Saturday, 17 April 2021

10th Blog Birthday and Pompeii Red

On 15th April 2011, the first Balintore Restoration Blog entry was composed, so as of two days ago I have been blogging for ten years. There are very few things that I have done continually for ten years, and I am pleased to have kept it going. 

It has never been a burden and always a pleasure, and the only reason there are not more blog entries is that I am conscious I have a castle to restore and don't want to impede progress.  I have a file containing the details of the many, many backlog item yet to be written.

I did want there to be an anniversary blog entry, but I have been off-the-scale busy of late and collapse into bed at the end of every day, falling asleep almost immediately.

Accordingly, I have chosen a near anniversary topic which requires minimal exposition. Here we go …

The wall colour of a corner top floor bedroom has been the topic of much debate, both in my own head and with Greg and Gregor. I wanted a brownish-red or a reddish-brown. Greg vetoed brown on scatological principles, but I was holding my nerve, and indeed have been becoming bolder and bolder in the chromatic domain.

I knew there was a colour lurking there but its nature was proving elusive. While my thoughts were idling, I recalled being shown around Overtoun House in West Dunbartonshire by the legendary Pastor Bob. Cineastes will be agog to learn that the excellent films "Cloud Atlas" (2012) and "Regenerations" (1997) were both filmed at Overtoun. The entrance hall was painted in the 19th Century to look like frescos from ancient Pompeii and I recall loving the boldness of both the conception and the design. It came to me in a flash, the colour was "Pompeii Red".

entrance hall at Overtoun House

I have since found out that "Pompeii Red" may actually be a "Pompeii Yellow" denatured over the centuries, but no matter. I could only find "Pompeii Red" as an expensive powdered artist's pigment. My next realisation was that the colour did not need to be called Pompeii Red", it only had to look like it. I found something called "Red Maple" by Leyland Paints, that was Pompeii to my eyes.

I have always wondered about the double "i" at the end of Pompeii, so did my research. It is a masculine plural form in Latin, probably based on the fact Pompeii started as five hamlets and "pompe" is a local archaic word for five. 

new bedroom at Balintore Castle - first coat of Pompeii/Maple Red


  1. Congrats on your ten years! My blog is now in year seven!

    I've read your every blog post, and hugely admire all your work, passion, and dedication.

    Oh, and I love the color!

    1. Thank you. What a young whipper-snapper of a blog - only seven. :-)

  2. Thats the exact colour of the dining room in our house in Canada. Not sure if they painted over but it is a glorious hue of dying maple. Congratulations on sticking it out so long. Hope to see you this summer

  3. Muchas felicidades por el blog y por ese trabajo tan maravilloso que estás realizando.

  4. Thanks for continuing your blog. I don't comment but I do read it. I used to have this on RSS Feed but my computer stopped supporting it a couple of years ago. Recently I random thought about the castle and I googled to find you and see how far you're come. Keep up the good work!