Screened Porch – The Aviary

The screened in porch, we call ‘The Aviary’ is our favorite spot in the house, it is a vacation just to sip coffee in or listen to the birds in the garden. We are entering into our third season using the porch and it is always evolving. Originally, it was furnished with Woodard ‘Rose Vine‘ outdoor furniture [as pictured below from the real-estate listing].

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These are a few shots just after we closed.

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Whilst we still have the original furniture in storage, we have replaced it with the design classic ‘sculptura’. We mainly switched it because we have always coveted the design pieces, and when we had the perfect spot to put them – we started collecting vintage pieces. They were all white when purchased from etsy + eBay + charish, and we had a local company powder coat them black for us.

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Year-after-year, the furniture remains in the same spot and is divided into two zones: a dining area that is located close to the kitchen; and a lounging area with views over the garden onto the pool. Planters are used to divide the ‘rooms’ up, and this year we are adding ‘flor’ tiles to make a rug. The rug will be placed under the main seating arrangement, just to mix things up, and to make it cozy under our feet when the sun goes down, the terrazzo can feel too cold for most of the year.

For plants, we have found that ferns seem to be the least maintenance, and will tolerate some hot weather and long spells without remembering to water them. The added bonus with the ferns, they can be found in Lowes in April and they last until January when the temps really drop.

The flooring is the original terrazzo Fritz tile, we found a box with some spare tile in the crawl space under the house. We used the same brand to add terrazzo inside.

Back to the Sculptura Chairs – we have been searching for a pattern, or an example of the cushions for the lounge chairs. I was able to buy a set of original pads for the dining table from F&F Vintage. As for the loungers, we had some made, they were expensive and not well constructed. So the search continues … but here are some photos of the original cushions in case anyone is looking for inspiration:

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Even in the winter the space is lovely. We switch out the screened panels back to plexiglass-glass and hope that the ferns make it thru.

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Glass Fence

We have had several requests asking about details on our ‘Glass’ fence. Let us start by pointing out our fence is a ‘fake-glass’ fence – it is actually made from polycarbonate material. We are not ones for long posts so we will break this down fast.

WHY A FENCE

Simple – we added a pool to the side-lot that came with the home, and state law requires the pool to be fenced. We also wanted to allow our dog Banksy to be able to enjoy the outdoors without us worry if he was playing on the road. The fence were were worried about – as we didn’t want to impact the look of the house – distracting from the original design and look of the garden – we started to lose sleep over the fence design.

DESIGN INSPIRATION

Luckily we didn’t need to look too far. We were inspired by our neighbors fence. Their gorgeous fence is an original pool fence to the house and it made from aluminum and actual safety wire glass. The minute we noticed it – we were 1] jealous 2] knew we had to do something in-the-manner-of to be period appropriate. Our landscape designer Julie DeLeon of Groundwork Design also provide some visual inspiration with black metal and glass fences, and we looked to our previous home for ideas too [see here].

MATERIALS

Here is a list of the materials that were purchased / utilized during construction:

  • Fake Glass: Mulit-wall polycarbonate sheeting we purchased through EPlastics, the material was made in Wisconsin, we had it custom cut and shipped direct
  • Posts: Standard 2″ square steel posts painted black [similar material – see here]
  • Post Caps: Plastic you can easily source these [local hardware or amazon]
  • Concrete: Used to set the posts
  • Frames: Steel hot rolled Angle bar [similar materials – see here]
  • Screws: Frames were screwed to the posts so at anytime if needed they can be removed.
  • Gate Hinge: Again nothing custom – readily purchased at hardware store.
  • Gate Handle: Simple and cost effective – here is something similar to what we used
  • Gate Plate: Custom made from plate steel, welded to steel angle bar painted black.

CONSTRUCTION

We had been working with, and still to this day, work with a local General Contractor, Juan Ramirez and his crew RASE Construction LLC – hold our house together and are not afraid of our crazy project requests. We are not handy people, and rely upon this crew to help us with our projects, they figured out how to construct the fence from all the pieces and put it together. The frames were welded off site and everything else was put together onsite. The poly carbonate panels are 3ft wide by 6ft tall, and are set into frames that are 2 panels across, attached to fence posts set every 6ft. We tried to do 9ft wide with 3 panels, but the wind made them too unstable. The rest of the details – to us it was magic. Sorry we are not of much use here as to the ‘how’, we truly are useless even with a hammer.

LESSONS

There was some trial and error with the fence, just like anything, nothing is really ever perfect and you just need to roll with it. Here are a few things we learned:

  1. Polycarbonate delivery was huge, the crates were custom made and hard to crack open – we needed a crew to help us off load a delivery that would normally go to a construction site with forklifts to offload – we had to do it by hand. It can be done, but be prepared with a crew to help you.
  2. Light. The fence creates the most amazing light shows all times of the day. It really obscures detail until you or the object is up close to the fence. You can see movement of people and cars going by, and night the headlights and tail-lights are like moving abstract art. And you can see the garden plantings and their movement too. So far no discoloration to the panels from the light has been observed.
  3. Weather. It is holding up well so far, it went in August 2017 and at time of writing April 2018 it is looking great. It has endured: heavy snow; high winds; tree branches; hot sun; and torrential downpours. So far we are giving it a thumbs up.
  4. Cleaning. It is low maintenance, with the hammered effect to the poly carbonate, to make it opaque it helps hide the dust and the rain splatter. A quick hose down get rid of any bark or soil.
  5. Channels. The polycarbonate is twin-walled so has channels for water and small bugs to make themselves a home. So far – the bugs haven’t been an issue. The first panels that were installed we used silicone and it created condensation issues. There is a tape to seal them that comes with the manufactures recommendation – don’t skip buying it, it seems to work to keep bugs out and condensation a way to escape [see photo below] It was only utilized on the bottom edge of the panels, the rest of the edges are sealed with silicone.

Oops this turned out longer than we thought it would. Well – we hope this helps, and please share your projects if you are inspired to create your own ‘frosted-fake-glass-fence’. And if you have any question please ask away we will do our best to answer your questions based on our project and experience to date.

 

 

Paul McCobb – Glass Partitions

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One of our favorite features in the house are the Paul MCobb designed glass partitions. There are two of them in the house. The first greets you as you enter the Front Doors, and the other separates the sleeping area from the dressing section in the Master Bedroom. We get requests for detailed shots for inspiration to enable home-owners to recreate the look or idea in their own home, so here we are sharing details.

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The Glass was a collaboration between Blue Ridge Glass Corporation, based in Kingsport – Tennessee, and Paul McCobb – as apart of their patterned glass collection. We haven’t been able to find the company or details on what happened to them [we found this]. If you have any vintage magazines, keep your eyes peeled for some advertisments like the one below, apparently you could mail in and request a ‘project booklet’ for ideas on what to do with the glass.

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We are not handy people with a hammer or any tool for that matter, so we can’t wax poetic on the process or details of construction. We can, however, take pictures and you can share these, or utilize them yourself [hopefully with more skills and technical know-how than us] to translate the construction methods.

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The framework is the same on both sides with the glass sandwiched in-between, and is secured to the ceiling and the floor.

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A few details of the glass itself – it is ridged on one side and smooth on the other.

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We love waking up to see them greeting us in the morning.

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Well – we hope these photographs and brief details help. Ask away with any other questions, and we will try our best to answer them.

Frost House – Interior Colors

There are 3 key colors utilized throughout the house: yellow + green + blue; accented with black and white. We are getting ready to spruce up the interiors and exteriors so we went to the paint store to find some matching colors and here is what we found.

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Paint by different brands:

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Valspar has the most direct match with the colors that are present in the house today, but they are all pretty close to one another that it is splitting hairs when looking at Sherwin-Williams + Olympic. As for favorite names for colors: Valspar Golden Treasure because that is how we feel about the yellow, although Rise-n-Shine from Olympic is more what it screams at you in the AM, Cheerful is for sure the best way to say it – we agree Sherwin-Williams; we are not really into any of the names for the greens or blues, Flyway is not bad for the Blue, but we see it more like ‘Clear Skies’, although we have been calling it ‘peacock blue’;  and as for the green we have always referred to it as ‘kelly green’.

Once we get started on the painting we need to do all the blues + yellows + greens inside and out to keep them coordinated. That is going to require a mix of satins + matte + gloss….. and plenty of it. Oh! And there are a lot of louver doors to paint, and of course not leaving any details unthought of, the interiors of the closets are all painted too, and we are not talking just the back of the doors – we mean the interiors of the closets.

Colors by rooms:

Kitchen is a bright ‘good-morning-shine’ yellow.

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Family room is a calming ‘sky’ blue.

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The Grand room or formal entertaining / dining area, uses the calming blue in the bookshelves only [ignore the messy shelves – WIP], the rest of the walls are either white or walnut panels.

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The family bath is also a calming blue.

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The kids bunk room is bright ‘kelly’ green, it’s a color that is sparingly utilized in the house, found on the front door and one small closet.

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The hallway closets are blue on left hand side and green on the right.

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The guest bedroom is bright yellow, along with the master-bedroom & master-bathroom.

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And there you have it – Frost House by color.

July 2017 – Pool and Garden Progress

We are making some progress on the pool and landscaping project, we still have a long way to go. We have the ‘fake-glass’ fence to be finished installing [rain delays], then we can finalize grading the land. Once we have the grading sorted out it is onto new irrigation systems and then some additional hardscaping, all that has to happen before the landscaping can go in. We are exhausted just thinking about it, we hope to have to finished by the end of Summer, so we are good to roll next Spring with pool parties and maximum pool enjoyment. Here are a few pieces of drone footage of the progress to date [thanks neighbor for the fly-bys.]

Pool Project & Landscaping

When we bought the house a year ago, we discovered after we put in the contract on the home, that we also got the lot next door on the title. It was perfectly groomed – filled with some lawn and tall established trees. Coincidently, our neighbor had cleared that lot by hand one summer before starting college. The lot – it was begging for us to do something with this extra space, and adding a pool seemed like the perfect addition to be able to enjoy the garden and the massive tree canopy on warm summer days.

We didn’t waste much time getting plans organized, and quotes aligned. It seem like it took forever, but finally we are working on getting the pool project underway. Everything moved very quickly with digging a hole and prep-work, over the course of 2 days and both a few hours of work at a time: a hole was created and prepared; a pool was delivered and set-in place; and water was added. However, it has been slow progress since, but we are getting there.

Here are some videos and photos of the work-in-progress .. we will post some more as we make progress.

 

Stationery – Frost House correspondence

 

We always love some great stationery for sending thank-yous and dropping someone a note, ‘snail mail’ still is king in our books. So we got some postcards and little business cards made with Moo [great service and beautiful products], recently and we are having fun sending and/or handing them out. Our friend over at Pivot Design did a stellar job whipping us up a logo for the Frost House – talk about make us look legit!

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