I woke up this morning to the sound of my kids ranting because we were experiencing a power outage from the lightning and thunderstorm the night before. What were they supposed to do on a school holiday without wifi? It made me wonder how far we have come from "normal life". It was quite fitting because I had a date to travel back in time with my friend Marie who was generous enough to allow me to photograph and feature her amazing home as my very first blog post. So with the official introductions out of the way, welcome to ANNO 1790 where there is always room for one more.
The sun hadn't decided to come out yet as clouds still loomed above when I turned the corner onto her street. You can't help but be awestruck by the sight of the mighty maple standing to attention at her gate. The classic red wooden fence parts way to allow for one of its giant branches to stretch out. It inferes, "you are now in a place that existed long before you were born and will continue to be long after you're gone, so enjoy your visit".
Spring is here and the vibrant green leaves against the red fence might just be the vision that every Swedish emigrant thinks of when they imagine home. It doesn't get more Swedish than this. When you step through her gate into the back garden you are suddenly blissfully unaware of the modern condos and cookie cutter townhomes neighbouring this stoic wooden house.
The entrance to her home is in the middle of the building. What use to be the front yard is now the fenced in garden and the original back yard no longer exists. Before you even reach the threshold of the door you notice that each curated piece was selected to enhance the personality of the house. If this home was a celebrity, I would say it's somewhere between a Morgan Freeman and an Ian McKellen. So much character without even having to try.
The first thing I noticed when stepping inside was the slate floor. I asked Marie if it was original and she told me that it wasn't, but they had reclaimed it from the roof of a church on Öland that was being renovated.
Do you remember that scene in the movie "Jerry Maguire"? Tom Cruise shows up at Renee Zellweger's door and gives her a long speech declaring his love and she replies "You had me at hello." Well Marie had me at "Reclaimed slate roof.". If you need more convincing, check out the tole painting that Marie has done above the door and stairwell. For those of you that don't speak Swedish I can translate that "Välkommen åter" is "Welcome back" in English.
Notice the plank above the door with the carved detail. Well Marie saw it in a picture and began searching for one. Years later, with no luck, this girl didn't give up, instead she took a wood-carving course and made one herself. I'm just going to stop there and leave you with that knowledge, I have no words.
Tune in next week when I show you her livingroom and kitchen.