Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A faded beauty of unparalled craftsmanship

She was the epitome of grand elegance and superb hand craftsmanship.
 Found at a garage sale underneath piles of items for sale.
A sign said very old sofa for sale.

From 1870's the woman said she was told.  I've owned her for over 20 years always with the intent of having her redone but, it was one thing or another not to mention the cost. 

She is really beautiful if  you can picture her someplace else and redone.  True quality for the finest of homes.

I'll take it. 
(All the while thinking my DB is not going to be happy about this.)

I did toy with the idea of having her redone with non-tufted sides in a navy and white stripe fabric, you know for the nautical flair and estimated it would be about $2,300-$2,500 if I was lucky.  Ouch! The problem was where to keep it in the meantime.

What I really wanted was the wood. Beautifully hand carved wood that had been painted white over the fine gold leafing.  

As we began to remove the once plum colored silk velvet it became apparent this was constructed like a work of art.  I began to feel guilty as the horsehair and enough cotton stuffing to fill two huge trash cans and then some; kept come on coming.  Then the burlap, and more burlap. 

It seemed never ending.

Eight way hand tied springs attached to a metal frame that just wouldn't budge with a crowbar.  Webbing upon webbing gave way to more amazement.  How many hours a day for weeks did it take from carving the frame, arched bracing and putting it all together or who made it we will never know.  All we found was one small marking made in Italy. 

It was as if she had come to life.
Resisting us at every turn to stop.

We had to get rid of all the fabric.  We didn't have a choice.
When we were picking it up it's former owner noticed the underside had become a home for mice.  Thankfully she cut the webbing and we all helped remove the nests that had been made in it before loading into the truck.  Good thing DB and I had on sturdy gloves just in case!

 In the end all that remained were the springs and these.

A few days later I walked outside and looked at some of them.
I thought they would make interesting photos.

As I piled them up.  It was as if she spoke.

I'm still grand. I'm still beautiful...

and she absolutely is.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Antique stained glass sailboat window

This is one of the windows in our home.

(from the inside looking out)

It greets me each morning as I head for the shower.
This huge 36" wide by 28" tall beauty  takes over the tiny bathroom.

It came with the house but, it is not original to the house.

(outside looking in)

Purchased by former owners from an antique store
for a princely sum and a costly installation that
required removal of exterior stucco.

 (crack in the on the larger panes)

An exterior pane of glass was installed in an
  an effort to minimize additional damage from the elements.


I wonder how many weeks it took of planning and
constructing each little pane with such lovely lines and detail.

I think the window was selling point for my (DB) dearly beloved.

A former Ocean Class Sailor, sailing from as far North
of the shores of New England to South America.
Not to mention the numerous trips to anywhere in between.
This is the reason we have a trove of "while at sea and port creations".
Ones that no longer exist have a sentence or two scribbled about in the
ships log."Grass hat today, boat from beach stuff, so and so is working
on another ship in a bottle, stuck shells on a lamp..."

(lighted in the evening)

We learned it's been known to back up traffic
when it's illuminated at night.

Whenever we are asked where we live all we say is
You know, the gingerbread house with the sailboat window.

That is the style it was called when construction began in late 1921
The most common question.
What's it like inside?...I've always wondered.

Right now it's a candidate for cluttered house awards.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Waiting for sunset at the beach.

My dearly beloved swears I will take a photo of just about anything.  While waiting for the sun to begin to set I did exactly that.

Evidence man's best friend had paid a visit.

Even my sandals are not safe from the camera lens.

I'm practicing for the new camera, sweetie.

Bored, my DB left me to snap away.

Around here flying the American flag is a must.


I seem to take a decent amount of photos of the 
dune fencing, summer or winter.
They just seem to make for interesting pictures.

Almost there.

Worth the wait. 

Summer has just sailed on by hasn't it?

Have a great week everyone.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Antique boat hatch door. A tough restoration ahead.

When my DB (dearly beloved) mentioned an old boat hatch table was available of course, I said absolutely yes, sight unseen. " It's in rough shape." he said. For you, it will be a piece of cake.  I'm not worried."
I replied.

Ut, oh!

There it laid on the ground partially propped up by one of it's former legs
and the rest covered in leaves and dirt.  
The photo above is after the dirt was cleaned off.

 Since we had already committed to take it, it would be 
ungracious to not haul it away.
We learned it was sitting outside for about three years.

Are you still sure you want it?
Feeling confident in my sweetie's skills.  
Maybe, too confident.


I think it was partly due to my not wanting to see a slice of
nautical history left out in the elements another day until
it simply rotted away....eventually.

The old varnish is about 1/8" thick at least 
and is likely the reason it hadn't yet.

Did I mention it weighs a ton?
I think it would make a neat dining table. I'm not sure our old house can handle the weight in the dining room
 Maybe the kitchen, that part is on a slab foundation.

If we had a  mansion, a coffee table for sure.
(It  measures 29" x 59")

No clue when it will get done but, I'll keep you posted
should there be any progress.  

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Coveting my neighbor's garden.

I love my neighbor's yard.  I can't help myself each time I wander about it I feel like I'm in a park. Even though it is just across the street, I feel like I'm far from home.

Hydrangeas in many colors,

 towering some seven feet tall and then some

Pathways to outdoor showers

and a convenient rest room.

Antique urns from an estate sale blend into the landscape.

And newer pieces weather to perfection.


Open up to an expansive open space just right for a garden wedding.

Which is exactly what my neighbors did after spending months of
clearing away dumpster loads of over grown brush and adding new plants when they purchased the house over 10 years ago.

The pond was added complete with a foot bridge (not shown).
Such a labor of love, that they take care of each week.
A John Deere(tm) tractor is always zipping about the place.

Head back towards the house; around the hydrangeas, and under
the wisteria covered trellis to this very large and old pool.

Situated in front of one of the guest cottages.

Obviously getting readied for guests.

Hammocks to rest when the work is done.

And sometimes neighbors lend a hand with things.

like old boats.
Right up my sweetie's alley.

Yes, my neighbor's garden is a sheer delight
but I wouldn't want to weed it!