November-December 2022 - 73

of my greatest life adventures. Even today, I never
miss the opportunity to appreciate the privilege
I've been given to live in such a special space. "
Every room in the house, he says, " holds
endless memorable stories, " whether the tale is
inspired by a particular antique, or a " moment
working with the artisans who brought a rebirth to
this lovely home. "
" It was my intention to guide a renovation that
can add another 225 years to this home's history, "
he says. " It's impossible to know the stories this
home has witnessed over the past two centuries.
There's an emotion that an old home creates that
I have never experienced in a modern home. A
'presence' that's hard to describe or define. "
It does, however, reveal Spychalski's conviction
that homes, especially homes with history, have
more than just stories to tell; they have a soul.
Spychalski's antiquing mentor agrees.
" Joe bought a house that would fit his collection, "
says Spiecker. " You literally have to find a place.
Did the Nantucket house fit (the collection)? Nope.
What Joe's collection was really crying for was
an old 18th-century center Colonial with the big
chimneys. Just what he has now. "
The house, while true to its Colonial roots,
is also an extension of Spychalski's playful
nature. While many antique collections can make
a house feel like a museum, the Andover house,
with its mix of traditional 18th-century pieces,
contemporary paintings (including several Ralph
Cahoon paintings of mermaids), weathervanes
and several well-placed whimsical items, is anything
but stodgy.
" What he's created there is an awfully comfortable
place to live, " says Spiecker. " It's the building,
it's a garden. It's all the things he's poured into it,
that's the beauty of it. He brought it all to life. "
Spychalski was a stickler for authenticity. He insisted
that Gauthier use rosehead nails whenever
possible. Original wooden beams and planks and
granite slabs were preserved. Recovered handmade
bricks from the fireplaces, some featuring
footprints of raccoons and turkeys, were repurposed
in the home's stunning kitchen.
" There is no modern functioning kitchen that
can be of true 18th-century design. I felt confident,
however, that we could create an environment
that would blend the features of Colonial living
with a modern-day lifestyle, " says Spychalski.
" I wanted a kitchen that blended seamlessly into
the footprint of the original period structure, but
flowed into the landscape, showcasing the pastures
and gardens. "
The finished product provided the perfect setting
for Spychalski's eclectic antique collection. He
acknowledges a keen sense of accomplishment
" when a finely restored period home, restored in a
manner to preserve its original integrity, is complemented
by furnishings that would have been true
to its original character. "
Much to Spychalski's relief, his husband also
feels at home in Andover, successfully making the
transition from " lifelong city boy to a country boy. "
" Joe fell in love with the countryside. I was always
a gardener, and he started dabbling in
gardening, " says Spychalski. " Now Joe loves to
walk to the pasture with the dogs (a pair of Jack
Russell terriers). He always calls it a sort of Zen
experience, working the garden, smelling the dirt,
hearing the birds. "
Most importantly, the two men continue to write
their own history-a history now shared with an
amazing collection of antiques and a warm, inviting
old home in Andover.
NHH
A carved gilt eagle keeps
watch over the garden
at the side entrance to
the kitchen.
RE S OU R C E S
George Spiecker * Member of Antique
Dealers Association of American
ADADealers.com
Heritage Metalworks
hmwpa.com * (610) 518-3999
J.A. Garneau Companies
(603) 934-2270
The homeowner would also like to thank:
Wayne Gauthier * general contractor,
custom carpentry
Jim Heslop * cabinet maker, custom carpentry
Knut Indemundsen * masonry and stone,
custom carpentry
Kathleen Hill * decorative painter
and paint restoration
nhhomemagazine.com | November/December 2022 71
http://www.ADADealers.com http://www.hmwpa.com http://www.nhhomemagazine.com

November-December 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of November-December 2022

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