Orig­i­nal Beauty

A rare mid­cen­tury gem in Utah gets a re­fresh­ingly min­i­mal up­date.

Atomic Ranch - - Contents - By Max Troja Pho­tog­ra­phy by Chaunte Vaughn

A rare mid­cen­tury gem in Utah shines with orig­i­nal wood pan­el­ing, Ter­razzo, built-ins and so much more.

LD HOMES ARE A FA­MIL­IAR AND WELL-LOVED FRIEND TO THE COU­PLE BE­HIND OLD HOME LOVE. Through­out the years, Andy and Can­dis Mered­ith have vis­ited, ren­o­vated and lived in more their fair share of his­toric homes in the Salt Lake City, Utah area. They even spent their wed­ding day giv­ing tours of their house at the time— which they were in the process of ren­o­vat­ing.

De­spite be­ing well-versed in the world of older homes, the cou­ple views find­ing a mid­cen­tury home as hit­ting the jack­pot. Chan­nel­ing all of their pas­sion for ren­o­va­tion and preser­va­tion, Andy and Can­dis wrote Old Home Love— a book de­tail­ing their many ad­ven­tures in the world of sav­ing old homes.

MAK­ING MOD MU­SIC

Andy and Can­dis got the op­por­tu­nity to work on the home of English mu­si­cian Joe Jack­son, a sit­u­a­tion they de­scribe as “won­der­ful.”

Joe’s home is a per­fect ex­am­ple of preser­va­tion at its finest. Luck­ily, the home has re­mained al­most en­tirely true to its orig­i­nal de­sign—thanks to own­ers who trea­sured el­e­ments like the wood pan­el­ing and were hes­i­tant to make any ma­jor ren­o­va­tions. Andy and Can­dis praise how this home kept its orig­i­nal de­tail, em­pha­siz­ing how rare it is to find a mid­cen­tury house that has been so well pre­served.

“Joe (and the pre­vi­ous own­ers) have been so true to this home that it looks as beau­ti­ful today as it did the day it was built—maybe even bet­ter,” Andy and Can­dis write. “When­ever you are con­sid­er­ing chang­ing some­thing that was orig­i­nal to a home, ask your­self two ques­tions: Is there a far su­pe­rior ma­te­rial that could make my way of liv­ing sig­nif­i­cantly bet­ter? Will I re­gret this change, even a lit­tle, in 20 years?”

PRESER­VA­TION WITH PER­SON­AL­ITY

While Andy and Can­dis en­cour­age home­own­ers to think care­fully about ren­o­va­tion, the cou­ple feels strongly about the bal­ance be­tween preser­va­tion and mod­ern­iza­tion— re­mind­ing home­own­ers to add their own touch of per­son­al­ity.

“Even when stay­ing true to a home’s orig­i­nal de­sign, it is still im­por­tant that you don’t feel like you are liv­ing in a mu­seum, pay­ing homage to a par­tic­u­lar time pe­riod,”

Andy and Can­dis write. “We never hes­i­tate to add our own per­son­al­ity to homes—we just try to make sure that it fits with the home’s per­son­al­ity.”

One of the chal­lenges Andy and Can­dis faced in this project was re­viv­ing the home’s many orig­i­nal de­tails. El­e­ments like Ter­razzo floor­ing and fire­place sur­rounds, built-in closet or­ga­ni­za­tion sys­tems, wood pan­el­ing, door trim, built-in planters and so much more were care­fully re­vived in true old home love fash­ion. “Ev­ery era of ar­chi­tec­ture has a story to tell,” Andy and Can­dis write.

SIM­PLE LINES AND LARGE WIN­DOWS SEAM­LESSLY COM­BINE TO GIVE THIS BED­ROOM A BEAU­TI­FUL VIEW AS WELL AS WON­DER­FUL NAT­U­RAL LIGHT­ING. THE VIEW GIVEN BY THESE WIN­DOWS, AS WELL AS THE LARGE IN­DOOR CAC­TUS, WORK TO BLUR THE LINES BE­TWEEN WHAT IS MAN­MADE AND WHAT IS NAT­U­RAL.

COM­BIN­ING TWO OF THEIR FA­VORITE MID­CEN­TURY EL­E­MENTS, THIS HEARTH FEA­TURES BOTH TER­RAZZO AND IN­DOOR PLANT LIFE.

“THIS BUILT-IN CLOSET IS A QUAL­ITY FEA­TURE THAT SHOWS HOW BUILD­ING PRAC­TICES HAVE CHANGED OVER THE DECADES. THINK OF THE TIME IT MUST HAVE TAKEN TO BUILD IN SOME­THING LIKE THIS,” ANDY AND CAN­DIS WRITE.

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