Sunday, 8 July 2012

Putting stuff back in

A lot has happened since my last update, so rather than boring readers with intricate details, here are the highlights.

Edinger and co have finished the outer insulation on the north and east sides of the house (the other two sides will be insulted internally due to orders from the building protection people). Makes it look like a giant Lego house.

We've also finalised the colour selection, but you'll have to wait and see. what that turns out to be like.

I rebuilt a manhole rim that got crushed by the big excavator when they were connecting the house to the main sewage system.

Old rim drilled out and frame built.
Job done. A perfect fit.

Inside, I finally tackled the limestone wall in the living room, armed with a tuck pointing trowel and three long evenings.

A tuck pointing trowel, which became my best friend.
 But first, this is how the wall looked in April 2011, after removing the dry walling that had hidden it.

"The Wall", April 2011.

And this is how it looks now, after sandblasting and repointing (note the ceiling was also removed to expose the beams).

Used a lot more mortar than I thought it would. The only issue, is that the mortar and stone have a very similar colour, so it doesn't have quite the punch we wanted. Maybe a cleanup (more sandblasting!) will define the edges better. For the window sills, I plan on reusing some of the old oak floorboards from the level above, which are wide and thick, hopefully adding a bit of character.

On the inside of the south (front) facade, I'd prepped the walls for plastering by nailing on ribbed expanded metal sheets, a must, considering the mixed nature of the walls. The idea was to plaster the walls with lime plaster to make them even (they are a crazy mix of oak beams, wattle and daub, bricks, patches of new plaster and the odd roof tile) and sealed, before insulating with wood fibre insulation boards.

The bedroom, with ribbed metal sheeting done.

Of course, plasterers are expensive, and this plaster will never be seen, to I decided to have a go. Despite everyone I know who had restored a house, including skilled tradesmen, telling me they'd do anything but plastering, I have to admit, I really enjoy it!

Plastering the bedroom
One wall in living room finished tonight.

I won't win any prizes for the finish, but at least they are almost perfectly even, ready for sticking insulation on.

So really, we've finally begun to put stuff back into the house, and it feels good!

As a bonus, our "Turkish Cherries" are ripe, and already three buckets have been filled, and jam has been made.


  1. Amazing! The new walls looks SUPER!

  2. Thanks Mirek! My plastering work will never be seen, as those walls will be covered with insulation and then wall heating :) But I'm learning! If I get good enough, I'll do walls that will be seen ;)

    I haven't read your blog in some time (like I haven't posted on mine in a month!), but just saw your new cellar floor and window sills (lovely wood!).

    Seriously, anyone reading this blog, go look at what a truly beautiful renovation is like, certainly maintaining far more character than we are: