In the end, the goal is to build an addition that nobody notices. The key to that is matching all the cool old details both inside and out. This sounds easy, but as time marches on, methods, materials, and styles change making once ordinary building supplies objects of exhausting treasure hunts.
We need foundation stone for the addition. I have no idea where the stone on the original house came from, but I know many of the homes in our neighborhood were built with limestone mined from a quarry just miles from here.
The historic Stone Avenue Station (1901) was also built with this limestone.
Our foundation stone continues around our front porch, so it”s is a dominant architectural feature of the home. Dave really wants to match this stone. Mismatched stone screams “addition”. His mason, Mike McMahon came out with samples, but the unique color and over 100 years of aging made a match impossible. Our options are to apply a stain to a “close match”, or search for reclaimed stone.
I was fine with staining a close match, but Dave would have none of it. So Mike referred us to Larry with Bromberek Flagstone Quarry who specializes in reclaimed stone. Sounds expensive and unnecessary to me, but Dave insists anything less will ruin the project. And that’s the problem with renovations. If you want to do it right, you have to match existing details and existing details are almost always the more expensive option. If you’re on a budget, pick the most critical items to match, bite the bullet on those items and find other places to save money. Everyone agreeing on which items are critical is unlikely, but generally exterior materials and styles are critical and hard to change later on.
Dave insists our foundation stone is something we can’t skimp out on. So, for an extra $3,000 we went with the reclaimed limestone. I cringed at the price tag, but on delivery day, we were both happy. Dave was ecstatic. He kept making me go out to look at it.
To further Match the existing foundation, Mike McMahon’s guys hand chiseled the stone before applying it.
Which resulted in a near perfect match.