Thanks to friend of Balintore, Violet, for making a couple of fitted cushions for the trapezoidal window seats in two of the entrance tower bedrooms. There is a previous blog entry on these window seats, sans soft furnishings, here. The cushions certainly transform the spaces for the better.
In the yellow room a damask curtain, bought at auction, was recycled into the covering. The warm tones in the fabric, pick up the red of the carpet and the yellow of the walls.
|new window seat cushion in yellow room|
|new window seat cushion in blue room|
I had obtained some pitch-pine tongue and groove lining from Lochee Parish Church in Dundee recently as it is being remodelled. I asked Gregor if he could recycle this for lining the windows. Unfortunately, it was just too short to reach from the bottom of the window to the floor. "Hang on a moment, " I said, "if we put in a window seat we can use the shorter lengths of lining above and below the seat level.". Suddenly, window seats became very attractive - it's an extra seat or surface if you ever need it. Even then, they didn't quite reach the floor, but a bit of skirting board hides the gap:
|new window seat with recycled framing timbers|
|new window seat with 50% recycled framing timber|
Gregor and I are living with the wonderful rich colour of the reclaimed pitch pine for now, but to suit the rest of the woodwork, we will probably have to paint it the same white which is a shame. One of the rooms has other dark wood detailing, so we may may be able to leave the pitch pine au naturel in this location.
What I love about the restoration of Balintore is paradoxically that there are so many constraints. It is a listed building so I am dedicated to putting back what was there before. However, we have to work with the reality of what has survived and what has disappeared, and the fact you cannot buy reclaimed materials to order, so how are we going to get everything to work together? The mix of solving practical problems and trying to achieve good-looking solutions is always a joy.
To donate to the Balintore restoration project click here.