Sunday, May 24, 2009

made in the shade

a long held dream becomes reality... Acorn Cottage gets a front porch roof.

The big living room window faces west, prey to all the windblown rain of winter and the heat gain of late afternoon summer sunlight. Former owners built a tiny deck beside the front door, but neglected to roof it over. For several summers I have been shading the window with my old SCA canvas camping dayshade, held up with ropes and wooden poles, and tied to the house and walkway with heavy cordage. But from the first, I had a vision of the front porch roofed over, turning it into an actual space; and creating a transitional zone between the house and the outside world. In Christopher Alexanders A Pattern Language the relevant pattern is #112 "entrance transition"

My friend Bill came down from Olympia and spent the last two days turning the piles of salvaged materials, along with two truckloads of additional supplies, into a stoutly built roof, which totally transforms the front of Acorn Cottage.

The construction process was fascinating, and the finished roof and railing is rather charmingly reminiscent of the booths at Oregon Country Fair. (appropriately enough, since we met there years ago). I suggested cutting the roof lintel ends into a decorative curve... and Bill also cut the roof to wall flashing in the same curve made smaller, so the design is echoed on two sides of the implied space.

Of course, I have still to prime and paint the new porch, which will further integrate it to the house, and paint allows an additional layer of decorative detail. I'm still cogitating on the possibilities... Bill suggested that stitched canvas noren might be a pleasant addition for the summer, to keep even more of the sun away from the house, and to make the porch space more shady still. They could be easily removed when the weather shifted to autumn. I like the idea of changing the porch clothing with the seasons.

If you want even more pictures of the new porch being built, my flickr pages are the place to look...

1 comment:

  1. Its porch fever,looking good! There are lots of good times ahead relaxing on the porches.