Katy Elliott

A daily design journal about new england life, home decorating resources, and renovating a 257-year-old house in Marblehead, MA.

My Thanksgiving Table

Posted on | November 22, 2010 | 18 Comments

When I was growing up we always had Thanksgiving at my great grandparents farm in Maine. Generations of women would gather in the kitchen making homemade rolls, fresh kielbasa, and stuffing so rich we now refer to it as “stomach stuffing” —it sticks to your ribs and gives you a bit of a bellyache.

Our family farm was sold and now Thanksgiving usually takes place at my house or my older sister’s. This year it’s just going to be Greg and I. Everyone has been really busy with work and we all agreed a day of sleeping late and hanging out in our pjs sounds like way more fun then sitting in bumper to bumper traffic. Our house looks like a bomb went off with house renovations projects going on in just about every room. I couldn’t be more thankful that I don’t have to clean the house from top to bottom to make it presentable for guests.

I haven’t even thought about what I’m going to cook which is a bit unlike me. I’ll probably head to the grocery story tonight to pick up a fresh turkey, some veggies and a loaf of bread to make stuffing. Greg will probably spend the majority of Thanksgiving working outside on the house. I want be stuck in the kitchen all day cooking and making homemade pies. Simple but perfect.

Above and below photos that I took for an online story that got cut. My great grandmother’s china is shown as a salad plate. A simple stripe linen tablecloth from Terrain and purple napkins from Libeco pull the table together without it becoming too fussy. The hurricanes are from now defunct Smith & Hawkins and the beeswax candles my mom picked up for me at Whole Foods.



Plait Textiles
Kitchens Linens For Table
Simon Pearce: Quechee, Vermont

Rake, Fascia and Wood Gutters

Posted on | November 21, 2010 | 7 Comments

Over the past week we’ve had carpenters here replacing rotten rake boards, fascia and wood gutters. The gutters were so badly rotten the rain literally washed right through them and made the whole back of my house moldy, so charming. Wood gutters are required in our historic district and all our trim has to be wood. The trim made from cedar is naturally bug repellent and lasts longer then less expensive pine. Composite trims are really common in modern construction but not allowed in my historic district.

Above and below photos of the renovation work in progress. All of the old trim has to be replaced; nothing has been salvageable. Scaffolding has been set up on the side of my house to help hang the new rake boards.

I’m using carpenters to do all of the woodwork and roofers for the roof. I received a lot of great e-mails from readers suggesting I use separate tradesmen for each job based on their own renovation experience. The amount of trim work I’ve needed is not typical of a normal roofing job so using a team of carpenters has been essential. I found Regatta Construction through my roofer and they’ve been great. Everyone has been nice, easy to work with and has taken the time to work with me to cut costs. I would totally recommend.

Next week we’ll hopefully get a gutter added to the front of our house. Yay! No more ice puddles on my front step for me to slip on! Stay tuned…

Regatta Construction
50 Jersey Street
Marblehead, Ma
Christian Tosi
(617) 894-5661






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