Standards (slipping)

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In the majority of the house I’ve worked really hard to do things to a good standard. Not an exceptional standard, but a very adequate standard. We’ve employed good (or at least reasonable) builders who’ve done work that I’ve been satisfied with. Our plasterer was really good, our electrician and plumbers were exceptional.

But there are a couple of areas where things could have been a little better. I could have insulated under the lounge floor before they refinished it; that would have been a good plan. We could have had under floor heating in the kitchen. And we could have tiled the bathroom floor rather than using lino.

But in all honesty, the areas where we’ve shaved a touch off to save money have been pretty minimal. And the effects have mainly been well hidden.

But there is one area where we have ignored the problem. The outbuilding (was once a kitchen extension) is just attrocious quality. Really dreadful. And that’s fine, it’s been tied in to the rest of the house at some point, so we’re not worried that it’ll suddenly fall down, but it is just shonky as all hell. And one of its “features” is that the doorframe is vastly unsquare.

I mean, it’s not even close to square. It may have a distant aunt that had once heard of a rectangle. The builders looked at it and discovered that, as was common for buildings of that sort at the time it was probably built, the top of the doorframe, that jauntily angled piece of wood, that is the lintel. So to take it down would require using acros and all sorts of exciting fun.

So instead they took the scabbiest piece of wood they could find, roughly planed it down and slapped it on to the top of the door frame to make it sort-of-square, so we could fit a new (reclaimed, square) door. The old one being more rotten than our compost heap.

And lo I finally got to trying to paint it. Yes, I have left it nearly 2 years.

It now consists of a large quantity of filler to try and make it all blend in. I could have taken it off, made a nicer bit of wood, put it back with it all being much closer to the right size. But no, I’ve spent probably longer than it would’ve taken me to cut and plane a better bit of wood to fill the space with filler. So that was wise.

Never mind. The main target of this fun activity is actually the bit of wood that makes up part of the roof trim, which I’m hoping to start work on tomorrow. I didn’t want to be clambering around on the deck on a ladder with Kathryn not here though. Just in case I decide to try and fall off it. Y’know. Like you do.

So anyhow, there’ll be pictures, at some point. When it’s finished and looks respectable, and not like a heap of filler stuck to a doorframe.

I think I’ve fixed many of the house’s problems, I’ve got some work to do on the render that I’m going to do properly, too, so I’m inclined to say I can leave this one to the next owner to solve… which’ll probably be when they want to have a proper extension built.


Kate is lord and mistress of all she surveys at