Thursday, June 29, 2017

Steam Dream

After much research and thinking, we're sticking to what we know in the realm of heat. Which is also to say sticking to what the building's already got: Steam! Poor steam gets a bad rap. Ok, it can be a little confusing, but after years of running a building with a steam system (O'ville Sq) we've come to love it.  Though 90% of the Wedding Cake House's radiators are in good condition, we will have to replace a few. This morning I went up to Boston seeking this gem! Can you believe the design work on this piece! The bonus prize of the day was learning about a cool org in Boston that redistributes building materials that could otherwise end up in the waste stream - they're called Greengoat.  We're already big fans!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017


THANK YOU to all the amazing volunteers who came out on Sunday and LITERALLY helped us move over 6 tons of rubble!!!!


Sorry... I had to repeat it because it is bonkers.

Hi fives all around!!!
Stay tuned for another Heavy Lifting, Gardening, Gin and Tonic Workday!!!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Short notice! Sunday June 25th! Heavy Lifting! Gardening! Gin & Tonics! Come over!

Hi All! Help!!! We know that this is last minute, but we've been waiting on a couple of pesky details like permits and the like.

So, many people have shown us so much (very appreciated) excitement about this project and expressed an interest in coming over and lending a hand with physical labor & we're ready to take you up on it! Skip the gym & come and help us move bags of rubble to the dumpster,  longing for some time in the sun, come and help us mulch and prep for future plantings,  always wanted to lift some claw foot tubs up flights of stairs, we have tubs to move!!

In all seriousness though, we're simultaneously daunted and excited by this project, and humbled by all of the support that we've been getting and promise to make your efforts to help out extremely efficient and as fun as possible. We'll likely have about 3 tons of bagged plaster rubble (150 ready to go 40ish pound bags) to move into a dumpster & many hands will make much lighter work of this!

We'll get started at 1:30 pm, and start wrapping up and making Gin and Tonics at around 5pm.  If you can RSVP and let us know if and when you're coming that would be amazing!! e-mail us at

If you have work gloves, wear em! We'll have dust masks, hand wipes, and tools on hand. 


Monday, June 12, 2017


While the focus of this phase of renovations is on interior systems stuff (electrical, mechanical & plumbing) we're trying to do a few things to spruce up the grounds a bit. We've gotten a few things in the dirt that we're hoping will bloom this year.

Like this lilly! And whoa...that's a lot of lawn to mow!
And then there is this fascinating phenomena where all of the nip bottles that we've collected in the yard are thematically connected to the house.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Demolition Derby

Haunted basement or grains of plaster flying through the air. You decide.

To the scrap yard???

A couple of heavy metal appliances (that is, appliances made out of metal that are heavy.... NOT appliances in service to heavy metal music... but we may need to talk about that too!) are way up on the third floor. We're pretty sure that the best approach might be to call a scrapper and have them move them for free. However, if they might get a decent $$ -- either to an odd collector or scrapyard -- I guess it would be good to figure that out. By decent $$$, I guess I'm thinking that $200 total might make it work with figuring out to move em & put our already taxed backs through another rung of hell. If you have any expertise on said matter - let us know!... In terms of music...we'll it's demolition time, and so if you have any favorite tracks to smash basement ceiling plaster to, we're taking recommendations!

Friday, June 9, 2017

School Desks

Do you want these desks from the basement? We listed them on Craigslist, but whoa...trying to navigate people replying to free postings on Craigslist is like a full time we'd rather see stuff go to people interested in the project.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Adventures in Plumbing Fixtures

We've plotted out every plumbing fixture & piece of hardware that we need for the project. We're trying to reuse as much as possible that's in the house or work and work with stuff from the time period where & when possible. Except for toilets, we've been in the game long enough to know that new toilets are SOOOO worth it! Anyway we needed to find three clawfoot tubs. This quest took us to a beautiful part of RI to the yard of a guy who does antique tub refinishing.  We talked about life and death. He crumpled poison ivy in his bare hands and joked about time machines. As we drove away Pippi asked where I thought he was from, "the past I said".  Here's a pic of the tub in the hall and below that are pictures of a statuary place that we passed on the way.

PS - we have since learned that the tub guy is from Romania...50 miles from Dracula's castle!!

Monday, June 5, 2017

Basement Crystals

A couple of weeks ago Clark from the Revolving Fund mentioned to us that years ago when Community Works was working on the building, they took out a few lighting fixtures to keep them from getting broken or stolen & put them into their office basement on Broad Street. A few phone calls later and we had an appointment to go basement rummaging. Three boxes were excavated, a few things had gotten broken, but lots of interesting stuff got reunited with the house including these chandelier crystals.  And yes, that's a blurry rainbow in the background.

September 15th Workday

September 15 September Workday!!! Wedding Cake House Work Day!  Volume 5 The details: When:  1-5pm ...