A Breathtaking Rowhouse Remodel Revealed Stunning Architectural Character
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Name: Daniel Clark, one roommate
Location: South Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Type of home: Rowhouse
Size? 1100 square feet
Years lived in: 2 years, owned
Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: When I purchased this small South Philly rowhome, it was a complete wreck. Though full of original detail, the house had fallen victim to the destruction of hoarders, water, neglect, and 10 to 12 cats. Despite the destruction and odor, I had already fallen in love with the vintage bathroom and original doors and hardware, not to mention the beautiful little plaster capitals that decorated the archways on the first floor. I spent 1.5 years rebuilding and restoring whatever original finishes I could salvage. It is a house full of details and original designs.
With the exception of drywall and screws, everything that went back into the house came from salvage yards and Craigslist. Now that the house is complete and furnished with my collection of furniture and art, my roommate and I are living well and entertaining often. One of the three bedrooms serves as my painting studio while the basement is slowly transforming into a furniture repair workshop and occasional party space. Outside of rebuilding this house, I work full time at an architectural and art conservation firm and maintain a painting and design practice I call DPClark Studio.
Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: Classically Eclectic
What is your favorite room and why? I think the dining room is probably my favorite space because it is the center of the house and filled with many of my most unique designs. On one side there is my ornate wood staircase, made completely from salvaged wood, and on the other, a custom built-in curio shelf with aesthetic-movement inspired murals. My favorite elements are the stained glass door and transom window on the far wall that leads to the powder room. These were made by my mother.
What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? I fell in love with a stoneware planter at a vintage shop in Philly last week. It was one of those moments where I just had to have it. It has a classic form but a super goopy and crackly glaze that seems possibly mid-century. It looks great sitting atop my marble coffee table.
Any advice for creating a home you love? Surround yourself with furniture, art, and decor (and people) that you love. Enjoy the search and look on Craigslist, eBay, Facebook, or the flea market. Items that you curate will have meaning and stories and give your home character and depth.
This submission’s responses have been edited for length and clarity.