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The word mansion comes to mind when you turn through the gate where Phil and Chris Hayes call home on the 1100 block of Main Street in Shelbyville.
The Hayes took on a “labor of love” nine years ago when they bought that is becoming more endearing each year, they say.
But this 25-room historic home on the corner of Main and Magnolia streets, in Chris Hayes’ words, “just needed to someone to love it.”
The Hayes have renovated this110-year-old home, replacing wallpaper, ceilings, doors, you-name-it, as well as extensive landscaping, Phil Hayes says.
“Do we have another project in the works? Well, it’s never-ending with a house like this,” he says.
Adds Chris Hayes: “It was a labor of love. We put in a new kitchen and repaired the beautiful front door. When we moved in, it was almost buckled, but now it’s just gorgeous.”
She chuckled when asked what the most difficult part of restoring the home has been.
“I would have to say agreeing on which project to undertake next,” she said.
The house was built in 1902 by the Campbell family and is constructed in the Colonial Greek Revival architecture. Its 25 rooms include 5 bedrooms, 5 baths, a living room, parlor, kitchen and butler’s pantry. It has seven fireplaces, with five of them working.
“When we moved in, all of our furniture fit in one room,” Chris Hayes said. “We went on a shopping spree, and now it [the house] is filled with antiques.”
Phil Hayes said the next thing he plans to do is to renovate the front porch, which extends all the way across the front of the house and wraps around one side, with towering columns supporting its roof.
That should take him up to spring, when he and Chris would begin working in the yard, something they dearly love to do, she said.
When spring arrives, the house will be surrounded by daffodils, lilac trees, and tulips, with a profusion of knockout roses spilling over the wrought-iron fence in front of the property. As one walks around the side of the house, a quaint gate with an arched trellis gives entry into the spacious back yard, where the sound of running water can be heard even before glimpsing a huge goldfish pond. You can watch the multi-colored fish darting about from a small footbridge or the pond, or from a small, nearby gazebo, or even from a comfortable wicker chair on the sprawling back deck.
The vision of picturesque beauty and gracious living is a far cry from the condition the house was in when they moved in, Chris Hayes said.
“I’ll never forget the first night we spent in the house,” she said. “We were lying on a mattress on the floor, listening to the plaster falling off the wall and the raccoons in the attic. I looked at Phil and said, ‘What have we done? Are we insane?’ But it has all been worth it, and we couldn’t be happier. It’s the house of our dreams.”
Address:1189 Main St., Shelbyville
Owners:Phil and Chris Hayes.
Statistics:6,500 square feet, 3 stories, 25 rooms, 5 working fireplaces.
Architecture:Colonial Greek Revival, painted white with green shutters.
Built:1902 by the Campbell family.
Ennui:In 1942, it was converted into a four-plex, but the Hayes restored it to a single-family dwelling.
To see a slideshow of the Hayes’ home, visit www.SentinelNews.com.