Saturday, 7 November 2009

Sinks, boxes and a short discourse on architecture

Well, the standing box by the tiller has well and truly had it: it has got very curly on the top where the veneer has lifted. I plan to fix it today with some marine ply and some spare moulding.

I bought another box from Emmaus the other day. I popped up there while Jackie was out with friends walking their dog in Thetford Forest......

Here it is:

In scale, it's a lot smaller than would have been ideal for standing on, but I liked its grain, the smooth 1930's line and its little bakelite handle. It was scruffy where the varnish had been rubbed, but responded really well to the old 240 grit sandpaper/wire wool treatment. It was then wiped over with meths, massaged with linseed oil, then brought up to a nice sheen with Briwax.

I then gave it to Jackie as a present. It went down nearly as well as last week's surprise flowers.......

A worthwhile afternoon's tinkering then!

The Belfast sink is going to be sold, though. Our friendly carpenter, Ian, dropped by to have a look at the job, and while it's all do-able, with new taps and his labour, we'd probably be looking at £200-£300. This, then is no longer the bargain I thought it was. I will ring Mike P-J and see if his chums are still interested. If not, ebay it is, then....

I had thought when starting to write this, that I might sound off about the windows that besmirch many of Cambridge's lovely buildings, then I remembered Amy Duck actually is an architecture graduate, and may have many post-modernist ideas and opinions that would make my amateur ramblings seem reactionary and even twee.

But what the hell? Here goes!!!!

Why oh why oh why do shops in Cambridge have to disport their wares through acres and acres of bland, flat, dull, boring plate glass?

I mean, here we are, blessed with some of the loveliest streets which have grown up, unplanned, in that empirical muddle that so delights the eye, and which no architect, town planner, (not even with a Royal Warrant - sorry Prince Charles!-) can hope to replicate without pastiche, and what do we do? Rip out the original shop fronts and install plain plate glass, which is then brutally lit to produce cold, antiseptic sterility in what was a characterful and charming ground level view.

Of course, this is no new thing. It has been going on for years. So long, in fact, that we have forgotten what a shopping street should look like. Is this because they now all look the same?

Boring, Boring, Boring!!!!

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