Friday, October 16, 2015

'Fingerprints of Time and Hard-work... in progress'

I’ve always loved travelling to places where the architecture has a story.  Where the fingerprints of time and hard-work, aided by elements and years spent in God’s presence, created a home that held it’s own history and left you wondering what stories it held.  From old barns with hand hewn beams that hold untold hours of work from farmers hands to tiny stone bungalows that held families who ran on cold floor boards to warm morning fires…there is something beautiful those aged axe marks and moss covered stones.

   And the struggle we found as we set pencil to graph paper is how do we create a new home, that looks like it belonged here before we came along…that wasn’t marked by latest trend, that would feel just as relevant fifteen years from now as it would have fifteen years previous. The hope that our home would make others feel welcome, like it was built to house memories shared with family and friends,  and coffee with a neighbor…

  Planning itself began with the aid of internet searches and pinterest boards. I specifically love the aspect of design and have probably always had one or two “what if” houses on paper somewhere.  So when we knew we where building the actual process of planning was probably one of the most amazing creative things I’ve ever gotten to do.  We had originally hoped to build a timber-frame structure, but soon found that financially and creatively it came with a few too many challenges for us.  As an alternative we decided to use timber without the structural component on the interior and structurally for posts on the exterior.  That also freed us to design just about anything we desired with the floor plan.  We took our inspiration for an exterior shot of an old farmhouse online and began working on a floor plan that would meet our needs and create an exterior that modeled the look we were trying to achieve.  I enlarged the design on a large sheet of cardboard and hung it in our room, a sharpie near by waited and anytime over the span of about six months I thought of a change that would function better, we would mark it on the plan.  So by the time it went to the draftsman it was pretty well tweaked down to the last square foot.
  I think one of the most important elements for us was the reclaimed wood we used in the house.  And then from that we choose material that would compliment it.  Deciding where to place the timber was a combination of looking at pictures online that inspired us, and creating something that felt our own...My father was a sawyer and so beams and timber bring back memories of my childhood, and although we love the look of wood we wanted to be careful not to let it overwhelm the house…so every place we put it would feel special.

  From the farm house distressed oak floor, the pebble tile in the shower, and the windswept siding…everything we chose for finishes was picked to compliment the natural aesthetic of the timber.  It also needed to be durable enough handle our four little people and we really tried to stay away from anything too trendy that would date the house, or anything that required considerable up keep or attention.
  We love how the authentic nature of the Windswept Weathered Wood siding grounds our home, allowing it to blend into the farmscape behind it. We struggled to find a product that was new yet still felt “lived in” enough to blend with the timbers.  And we could not be happier now that it has all come together.
  The result for us has been something we love.  From thanksgiving with our big extended family to coffee with new friends, we have gotten to enjoy the moments we hoped to in this house already.  I love the way the materials pulled together, to make the house melt into it’s surroundings.  It already holds memories we brought with us, like the turquoise door from Lorne’s grandparents homestead, and has begun already to house new precious moments.  How special it is to walk up the drive coming in from the fields, or rounding the bend from a long day hauling children or groceries, and feel the smile in your soul as you “come home”.

Robyn for the Ewerts

Contact for Windswept Weathered Wood:

Glen Ehrhardt, President
Harvest Timber Specialty Products
PO Box 59 
Lakebay, WA  98349
p. (253) 884-6255  
f. (253) 884-6256