Event gives designer chance to show house


April 11, 2002|By Jean Marie Beall | Jean Marie Beall,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

WHEN THE ISAAC R. Atlee house opens to the public this month, it will have a touch of New Windsor resident Barbara Brown in it.

Brown is one of the designers helping to restore the early 19th-century house for the Historical Society of Carroll County as a Designer Showhouse 2002 fund-raiser. It is a symbiotic relationship among the designers, the house's owner and the historical society.

"When a designer does a show house, she does so at her own expense," Brown said.

The designer benefits by getting her name and work before the public. The owner gets a restored home, and the society is allowed to use the house as a fund-raiser for a month. (The house at 120 Water St. will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, April 28 to May 26.)

Brown said she learned of the project by accident. She had been shopping at a Westminster antiques store when the shop owner told her about the house. She contacted the mansion's owner, Terry Wiley, visited the house and selected a room.

"It's a very old house and a lot of work needed to be done," she said.

The house had been split into nearly half a dozen apartments. Brown said her room had been a kitchen when she first saw it. But the society put up drywall and the room became a dining room.

The room was dark and Brown said her first task was to select colors. She chose "butter-cream yellow, raspberry and greens" to lighten it. Her next task was to find a painter she could work with. Judy "Jutz" Moreland, a faux finisher from Westminster, agreed to work with Brown. They had worked together before.

Brown said she contacted local artisans and merchants to donate drapes and furnishings for the show.

A Real Find Antiques shop in Finksburg donated dining room furniture, and Sew Business in New Windsor made the drapes. Uniontown blacksmith Nick Vincent is making an iron chandelier. Others providing furnishings include Locusts Antiques, Chicken Coup Antiques and Gizmo's Art and Framing.

Brown said merchants donate items for the show in hopes of selling them. None of the furnishings stays with the house after the show.

"It's a real good place to get recognition," Brown said. "There's a lot of prestige. And people who come to these events are usually interested in decorating."

Brown said she did not design the room to mimic a period in history.

"I wanted a room that a family could picture living in today," she said.

The show house is a first for Brown and Moreland. Moreland has been painting for eight years. She was trained at faux finishing school in Georgia.

"Faux finishing is a term meaning `fake' or to `fool the eye,'" Moreland said. "I can paint a wooden column and make it look like a marble one. I can paint a ceiling to look like a sky."

For their room in the Atlee house, Moreland's painting gave texture to the walls. She painted birds on the ceiling's corners.

Brown said she is happy with the way the room is turning out.

"I wanted to keep the room light and airy, beautiful and comfortable," she said.

Arbor Day planting

New Windsor Tree Committee is holding an Arbor Day ceremony to plant a seedling from the Eastern Shore Wye Oak. The ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. April 27 at Lions Club Park on Maple Avenue.

Mr. and Mrs. Donald Elliot donated the Wye Oak seedling to the town seven years ago, according to Linda Donaldson, who chairs the committee.

"It has been growing at the Wakefield Valley Nursery," Donaldson said. "They grow very slowly."

In addition to the ceremony, the committee will sell other types of seedlings for $2 as a fund-raiser at the Presbyterian church at Church and High streets. Evergreens, Douglas firs, river birch, dogwood and red oak will be sold.

The New Windsor 4-H group will serve ice cream from its dairy program. The committee will sell T-shirts that say, "Catch the Future, Plant a Tree," for $10 each.

Last month, the committee held a tree-planting day.

"It went really well," Donaldson said. "We had about 30 kids come out and plant 50 trees."

Information: 410-875-0991.

Runnymede garden

Runnymede Elementary School is doing its bit to help the environment. The school received a grant from the Chesapeake Bay Trust, which it will use to create a native garden with benches, signs and a birdbath.

The garden is part of an effort to help the bay.

According to Michele Ziegler, fifth-grade teacher, and Clare Wieber, third-grade teacher, the garden will be used in the school's curriculum to teach pupils about seeds, insects, plants and soil.

Pupils are planning the garden and will have their first planting day May 16.

Taneytown car show

The seventh annual car show will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 27 at Thunderhead Bowling Centre, 4337 Old Taneytown Road in Taneytown. The car show is a fund-raiser sponsored by Street Cars of Desire to benefit youth programs of the American Legion, Hesson-Snider Post 120.

The car show is open to all vehicles, including antique, custom, low riders and muscle cars. Registration is $7. The first 100 cars registered will get dash plaques donated by Crouse Ford.

Bowling specials, an auction and games will be held during the show.

Information: 410-751-1750.

Jean Marie Beall's Northwest neighborhood column appears each Thursday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.

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