custom furniture, kitchens, and baths by fineartistmade


Hello Out There

August 6, 2016

Several projects in our home-workshop gave us the chance to enjoy our lakeside farm here in coastal Maine - and what a lovely summer it has been. We also got a nice compliment when a Toronto based production company casting for a new design and renovation show in development for HGTV expressed an interest. We of course already have quite a full plate between time in our studios and business activities.

We've been busy with a number of renovation and restoration projects off site as well, including bathroom updates for our old friends at Cinqueterre Farms. A 2011 blog post tells the story of this unique couple and their amazing bakery. This July master baker, Leslie Prickett, celebrated his 101st birthday just a few years after retiring from his craft. His artisan country bread and wife, Gloria's delicious jam, graced the Spring/Summer issue Early Homes magazine - featured inside our Golding Gourmet cabinet.

A window restoration project in a 1880s home down the coast in South Addison was situated just around the cove from Cape Split, the summer home of American artist, John Marin (1870-1953). Marin painted "Composition, Cape Split, Maine, No. 3" in 1933, during his first summer in Addison. We made a pilgrimage to the still standing though greatly enlarged art shrine while picking up the windows to bring back to our workshop.

We just finished a project in another summer home, this one situated atop Redoubt Hill in Eastport. The Georgian Revival home's elaborate front door surround with 4 fluted pilasters topped with Corinthian capitals needed some TLC. This sturdy structure was constructed in 1935 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; one of a handful built for officers, and their families, who were dispatched to 'Moose Island' to oversee President Franklin D. Roosevelt's (New Deal) Quoddy Dam Project. Roosevelt wanted to harness the power of the ocean tides to create electricity (the tides in the area rise and fall nearly 26 feet twice each day). FDR was very familiar with the tides as he summered on nearby Campobello Island. In 1936 Congress voted to discontinue funding and the project (which was well underway at the time) was abandoned.

Speaking of fluted pilasters; for the past year we've been on the hunt for a specific antique door for a restoration project. Our search through architectural salvage yards and antique shops down the coast of Maine came up empty, so we placed a want ad in a local newspaper. A reply to the ad unearthed instead a pair of ancient pilasters and a surprising story that connects a simple Maine summer cottage to the Boston home of John Hancock, iconic first signer of the Declaration of Independence, and the origins of the modern preservation movement. To learn more check out our previous blog, The Old Hancock House.

(click photo to view larger image)

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