Discovering Original Green Gables and Old Rafter Tails on Cottage

Discovering original green gables and old rafter tails on our little cottage was so unexpected and a huge delight!

original siding, green gables, and rafter tails on fixer upper cottage

We ended up removing more of that cheapy cardboard siding under the soffits and the fascia area and exposing more of that beautiful wonderful gem of historic rafter tails!

man standing in front of fixer upper cottage with original siding and safety glasses

Nate was using a pry bar and crowbar to remove the newer siding and really digging in under the soffits to get it out. The goal of course, was to uncover the original wood siding and rafter tails. He was also busting up the fascia and pulling it apart to remove it. 

man using a crowbar to demo fascia and remove it

This was quite the job and arm workout I’m sure. No need for gyms when you are renovating your own house~ that’s for sure! 

man using a crowbar to demo fascia and remove it


I tried to film him working on this outside demo project with my iPhone 7, but he told me to be careful and watch my eyes as debris and pieces of siding were falling all around us. Tons of the yucky siding was being peeled away with every crunch, smack, and punch of those pry bar and crowbar tools. Nothing like beating up your house real good to discover the hidden gems it holds! 

man using a crowbar to demo soffits and remove it

We sure did find quite a few of those! This was absolutely exciting for me as I’ve never experienced anything like it before. And never did I ever imagine that I would ever one day live in a tiny little historic cottage with original rafter tails and green gables! Oh, and yes, we were also able to uncover little rafter tails under the front gable as well. It’s like a fairy tale book featuring a dreamy cottage that’s in the city. Yea, like an urban fairy tale tiny cottage. 

small fixer upper cottage with old original wood siding

Discovering original green gables and old rafter tails on our cottage definitely gave us motivation to keep going with these hard renovations!


Nate made his way from demo under the soffits and fascia to the front little gable of our house. He carefully and yet quickly removed that cardboard-like siding so we could restore this old beauty back to life!

man using a crowbar to demo siding and remove it

At least we are still reusing the pry bar and crowbar from prior demo projects. He used those tools quite a bit when we worked on our initial demo projects inside the house. It was nice to be able to reuse them over and over again on various projects. Wow~ we have created quite a video library of all our early demo projects!

man using a crowbar to demo siding and remove it

Nate removed all the wood from the fascia and soffits. I realized that I called them eaves and he called them soffits. We are not the experts here, but learning and figuring out all these terms along the way. We obviously know of some, but it’s not a world we lived in or played in often before buying this fixer upper. At least mostly for me. Nate has some construction background so obviously knew a bit more than me.


Some of the rafter tails were rotted and would need to be replaced. I thought they made our little cottage even more cute than it was before. The details of them along with the rest of the original siding was such a sight of old preserved beauty.

old original rafter tails exposed

Some of the detailing made me wonder if birds or anything would try to make their nest in those detailed cracks. Luckily, we haven’t had any issues like that come up. Well, actually~ I think the space between the gable and roof line became a haven for wasp nests!

old original rafter tails exposed

We just love those rafter tails! I never even knew what a rafter tail was before we bought a historical home, but now I see them everywhere on historical homes. They just add such awesome charming character to these older homes and we’re so delighted that we have rafter tails on our little cottage. 


To our surprise we discovered original green gables throughout the cottage! As the layers were peeled away, the original green trim and gables were revealed. It was like old classic heritage green gables and trim! Such a gem of a find!

original green gable exposed

Nate would remove that newer looking stud that was under the green gable that covered up the older original trim. That way we kept with our theme of maintaining only the original old wood as much as we could everywhere. 

man on ladder with pry bar and hammer with original green gable exposed

It was very interesting to see how they renovated on top of the old wood using random pieces of newer wood to patch areas up. And then they covered up the original wood with that cheapy cardboard-like shell. Good news is that it preserved our little time capsule cottage!

We also uncovered the original wood on the porch ceiling. It was so cool! 


I just couldn’t get over how cute that little gable on the front of our house was. There’s just something about a gable that makes a house feel so cozy and homey and more of like a cottage. 

man on ladder touching siding trim under original green gable

The fact that we were able to uncover the original green trim was pretty cool because, I don’t know about you, but I grew up watching Anne of Green Gables. So this took on a whole new meaning for me personally. It was like going back to my childhood memories and fantasies of cottage living in the country. 

I never thought that I would live in my own little cottage with green gables though. We’ve got several gables all throughout the house. The cute little gable in the front, one on the side, and two on the garage side. Every single one that we exposed had an original green color. 

man on ladder holding old original trim under original green gable

Oh, and what’s also cool is that as we were uncovering the original siding, you could see where the original trim would have been under the little front gable. Another awesome discovery! 


It’s like we’re going back in time to figure out what this house looked like prior to all the renovations and updates that had been put on top of it. We were just unpacking it and uncovering it and peeling away all the layers to get back to the original way that this house looked like and was built. I’ve said it before. It’s like a little time capsule that we were unearthing and were a part of stewarding. I know that sounds kind of weird, but we are stewarding this little old house and bringing it back to what it originally used to look like. 

man on ladder removing stud under original green gable

Discovering original green gables and old rafter tails on our little cottage made all the hard work worth it!

Psalm 20:4

May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.

original green gable exposed and man on ladder touching original siding under original green gable


Thanks for joining us on this journey! We hope that you will find inspiration watching us learn as we go while we’re attempting to renovate and rebuild this old small historic cottage mostly on our own. Stay tuned for more progress updates ahead!

You can also watch a video about this here.

To see more adventures of our tiny fixer upper journey, click on the links below.



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  1. Wow! So neat! I never knew what rafter tails were either and never thought of the phrase “green gables” from Anne of Green Gables (which my 12 year old is reading right now!). That’ so cool that your house has some! This was really fun to read about on your blog. It’s also making me wonder what is underneath our vinyl siding of our 1936 farmhouse. Maybe we have something cool too! Thanks for sharing your journey and keep it up!

    1. Thanks for all your encouragement~ means a lot!🥰 Glad that I’m not the only one who didn’t know about rafter tails!😉 I really need to buy Anne of Green Gables books too! Only watched the shows growing up~ so good! I think our neighbor (in our heritage district) is also wondering what’s behind their vinyl siding! You may find your own gems in your 1930’s farmhouse~ love it!💖

  2. I just (again!) watched the first Anne of Green Gables the other day! And when I saw the title of this post, that’s what I thought of.
    What a beautiful and amazing find!