The happiness a garden door brings has surprised no one more than me.
The feat of getting this beautiful door into place was a fair few months in the creation. It was an idea I’d been brewing on for well over a year and something I didn’t ever think I’d be able to achieve without professional assistance. Let’s face it, I’m not the best at DIY and the thought of rolling up my sleeves and getting stuck in with posts and a heavy oak door simply were not on my agenda. Well, once I had been inspired by my friend Kristy Ramage, there was no going back. I’m not one for not seeing things through and after a visit to Leominster Salvage Yard I was hot on the trail to find my door. They had a huge selection but once my tape measure sized a few up, it was decided that the idea was planted but the door had not been discovered, as yet!
One Saturday morning I popped up to Masco’s, a local salvage yard near to Chalford, they had a small selection and I spotted a humble and very lovely old solid oak door that I felt fitted the bill, narrow that it was, it had the right look and feel I was after. It squeezed into my car and off I went, stopping on the way at Baileys Paints to pick up primer and top coat. Before Sunday was through, I’d started stripping the door, removing all the multiple layers of glossy paint, quite a task for me and my sander.
I bought posts from a local wood merchant and set them up in the garden, treating, priming and finally top coating them.
After a few weekends of dust, paint and determination, the door and post were ready for installation. Fortunately I am blessed with a treasure of a neighbour, Barry – his incredible workshop had every tool for every eventuality and with a team of three (Barry, my brother and a friend), the concrete demolition began. The posts were in and curing within hours and the following day the door was hung into position.
The space now feels totally magical, the sense of enclosure and privacy has given the garden a new dimension. It feels so much more like a secret garden and my rampant meadow can now relax and not feel the pressure of peering critical eyes.
The final touch to the door was to paint on the name. With a steady hand and deep concentration I carefully applied the last drop of paint, not wanting to smudge or create any ligatures that shouldn’t be there! So that leaves me to present my lovely entrance to Hawthorn Cottage.
It still isn’t totally complete, I have yet to added chippings to the threshold and find a suitable evergreen shrub to fill in the gap, but you can’t rush these things!