Summer 2009- restoration, renovation, illumination
Now that the new doorway has been opened between shower room and terrace bedroom and the long wall dividing the shower room from the tulip bedroom has been knocked through we are illuminating spaces that may never have actually seen the light of day since the roofs went on!
The veluxes are brilliant, literally, and I am so glad we didn’t let the restoration purists put us off having these fitted. They make such a difference upstairs and do NOT look out of place in any way.In fact none of our modifications look odd, they just make the house look and work better. The tulip room had only a tiny tabatiere (roof light) to lift the gloom and that has muck between the corrugated glass panel that can’t be shifted. Another velux I think. At least the window is now actually in the bedroom. It is the smallest window in the house and the dirtiest, so I scrub it as main rubble making activities now ceased in here – amazing!
I would like to keep this window and shutters as oldest in house, but the cross bars do reduce light and shutters have coats of lethal lead paint, picked up by purchase survey, so impossible to safely rub down and paint, also they don’t shut properly anyway and have no redeeming aesthetic features whatsoever.
I do tend to want to hang onto the old where possible, but there are limits;so Trevor will make new shutters and we will have double glazed hardwood window made to match new French doors when funds allow.
Other windows in house are sound and well made, probably by M. Sire the carpenter, and clean up rather well. I was going to rake out old putty and re do, but have had another eureka! moment.
As windows solid & strong why not see if we can get made to measure ultra slim double glazed panels for these? Whole house will then be double glazed , but unobtrusively. Although temperatures in 40’s in summer, the winter (January/February mainly) is cold and we are trying to be eco and economically minded in our renovation decisions. Garage doors are solid under flaky paint, so whilst I am stuck in UK with work commitments, Trevor comes over to France and replaces all garage door windows including one that fell casualty to building knocking about work ( only casualty so far!)
With new clean glass garage also illuminated. Even the cave now admits some daylight now 18” wide doorway replaced with French doors to courtyard. ( see episode 3 for “before” picture!) We also remove blackened and melted tiled ceiling to reveal good solid beams and floor above. This allows us to see the lovely old stone walls in here which we (I ) will clean and point where necessary so that they can be left exposed .
We will get over between floors insulation problem by laying new floor in kitchen-diner immediately above with sub floor insulation. This kitchen-diner floor is lower being in the old barn side of house so laying new will bring it closer to level of sitting room.
We had already taken down folding door between kitchen & sitting room and are going to leave this open plan for maximum light and space feel.