Over the years, the landmark Unsell- Cabell House, in Kirkwood’s historic district, had fallen into disrepair, its deep yard a tangled web of overgrown trees and shrubs and portions of its wood siding, vulnerable to insects and weather, in a state of decay. Yet its telltale Victorian charms—triple-sash Jefferson windows, fancy brackets and scrollwork, louvered shutters throughout—caught the attention of Emily Hoffman, an architecture buff, in early 2015. Nearly every week on her run past the house, she imagined all the possibilities if only someone would make the home a passion project. That someone turned out to be Emily and her husband, Matt Hoffman.
“Emily wanted a historic house in Kirkwood, and she was in love with this one,” says Matt, a developer of rental properties. “We knew we had to move fast rather than let it go to market.”
After showing up at the county courthouse for an auction that was abruptly canceled and, a week later, watching as a Coming Soon sign went up in the yard, the Hoffmans bid on the property sight unseen. “We just kind of went for it without looking,” Emily recalls. The couple hired Ben Ellermann, of Blaes Architects in Webster Groves, to guide the renovation and design a 2,500-square-foot addition to replace an existing structure dating back to the 1960s.
Besotted with the home’s architecture, the couple was committed to maintaining its historic integrity throughout the addition, which would hold a kitchen, family room, and two outdoor spaces for the family of six. Emily chose a channel-bevel siding to match the original shiplap, which mirrors ashlar stone, and the team replicated the distinctive corbels and door mouldings by fabricating molds based on the originals. Sourcing longleaf pine for the floorboards lent a seamless transition from the addition to the aged planks in the front rooms.
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IN GOOD TIME
With the help of interior designer Robert Idol, a Kirkwood couple creates a home that pays homage to the past, yet feels just right for their modern young family.
"Food Raconteur” Ashok Nageshwaran wants to tell you a story.
The Right Move
New shops and showrooms bring exciting opportunities for local designers, makers, and arts organizations to sell their wares to home enthusiasts here and everywhere.
Painter and gardener Lauren Knight branches out.
Chris Mower of White Stable Farms discovered the Japanese style of gardening in Italy. Now, he’s bringing it to St. Louis.
Letters, icons, and illustrations that speak in a hand-drawn language
AUDRA's New Digs
Audra Noyes, of the Saint Louis Fashion Fund Incubator’s first class, opens an atelier in Ladue.
A background in sculpture trained artist Aly Ytterberg to see objects more fully.
A Modern Story
How a little log cabin went from being a home to a guest house
Cut from the Same Cloth
“Turkey Tracks” is a 19th-century quiltmaking pattern that has the appearance of little wandering feet. Patterns like the tracks, and their traditions and myths, have been passed down through the generations, from their frontier beginnings to today, where a generation of makers has embraced the material as a means of creating something new. Olivia Jondle is one such designer. Here, she’s taken an early turkey track-pattern quilt, cut it into various shapes, and stitched the pieces together, adding calico and other fabric remnants as needed. The result is a trench coat she calls the Pale Calico Coat. Her designs are for sale at The Rusty Bolt, Jondle’s small-batch fashion company based in St. Louis. —SAMANTHA STEVENSON
WATER WATER EVERYWHERE
HOW TO STOW, CONSERVE OR GENERATE DRINKING WATER IS KEY FOR ANY OFFSHORE SAILOR. TOBY HODGES SURVEYED THE 81 SKIPPERS OF THE ARC 2020 FLEET FOR TIPS
SOME THOUGHTS ON ORDER—IN POETRY, IN LIFE
A skeptic's journey with CBD
Life really does fly by. Before I knew it, my 40s 30ish had arrived, and with them came some new gifts from dear ol’ Mother Nature— frequent knee pain, stress, low energy and sleeplessness. Now, I’m a realist about these things, I knew I wasn’t going to be young and springy forever. But still, with “middle-age” nearly on my doorstep, I couldn’t help but feel a little cheated. That is until I found my own secret weapon. Another gift from Mother Nature.
Emily Ford – Thru-Hiker
Late last December, Emily Ford, 28, of Duluth, Minnesota, took her first steps on Wisconsin’s 1,200-mile Ice Age Trail with a borrowed sled dog named Diggins. “I was laid off from my job as head gardener at the Glensheen Mansion, and I took full advantage,” she says. Ten weeks later, she became the first woman and second person ever to thru-hike the IAT in winter.
CROWN OF THORNS!
Mom & daughter charged with rigging HS election for homecoming queen
Artist Emily Mason's 4,700-Square-Foot Studio Is Just As She Left It
She painted there for 40 years.
DAYS: GWEN AND LAURA FACE OFF!
Jack visits Gwen to try to get to know his daughter better, and during their chat, he slips that it was Laura who set the coverup scheme in motion years earlier.
What's on your mind?
DAYS: LAURA KNEW ABOUT GWEN
My Girl: Jack (Ashford) discovers he has a third child in Gwen (Emily O’Brien).
The Economist who Says Schools Are Safer Than You Think
When the feds failed to track COVID-19, Emily Oster stepped in.