TCH peeks into Birmingham homes on annual house tour

By: Tiffany Esshaki | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published September 4, 2015

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BIRMINGHAM — When Weatherly Stroh made an offer to purchase her home on Bloomfield Court, just north of downtown Birmingham, she was living in Colorado. She bought the property without having stepped foot inside.

“I found it online, and the description said it was an older home that was remodeled by an architect. It was marketed as kind of an ‘artist’s’ home,” said Stroh, a professional painter.

Luckily, when Stroh finally came back to Michigan and saw her new house, she was relieved to find that it was everything she wanted. The three-bedroom, 2 1/2 bathroom house has three levels, in addition to the basement, with the highest floor devoted to her art space. She said she spends about six hours a day in that sunny room, creating her paintings of landscapes, animals and other images inspired by her Metamora upbringing.

“I started painting full time in 2010 and slowly started to get my name out there and grow my business,” she said. “I grew up in the country, so it helps to paint what I know.”

The walls of her home boast numerous paintings of hers — as well as a few from other artists. Then, every so often, you’ll walk by a photograph or beer stein bearing her family’s name, Stroh, of the historic Stroh’s brewing company in Detroit. While the family sold the operation several years ago, the local legacy is something that Stroh embraces in her décor.

“I’m a fifth-generation (family member). My dad was actually in charge of the ice cream department before it was sold in the late ’90s. We had this deep freezer in our house, and he would bring home all kinds of new flavor samples. It was dangerous,” she said with a laugh.

Despite the fact that her mother, Susanne Stroh, is an interior designer, Stroh curated her home décor herself to reflect her own tastes and experiences. A mix of antique and modern elements come together seamlessly with family photos and mementos, including an end table that doubles as a showcase for her horseback riding ribbons.

The artist, who graduated from Cranbrook before studying at the University of Colorado, recently joined forces with The Community House to present the nonprofit’s annual Our Town Art Show and Sale, so when she was offered the chance to participate in the house tour, she thought it would be a great way to spread awareness of the fall art event.

The 28th annual house tour will take place Thursday, Sept. 24. Stroh’s home will be one of seven private residences showcased, each with a unique architectural style and interior design. Guests can stop at TCH during the tour for a light lunch buffet.

Like most events that TCH hosts, proceeds from the house tour will benefit the nonprofit’s outreach programming for at-risk children around metro Detroit.

TCH President and CEO William Seklar spoke about how the event is supported even further by community sponsors, including Hall and Hunter Realtors.

“Not only does Hall and Hunter provide critical sponsorship dollars to support our children’s outreach programs and services, but the extraordinary Hall and Hunter team provides their valuable time, talent and treasure to make the house tour event possible,” said Seklar in a prepared statement.

The 28th annual Birmingham House Tour runs 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 24. Tickets cost $40 in person or $45 the day of the tour without lunch. Tickets including lunch cost $55 in advance and $60 the day of the tour. For more information or to purchase tickets, call (248) 644-5832 or visit www.tchserves.org.

The Community House is located at 380 S. Bates St. in downtown Birmingham.

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