My daughter and I entered in a discussion recently regarding the difference between the words "save" and "restore". We agreed that those words yielded two very different definitions. Without even opening up a dictionary, we inherently feel that to SAVE means to stop something from further degradation. To RESTORE means to bring it back to life. It's an active word, and much more laborious of a verb than just "to save". Restoration happens after the "saving" has been done and we start moving (carefully and slowly) back up the ladder so to speak, and into what that thing was before it started to become, well, less.
The restoration of the Gough-Hughston (the name formally used on the National Registry) home on Louisiana Street is a "restoration" in the true sense of the word. The owners fell in love with the home many years ago, and it's taken trial and error for them to find a contractor that shared that same infatuation. And if you follow us even just a smidge, you know that it was a match made in heaven.
When you look at the project from the outside looking in, you might begin to question the time line. But looking at it from the inside out yields an entirely different perspective.
Let's take the story of JUST the windows for example. Every window was taken out, glass removed, frames and jams rebuilt, hardware re-worked, new rope and then original glass re-installed. All of the wood and glass we needed were sourced with the same era and type, which meant that we first needed to locate the exact species of wood and then have it shipped for milling. Once we receive the wood, to continue working on that particular window and to make cuts that match, blades and knives must be custom made. And this is just for the windows!
But....ALL OF THE WINDOWS WORK! How many of us who have ever lived in an older home can say that about historical windows! We are so proud of what our skilled craftsman accomplished here in just that one area.
Other than feeling like we won the lottery that our company gets to take part in and revel in the beauty of this living and breathing space, I'm thankful for the individuals (owners and fellow old house lovers) that are putting their resources and energy into, not just saving, but RESTORING, pieces of our past. Our history is worth it!
Master woodworker, Dru, holds a window header after repair and multiple landings. Every header of EVERY window is having this same treatment.
The day that this particular window was re-installed, the crew said they couldn't sleep the night before, knowing that it is irreplaceable.
Make sure to read up above to learn the vast number of steps and stages that a single window must transition between in order for it be repaired!
A special frame with very specific dimensions and angles was built in order to repair and rebuild this curved window header.