custom furniture, kitchens, and baths by fineartistmade

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Water Street shower/bath

Bathrooms With History

November 27, 2021

It’s been a while since our last blog; more than one pandemic ago. Who knew that we would be considered essential workers? We safely navigated shutdowns and mask mandates while working our way through six consecutive bathroom projects.

Our client's oak table and crank phone fit right in with the new period kitchen

The Cottage (part 2)

August 1, 2019

When the Red Beach cottage was built and by whom is still an open question. It has been added to and altered a number of times during its long life. Census records suggest occupation on that site as early as 1910. Structural tells found during the demo phase; square nails, hand planed beaded moldings, lath and plaster marks and extra wide old growth pine sheathing suggest an earlier date - 1860 to 1880.

Samuel de Champlain's 1613 map,  Isle de sainte Croix.  Red beach Cove upper left

The Cottage (part 1)

July 31, 2019

We celebrated the start of summer with the completion of our latest project; a kitchen/pantry renovation in a 100+ year old cottage, in the sleepy Calais suburb of Red Beach. Situated on the St. Croix River around a sheltered cove and first-rate mill stream, one would never suspect driving through this quiet residential district today, that it was once a vibrant, prosperous, self-sufficient community.

The historic Holmestead circa 1856.

Summer Newsletter

August 19, 2017

Our latest kitchen and pantry project in the historic, circa 1850, Benjamin R. Jones home in Dennysville and detailed in the blog, 'Square Nails and Tells', now has its finishing touches. Our clients took a trip down to historic Little Compton, RI and the Antique Stove Hospital to pick up their freshly rehabilitated kitchen stove.


Leaving Well Enough Alone

August 15, 2017

With the kitchen restoration in our project home, a circa 1850, Dennysville cape, nearing completion, our focus turned to a bathroom on the first floor of the main house. The room, that likely once served as a small bedroom (sometimes called the "birthing room") was turned into a bathroom, in the late 1920s by members of the Leighton family.

Eastport and Passamaquoddy Bay - circa 1840, by the French painter, Victor DeGrailly (1804-1889)

Water Street (Part 3)

July 13, 2013

As there was no reference in this deed to a prior owner, we had to take a different approach. We knew from an 1888 history, Eastport and Passamaquoddy, compiled by William Henry Kilby, that the property had once been part of a much larger track of land, 100 acres, owned by John Shackford - sea captain, ship owner and pioneer settler.

Eastport, 1879 Panorama (detail); Our project house in the center - on the corner of Water and Shackford Streets with a horse and wagon in front.

Water Street (Part 2)

July 12, 2013

Our first clue to the home's earlier residents came from a map of Eastport Village published in 1881 that included the footprint of every building along with the owner's name. Printed next to the cape on the corner of Water and Shackford Streets was M.D. Bibber.

Eastport sardine fishing fleet in the harbor.

Water Street (Part 1)

July 9, 2013

We were recently called in to do a bathroom renovation in an historic, Federal style, Eastport cape on Water Street. Its proud new stewards were relocating to the area; part of a fresh influx of creative entrepreneurs that are breathing new life into the city.

The period bath in the Haas-Lilienthal House with its centerpiece - the earthenware tub. Photo by Jody Stuart

The Case of the Dubious Earthenware Tub

May 19, 2013

I recently received a lovely compliment when one of our clients, a Calais, Maine native son and local town historian, exclaimed, "you're the Sherlock Holmes of restoration!" While it’s true I once lived on Baker Street, not in London but the “City by the Bay” - I’m not sure that that illustrious title quite fits.

The George Eaton House decked out for the Calais Centennial

Hot off the press

July 31, 2011

On the heels of the Down East magazine article, ‘Every Mainer’s Kitchen” comes a feature story about our bath renovations in Old House Journal magazine’s Special Fall Issue: Creating beautiful vintage baths.

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