Things are not what they seem.
In 1967 my father decided to build an addition to the cottage. Two large bedrooms. It wasn’t really necessary. We had managed fine and there was room for me to bring friends along. But he wanted something to do. Needed something to do. He liked to build and was happiest with a hammer and saw in his hand. So, he decided to add a third section to the cottage, the same size as the other two sections.
The first section houses the bathroom, kitchen and dinning room. The second section was the living room and two small bedrooms. I guess he didn’t like these two small bedrooms. He enlarged the second section to become a very large living room and added the third section to the west with two very large bedrooms.
The most interesting features of the new addition are the bedroom doors. Previously, this wall was panelled with tongue and groove vertical pine boards. All of the walls in the first and second sections were pine. That was the style in those days. Knotty pine was in abundance, inexpensive, warm and rich looking. And, he liked working with pine. It was easy. Easy to cut. Easy to fit. Easy to transport.
So, when considering the third section, my father did not want to change the appearance of the pine wall. He wanted to keep the knotty pine. He didn’t want doors interfering with the look. I can imagine him thinking this through. I can imagine him saying “What can I do to leave this wall as it is and still add doorways for the new bedrooms?”. He decided to make doors out of the pine boards and leave them in place. He made an angled cut across the top of where he planned a doorway, carefully removed the pine boards, fasten them at the back, removed any studs that were there and then hung the fastened boards as a door.
When the two doors are shut, the wall looks like it did originally. A solid knotty pine wall like the other walls in the cottage.
It was clever solution. He maintained the look he liked so much and saved money not having to purchase doors. The addition does not, at first glance, appear to exist. The doors are not noticeable.
The doors do not close as well as they once did. They have dropped like the stomachs and faces of the old. They need to be rehung and plumbed. A facelift. A job I intend to do on one of these visits. There always seems to be something more important to do.
This dining room wall, like so many things in life, is not what it seems.