52. Drawing a blank

Our north wall is rendered

11th November 2014

A quick word of appreciation for the three central European renderers who came to site today and put the top coat on our featureless north wall before I had properly woken up.

I've never seen anyone work so fast: one on each level of the scaffold, reaching up and down through the scaffold to overlap each other's work and so leave no evidence of joins. And they didn't take any short cuts - the final finish is bright, smooth and completely consistent across the 80 square metres of wall. Its big blank whiteness certainly sets off the rich colours and details of the front and back elevations.

This wall will one day disappear behind whatever gets built on the plot next to us. So we have left it blank to express the future of The Orchard within a terrace of rather wacky buildings. Currently - see below - we have Tree House (timber and render, inspired by Alvar Aalto's organic modernism), the half-built Orchard (handmade bricks and porcelain tiles, in the spirit of the English Arts and Crafts movement), the empty plot next to us, the Slip House (a minimalist glass box), and finally another sharply cut new house beyond it, being built by our friends Simon and Katie (and about to be finished in concrete slips in a rather nice pinkish shade of white).

Given the range of styles and finishes, I think the final piece of the jigsaw should be something else again. Art Nouveau in bronze, if I have my way.


  1. I tootle by every Tuesday and Friday on my bike regular as clockwork Will and really enjoy seeing the house go up. Will stop by next time! Pxx