View-Listings-CTA get-in-touch

Step into a winter wonderland at these upcoming holiday home tours

Comment are off

MEG MCCONAHEY THE PRESS DEMOCRAT November 29, 2019

HOLIDAY HOME TOURS

Petaluma: Visit two prominent Victorians and one historic farmhouse. Refreshments served at the Petaluma Historical Library & Museum, 20 Fourth St. 5 to 8 p.m. Dec. 8 Tickets cost $20. For more information, visit parlortour2019.brownpapertickets.com or call 707-778-4398.

Sebastopol: Five homes will be done up for the holidays. 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 13 and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 14. $45 for both days, $35 for Saturday only, $10 for kids on Saturday. Artisan Boutique of crafts is free and also open to non-ticket holders. Open 5 to 9 p.m. Dec. 13, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 14 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 15. For information on purchasing tickets, visit sebastopolholidayhometour.weebly.com/tickets.html.

When Bonnie Spindler bought the impossible- to-miss Queen Anne presiding over the corner of 6th and B streets near downtown Petaluma, it had been on the market a long time and was suffering years of deferred maintenance.

But Spindler, a “down low” real estate agent as she puts it, with a soft spot for old houses, recognizes a diamond in the rough when she sees one.

The heart of the house had changed remarkably little since it was built at the turn of the last century. It was brimming with original details and Victorian eye candy, like turrets, a wrap-around porch and stained glass windows on each floor.

Old Dr. Gossage, the town veterinarian who built the house to serve as both home and office, would have no trouble finding his way around the house, from the washroom to the kitchen. Both were remodeled in th 1970s but remained in the same location.

He would feel at home on the staircase, with its walls lined with the original Lincrusta, a deeply embossed wallcovering made of a gelled linseed oil and wood flour paste spread onto a paper base and rolled between steel rollers one side of which is embossed with a fancy design.

Both the Lincrusta and the original woodwork were spared the indignities of a poor paintover and remained in original condition. Spindler enlisted Dustin O’Brien of O’Brien Painting, a second generation Petaluma painting contractor, to simply wax the wood.

“My whole focus is Victorians and keeping historic housing stock authentic,” said Spindler, who specializes in both the sale and the restoration of old homes. “People like to gut these and make them big white boxes, like a museum. I try to show with my restorations that you can be both authentic and historic but also practical for the 21st century.”

Spindler said she also believes that restoration with a light touch also is more eco-friendly.

Spindler has spent the last two years preserving the 3,317 square foot mansion and filling it once again with period antiques.

“Anything that was not original, I removed,” she said.

Now she’s ready to show it off. Her home is one of several historic homes that will be open to visitors for the Holiday Lighted Parlor Tour Dec. 8 from 5 to 8 p.m., put on by Heritage Homes of Petaluma.

The tour is a Petaluma tradition and a chance to see some of the river town’s storied old homes, each lavishly done up for the holiday season. The tours also present an opportunity for other homeowners to pick up on remodeling and holiday decorating ideas.

Typically, 440 to 500 people will stream through the homes, also stopping by the Petaluma Historical Library and Museum for refreshments.

Among the other stops on the self-guided tour is a Queen Anne Victorian with a water tower, and an early farmhouse on D Street built in the 1870s — one of the first homes in the area.

Spindler’s home was built in 1889. There was another house on the site when Dr. Gossage earmarked the location for his home office. He had that much smaller home moved a couple doors down, where it still stands today, nearly 130 years later.

 

HOLIDAY HOME TOURS

Petaluma: Visit two prominent Victorians and one historic farmhouse. Refreshments served at the Petaluma Historical Library & Museum, 20 Fourth St. 5 to 8 p.m. Dec. 8 Tickets cost $20. For more information, visit parlortour2019.brownpapertickets.com or call 707-778-4398.

Sebastopol: Five homes will be done up for the holidays. 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 13 and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 14. $45 for both days, $35 for Saturday only, $10 for kids on Saturday. Artisan Boutique of crafts is free and also open to non-ticket holders. Open 5 to 9 p.m. Dec. 13, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 14 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 15. For information on purchasing tickets, visit sebastopolholidayhometour.weebly.com/tickets.html.

About the Author