Parlor Window - Completed

Okay, parlor/studio front double windows - check.

The window above looks so tired and dirty compared to the one below, but it will have to wait. I did manage to put a coat of primer on the stair's railings today. It was soooo easy compared to the previous window work.

Next job: Astrid's two bedroom windows. Once they are done, I will have met my 'eight window per season' quota. Enough with R & R (repairs and restorations) I'm ready for some real R & R in my hammock.

Parlor Window - Part I

Now that I've recharged my battery, I'm back to business. I decided to hold off on Astrid's bedroom windows for now and wait until she's off in Montreal visiting family. Meanwhile I have resumed work on the parlor window, a/k/a the studio. Located in the tower part of the house on the main level, it's double in width and has architectural detailing not found on the other windows. The arch at the top is like a trompe-l'oeil in that it does not translate to the inside of the room. It's double in width and has a decorative centre post - features, in my opinion, that should be emphasized. Because the tower and its windows are one of the main architectural feature of the house, they should be treated accordingly.

The house faces west and is on a hill; from 2:00 pm until sunset, it is bathed with sun. I think the Dusty Victorian looks its best during the golden hour, but on bad days the face of the house can be battered with hail and rain pushed by wicked winds. Needless to say, I had a lot of scrapping and sanding to do.

On the inside, there is no arch.

Small part of the work is done.
Colour blocking, detailing, and second coats need to be applied.

Imagine with the porch painted...

Three days of rain forecasted for our area is interrupting my window work, but that's okay, it will give me a chance to work on an art project I've been pondering.

Gentlewoman Farmer

I was so busy with work on the house that my spring flowers came and went and I barely noticed. So I'll show you progress on my fruits and vegetable plants.

Here are garden boxes Brian built for me earlier this spring, using the wood left over from the fence. Pretty good for someone who could barely hold a hammer when I first met him. Because the dogs like to water the garden, but not in a beneficial way, I wanted the boxes to be out of reach. The height is also easier on my back. I kept it simple and chose easy varieties to grow, mainly due to my lack of experience.

Earlier this spring.

Taken a few days ago. It soon became overcrowded so I had to transplant some varieties into the ground nearby, protecting them from the dogs with chicken wire.

I also planted raspberry stalks to create a hedge. I don't expect anything much this year.

Twenty raspberry stalks.

Three blueberry plants.

The strawberries are coming.

Six sweet red peppers plants. They're not doing so well - not enough sun I guess.

Six Red Beef tomato plants.

Three cucumber plants.

My mom gave me some garlic and chive from her garden.

And finally, several heads of lettuce.

If all goes well with this garden, I'll try heirloom varieties next year.

Thank you to Our Vintage Garden for these beautiful Victorian images.

Two More Done

If I don't have too many interruptions, it takes me a day to do a window. I prefer removing the window from its frame so I can work comfortably on terra-ferma (or should I say porcha-ferma?). Once the window is done - glazing, scraping, sanding and painting - I work on the frame and then put the window back into place. Brian steps in to do any parts I can't reach and installs the shutters. Here he is at our bedroom window, above the side porch.

The other window done, above front and centre, is at the end of the main upstairs hallway. It looks small from where I stand, but with Brian as reference, you can see that the windows are quite tall, but narrow (like Brian himself).

The next ones will be the windows in Astrid's bedroom. She has two located at the south-west upper corner of the house. But I need a break, they will have to wait a little. I want to spend time in my garden.

My Backside

Working pretty intensively trying to catch up on lost spring time, the back (east side) of the house is done.

At the back, a narrower part of the house juts out. The kitchen is on the main level. The second floor has the laundry room (left window), and the bathroom (right window) - these were once the servants' quarters. Brian is walking toward the kitchen door.

Here Brian is putting one of the shutters back into place. We had a little bat living behind this one, so when it came time to work on that window, we installed a bat house (seen in the upper left corner) hoping that it would take to it. We'll see later if it does or if it goes back to the shutter.

Victorian Shutters - Part... I don't know anymore

Yes, bear with me, I'm back to working on my shutters and windows. I've had a late start on them because of a bad spring, but I'll spare you the unsightly details of peeling paint and "gunky" stripping and skip to shots closer to the finished stages.

I'm prioritizing, restoring the windows and shutters that were the most damaged first. We felt a noticeable difference last winter - rooms with windows that had been restored seemed warmer.

My working station, under the side porch where it's shaded and breezy.

Locations where the restored shutters will hang.

Above the side porch, south windows.

Back upper windows, east side.

Front upper windows, west side.

The stripped hardware from the shutters. They had been soaking all winter in an eco friendly stripper. When came time to clean them up, I just used a toothbrush, soap and water. If you really want to see "gunky" stripping go to this related post.

The spray painted hardware, ready to be screwed back on the shutters.