Monday, April 28, 2014

Log House Progress - Moving Upstairs

Beginning where I left off from the last post about the house, when we were getting close to finishing the inside chinking upstairs....

When my family came up for a quick 3 day visit last November, my brothers helped Jordan put in our upstairs ceiling.

Tar paper put up first

It looked so great when they got finished! It changed the whole look and feel of the upstairs. I love the brightness of the natural wood look, but once we get the room walls in place we may decide to paint the ceilings.

Next some friends helped us get the very last of the chinking done! That was a monumental day!

 The only thing left keeping us from finishing the floor was a problem with the floorboards buckling over the center joist beam. Jordan had to rip up some of the boards and adze and plane the beam level, then replace the flooring.

After that the floor had to be finished. Before the wedding, Jordan and my brothers had bought dried oak wood and made lapped edge flooring by running the boards through multiple saws. So, since the flooring wasn't already perfectly even and level, there ended up being many boards that had slight edges that stuck up over others. Jordan ended up planing the whole floor with a hand plane. (his poor knees!)

The next step was sanding the floor - which was quite a process. In early December we rented a big floor sander to do the job - but quickly found out it wasn't going to work, as the floor not being perfectly level, threw the sander off. So, Jordan had a small handheld sander that worked pretty good, but took forever! So, we didn't have time to get it finished before leaving for Texas for the holidays. 

When we returned in late January, our first priority was moving upstairs before the baby decided to arrive. Our crowded downstairs bedroom/kitchen/living room was certainly not appropriate for lots of company and having a home brith. 

Our friends the Morgans came and stayed a week with us and helped us finish sanding the floor (among many other things!) It was a lot of dust and noise - but what a relief it was to have it finished!

(Silly guys)

After the sanding came the best part - oiling! Jordan had decided to do an oil finish so the floor wouldn't be as high maintenance as a polyurethane floor finish, and so we wouldn't have to worry about it getting scratched and banged up - when it does hopefully it will look more like an antique floor, which was the look we liked anyhow! We used linseed oil applied on with rollers - it was such a fast transformation, it brought out the colors in the oak so beautifully -we were all very pleased with the color!

We all wanted a turn helping - it was so much fun rolling the final transformation on the floor!

Done - and it looked wonderful!
As soon as the oil had soaked in enough that evening we tore apart the downstairs, and started moving furniture upstairs, and we were able to spend the night up in our real bedroom for the first time!

The guys lost no time - the next day they were hard at work getting our stairs built.

Stairs useable but still in progress (finished pictures to come)

So - we were upstairs before Marian arrived, and with stairs to get up and down! We were so happy and so thankful for all the help we were given to meet our 'deadline'!

A little peek at our downstairs, that is finally our living space, and not a bedroom!
I am preparing pictures to give you a current 'house tour' soon!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Pale Green Linen Regency Dress

 A new Regency dress is listed in the shop. (finally!!) I've been working on this one since last fall. Not because it was all that time consuming, but because I've only gotten to work on it in bits and pieces, and kept having to put it away for other projects or trips. It's a wonder I didn't loose some of the pieces over all this time!

Anyways. Pale green linen in an 'apron front' or 'bib front' style. I love working with pure linen.
 It drapes and flows so nicely.

The pattern is from one found in Janet Arnold's 'Patterns of Fashion'

At the last minute I also constructed an apron to accompany it in brown linen. I most enjoy making 'everyday' Regency clothes - or actually historical clothes in general. It seems like a lot of what you see available is all geared towards representing the rich and fashionable, but I prefer to make clothing items that 'normal' people would have worn. The upper classes are often far over-represented in reenactment/sewing world.

Very small back bodice with higher waistline than the front. Makes a very elegant silhouette with the back skirt train. Because I was on-the-go a lot of the time while working on this, much of it is hand-sewn, all the exposed seams, and many of the inside ones as well.

More pictures and details at the shop listing for dress and apron.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Our First Year

This past Sunday was our one-year anniversary. Its hard to believe it's already been a year since our wedding. What an eventful and blessed 12 months!! For a small glimpse into what this past year was like, I uploaded a selection of snapshots taken from our phones. This is by no means a complete overview, but include quite a few pictures I haven't been able to include in blog posts before. (note - quite conspicuously missing are many pictures of house progress - this is because I am saving those for a post of their own!)

 Moving into our new house

Learning how to cook for two instead of eight...
 Working on the house
Finding swimming holes

 Going hunting for edible mushrooms

 One of our favorite hobbies has become driving around exploring teeny little backroads to ooh and aah over any old houses we can find. Especially log ones.

 150th Gettysburg reenactment

Driving back from Gettysburg along the Blue Ridge Parkway

 Blackberry time!
 On the river for my birthday in July

Sunset on the ridge + picking Queen Anne's Lace

Jordan's anvil

 Jordan making beds for our shop

 Blueberry time
A rainbow promise

Visit from my two youngest siblings
 Texas sunset

Morning sickness is yuck, but a hammock and a book make it better.
 More house progress.

 Sketching the creek

Getting back to sewing
 The drive up to our house

 My rescued pet baby squirrel - now returned to the wild.

 A bit of a bump!

Jordan found this antique farm table in the dump and fixed it up for our kitchen

 Homemade donuts

 Our first glimpse at Marian!

 Cream of mushroom soup from wild picked 'shrooms. Jordan had me get the recipe from his Mom, and even though I'm not the biggest fan of mushrooms, it wasn't bad. :)

My kitchen by lamplight

 Frosty mornings - the cookstove begins to feel good

 Doing laundry

Antiquing (another favorite hobby....)

Our little cookstove just wasn't putting out enough heat for the whole house, so Jordan rigged up this nifty barrel stove - so warm and toasty!!

 Chinking the upstairs

 And for a bit of reality - my messy kitchen.
 It doesn't always look like this, but pretty often it does. : /

 Surprise visit from my family - Carolina makes a cute old-fashioned picture

 Fairies live in our woods. I know because I see their house doors.

 Fall colors

 Working on sewing orders

Thanksgiving. Pie supper at our friends house

Headed to Texas for the holidays

 Jordan loaded up the bed business and took it on the road with us

 Jordan helping work cows

 I got the fun jobs - making a gingerbread village with the kiddos,

Sewing for baby,

 and scrapbooking the wedding.

 Back in Tennessee - a snowfall

Marian getting ready to arrive...

Marian here!

 Exploring the world with Dad

What an amazing year. I wonder what the next will bring...


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