area was probably a larger/deeper hearth for the original cooking fireplace.

beehive oven1
photo by Deconstruction Works

I found some interesting information about beehive ovens on Wikipedia.  “In the thirteen colonies that later became the United States, most households had a beehive oven. The beehive oven typically took two to three hours to heat, occasionally even four hours in the winter. Breads were baked first when the beehive oven was hottest, with other baked items such as cinnamon buns, cakes, and pies. As the oven cooled, muffins and “biscuits” could be baked, along with puddings and custards. After a day’s baking there was typically sufficient heat to dry apples and other fruits, vegetables, or herbs. Pots of beans were often placed in the back of the oven to cook slowly overnight.”  The beehive oven was almost certainly an original feature of this home’s kitchen.

beehive oven2
photo by Deconstruction Works

Here you can see the beehive oven from above and the fireplace from the next room which shared the chimney.  I believe this is the fireplace in the white paneled room below.

photo by Deconstruction Works

The white mantle is available at ReHouse.  It does not include any of the other paneling that surrounds it.  It measures 60x51x7 and is priced at $110.


Here are two other fireplaces and chimneys as they are being deconstructed.  You may be asking yourself, “What did they do with all that brick?”  This brick was made differently than most brick we deal with in building today.  It should be used inside to avoid deterioration, and quite a bit of it has already been resold by Deconstruction Works for other projects around New England.

fireplace brick
photo by Deconstruction Works

Imagine all the loaves of bread and pots of broth these bricks have seen.  How many tubs of bathwater they have heated, how many guests they have warmed, how many meals they have cooked, how many loads of laundry they have boiled.  What will their lives be next?

Temple, New Hampshire Farmhouse, Part 1

demolish  de·mol·ish  (dəˈmäliSH) verb 1. to destroy (as a building) completely by knocking down or breaking to pieces.  The town has scheduled will demolish that old building with an implosion.

deconstruct  de·con·struct  (dēkənˈstrəkt)  verb  1. to identify and examine the basic elements or parts of  especially for discovering interrelationships.  2. To take apart or examine  in order to reveal the basis or composition.  3. To adapt or separate the elements of  for use in an ironic or radically new way.  The family decided to deconstruct the old home and re-purpose the land it is on.

house front
photo by Deconstruction Works, VT

She grew up in the farmhouse across the road.  It was built in 1770 by her farming ancestors when they came to Temple, NH, a town that was founded only a few years prior.  Someone in her family lived there for most of the last 230 years, but for the last several it has stood empty.  Sadly, there were no family members interested in the old beauty and no buyers either.  Instead of letting it be occupied by someone who wouldn’t care for it or letting it sit empty, she decided to have it deconstructed so that others could enjoy at least the parts they needed.

exterior deconstruction1
siding partly removed – photo by Deconstruction Works

Deconstruction Works, a contractor in West Dummerston, Vermont, took on the job.  At ReHouse we are able to remove kitchen cabinets, built-ins, flooring, trim, doors, and windows from homes locally.  At Deconstruction Works they are able to take apart an entire house, remove everything, and find customers who need each piece.

house front deconstruction
it looks good in brown – photo by Deconstruction Works

Having worked with us before they kindly let us know about the project and gave us the opportunity to claim a few pieces to bring back to Rochester.  We wanted to share with you some photos, and a bit of the house’s history to go with them.

Sally at NH
here’s Sally picking out some sashes – photo by Deconstruction Works

Temple, NH is, according to Wikipedia, “a town in Hillsborough County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 1,366 at the 2010 census.  In 1758, Maj. Ephraim Heald and his (family), were among the first settlers. Peter Heald is generally considered to be the founder of Temple.  In 1768, it was incorporated by colonial Governor John Wentworth, who named it after his lieutenant governor, John Temple.  Temple Glassworks was founded here in 1780 by Robert Hewes of Boston.  By 1859, the town’s population was 579, when Temple had two sawmills, one gristmill, and a tannery.  As of the census of 2000, there were 1,297 people, 440 households, and 347 families residing in the town. ”

Although I do not know who the original owner of the home was, we do know that he was one of the first settlers in Temple.  As you can see from these illustrations of 3 early Temple homes, the style was very typical of the period.  These are from The History of Temple, NH by Henry Ames Blood.

entry stone
front step stone with boot scrapper – photo by Deconstruction Works

Please scrape your boots before coming inside for a tour.

Welcome to the parlor.  This room is a perfect example of the home’s interior decor.  The floors are wide spruce boards which were almost certainly cut on the property.  The woodwork is all natural in this room which is so beautiful.  Too bad wallpaper is too hard to save.  The fireplace itself is brick painted white; more on that in a bit.

deconstruction of the parlor – photos by Deconstruction Works

parlor at ReHouse

Here is our almost authentic 1770s parlor vignette.  We have the paneling, mantle, built-in, and doors at ReHouse.  They are all available for sale as of 7.16.18.  Here are the details from left to right.

  • built-in cupboard, pine, two 2-paneled doors, with wood knobs and brass toggle latches, 6 shelves total inside, 50″ wide x 86″ high x 20″ deep, item number #100953, $1425.
  • mantel and fireplace surround with upper panel, natural pine, simple detail, 71.5″wide x 85″ high, mantel is 50.75″ from floor, opening is 54″x45,” item number #101678, $535.
  • paneling to the right of fireplace, 4 panel, pine, floor to ceiling, 45″ wide x 85″ high, #101679, $125.
  • interior doors, we have several, most are natural on one side and painted on the other, 4 panel pine, about 1″ thick, all include traditional wrought iron latches, 29-30″wide x 76-78″ high, various item numbers, $75-80 each.


I hope you will come back for Part 2 next week.  We’ll leave the latch string out for you.

Salvage Job in Elmira

It is a sad day for anyone who sees a family home demolished for any reason.  At ReHouse we hope that we are able to help during this time by saving some treasured pieces of that beloved home.  Last week we went to “Grandma’s” house in Elmira NY and did just that.  I don’t know why the house is being taken down, but I do know there were memories made there.  According to Zillow, the house, on Main St, “is a single family home that contains 2,152 sq ft and was built in 1900. It contains 3 bedrooms and 1.5 bathrooms.”

The home still featured the original Victorian double entry doors.  Blue on the exterior and cream on the interior the doors are constructed with 2 panels and one upper lite each (#98448).

The interior panels are flat, but the exterior panels are raised with detailed trim.  These giants measure 53.5″ wide by 101.25″ high when placed together.  The door plates, mortises, hinges, and original round doorbell are included for $875.

There was also one pocket door in the home’s interior to a bathroom closet.  This is a beautiful four panel door with gorgeous Eastlake hardware that had been painted over (#98385).


We removed the pocket door handles and mortise, stripped the paint, and put them right back where it came from giving the whole door new life.  This single door measures 29.5″ wide by 89.5″ high is available with the rollers on top for $325.  (Measurement is for door only and does not include rollers height)

Speaking of hardware, all the door knobs in the house were brown swirl porcelain… PAINTED!  Yikes!  We patiently let the Crockpot work its magic and were delighted to discover 12 sets of these after about an hour.  Each set is $20 (#98300).

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Another great hardware find was several closets worth of coat hooks.  More specifically cast iron acorn double hooks.  This is a classic antique design, and these are a nice large size at just under 4″ deep.  We did the work of stripping the paint off these for you as well.  Fill your own closet for only $9 each (#98304).


Cast iron is a hot topic at this house, and the coat hooks are just the beginning.  We were able to pull out several heating grates including a large floor cold air return, a few modern grill style wall grates, and the these decorative ones.

Top left: brown, top only, 9.75×11.5, #98325, $25

Center left: natural, top: 10×13.75, insert: 8×12, #98323, $75

Bottom left: some brown paint, top: 12×16, insert: 10×14, #98321, $85

Top right: natural, top: 12×18, insert: 10×16, #98269, #95

Bottom right: white, top: 9.5×11.75, insert: 8×9.75, #98324, $75

Here are a few close-ups for details.

Back outside the cast iron continued in the railings from the front and side porches and stairs.  These are black wrought iron with delightful cast rose accents.  The balusters alternate between straight and twisted and the ends have generous swirl handles.

We have 6 pieces altogether.  The 3 stair pieces measure 48, 60, and 72 inches long and are priced $80, $100, and $120 respectively (#98282, 98238, 98281).  Two identical straight pieces (#98280) measure 30 high and 50 long for $80 each. The largest piece (#98426), shown in the right photo below, is a straight piece with a tall end that would have gone from the porch floor to ceiling similar to a column.  It is 132″ long and the tall end is 112″ high.  This is $320.

Since we are talking about railings let’s take a look at the interior natural wood railing inside the main entrance.  We were able to remove the entire railing, newel post, and balusters.  This is a gem with an elegant design and hairpin turn, not to mention the UNPAINTED wood finish. The railing measures in at 365″ long and includes 59 balusters.  The newel post is 43″ high.  The complete set is priced at $625 (#98277).


Next, join me in the kitchen where we were able to remove a small set of vintage metal cabinets, a cast iron sink, and a built in wood pantry.  The cabinets are a classic vintage style and color with original chrome handles.  The sink base has 4 doors and 2 drawers for versatile storage.  The other 3 cabinets (the one not shown is the same as the bottom one) are all uppers, the smallest of wise could fit over an appliance.


The sink is included in the price.  It is cast iron with a porcelain finish that is in pretty good shape.  The faucets, handles, and sprayer are all included and had been used recently.  The double drainboard means you can have lots of dishes drying at the same time or you can use that counter space for something else.  The whole set (#98428) is priced together for only $425.  What a deal!  Main piece including sink: 54w x 39.5h x 25d.  Smaller cabinet: 18x18x13.5. Larger cabinets: 18x30x13.5.


The built in pantry cabinet is original to the home and has traditional bead-board doors and Eastlake hardware.  It comes apart in 2 sections which makes it easier to move and reinstall.  The upper section has only 2 very tall doors concealing 6 storage shelves.  Are you picturing rows and rows of jams and pickles?  This section measures 41w x 78h x 15d.  The lower section has 2 drawers and 2 doors.  The base is 34h, a great counter height.  The “counter” measures 41.75×20.75 which gives it a slight overhang.

The finish one the pantry was in bad shape, as you can see in the close-up, so we decided to give the piece a face lift.  We used Valspar Furniture Paint in Tea Light for the whole exterior except the “counter” which we sanded down and stained.  I know you want to see it done, but it is still drying.  Check our Instagram feed next week for the reveal.   think you’re going to love it!  Until then enjoy the slide show we’ve posted there of some other smalls we picked up at the salvage job that are available in the store now.



A Philly Story: The Cathedral

In keeping with the theme of church related items from Philly, I want to feature some from the another area congregation.  Like private homes and commercial buildings, houses of worship occasionally take on updates and restoration.  The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception had in the basement a collection of no longer used items from the church, social rooms, rectories and class rooms.

image source:

The Cathedral is located in the Northern Liberties district in Philadelphia and was erected in 1966. This building replaced the old Cathedral Church at that time.  Inside and out the Cathedral is gorgeous but as the website says, “the completion of the interior embellishments is an ongoing process which will continue over the years.”

Some changes are choices and some are not.  It is common practice for Catholic Churches to have displays of small candles for the faithful to use as part of a devotional prayer.  More and more, these real candles are no longer used in churches for insurance purposes and are being replaced with electric or battery powered prayer candles. The Cathedral is one of those places that has decided to switch, and now these beautiful displays are available in our store.

The large gold displays have 102 small holders in the center and 20 large holders on the sides and across the top.  In the center of the top is an electrified light socket under the cap and cross.  They measure 65″ wide and 21 1/2″ deep and have small casters.  We have 2 of these.  They do not include glass votive inserts or candles.

The one smaller iron display has 40 small holders and 5 large ones across the back.  The base is twisted and scrolled wrought iron.  There is a slot for donations on the front.  The total dimensions for this smaller one are 28.25″wide by 44″high and 15.5″deep.

I hear you, you aren’t a Church, so what the heck would you do with a piece like this.  No worries.  We have some ideas…wine rack. cups with craft supplies. bird feeder.  Or how about this one?  Take the top section off.  Put the candle holder in your unused or faux fireplace and partially fill it with candles.  Now it looks like you have a blazing fire.  You can use the base as an aquarium stand, plant stand, or garden art.  Can you imaging dozens of tiny herbs growing in them?

Let’s see what else we have acquired from the cathedral.  A few short pews that are 54″ long, shown below. The back is 32″ high, the seat is 17″ off the floor in the front. Several have kneelers attached but they can be removed. Stained and varnished oak.  They are a nice size for a front entry or mud room where people are taking shoes on and off.


Holy water “urn” with a stainless steel upper canister marked HOLY WATER on the top handle and an aluminum legged base. It stands 45″ high and could have many reuse options (with no disrespect intended to its original use).  Exceptionally clean and unmarred.  Lemonade?

Next up: front row pew.  Paneled section in varnished oak with capped ends, kneeler, Bible holder on back side.  Front side is also beautiful paneled wood, no seats.  8′ 1″ long by 38″ tall at end cap.

The Cathedral housed a school for many years so we now have several chairs that have an arm with a tablet table, all right handed. Some seats have numbers stenciled on the back, and the traditional school desk carvings.  Wood is varnished and frames are sturdy metal.

This is interesting…a 49″ tall octagon cupola or dome. Brilliant and metallic colors, beautifully painted, tiered with an onion top that may have been the base for a cross(?).  It is quite a stunning piece.


Assorted tall metal candle holders originally used in the main sanctuary.  Very sturdy.  Could be spray painted a new more inspiring color.  Would make great bird bath stands.


This is a special find.  A bell/gong from the church.  This was used during special services and events.  Made of bronze it has a sacred sounding tone when rapped with the wooden mallet.


We would like to take the opportunity to that the community at the Cathedral for their dedication to reuse by offering these materials to Restore of Philadelphia.  Let’s give them new life!

Best of Bowling Alley Salvage

“Do you bowl?”

Shortly after moving into my new home the lady across the street, who was then 84, walked over to welcome us.  After “hello,” the very next thing out of her mouth was, “do you bowl? We need another woman in our league.” I think my jaw hit the floor.  The truth is…I CAN bowl, but I don’t make a habit of it.  What I would like to do is build something out of reclaimed bowling alley wood.  I didn’t tell her that though.

I have put together a compilation of the Best Bowling Alley Re-Builds by customers here at ReHouse.  We don’t want to brag, but they are also some of the best anywhere.  In my search for primo projects on Pinterest I discovered that most reclaimed bowling alleys become one type of finished product: the top of something.  They become the tops for desks, coffee tables, dining tables, counters, bars, and islands.  Here are some amazing creations by our very own customers (in no particular order).

Extended Kitchen Island

The Johnson-Kercsmar family chose an 8 foot section of bowling alley with inlaid arrows.  They refinished the wood with a warm stain, painted a reclaimed kitchen cabinet, and added some wood legs and framing.  Those industrial stools appear to be made to match!  And how amazing does it look with that stone fireplace and those vintage style lights (which are also available at ReHouse)?  Can I come over?rehouse

Custom Kitchen Island

Here is another kitchen island.  The Zuech family also chose a piece with inlaid arrows to add some direction to their cooking.  They refinished the top but kept the light finish, trimed the edge with metal, and went with a white base to compliment their amazing Chambers stove (ReHouse has one of those right now too).  I’d love to poke around the rest of the house!bowling alley_Zuech_2017

Dining Table for…a crowd?

This dining table is the longest project I am featuring today.   Our customer, who resides in a loft apartment in Rochester, apparently enjoys hosting large dinner parties because he has this table set for 18 guests!  He chose a 12 foot section (the longest we have).  On the near end you can see the lane’s original pin decking and a few bowling pins for some interest.  I don’t know what the base is for this table, but I can assure you it must be heavy duty to hold up this grand table.  (Sadly, I am not certain which customer created this beauty.  If it is you, please let me know so that I can give proper credit.)  How do I secure an invite to the next party?bowling-alley-table-2bowling-alley-table

Bathroom Vanity

The Church family used 2 lengths of the approach for their double-decker bathroom vanity.  The approach is the section of lane before the point where you release the ball.  This material is thinner because it does not usually need to withstand the abuse of heavy bowling balls.  The approach was also salvaged in narrower pieces, so there was no need to cut down the width of these pieces before installation.  Both levels are edged in strips of beautiful matching wood trim.  Some steel pipes for supports gives this a sophisticated industrial feel.  Do you mind if I use the facilities?bowling alley vanity

Kitchen Table & Benches

The Femecs, a local husband and wife team, designed and constructed a built-in breakfast nook including a table and benches on 2 sides.  The alley section they used for the bench seat features small circle markings on the far right.  The metal table base was custom made by Rochester company General Welding and Fabricating.  All other work on this inviting corner of the kitchen was done by the couple.  The edge of the table was left without trim to show off the many narrow strips of wood that make up the alley.  I like my eggs over hard please.BowlingLaneTableAndBenches

Have you purchased bowling alley from Rehouse?  Have you done anything with it yet? We want to see it!  Email your project pics to  We LOVE to see what our customers are doing.  Don’t you have a project to start?

Photos have been provided by the customers and have been used with their permission.

Top 10 Architectural Salvage Items to Repurpose for Your Home

It’s a hot word in today’s online world of DIY blogging and made over décor: Repurpose.  But what does it really mean to “repurpose” something? Google has informed me that to repurpose means to “adapt for use in a different purpose.”  This is one of my favorite words, and working at ReHouse I have daily inspiration.  It got me to wondering, what are the most popular architectural salvage items to repurpose?  I’ve done my fair share of upcycling, as it is also called, but I turned to the DIY pros via Pinterest for some guidance on the topic.

I conducted a search on Pinterest for “repurpose architectural salvage” and gathered my data on the frequency with which each item or category appeared in the results.  I then compared those results with our own POS database and the quantity of each item or category we sold in 2016 and 2017 so far (these numbers will be listed in parenthesis for each category or subcategory).  I have concluded that the top 10 architectural salvage items to repurpose (in no particular order) must be

Doors (1081)

Interior (709), exterior(209), paneled wood, metal, wood with leaded glass, rustic/barn (53), sliding, folding, painted or natural, hundreds of DIYers are adapting doors to fit their décor needs and styles.  These photos all come from ReHouse customers who have reinstalled or repurposed the doors they purchased here.

Top left: Tim repurposed a pair of oversized doors from a garage or barn into outdoor privacy walls on his deck. Top right: Exterior door with side lites and arched transom from Victorian home in Hornell, NY reinstalled at MCM Natural Stone in Rochester, NY. Center right: wood interior door with beautiful grain turned on its side is now a customer’s headboard. Bottom right: an assortment of paneled interior wood doors pieced together to make the sales counter at Grossman’s Nursery also in Rochester, NY.  Bottom left: side folding wood and glass garage doors became a space divider in a clothing store in NYC.

Windows (955)

Technically these are window sashes or one part of the whole window unit.  Most DIYers using windows seem to choose older wood framed sashes with divided lites (256), leaded glass (100) or the occasional stained glass (31).  Pinterest has window project round ups that include “25+ DIY Repurposed Window Ideas” and “40 Simple Yet Sensational Repurposing Projects for Old Windows.”  Wall decor seems to be a very popular result, and here are a few I would be happy to hang in my home.

Left to right.  1. Frame a fun favorite poster within the divided lites and add a whimsical accent to the front like Cassie from Little Red Window.  2. Feature a collection of small stained glass windows on an empty wall like this arrangement from Pinterest said to be in the home of John McGivern.  3. At Right Up My Alley Design on Etsy I found inspiration for painting on glass just as I would on a canvas.  4. I could not find any one to which I can attribute this creative enclosed frame except that it is obviously from the family of Sgt. Gregory W Ball.  Cases and cabinets seem to be a natural progression in window repurposing.

Left: By Your Hands featured this cabinet with windows as doors but did not know where it originally came from.  You could use a pre-built cabinet or build one to suit a found window.  Similar to one at my house, this cold frame from Grow Garden Tomatoes will protect your sprouting plants in the cool spring.

Metal Accents

Metalwork that was a part of something else in a former life often peeks through or sometimes even dominates architectural vignettes.  In ReHouse these items fit into all categories.  Among the top choices for salvaged metalwork are fence sections or pieces (73), gates with some sort of latch (7), heating grates (180), tin ceiling (361), lamp/lighting parts (320), and other metal do-dads, tools, and thingies from who knows what (I don’t have a number for that).

Top row, left to right: Narrow console table using reclaimed wood and wrought iron fence pieces, this post led me back to Cass at Remodelaholic. An aged run-of-the-mill chain link fence gate becomes a decorating focal point when hung above the fireplace and adorned with a natural arrangement at Back Porch Musings.  Those little dod-dads come in handy when making unique wind chimes as Rebecca discovered from life. by hand.  Tear that ugly fabric off an old lamp shade, invert, and let it hold up your tulips (no attribution).  Bottom row, left to right: Antique heating grates set into the ground and filled with colored stones become and enchanted walking path aparently from Hometalk. Make your own toilet paper holder out of pipe pieces or purchase at Reclaimed Art.  This lovely bouquet accent lamp is made of lamp parts with a touch of hardware for the blossoms by Jack at Jack Riley Lighting.

Hardware (9725)

That leads us into another broad category that spans all types of door knobs (816), door plates (688), drawer pulls and knobs (2451), latches (205), hinges (1348), hooks (217), escutcheons (162), and brackets (64).  I was surprised to discover that many hardware repurposing projects are resulting in beautiful and unique jewelry.  There are also many customers at ReHouse who want to give their kitchen or furniture a makeover with new knobs or pulls.

Top row, right to left: ReHouse customer, Alissa Laine, restored this beautiful dresser by replacing the knobs with original glass.  1/2 of a hinge + 2 typewriter keys = a classy hook for necklaces made by Paul at Etsy shop StrangeTanks.  An antique eschutcheon (that key hole thing) and a few beads create a simple and elegant statement from a web page that is no longer active.  Some shabby chic door knobs are retrofitted for candles and rented out as wedding decor at Something Borrowed.  Bottom left:  One of my favorite uses for antique hardware has to be the addition of a door plate from ReHouse to a real and functioning guitar by Jonathan at Postal Commerce.  A statement piece worthy of a red carpet event this necklace features an antique drawer pull and (I think) precious stones made at Retreaux Girl.  Another ReHouse customer (whose name has been sadly misplaced) used 12 point glass door knobs and a wood door header to create an elegantly rustic coat rack.

Wood Trim and Accents

This is admittedly a large and varied category.  People are using corbels (76), plinth blocks (76), door headers (over 150 linear feet), column capitals, and pieces of wood appliqué.  It also includes all types of turned wood findings such as balusters (149), newel posts (8), columns (57), and furniture parts like chair spindles (145 chairs) and table legs.

Top left: An antique extra large corbel mounted on the wall becomes a plant stand at the Bachman’s Spring 2011 Ideas House and captured by Itsy Bits and Pieces.  Top center: Using some salvaged wood trim our customer Ms. Farnung created a lovely space to display her jewelry.  Top right: Decorative plinth blocks used to adorn the bottom corners of doorways where 2 types of trim meet.  Add a hook of your choosing and mount them to hang hats, necklaces, or dish towels like My Desert Cottage.  Bottom row: Matching corbels are used to support a shelf in the dining room at the Red Chandelier.   An unidentified but beautiful piece of salvaged wood repurposed as a table lamp by Meyer Interiors.

Mantels (33)

Pinterest viewers are not inundated with mantels as they may be doors or windows, but the end results are so beautiful and inspiring I feel they have earned a spot in the top ten.  These mantels are might be striped, sanded, painted, and/or stained.  Many live their new lives simply as restored mantels for real or imagined fireplaces, but often they are transformed into headboards, book shelves, or even a mirror frame.

Top left: upholstered mantel headboard by Rhonda at My Blue Creek Home.  Top right: shabby chic arched mantel headboard from a compilation at Country Design Home.  Middle right: mantel turned bookshelf found on Pinterest from an old Ebay link.  Bottom right: small mantel repurposed as a bathroom mirror frame at Neighbor’s Hill Bakery and Cafe in Arkansas (photo by Aunt Ruthie at Sugar Pie Farmhouse).  Bottom left: imagined fireplace vignette at Chateau Chic.

Shutters (224)

Both interior and exterior, shutters are used in a variety of household vignettes and projects.  Interior shutters are usually shorter and narrower.  These were more for privacy that for protection as large outdoor shutters were.  In case you’re interested, the most popular exterior shutter color is green if our inventory is any indication

Top row, left to right:  Gail Wilson at My Repurposed Life made this handy magazine rack with one wide interior shutter.  A tool caddy using 2 small interior shutters made by customer Gail Miller at a ReHouse workshop last year.  Four small interior shutters painted white and attached to form a box hangs from a chain and lights up the space (unknown source).  Bottom left: A lovely autumn vignette featuring a pair of shutters in another customer’s home.   Bottom right: I’ve seen many display shelves made with a shutter as the back but this one includes a light at the top and doubles as a hall tree with coat hooks (unknown source).

Furniture (1633)

At ReHouse our furniture sales are topped by cabinets of all types (1027).  Far below that come chairs (145) and tables (131) and then just drawers all by themselves.  Many DIYers are following the painted furniture trend which is sometimes covered by the repurposed umbrella.  Here I would like to show some amazing examples of furniture repurposed as some totally unexpected things.

Top right:  wooden head and foot boards become a sunny bench for one customer.  Center left:  a refrigerator on its back and covered in barn wood will now hold all the cold drinks for the party at another customer’s house.  Top right: dresser – drawers + wallpaper = dollhouse (unknown source).  Bottom left: another foot board with some shabby chic paint and a dozen small hooks can hold all your tea cups and saucers on the wall (link went to Hometalk). Bottom right: From Gypsy Barn this upright piano has been gutted and fitted with shelves and a drawer to be used as a dining room feature.

Lighting Globes & Shades (528)

Although we do sell the occasional fabric shade for lamps or sconces (24), most of the Globes & Shades (427) category consists of antique or vintage glass ones.  These come in every shape and size and fit all different lamps ceiling mount, chandeliers, pendants, table, wall, even under the cupboard and over the vanity.  They are available for indoors or outdoors, attic, basement, or garage.  I never knew there were so many! On top of that, individual chandelier crystals (101) make up a significant portion of all lighting related glass sales.

Top left: Use round glass globes as a mold for these trendy concrete spheres by following the tutorial by Steve & Kathy at The Garden Glove.  Top right: Search out ridged white globes, add a “stem” and create an autumn display that won’t rot before Halloween, Homeward Found Decor.  Bottom left:  Another great tutorial, this one from Addicted 2 Decorating, shows how to turn the classic school house globes into a succulent centerpiece.  Bottom center:  Two very different glass shades come together with some glass glue to become your new favorite cake plate worthy of the finest celebrations like these from DIY Homer.  Bottom right: Solar lights with a twist, this DIY project uses normal outdoor solar lights and glass shades from a common ceiling fan to light up Gail’s porch at My Repurposed Life.


Ok, I hear you…”what kind of category is commercial?”  This may not be on the top ten for Pinterest posts.  It may not even be defined as architectural salvage at all, but this year ReHouse has sold over 700 square feet of bowling alley.  That’s right, bowling alley.  I’m taking a guess that the customers who purchased these 700 square feet are not installing a home bowling alley.  The other option?  They must be repurposing it.

Now 700 square feet is very heavy.  It requires commitment to salvage, commitment to purchase, and commitment to repurpose.  With all that commitment I shall add my own.  I commit to giving Bowling Alley its very own post within the next few weeks featuring only projects completed by ReHouse Customers.  If you haven’t sent photos of your bowling alley project yet, now would be a good time.

Until then, what will you repurpose today?