Wednesday, 17 April 2013

I'm back - windows and other things

Or not :) I have found a job (as a DTP technical designer) and so all else has taken a back seat. Or a trailer seat. I am be off for a while after this too. Of course I have many things to post about and I won't just not to make it too long ;)

I guess the routine will take shape and my energy levels will soon be back up so that I can pick up some other projects as well. First in our mind of course is the house, but since we don't have the keys yet (that will be the 25th of this month), there isn't much we can do yet.

We have been shopping for windows. The current windows are single glass PVC and must be from the 90s or thereabouts - extremely bad insulation, and why not say it, extremely ugly as well. Let me show you the façade again:

Ok, this is the lower story only, there are two more windows on top, and more windows at the back of course, those have a shallower arch:

So on the façade there is the original door, and the front window with a roller shutter. This window (and the one in the kitchen and another in the back room, on the photo above, with the white wall) doesn't open.

All windows will be wood, the windows in the façade are going to have a fixed top sash in the same shape than the door, here they call it "napoleon hat", you can see why I guess. This is a house in our city with new windows, placed by our contractor, in this shape, recreating the original ones:

They will also be fully curved following the arch. The windows at the back, due to the much shallower arch, will follow the arch on the outside but be rectangular on the inside (all windows in the house are now rectangular). We will not put any roller shutters.

The contractor we are going for doesn't offer two different colours inside and outside, so we are going for oak (oak finish, the wood itself is FSC afrormosia), which we like and goes with our furniture - the pretty pieces anyway ;) The door is now white on the outside, but it is solid oak and on the inside it is just varnished.
We may paint the outside a different colour later on, since the oak doesn't go too well with the brick (well... see above! that house has more stone, though). I have been keeping an eye around for options. I really like this green colour, I think it looks very nice with the brick, but Pim doesn't seem to like it much:


Last weekend we got a few cheap gardening books in the local store. I have only ever had balconies (and that in a completely different climate), and house plants (granted, my apartment is littered with them), so I really have no idea whatsoever what I am getting into, and want to read about it.

Plant thing I got the other day for 7€ - many
of my orchids are in bloom, including a cambria!

Two of the books are Dutch and another is perhaps English, translated to Dutch. This later one was a bit of a mistake, we got the wrong impression from browsing in the shop. But there are a few very inspirational photos (even if totally useless to the purposes of the book... which is useless to me). One of the Dutch ones I am liking a lot, it is a very tiny guide on "nature friendly gardening", I took it because it has a lot of information on how to attract animals to the garden (insects, birds, amphibians, etc) and I am very interested in this. Turned out to be a nice book, with no holier-than-thou attitude whatsoever, and lots of info per square centimetre. The last book I am not liking much at all. Written by some maybe popular? gardener in the Netherlands, the guy is opinionated, which I don't necessarily have anything against, provided the person is likeable (I know, subjective), such as Elizabeth Zimmermann, but this guy I find quite insufferable! at least I do not have to hear his Dutch accent to top it off ;) anyway, some info may be salvageable.

So perhaps I should just look for English books. I love English gardens and the cottage/informal style, plus the climate is very similar here, so I think that may be the way. I see a lot of Amazon-review-hunting in my future.


I've picked up knitting during the train commute, as I used to do (one of the reasons to get started!). I think this is my favourite time and place to knit. It is a regularly scheduled occupation (when I get to sit, I am still getting the hang of the train schedule), which strangely enough helps a lot. I do not stress so much about my project or when or how I'll write the pattern (this may also have to do with actually being employed and not feeling pressure to publish patterns).

I've been knitting a pair of fingerless mittens -little accessories are great to knit on the go- for Pim. I know, Pim with fingerless mittens? I am selling this as "driving gloves", we will see if it takes.
I am using the most amazingly gorgeous tweed yarn in yellow and green, which makes the pattern quite sporty (in the old meaning of the term). I am afraid he will need an English convertible car to go with them, though.

Here are they a couple of days ago, picture taken in the train:

I am very advanced now, I think I will need another project for the train tomorrow. This should be the shawl I started a while ago. I got a bit discouraged about that one but that has probably washed away with this agreeable little project :) I showed some similar mittens some time ago, I have two other projects started with this same pattern I am writing, a hat and mittens. Cowl should come as well, I love this fabric. Still not tired of the linen stitch!