Cool temperatures and a light drizzle did not spoil the enthusiasm of people on the Hinsdale Cooks! Kitchen Walk.
“It’s my favorite day of the year,” said Jenna Crowther of Western Springs. She, her mother and a group of friends all met at their friend Jill Sunderson’s house in Hinsdale Friday morning.
“We started the day with mimosa’s at Jill’s house,” said Sue Crowther, who lives in Joliet.
The group had rented a bus to take them to each of the five houses in Hinsdale and one in Burr Ridge that were featured on the walk.
The annual event is a fundraiser for the Hinsdale Historical Society. For an additional cost, people could reserve a seat on a trolley that goes to each home, but seats on the trolley sell out fast, some women said.
The Crowthers and their friends had been on the walk in years past, but said the style of houses this year was more diversified.
That is what struck Anne Swenson of Hinsdale who, with her friend Janine Farrell of Burr Ridge, were on the walk for the first time.
“It’s fun to see new construction versus a house built in the 1860s and how you can modernize an old home or keep it traditional,” Swenson said.
Farrell said she was getting ideas for a future remodeling project of her own.
“We are going to be redoing our kitchen, so this is perfect,” Farrell said. She was noticing the materials, appliances and layout in each home, such as a new Scandinavian designed home on Quincy Street.
“When you go into a showroom, you see just the kitchen,” Farrell said. “But here you can see how the kitchen interacts with the living room, the dining room and the whole house.”
It’s called a kitchen walk, but they got to see a lot more inside the house than just the kitchen, said Joan Martin, who went on the walk with her daughter-in-law Dana Martin, who lives in Clarendon Hills.
Gina Kopczynski of La Grange said her favorite house was the one on 60th Street in Burr Ridge that was described as inspired by a French cottage.
“It was so unique with all the European influences,” Kopczynski said. “And it was a big wide house that you don’t see in this area.”
The two oldest homes on the walk were the lavender Victorian, built in the 1860s on the corner of Fifth and Garfield streets in Hinsdale and the nearby house, built around 1887, on Fifth, east of Garfield.
Docents in the Victorian house pointed out the 2,000-pound mantelpiece made of Italian marble and the light fixtures that are French antiques.
The dining room is original to the house, but the kitchen is part of an addition done in the 1990s. But items, such as chandelier in the kitchen and all the hardware on the cabinets were found other parts of the house and reused in the new kitchen.
Maria Frederick of Elmhurst said the interior of the Victorian was formal and beautiful and had a gorgeous conservatory.
The decorating was appropriate for the era of the home, with furnishings such as floral chintz-covered English club chairs, Frederick said.
The 1887 farmhouse-style house was beautiful as well, but different, Frederick said.
It was decorated with many Asian furnishings the owners had collected, such as a Tibetan drum and mask and Chinese hatboxes. Some of the hatboxes had been converted into floral containers and a grain box was used as a table.
Each of the houses also featured tastings of beverages, appetizers and cookies.