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Well the cat’s out of the bag. For those of you who saw the June teaser in the May 2011 issue of House & Home, you’ll know that my wife Sara and I are going to have our first home featured in the June issue. After enjoying two years in our charming little apartment in the city, we decided to head back east to put down some roots and make a home out of a house. Located in Oshawa, Ontario, we’re a hop, skip and a jump away from our family and life-long friends and couldn’t be happier.

Here’s the house when we bought it in January 2010. We didn’t close and move into the house until the spring, though.

It's perfect for us because it's in near-original condition and has all of the character and special details we love. I wasn't sure I loved that red roof, but I was certain I could warm up the trim work and windows to bridge the colour gap.

Inside, there's a spacious living room with built-in cabinets and hardwood flooring.

The ceilings on the main floor are extra high and there's plenty of light coming in from the big bay window. And a fireplace? Score!

The woodwork continues in the dining room, complete with panelled wainscotting and a hinged door that swings back and forth just like in all of those classic sitcoms.

There’s even more light coming in through the dining room windows and look, we found the original French doors hidden down in the basement. They were covered with decades of dust and grime, but we wondered if we could put them back in the entrance. And how about that brass chandelier? I think I can work with it...

The kitchen is pure retro kitsch. It has a smallish footprint but lots of counter space when you measure it out and tons of cupboard space. In old houses like this, there’s no bulkhead, so they ran cabinetry all the way to the extra high ceiling, which means plenty of storage for us. One thing that must go? The red and yellow tile! Oh, and the fleshy coloured linoleum flooring!

Here you can see an interesting little archway and the dining rooms’ swinging door. This is an extra hall that separates the front hall from the kitchen and also the dining room from the kitchen. It speaks to the formality of the home and a genteel lifestyle of keeping kitchens hidden from guests. And what's that strange cupboard in the wall?

It’s a built-in ironing board!

The front hall is nice and wide with lots of special details. I knew immediately that the red carpet runner was history and that we’d need to get painting ... fast!

Oh, and one little bonus: a spacious and luxurious bathroom! Just kidding. This is the front hall closet that the former owner had turned into a powder room. Green toilet seat, anyone?

Well, that’s the first floor for you, click here for the second floor, here for our kitchen, here for the video tours, and stay tuned for some DIY projects we did to get the place ship-shape for the photo shoot.

To follow my colleague Meg Crossley's basement renovation and photo shoot, click here.

Photo credits:
Michael Penney 

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