Monday, 30 May 2011

Mooredge Manor Exterior Decoration Ideas

Since Tanglewood is so very nearly done (just finishing off the interior now!), I'm beginning to finalise my ideas for the decoration of Mooredge Manor. The exterior is inspired by the stunning Lakeland Arts & Crafts house Blackwell, which was designed by Mackay Hugh Baillie Scott and completed in 1900.

The walls will be sandstone blocks on the lower levels, then rough cast rendered with a off-white limewash finish (Farrow & Ball 'Lime White'), with sandstone quoins, roof edgings, drip moulds and window sills (all painted using stone paint). I want the chimneys to look like they're made from stone blocks (using the stencils and compound from Bromley Craft Products). I'd like to add guttering too, either from Sussex Crafts or JSM Miniatures. The roof will be covered in slates, however there is quite a lot of area to cover and the house is heavy enough as it is, so real slate is out. I looked at the versi-slates from Richard Stacey however, and I think they'll do the job nicely. The house's chimneys are a little basic as is, but I think I will replace them with the lovely spiral pots from Romney Miniatures, painted with stone paint. This is what I used on Tanglewood Lodge and it looks great, and it would be a nice little link between the two houses.

The windows are a mixture of sash and casement, painted dark green. I think they will be leaded too, with stained glass in the prominent rooms. The casement windows have wrought iron curled handles and stays (bought from David Provan at Kensington). I'm thinking the flat roofs above the bay windows would look nice in weathered copper.

If I can find or make one, I'd love a carved stone Green man above the front porch entry. Currently the front door is panelled (as are all the interior doors) but I'm considering making a ledged and braced oak door which is more in keeping with the Arts & Crafts style, and putting some strap hinges on! It will be painted the same dark green as the windows. I'm inspired by the door shown here (from a real cottage in Devon). The porch is stone with flags on the floor and a copper bell hangs by the door. I rather like the copper lamp by Lighting Bug too.

There is a small strip of garden surrounding the house, which will be either paved or grassed, with plants in pots. Since the house has 360° detailing I need to find a way to disguise wiring for lights - right now I think running all the wires down the main chimney and having a log stack and foliage to conceal where they emerge. I'm not sure how well this will work in reality though!

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