96 Maple Street

96 Maple Street

96 Maple Street

96 Maple Street
And after...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

On a happier note...

In spring of this year, we were fortunate to make the acquaintance of Craig Blake from Earth and Arbor Construction. After working with Craig on a couple of small projects, we decided he would be perfect to finish the cottage for us. He is hard-working, easy to get along with, and above all, honest.

Craig began working on the cottage in April, 2011. His initial task was to get the mechanicals (electrical & plumbing) rolling.

Following mechanicals, the insulation was installed.

John and I decided we wanted a tongue and groove material for the walls and ceiling. We chose a 5.25 inch width poplar for the walls and a 3.25 inch poplar for the ceiling. Our plan was to paint everything white. Craig brought in Adam Pealer to do the carpenter work. Adam was great! His attention to detail, even for our little cottage, was remarkable. Adam worked diligently to get the tongue and groove installed. Craig and Adam even joined forces to move the material faster so that Audrey could have her birthday party sleepover in the cottage. Talk about above and beyond...

Initially, I planned to put terra cotta tiles on the floor and Adam was going to be the one to lay the tiles as well. After several discussions with Adam, however, we decided terra cotta tiles may not be the best solution. With all the moisture in the cottage and the irregular nature of the tiles, he thought we would ultimately be very unhappy with the performance of the terra cotta. We decided hard wood was a better, more stable solution. John and I chose a 7 inch quarter sewn, white oak from Sheoga Flooring in Middlefield. Adam installed the wood flooring as well.

Adam proved to be such a good carpenter, we asked him to make the cabinets for the cottage too. He seemed to have a good grasp of the look for which we were searching. We wanted it to seem like a cottage, maybe the cabinets had been added over the years - no bells and whistles, but good quality. We are very pleased with the result. The photos below show the cabinets prior to door installation, but you can see the hardwood flooring before it was finished.

Craig and I discussed countertop options. We had such a small, sink nook to work with, we felt the sky was the limit on what we could use. We thought about concrete or copper, but in the end, we decided upon walnut countertops. A good choice indeed! Craig worked with his supplier to get us a beautiful (not inexpensive, however) piece and Craig and Adam installed it. I found a food-safe protective coating material to put on and the finish is wonderful. The finish is similar to that of a wooden salad bowl. The richness of the walnut was really enhanced without adding an oily or plastic feel.

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