Tread carefully….


Many moons ago; maybe six years, we decided that the lethal access to the terrace bedroom needed addressing urgently. ( HA!)
The reason for the crazy perch of that doorway over the stairs is that the terrace bedroom side of the house was originally, the barn, tacked onto the living spaces of the house as a mid 20thc afterthought.

Three doorways were punched through, one on each level, to connect one side of the house to the other.
To say that two of these three access points were sited without due care and attention would be understatement of the decade. So, one leaps athletically from the existing and unaltered staircase to the terrace bedroom doorway with care.

So, we cut new stairs in 2.5 cm thick “Pin Maritime”hard pine ( each one COMPLETELY DIFFERENT) and will basically be wrapping the existing staircase.

To get the shape right for each step and follow the mad curves in the wall, we cut a paper pattern for each individual step starting from the top. Just cut a piece of paper slightly larger all round than the step and then you can fold and trim to the perfect shape .
Please note:stair four on photo two (shaped step) will have a small triangular piece tacked on to that step to run against the wall.

Like I said, we cut the new staircase several years ago, then started other projects. Trev has now reached the ” lets finish one room at a time ” stage so, as kitchen nearly finished ; well , decor and floor and walls anyhow, we may just finish the top staircase next.

So, we go and look for the wood.
Since we cut the stairs the ground floor demolitions and new walls and doorway installation has necessitated moving our materials around; meaning that the different stacks of wood in the cave have slightly blended together .
So to find all the staircase components we were obliged to tidy the cave for the first time since forever. Maybe the first time ever.
My daughter rang.
“guess what we’ve done for the first time in eight years?!” I said with notable excitement
( I meant tidy the cave of course)
She paused for a nanosecond and replied thus…
“Had a day off ?”………..


About coteetcampagne

Artist, period home maker, renovator, restorer, Francophile. My mission is to save the old stuff, one beautiful piece at a time
This entry was posted in Renovation and restoration diary- France, What we did, how we did it and what we used and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to Tread carefully….

  1. Chris says:

    Wow my goodness I thought that our stairs were terrible to navigate having fallen down them but yours are wow. It makes me nervous looking at the pictures. Keep up the good work

    Liked by 1 person

    • They look worse than they are because the camera on my phone seems to add a slightly exaggerated perspective.
      I too thought they were madly angled till I saw some at another English lady’s village house nearby; hers were 75 degrees and open , more like a ladder! Trev found them particularly disturbing having larger feet…!


  2. gabriele says:

    For Trev The League for the Protection of Birds of l’Aude
    Yes, this is in Ariege but the photos are wonderful. The entire site is a labor of love, skill and great talent. He explores Ariege and shares what he finds with the reader. Links for all sorts of other sites. A more personal Aude site. I love the quote: “I hope you love birds, too. It is economical. It saves going to Heaven”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Osyth says:

    Who knows … They all want some 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Nadia says:

    You need a day off too. That is quite a job!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. poshbirdy says:

    Looks lovely, Gill. Nice work

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Osyth says:

    Day off? That’s a sweet thought if ever I heard one … the stairs are a triumph – Trev I have work for you 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wouldn’t know what one was anyway… Trev in coma on sofa with glass of red wine, playing Neil Young


      • Osyth says:

        Yeh but comatose on a sofa playing Neil Young IS a day off, isn’t it 😉 Joking before you voodoo unhinge me … the work work work will lead to play play play as you well know. PS: I have just bought a bird feeder (very pretty and will look well in France) to feed my latest obsession – they are SOOOOO pretty here – cardinals and woodies and chickadees and oriels and jays. And bluebirds which are outrageous and even the blackbirds have hidden epaulettes of scarlet and gold which they display when they feel like it (or the girl takes their fancy) …. there is beauty wherever we are if we care to look x

        Liked by 1 person

      • Talking of birds, taking coffee on the terrace today we saw a pretty, tiny wagtail that even ornithologically astute Trev couldn’t identify. There are species here we just don’t recognise

        Liked by 1 person

      • Osyth says:

        I’ve boce properly obsessed here … but your watgail would need an ornubuff (but not in the buff – not attractive sweaty flipflops, nude telescope prominent 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      • What are you on?

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Reblogged this on husifrankrike and commented:
    Look what our Brittish blog friends/followers did with their staircase. We will find a similar solution for both our stairs with (perhaps old) oak. Great inspiration – thanks!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. francetaste says:

    Well, congratulations, the new stairs look much better! Already if all the risers are identical (which is not at all common), it’s a huge success.

    Liked by 1 person

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