Somewhere in Time, Unlimited

Snohomish Parlour Tour
December 13, 2009
Several members of Somewhere in Time, Unlimited gathered in the historical town of Snohomish, WA in order to participate in the wonderful "Parlour Tour", hosted by the Snohomish Historical Society.

The members of SITU came dressed in their Victorian holiday finery to wander the homes on tour, allow the general public to take photos, stroll in and out of the stores in town, and in general, lend a vintage feel to the celebration.

The town of Snohomish is located approximately 1 hour's drive north and east of the city of Seattle.  It is quaint, and prides itself on maintaining historical homes, buildings and businesses.

The weather on this day was very chilly and frosty, but approximately 20 degrees warmer than it had been for the group just the day before when they visited Leavenworth, Washington where snow lay on the ground.

The day began with one load of carpool partners arriving to the Blackman House where we had agreed to check in and gather as a group.

Pictured here left is Miss Bobbie at the doorway of the Blackman House, wearing a delightful 1850's era Victorian hoop dress, bright red shawl and festive red bonnet .

Here, five members of the group pose for a photo, creatively staged on the staircase of the Blackman House.

For those wearing fur, faux or real, the house was well heated, so we made a hasty exit to stroll up the street to begin viewing some of the homes on the tour this year.

We were so looking forward to the festively decorated living rooms and exteriors of homes.

 It would be a total surprise what we'd find...

At the first stop, we entered what used to be the Catholic church in town.  It had been converted into a private residence and artist studio.  Notice the dramatic ceiling height.

Looking down the length of the room, one could imagine what the space would have looked like with pews in position.  Just beyond the area which is marked by the large drapery had been the altar.  It is now a raised area complete with seating, faux fireplace and terrific art.

In the photo on the right, you will find the owner of this structure who is the talented artist!!!
(She also happens to be the Mayor of this charming town...)

Crossing the area of what used to be the altar, one steps through a doorway to the private enclave of the residence.

On this side of the former altar, the owners have decorated quite tastefully with antiques and a gorgeous Christmas tree.

Standing on the back deck, one could view a quaint, small garden, complete with columned "folly" and a walkway outlined in small boxwood plants.
The rear porch area was so cozy, we wanted to settle in with a cup of tea, but alas, this was only the first house and we had several more to view!

Thank you for sharing your home and your incredible talents with us.  We are in awe of your decorating and artistic abilities...

At our next stop, we found a couple who had a number of delightful antique pieces in their home, such as this lantern with reflective mirror.  The cute mantle clock is also sweet with the little turned pieces on each end.

Above: Miss Bobbie & Sir Harry pose outside of the residence.   The smell of fresh cedar was fragrant and lent a "Christmasy" feel.

Right: The owners pose before their Christmas tree and warmly lit hurricane lamp.

Thank you for allowing us to come thru your home this holiday season!

The next property was another surprise.  This owner featured a "retro tree" and style of decorating throughout the house.

Her channel-back wing chairs and heavily upholstered couches hearkened back to the 1940's and a cozy time in homes when our nation was still at war.

The fireplace area had curved-top niches, drawing one's eye to them.

In the top one, the owner had placed a small village of homes which lit up on battery.  Symmetrical  topiary trees in decorative pots flanked the fireplace, adding to the theme.

Even the dining room twinkled with small white lights.  Beautiful white roses and candlesticks were set upon a large mirror, outlined by a heavy gold frame.

The Duncan Phyfe table and chairs invited one to "Come on over for holiday dinner."

So cute.  So vintage-chic.  Thank you for letting us peek.

Sir Harry prepares to climb the short rise of stairs to the next home.  On the outside, artistically pruned topiary bushes and hedges along with the vignetting of table and chairs on the porch only hinted at what was in store for us inside!

"Is that a goose," you say?  You'd be wrong.

That is one of the most handsome swans you would ever have the ability to see up close without being pecked!

The subject used to be part of a classroom environment, but fortunately for our winged friend, he found permanent residence with the owner of this home where his feathers will remain in position and he'll always have a place of honor.  Doesn't the swan look dashing in his tapestry ribbon?

The kitchen lured us forward, deeper into its depths.  Here we found twinkling Christmas lights strung overhead, as well as on the wreath in the window. 

Fragrant fruits were displayed on the counter.  Plates were at the ready in the tiered stand, as if we'd be served tea today at 4pm.

Just what was beyond the window?  Let us take a look....

Oh!  Just look at the lush garden out there!

Let's go outside next...

In the garden we'd find statuary, closely trimmed plantings and a garden shed.

In the living room, the feeling of a romantic home emanated virtually from every corner.

Heavenly scented candles. An incredible imported glass chandelier. French doors.  Cast busts of important figures from history.  Books and magazines strategically placed near at hand for when you'd want to take a seat in this room.

One could hardly imagine what the house would have looked like back when because this owner had made such perfectly suited adjustments, they all just married together so smoothly.  Nice job!


The gentleman in the photo here is the homeowner and talented interior designer.

Lady V might need to contact him for an home interior consult since she appreciates his style of working with French antiques!

Thank you so much for allowing your home to be added to the tour.

Sir Harry - What say you?  Do you think all of our antiques could fit this beauty?
We shall have to keep an eye open for when it becomes available!

The next residence was quite a hike from the last home.  Our merry troupe had not chosen to drive from place to place, thinking that they homes appeared to be so close together on the map.  HA!!! At least we worked up an appetite as we prepared for the evening's dinner together.

Here, Sir Harry is pictured wearing his beaver fur coat.  As cold as it has been today, it's a good thing you're wearing it.  Long-johns would've come in handy too...

This home had another interesting theme throughout.  In the front living room, we found nestled in the corner a country tree, antique dolls and books from the family, and all very beautifully displayed upon a red and white quilt.

Notice the leaded windows in the photo?  They just seemed to add to the vintage charm and Christmasy theme of the house.

"Say Dinglesnorts!  Say Candy Cane!  Say Chocolate!"  Aaaaah, finally a big smile.

This is the couple who own this home.  Thank you for sharing your large home with us!

The dining room is very spacious and offers an efficient, built-in china hutch which the owner had magnificently decorated for the season with tiny houses and a Santa.

Look closely, do you spot a house you'd like to move into?

These are the decorations on the sideboard / hutch in the dining room.  Looks like Santa is going to arrive via the vintage catamaran.   The small lighted houses look sweet on the shelf.
In the kitchen, we found 21st century technology side-by-side with vintage chimney charm!   The owners have saved this bit of their home's history when they updated the kitchen.

The black door reminds me of an old German folk story my Grandmother told to keep us in line, where the "bad children" are threatened with being tossed into the oven.  I prefer to think of the delicious Lebkuchen and Spritz cookies that are likely to come out of the oven instead!

(I'm getting really hungry now.)

What have we here? 

This Craftsman home features an acorn-shaped light on the volute of the banister.  Bet that comes in handy when you climb the steps at night or need a little extra help on a dark, wintery day.

The small library/sitting room beyond has been created with intense wall tones and comfy furniture.  Wonderful shelves are filled with books, records and family treasures.

Aaaaah, a small feather tree in the small library is perfectly scaled to the size of space.  There are even tiny people and fencing on the table. 

I believe I might have to loiter in this cozy nook a wee bit longer.

Lady Victoria & Sir Harry's friend, Gary McLean (a real estate agent) also happens to be a family friend to the homeowners.

Thank you for taking time out of your busy "Open House" schedule as an agent to volunteer time to play host at this home.  Your help in opening the door and escorting folks into the home was most appreciated.

Upon leaving the large Craftsman, our group spotted this sweet little Edwardian catty-corner.  The Gothic white fence is especially delightful with the arbor welcoming folks thru the gate this holiday!

We strolled further down the street to pick up some of our group at the Blackman house and then join the rest of our members who were to meet us at the Cabbage Patch Restaurant.

With all this stomping around town, gosh, we sure are hungry now!

This is the delightful Miss Chloe who plays harp.  The historical society had asks Chloe to play Christmas tunes in the living room of the Blackman House.

Chloe is quite talented and available for hire if you have a special event coming up in your family, church, or corporation.

"O Tannenbaum!  O Tannenbaum! Wie grün sind deine Blätter!"

The fragrance coming from the live tree was intoxicating.  THIS tree was sans electric lights, just as it might've been in Victorian times. 

The Germans brought the tradition of Christmas Trees to England via Queen  Victoria's husband, Albert.

Take a look at the dining room's fireplace!

If memory serves, this is a portrait of members of the original Blackman family.

Tours of the building can be made by contacting the Snohomish Historical Society.

Ssssssh!  I think I heard some rustling out in the kitchen.  Perhaps we can get a quick cup of tea while we're here after all....
Ah!  It wasn't any maid or butler in the kitchen area.  This is Warner, the 2009 President of the Snohomish Historical Society.  He is the husband (and co-homeowner) of the talented artist pictured in the first home images.

Thank you for allowing all of us to participate in the home tour and to visit your own home too.  You're a doll...

Befitting an antique home, the cast iron stove is incredible and a good thing to keep with the property.  Original cabinets can be seen in the background.
While the rest of the group headed for the Cabbage Patch Restaurant, holiday music drew Lady V & Sir Harry back downtown.

Arriving to a vacant space between buildings, we found a merry group of brass horn performers, providing lively tones for all those present in the audience.

As Lady V happened to be wearing a long strand of bells, it was suggested that we all sing "Jingle Bells" while the strand of bells was jiggled in time to the music.  Nice!

Shivering in the cold was this long-haired Dachs who traveled in his master's arms wearing a cute holiday sweater.

I wonder what he'd look like in a little bowler or top hat...

After all the walking about town and posing for photos with the public, everyone was a bit parched and needed some refreshment.

We trudged our way up the steps to the Cabbage Patch Restaurant, home to lovely antique furniture, excellent food and a host of juicy ghost stories of previous occupants of this home turned restaurant!

The food here is quite affordable and very tasty indeed.  You can swing in just as easily to enjoy a Cesar salad, a Hot Toddy, some pie or a full blown meal.  These folks know how to do it up right!  Yum......

Pictured here, we have the delightful Miss Loveday (Board Member) of Seattle fame.  She is sans husband today as he was very busy with holiday preparations at their own property.  Maybe next year, hmmm?

We are seated in the front room of the house which has a gas fueled fireplace. The front half was the part of the establishment that had to be rebuilt after a fire broke out a few years back.

We met the lovely lady who owns the restaurant and she told us the whole story of the fire and subsequent efforts to reestablish.  It was truly a major undertaking but well worth it in the end.  The carpentry work was well done and her place shines!

Here are two of SITU's Darlings: Miss Joan and Miss Sharon.  Joan is a long time costumer both on stage and reenactment.  Her wardrobe covers a wide range of eras.  Sharon has a sweet-spot for the high Victorian fashions, her favorite is the bustle-era in particular! 

In the photo, Joan is wearing a beautiful lined mink wrap over her Victorian walking outfit.
Sharon is disguising her bustle-back outfit with the festive red cape trimmed in brown fur. 

These ladies sure know how to fend off the dropping temperatures! 

Miss Bobbie rubs her cheek on Sir Harry of Essex's coat made of vintage beaver fur with a raccoon collar.  Good thing he too, had something warm to wear...

Pictured L-R: Miss Loveday, Lady Paisley (author of "Lady Paisley Presents"),
Miss Corky (a Victorian Civil War reenactor and SITU member),
 Miss Bobbie,  Sir Harry & Lady Victoria of Essex.
(Not shown in the assemblage: Miss Joan and Miss Sharon)

Oh wait, ladies!  I want to catch another shot of you together before you leave....

You both look just so, "Victorian"!!!

As our party left the restaurant, we strolled past the lovingly decorated windows in this tiny town.  The decorations reminded several of us of happy times in our own youth or young adult lives.  Flocked houses, bottle-brush trees, shimmering glitter reindeer all evocative of a more family-oriented and slower time in history.  Look carefully, you might even spot the reflection of our photographer, Lady Victoria...

Couldn't you just recall your own childhood and imagine yourself in this scene?

The members of Somewhere in Time, Unlimited slipped down the darkened street,
now vacant of holiday shoppers.  Only  the echoes of Christmas music
coming from the restaurants and our memories of a wonderful
day, filled our hearts.

Thank you, Snohomish Historical Society and all the Homeowners.
It was so kind of you to welcome SITU into your midst.
We'll be back next year!


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Updated June 21, 2010