June 2011, finally we started building something. Now for garden walls etc. it’s obvious to use a dry stone techniques. However for the walls of the “workshop to be”, we decided on a hybrid system. This means putting up a mold for the inside, laying the stones in cement (is easier to fill the gabs) and the backside is filled up with concrete and little stones. This all makes it easier to have some rendering on the inside.
We decided way back that we wanted the original walnut beams to stay, and used it as a feature by integrating it into the wall. Because we are in the land of the Templar Knights we allowed ourselves to fake history a bit by carving a Templar Cross in one of the big stones. Slowly the building started to look like the plans that were drawn on the back of a shoe box, even before we bought the ruin.
Finally the combination of old and new started to show. The biggest challenge up until than was to make the arch. I just made a mold and started laying bricks. The hardest work however seemed to be remodeling the old wall. Some of these stones are very heavy, and you can’t use just little ones.
With the original beams now treated against attacks from all kinds of wood loving bugs, they were painted black. Somehow this progress gave us a bit more energy, working many hours to get closer to our dream workshop.
Still, the human body can only take so much battering…. and it would make sense to give the old back and shoulders some rest. It took a few little accidents and hurtful events to make me see the sunlight, the barbecue and the lounge chair on the terrace as a good remedy.
Because we run a B&B and recording studio next to our “dream building” it took until oktober 2011 before the work would get into it’s second (or was it third) fase….
Next time; Finally some carpentry.
The view, the reason for buying a 200 year old derelict cottage at this place in the rural heart of Portugal, is sometimes scary. Bush fires are common during the summer. In this case our view from the hilltop became a dark spectacle.
After a few years you get use to it, and it makes you carefull with fire. Sometimes it’s the only way to get rit things, so at the first rain fall in October….
To show that there is some woodworking involved during the first years of the rebuild, some pictures of the fence that’s placed upon the separation wall with the neighbors. Yes, it’s made out of Eucalyptus, for some an unbelievable choice, but here it’s the cheapest wood around.
Now building up the workshop could only start after removing all the walls that were to fragile and some of them even in the way. To make space for a car in front of the workshop we decided to reduce the size by a third. Taking away an outside wall means building an other one though.
To make sure that the wall on the backside wouldn’t get worse during the first rain in autumn, I started there by making the door frame. For the first time in my life I’m laying bricks and made the decision to make an arch. The first real building up!
Because we didn’t need all the the stones that came from the front wall, we decided to make some more terraces.
Next time; Building the new front wall.