Thursday, October 6, 2016

Halloween Weekend Victorian House Tour and Craft Show - Sat/Sun Oct 29 & 30 - 10a until 5p

255 Mill St. - Scandinavia, Wisconsin  54977
Halloween Weekend – Saturday Oct 29 and Sunday 30 – 10:00a to 5:00p

Take a historic tour of the Wrolstad-Quien Victorian at 255 Mill Street in Scandinavia, Wisconsin Halloween weekend.  We are asking for a modest donation of $2 per person--all going to The Humane Society of Waupaca County.  Enjoy chili and dessert by Scandinavia Library in the Red Garage.



Our Queen Anne Style Victorian was built in 1893 by John and Mathea Wrolstad--owners of a successful logging business.  

Back row, left to right standing: sons and daughter Alfred, Sina, and James.  Second row, seated: son Martin, parents John Olsen and wife Mathea, and son John.  Littlest ones: Henry, Mabel, and Josephine.  
I believe this photo of our house was taken about 1905
The girl second from the left is Mabel Wrolstad youngest daughter of John Olsen Wrolstad and his wife Mathea.  

The second owners, Thomas and Maren Quien family owned the house for 90 years.

Standing, left to right: Bessie, Gusta, Peter, Ragnhild, 
with parents: Thomas and Maren (Gurholt) Quien.
photo c. 1910 - Second Owners

Thomas Quien with grand-daughters Mary Jane and Donna (children of Ruth and Peter Quien)
photo taken about 1926

Jon and I purchased the house in 2007 beginning a 7 year restoration.  We are delighted to show you all the ornate features of the house; faux bois woodwork, pocket doors, fret work (spandrels), 5-window bay, corbels, 3-window cut-aways, wrap around porch, summer kitchen, Juliet balcony, stained glass window, etched glass doors, wavy-glass windows, spoon carved woodwork, 1917 cook stove, 1916 parlor stove, and original hardware.  Be sure to see the displays of photographs and personal items belonging to the Quien family.

Kitchen - March 2008

Before: North Bedroom Upstairs

After: North Bedroom Upstairs

Let me tell you a little bit more about our CRAFT SHOW artists— and more about our restoration.

1. Jerry Johnson of Iola is a master rug weaver for more than 35 years.  At the Halloween Victorian Tour and Craft Show Jerry will demonstrate the frugal Scandinavian method of turning old clothing into beautiful woven rugs for the home.   Also--Jerry will demonstrate many antique and vintage sewing machines he restored. 

Jerry will tell you the history of portable hand crank sewing machines like this turn of the century Singer La Vencedora Model 128 he restored.  A 3/4 size petite sewing machine, it is ready to take to the cabin for a bit of relaxation and sewing!  

As as a teenager Jerry was already helping his Mother and Aunt sort old clothing by weight, texture, and color in preparation for rug weaving.  Jerry says, “cotton and wool make great rugs, but the real artistry of combining fabrics to create pattern, color, and texture—it all begins with my 1932 Singer hand crank sewing machine Model 99 . . . made of good old cast iron, and no plastic.”

Jerry studied with master weavers: Ken Colwell of Mineral Point, Joanna Ericksen of Boston, and Peter Collingwood of England.  Jerry says he loves to weave rugs, because it keeps a connection to the past alive.  He says, “people relate to the art of rug weaving—many people share stories of family members who made rag rugs, and that makes me smile.” 


2.  Jane Berkholtz  and daughter Krissy Samson have good news to share about their business "Just Hangin' aRound" and will show you some wonderful ways to decorate your home during the Fall and Winter with beautiful holiday wreaths, and table centerpieces.

Born and raised in New London, Jane moved to the Shawano area in 2010.  She's been doing arrangements and wedding flowers for more than 20 years now  Jane tells me, her husband Keith helps with all the wood cutting and new display ideas, while her daughter Krissy Samson created the business logo and facebook page Just Hangin' aRound."  Jane and Krissy look forward to meeting you at the Halloween Weekend Victorian House Tour.  Come browse their collection of wreaths and table centerpieces--and see how they've decorated our old Victorian House.

Our Red Dining Room

3.  Sisters Cathy Larson and Deb Kettenhofen - have lots of beautiful items to show you at our Craft Show.  

Cathy learned to sew as part of 4H. She started out sewing clothes, but expanded into quilting after visiting quilt shops with her mother.  Cathy is also active in paper crafts and card making.  Her business Wood 'n Stitches began several years ago.  

Deb--(Cathy's sister) works more with yarn and thread.  Learning sewing and knitting in 4H she's a quilter too just like her mother and sister.  Her interest in machine embroidery took off several years ago when she read some articles on thread art.  Soon she was offering beautiful embroidered flour sack towels for drying dishes.  When I met Deb and Cathy this summer at a craft show in Wausau I was dazzled by the sisters' booth.  I remarked--the towels are almost too pretty to use.  Deb says, "who says dish towels can't be pretty."    

West Bedroom - Wall Repairs Finished Smooth - Ready for Paint

4.  Patty Kirchner - "Nature's Treasures--All Things Beautiful from The Earth and Sea" 
Patty is a designer of fine sterling silver jewelry.  The materials she uses are natural items: Gemstones, Pearls, Shells, Polished Stones, Sea Urchin Spines, Seeds from Hawaii, Mother of Pearl, and even Wood Beads.  Patty happily admits, "I pride myself in using only the best materials and guarantee all of my work."

Patty's expertise includes sterling silver wire-wrapping and hand-setting stones herself to make each jewelry piece perfect.  I am pleased Patty is joining us for this year's Halloween Weekend Victorian House Tour and Craft Show where you can see, feel, and enjoy her handcrafted Earrings, Necklaces, and Bracelets./


5.   Kay Durrant of Sheridan, WI demonstrate the time honored tradition of wood carving.  What started out as a hobby for Kay turned into teaching wood carving classes at Fox Valley Tech.  Currently she is teaching several classes a week and her classes are always full.

I’m so happy to have Kay here as a featured artist so you can meet her in person and watch her carve. If you ant to know more about wood carving, Kay is the person to talk to.  She'll have a selection of her wood carvings for sale at our open house.
Arched spandrel, east window bay, Living Room
(June 2007 - blowing insulation into walls, installing new ceiling)

Linda touching up faux bois finish on woodwork with artist brush and oil paints.
Living Room  - 2008

Repairing Walls - 2007
Repairing Downstairs Bedroom (formerly the Parlor)

2008 - Downstairs Bedroom Finished


6.  Jenny Vater - Tie Dyed Clothing and More

I met Jenny at a craft show and was so delighted to buy a half dozen of her colorful tie dyed dish towels.  Recently I wrote to her and asked how she got started . . . .

Jenny replied:
I am a stay-at-home-mother of four children.  I love sewing, tie dyeing, gardening running and cross country skiing.  I started dyeing everything white in our house to practice different dye techniques in order to make a ring sling to carry my baby.  I fell in love with ice dyeing.  90% of my work is ice dyed, which results in unique and beautiful colors.  Most of my dyed items are purchased new and some are upcycled from "like new" pieces.  I enjoy turning something ordinary into extraordinary.  I use professional fiber reactive dyes that are permanent (no fading) and rinse the unbond dye thoroughly (no bleeding).

Long Hallway Upstairs - 2011
Process of Saving the Walls throughout the House

Long Hallway Upstairs - 2013
Wall Repairs Finished and
Jon re-installing picture rail found in attic


Wall Repair - Stairwell 2013

Jon working on bathroom 
Installing 3/4" beadboard

Kohler Clawfoot Tub
born May 12, 1903, Plant Line #2 Kohler, WI, about 11:30 in the morning
according to tub serial number and Kohler mfgr. records

7.  Linda Durrant - long arm quilter, Scandinavia WI.  My husband and I are the restorers of this old Victorian.  I will be displaying and selling my queen size bed quilts, baby quilts, table runners, over-sized fancy quilted potholders and my signature beaded zipper pull purses.

Be sure to check out all the 1950s restored VINTAGE SEWING MACHINES "For Sale" in my SECOND STORY STUDIO above the RED GARAGE.

1950's Nelco Model 1603, Ser. #70
I call her "Miss America"--she's so pretty.  

My studio where I make quilts and purses . . .

Finished Earth Tone Quilt

Detail of quilting on "Stars 'n Scraps" quilt

Long Arm Quilting of "Stars 'n Scraps" queen size quilt in Linda's studio (Victorian homeowner)

"Night Shirts" quilt

Detail of long arm quilting, "Night Shirts" quilt

Long Arm Quilting "Navy Blue" queen size quilt.  Linda experiments using freezer paper cutouts.

 Quilting around the freezer paper leaf template.

Orange Crush - Hand Applique - Queen Size Quilt

Detail of Hand Applique - Queen Size Quilt by Linda Durrant

Crazy Blue Jeans Quilt featuring machine embroidered and fabric yo-yos 

Hand stitching binding on "Cheese Platter" queen size quilt
Hand stitching binding on "Cheese Platter" queen size quilt

antique buffet in the red dining room

REMINDER:  The Halloween Weekend Victorian House Tour is:
Saturday Oct 29 and Sunday Oct 30
10:00a until 5:00p

DON'T FORGET-- there is a great lunch of chili and dessert by the Scandinavia Library Group in the Red Garage.

I'm looking forward to seeing you at our Victorian House Tour--Halloween weekend.  Can't wait to talk to you!


  1. You are so generous to share your home with others during Halloween. Your house is beautiful and it must have been fate for you to buy and live in it. Hope your week end is a huge success.

  2. Hello Gearhart,

    Thank you for stopping by my blog and giving me the ultimate gift--a lifetime friendship. I feel like I should call you Dr. G because you always bring along the medicine of praise and laughter. No human bean can thrive without those two important things! I intentionally used the word bean, instead of being, because I know you enjoy using words in a difference way that make people smile, and laugh out loud. Wish you and Janet, Beverly and Doug could be here for my fun Halloween party. A poem for you my friends . . .

    It's good to open up the door
    and find you standing there.
    For just to hear you say hello
    can banish all my cares.

    And when you come inside this house
    you bring so much along
    companionship, and arousing smile
    that turn the hours to song.

    These visits give the heart a lift
    one can't afford to miss
    and life is richer through the years
    because of hours like this.

    So come as often as you can
    there are dreams for us to share.
    It's so good to open up the door
    and find you standing there.

  3. It was wonderful. My sister and I enjoyed it so much. And after returning home realized the purse and apron we purchased were made by you. Thank you for opening your home to the public.

  4. Dear Anonymous,

    Jon and I are delighted to hear you and your sister had a good time, and we are especially grateful for your donations to the Humane Society of Waupaca County. Friends like you make this event work out so well. You made my day with your lovely note. Thank you, thank you.

  5. Hope you had a wonderfully successful show and sale!

    Salem, OR

  6. Dear Mrs. D,
    We are Pam and Mike in St. Louis and we have an 1880s Remington and are trying to figure out how to restore the paint on the treadle portion of the base. We've seen picts on the sewing machine sites, but they haven't really answered out questions.

    I know this question is not going into your "sewing machine' file, but I can't figure out how to contact you. I have given our E-mail Address to the barnburner (or whatever) site, but I'm such a techno-loser that I'm not sure it went through.

  7. Hello Pam and Mike in St. Louis. So wonderful to hear from you, and especially your question about how to restore the paint on the treadle portion of the base. My email address is:

    Please feel free to email me back, so I can discover your email address. Then we can begin correspondence to talk about your 1880s Remington sewing machine. There aren't many around, and it is good for us to answer each other's questions. I have some questions for you too.

    My husband Jon did the restoration work on our Remington's walnut veneer sewing machine cabinet, and re-glued it's cracked wooden pitman, as well as repainting of the iron legs, its iron foot treadle portions, and its iron wheel. I took a number of before and after photographs and will find that folder of photos and send them to you. As we begin correspondence, my husband Jon can tell you step by step about his restoration on the treadle portion of the base.

    Our Remington's machine head's restoration was performed by friend Jerry who is teaching me and others in our restoration group how to restore these old machines we've collected.

    Thank you for contacting me. We want to see photos your of old Remington machine, and our first question to you begins with the bobbin shuttle.

    When we pulled the machine head out of the barn, the original bobbin shuttle was missing. I took the machine head to our local sewing repair guy as he had a few bobbin shuttles on hand. We tried to find a good fit. Bought one bobbin shuttle from him, but it is a bit undersize--and we haven't been able to form good stitches on our Remington so far. We're still in the dark about what size bobbin shuttle our Remington machine uses. I am really really interested to know if your bobbin shuttle has a number stamped anywhere on it to help us in our search to find an original one, or a better fitting bobbin shuttle.

    Looking forward to corresponding with you Pam and Mike. Would like to know more about what sites you've found so far--where people discuss these old Remington sewing machines.

    Linda (Mrs. D)