Welcome to Cranky Puppy Farm!

This blog belongs to two Gen X-er's smackdab in downtown Kansas City where we've been renovating and decorating two old Victorians built in the 1890's. Our life is filled with 3 demanding Pomeranians (1 of them cranky, of course), honking cars, noisy neighbors and the hustle and bustle of city life but we dream of the day when we can move to our 40-acre farm and hear nothing but the wind and the cows next door. Until then, we're chronicling our triumphs and mishaps here as we try to garden and preserve on 2 city lots, raise chickens, and learn all those things we should have learned from our grandparents. Welcome to our world - we hope you'll stay awhile!

1893 Victorian: The Dining Room

Friday, January 11, 2013

Oh, sorry!  I think it's time to continue our tour of the downstairs and I'm so sorry to have left you standing in the parlor for 2 days!  Let's go, shall we?  On to the dining room...
Here's what it looked like the day we were thinking about buying it. 

The walls look awful, don't they?  But it's not as bad as it looks.  The previous owner had stripped the wallpaper out of this room and fixed all the pin holes and cracks in the plaster, so what you are seeing is bare plaster stained yellow by the wallpaper paste. 

So this room was basically a blank slate!  All ready to be beautified.  Here's a look at the fireplace in the room (the 2nd of the3 in the house).  Once again, I managed to capture Pauline's behind in this picture.  J. accuses me of doing that on purpose because we have a ton of pictures from his behind.  I say either (a) get your behind out of the photo if you don't want it snapped, or (b) maybe I think your behind is nice and wanted to capture it for posterity, or (c) maybe I didn't notice or care if your behind was in the frame.  Or (d) maybe you shouldn't turn around when I'm taking a picture.  So there!

The original fixture only partially worked and, rather than rewire it, I felt the room needed a classier feel.  I'm all about the bling, you know.  I had gotten this really great deal on a gorgeous Schoenbeck crystal fixture (like Swarovski) when one of the Rensen House of Lights locations went out of business, and it was perfect for this room.
The only work we had to do to here was to paint the walls a deep plum color to match the tile on the fireplace and put several fresh coats of white on the trim.  These pictures don't do it justice - the color really pops!

Another on my long list of projects: a late 1800's buffet.  This will be moving across the street to our dining room.
And some of the crystals on the chandelier matched the color of the walls.  I think it lends an air of elegance to the room.  What do you think?

This room is surrounded by pocket doors.  We just walked through a set from the parlor and here's another set heading into a back room.  Truthfully, I'm not sure what this room was originally used for.  It could have been a servants or nanny's bedroom, as there's a closed up staircase converted into a closet in there.  There's also a back door that leads out onto the deck that spans the entire length of the back of the house.  That room is so light and airy - it would make a great office or study.

I love the long windows in this room.  Can't you just see long silk curtains spilling onto the floor here?

I couldn't get over what good condition the original fireplace tiles are in this house.  Someone cared for them lovingly, that's for sure, as they are usually cracked and missing.  And it can be virtually impossible to find a match.
We did clean up the fireplace cover and give it a nice fresh coat of paint. The designs on the three covers are all different but this one is my favorite.  It's of an ornate wreath with what I think are cherry blossoms on either side.  You can click to biggify the picture below to get a better look.

Well, that's the dining room.  We have just 2 more stops on the main floor and then we're heading upstairs.  If you turn around, the door to the kitchen is right behind you.
Thanks for stopping by on the tour and I hope you have a great day!


  1. Gorgeous! I really love the bright white and dark brown together, really wonderful.

    1. Thanks, Yolanda. The color is REALLY dark, but it's the only room that we painted a dark color and I also love it against the white trim. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Beautiful CP. Keep the tour going!

  3. I too was amazed at the excellent condition of the fireplace tiles. It is practically unheard of! I absolutely love the fireplace covers and didn't realize they were all different! I'll have to check them out up close next week!

  4. I'm so glad we're getting to see the inside of the house... can't wait to see the kitchen. Your friends are getting a gem!


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