Before & After: Painting a San Francisco Victorian

updated Dec 19, 2019
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

When Andi, Dean and their building neighbors decided to re-paint the faded exterior of their Victorian home, it quickly became apparent that the process was not for amateurs. Located in the Alamo Square neighborhood of San Francisco, not far from the famous painted ladies, their building is over a century old. Full of intricate architectural detailing and historical significance, it was important to take the proper steps to restore their exterior, both for the sake of maintaining its historical value and bringing back the vibrant color and detail it once embodied.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Since the project involved an important piece of SF history, as well as requiring an investment of time and money, they looked to an expert for guidance. Architectural color consultant Bob Buckter, whose experience included the building’s previous paint job, completed in the 80’s, consulted on color choice and location. The new scheme included nine colors: five shades of blue, along with burgundy, white, black, and gold. Hiring a consultant to help with the process took some pressure off of the decision making, and helped to avoid what could be a pricey fix.

The painters, from Winning Colors, were talented and meticulous. They spent three months on the job, which unfortunately meant three months of scaffolding for the building inhabitants. With great attention to detail and emphasis on quality, at times they brought in carpenters to repair cases of dry-rot before painting. The gold is actually gold leaf, used to protect the woodwork from water damage while simultaneously adding an element of sparkle to the exterior.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

While this job required a team of experienced professionals, Andi and Dean have developed quite a repertoire of their own remodel projects. Since purchasing their home, they’ve completed numerous improvement projects (mostly all on their own) including their bathroom, featured here on Apartment Therapy. In addition, they are recording all of their renovation efforts on their blog Project: Nest, which includes their post about the Painted Lady.

(Images: Andi Forker)

(Re-edited from a post originally published 02.06.12 – NM)