Monday, January 23, 2017

Working away at the Burgman Building: Stencilling and murals

First post of 2017 and we plan on getting back on track on postings as we know those of you following the  restore want to know what is going on. We also plan on bringing back our Antique of the Week and more Preservation articles. Of course we still are completing end of year stuff  so we are very busy. We had a great holiday and were very pleased with shop sales.

Upstairs we are working on the "big hallway". Over 50 feet long and 4 ft wide with 12 ft tall ceilings it is more that a way to get to the front formal rooms it is an opportunity to showcase Victorian style and design. One of the key things about this hall is a curved wall that transitions from the  top of the stairs area to the long hall leading to the Parlors and formal dining rooms. This curved wall is the perfect location for an piece of art and true to the period and our love of the Aesthetic Movement we have decided a Crane scene with stream is appropriate . This design was common in high end entries such as the now gone Lux mansion in San Francisco which had similar curved wall. Far from done with it but I'm beginning to get a feel for how this will look.

Another design decision is what to do with the woodwork? We know that the wood was originally faux grained but the last owner had taken all the trims off has it stripped, this raised the grain and had to be sanded. More importantly he had not labeled anything and we spent weeks getting the door trims back to the doors that they belonged to. Also the baseboard has not been taken off and was painted . Removal of the curved baseboard (based on our experience) would have been ill advised We decided to do an ebonized wood treatment and a Herter Bros theme gilded stencil, again following the principals of the Aesthetic Movement.

To this end we chose  a design based on some inlays used in a Herter Bros piece we sold several years ago. We have a total of five doorways and one window to do, so its an on-going project.

We have not forgotten the downstairs and we are now working on the upper frieze stencil in the shop space too.

So there is a lot going on and more updates will be coming sooner than later.

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