The Piazza. Or The Atrium. Anyway, It’s Epic.

I can’t quite get my head round living in a house that has an atrium. But is piazza any better? Who knows. Anyway, it’s really remarkably done, after a week or two of having the use of Rae’s scaffolding tower.

I (once again) failed to take any “before” pictures, because who takes pictures of the ugly shit you look at every day that just hangs over you like a dark cloud of obligation? But Ben took this one of the phase just before we put the plasterboard on, with acres of lovely glass fibre sound insulation. How I love it.

I’ve been working on the second half of the ceiling painting as readers will be aware. I painted it in four panels, each two meters by one meter, which seemed like a reasonable size at the time.

I left the edges til last so that I could make sure they ended up matching.

That bit went remarkably smoothly and I quite enjoyed it.

Getting them onto the ceiling at the top of a swaying scaffolding was another story entirely. Many tears. Much swearing. Julian saving the day with extra hands. The less said the better. If I ever do it again I will do it with four people minimum. And not on a scaffolding. Somehow.

Anyway, meanwhile, Ben was making some amazing bi-fold soundproof shutters for the windows, so that Julian can have their work zoom meetings while I am wailing away to Florence + The Machine and using an overlocker at full pelt.

We used official soundproofing glass fiber insulation, but I don’t know that I could sense any difference between it and any other glass fibre insulation. Anyway, it works well.

The doors are made from yet more of the inner cladding from the much-used ex-sauna, same as the kitchen and bathroom cupboards.

And Ben’s skill made sure they close really tight and pass every soundproofing text we threw at them, while looking amazing.

I used a bit more of the wood for the trim, just to tie them in with the barn theme that was emerging.

I think they look very nice. Far better than anything I could have cobbled together. Ben is a treasure.

Meanwhile I also took advantage of the scaffolding to hang the plant-hangers-on-pulleys that I’ve been planning.

I put the boxes together from some boards reclaimed at one of Anthony’s jobs, cut to fit round some cheap plastic plant pots.

After wondering what to do about hanging them (they’re really heavy even without plants in) I figured some sort of sling would be best. (*raids upholstery fabric collection*) So I whipped these up, using some old curtain rings Anthony had given me and some fabric Michelle had given me.

And did a lot of cord loop whipping. Boy, there are particular calluses associated with that which I did NOT have. Fingers very sore afterwards.

Using wood courtesy of Anthony, pulleys courtesy of Tod junk market and shelf brackets I actually bought new (!) I cobbled together a system for hanging them above head height while not requiring a ladder to do the watering.

I am a bit concerned about the weight. They are too heavy for Julian to put up and down even without plants in. And they look a bit bulky. I will probably end up using these troughs somewhere else and designing something lighter for here, but anyway, the pulleys are up and that’s what I really needed to get done before the scaffold went back to Rae.


So here it is. Is it not glorious? Please ignore the stack of 2×3 timber. And the bare straw. And the curtain blocking off the woodshop area of the house. And the fact that only one of the lightbulbs has a shade on it. Things remain to be done, but I am very pleased in general.


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