The Parts of Your House You Definitely Want to Check After This Winter

The winters and snow are not fans of your house. Both of them can do some serious damage to your house. Harsh winters can affect all kinds of buildings apart from humans and animals. The cold wind is a source of precipitation which can cause water sources to freeze, and put a strain on your house. As unforgiving as winters are, they can bring a world of trouble for you when they finally end.

There are several problems caused by winters, mainly to the foundation of the house, roofs, etc.

Here are some parts of your house that may be potentially damaged by the cold and should definitely be checked out.

The Foundation

Bespoke front door

The foundation of the house is the most important part of the house because it is what your house rests on. A strong foundation means a strong house. However, the cold breeze of winter can cause some serious damage to foundations which could ultimately turn your house into a hazard.

Winters can freeze the soil under your house, making it extremely hard instead of soft and supportive. This freezing of soil can cause irreparable damage to the foundation of your house if left unattended. Hairline fractures in the concrete can develop into cracks, causing structural issues which could next affect the walls of the house

Therefore, it is best to hire a professional to check for frost heave, and if found, attend to it timely.

The Pipes

period front door

The piping of your house is also an integral part that needs to be regularly checked, especially during and after winters.

Low temperatures can cause water to freeze quickly, especially drainage systems. When this happens, the incoming flow of water increases in pressure and puts a strain on the pipes. This additional pressure and force significantly increase the chances of the bursting of pipes. What’s more, the pipes themselves can freeze up or break due to the cold. Hence, it is a must to check the whole discharge system for any damage at the hands of winter.

Front doors

Bespoke Front Doors

All kinds of doors, be it interior or exterior, are damaged by winter. However, the front doors bear the brunt of the harsh winters, especially in London.

London front doors bear the brunt of nature’s harshest breeze and cold. If not protected, the cold winds or moisture-laden fog can cause period front doors to contract as well as crack. What’s more, Victorian front doors can absorb rain and precipitation and be damaged internally which is why your front doors need the proper protection to handle everything nature throws at you.

The Roof

Roofs face a greater threat than front doors during the winter season. They face the harshest challenges in the form of wind, rain and the cold. The harsh winters can do a lot of damage, cause cracks as well as weaken the structure of the house as well as absorb drizzle and precipitation. Hence, it is important to protect your ceilings to the utmost.

The Importance of Doors

Research states that a decision as big as which house to buy takes just eight seconds. Yes, the human mind processes the request and acts on it in just a few seconds. Whether it’s common people, or celebrities, the decision time remains the same. However, more often than not, the decision is based on how the front door looks. “People look at the front door before they look at anything else,” says Melton designer, Cecilia Neal. “Your front door reflects what you think about the house. A door can sell a property.”

Victorian door
a Victorian front door

A Victorian front door with stained and etched-glass panels and side windows, coloured Oxford blue, was behind the sale of a house in Putney. Susie King, the person who bought the house stated, “After being shown round by the agent, I drove back there that night, parked outside and just stared at the door. I wanted to live behind it so badly.” A repainting of the house a decade onwards required a dozen attempts to find the right shade of blue.

Conversely, the front door can also lead to the downfall of a sale. Buyers are more specific about front doors than they normally think. According to the director of John D Wood, Chelsea, Andy Buchanan, “We have had a buyer who refused to complete until we repainted the front door as it was green, which they felt was unlucky.”

The front door must match itself to the house according to Jeremy Musson, the Architecture Editor of Country Life. The door has to meet architectural requirements and the desires of the buyer. For example, planked doors do work well on barns, warehouse conversions, and new-builds, and might be preferred by many buyers.

However, the universal charm of a Georgian front door is still on a level of its own. Its “solid, well constructed, but at the same time curiously domestic and welcoming,” much like the iconic blue London door that Hugh Grant owns in Notting Hill, is far too iconic and comfy. “The classic Georgian combination of solid, panelled door with a glazed fanlight over the top, as in London and Dublin, and Bath and Liverpool terraces, is just magic,” says Mr Musson.

period front doors
One of our Edwardian front doors

However, while they possess a charm of times gone by, it does not mean that period doors, whether Georgian, Victorian, or Edwardian, cannot be used for new house. Many new installments, such as properties on the Wentworth and St George’s Hill estates in Surrey, are dependent upon classical styles and use them on a larger scare. The homeowners are happy to experiment with the size of their establishment, as compared to the colour, tone, or style. “Double doors are vital for new-builds over £2 million,” says Simon Ashwell, of Savills. “They give an impression of a much wider frontage. I will always tell a developer to put in a double door.”

Why is Your Front Door Important?

If you have asked this question to yourself many times, here’s the answer offered by some people who make it their business to know the perfect answer.

“So many people neglect the importance of their front door. Painting your door in an attractive dark shade, and either polishing or replacing your door furniture can make a huge difference to a buyer’s first impressions. Dark colours are said to work best, but take a look at your neighbours’ doors and if light colours are a theme consider a more muted grey or pale green, neither of which colours are likely to alienate potential buyers.”

Says Phile Spencer in this extract from a guest blog that he did for Ratedpeople.com.

http://www.ratedpeople.com/blog/kerb-appeal-phil-spencer/

Often times the very first impression that a property makes on a buyer dictates how the rest of the visit and dealing will go. Buyers find all kinds of irregular things to be a major turn off. This includes front gardens that are unkempt and full of cars or derelict fencing and gates.

The same thoughts are echoed by a certain Leeds sales agent, ‘If they’re not smiling as they step over the threshold then the rest of the viewing is generally a waste of time. If the vendor doesn’t sort it out then you can end up reducing the price. For every eager buyer put off by the surface appearance there’s a shrewd old pro waiting for the price to tumble. It’s the vendor who loses out.”

Period front door

When looking at it from face value, the condition of your front door (Victorian, Georgian, or modern) might not seem to be important or significant to the overall value of your property. However, experts suggest that you would be wise to reconsider that thought.

Here’s a reason why: “The period front door is a very important part of a home’s curb appeal and contributes greatly to the home’s overall value,” says Lipford.

“It’s usually the first opportunity to influence a guest to your home, or a potential buyer of your home, because they’re going to see that from the road,” explains Lipford. “It’s the nose on the face of the house, and it’s important to showcase it in the best light that you possibly can.”

This extract comes from an interview with Danny Lipford. He’s the executive producer and the host of the Home Improvement show on television: Today’s Homeowner with Danny Lipford.

http://homes.yahoo.com/news/renovations-that-add-value-to-your-home-201815529.html

Don’t just take what we say to heart. Have some insight from the experts instead.

If you have asked this question to yourself many times, here’s the answer offered by some people who make it their business to know the perfect answer.

What Does the Colour of Your Door Say About You?

“Your door is a portal to your personality, not just your house.” – Brie Dyas, House Beautiful, 24th July 2015.

Taking this into account, just what might front door colour suggest about you and the way you feel about your home? After a lengthy discussion with a colour psychologist, we found out that what some of the most common front door colours might suggest about regard for your home:

Blue.

Quite easily the most popular colours in various studies, a blue front door suggests that the homeowner might view their home as something that can find peace in. A place of refuge that brings calm, serenity, and relaxation. For the homeowner, it’s the perfect retreat from the harsh and oft highly demanding world.

period front doors

Green.

This is another colour with a lot of popularity when it comes to front doors – and there’s a lot of good reasons behind that. In psychological terms, green has connotations with harmony, health, and tranquility. These are attributes all homeowners desire from their home.

Victorian front doors

Black.

People who have their front door painted black actually communicate something that’s quite different and unique about their homes. The colour black for a front door exhibits power, strength, sophistication, and authority. It indicates to everyone who looks at the door while walking by that the home is under the ownership of someone with substance and assuredness.

London front door

Red.

Red is considered to be a powerful colour with some ‘punch’. It is actually known as the colour of passion. Painting the front door red means that the homeowner wants people to know that the house is full of life, energy, and excitement.

Brown.

Brown is the natural door colour. Whether the door is painted or stained brown, the feel it gives off is natural and organic. However, the message in colour psychology is mixed and can vary. While typical shades of brown convey warmth, stability, and reliability, some darker shades are not so positive. They give off a vibe that suggests privacy and even isolation.

front door London

It’s quite likely that the colour you have selected for your front door exhibits the way you want people to look at your house. It’s a way of making them understand just what the place is all about. If you purchased the house and wish to say something different than the previous owner, the best thing to do is to have a new front door made and painted in a colour that you desire.

Making the Most of Your Home

Owning a property in London helps you attain a special status. It’s not about class or anything. What you own instead is a piece of history and your automatically become a custodian of just one part of the country and city’s incomparable cultural heritage.

One thing you might have never thought about is just how much of a role your front door has to play as the focal point of your home’s overall aesthetic, along with both its appeal and its unique character. Whether it is negative or positive, the effect of the front door cannot be diminished. One thing you can notice is that a trip down London’s streets looking for good looking houses will show that the best-looking ones have a wonderful front door.

Victorian front door

It’s quite saddening to think about the act that it has not always been financially possible, or even something fashionable, to preserve the original period features expressed in architecture. When homeowners were compelled to change the front door, what they found were mass produced, poor quality doors made out of wood, plastic, or aluminium. These have been the only options for so long that they have slowly crept across the entire city’s visage.

Thankfully, we now live in an era where homeowners actually care about and appreciate the traditional aesthetics found in our domestic architecture. It’s not just about giving off a rustic appearance either. The homeowners are well aware that keeping the period aesthetic of their home intact is bound to maximise the value of their property, which is usually their most important and valuable asset.

period front door

With a beautiful front door, you can pretty much transform your home’s entire appearance. Furthermore, you can also add some value to it which is bound to give you a thrill full of excitement whenever you look at it or use in the future.

Bespoke Front Door was established from a passion and love for the British period aesthetic, with an undying commitment towards the preservation of our cultural and architectural heritage. We offer a number of services, specialising in production, design, and installation of period front doors. Furthermore, we are always available for consultation and can offer you all kinds of advice and guidance on how to get the best out of your home’s most prominent and important feature.

An ‘ology in doors

An ology in doors is the characteristic of true art, so much so that it has its own unique vocabulary: difficult words comprehended by the few and astounding at first to the many. Carpentry is not a special case and I’ve been digging into the significance and origin of the absolute most normal terms related to front doors.

Mortise or Mortice: [noun] a gap made in a bit of wood to get a join of a similar size (from the French word mortaise). Begins before 1350 but otherwise unknown. Not to be mistaken for a property loan (the reason the majority of us get up and get to work daily).

Tenon (come from French word tenir which means to hold) is a projection toward the finish of a piece of wood, intended to be embedded into the mortice of another piece, to frame a joint between the two. Not to be mistaken for tennis (a game played in Wimbledon to energize rainfall).

London front door
Anatomy of a front door

Rail and Stile: a development procedure (now and again called ‘casing and panel’) whereby a floating board is held inside an edge on Victorian front doors. Even timbers in the edge are called rails and verticals are stiles. The boards are held in grooves cut into within edges of the rails and stiles, which are themselves held together utilizing tenon and mortise joints. (Rail originates from an old French word reille got initially from the Latin rēgula a ruler (I think they implied something with a straight edge). Stile presumably contacts us from the Dutch Stijl meaning a column or post). Not to be mistaken for Style (which, in the event that you need to ask, you lack).

Muntin: a charming word which sounds like a depiction of a glad, wet and sloppy Labrador however is really a vertical framing timber between two strong or coated door boards. Not to be mistaken for Munchkin a fictional little person in L F Baum’s Wizard of Oz.

Raised and Fielded

If a wooden board has a flat square or rectangular zone at its inside with an angle all around its edges, it is portrayed as being raised and handled. The level of focus is ‘raised’ and the slanting edges are said to be ‘fielded’.

Moulding

There is any number of mouldings which can be utilized where the surrounding meets the board. A portion of these, (for example, ovolo and sheep’s tongue) are cut from the muntins, rails, and stiles. Others, for example, board and bolection mouldings are ‘connected’ or ‘planted’. Bolection mouldings have a luxurious cross-area and spread the edges of both the board and the encircling. It would be ideal if you note that the spellings moulding and molding are these days utilized conversely although, but molding is just correct in North America.

Victorian front doors
Anatomy of a front door

The Ovolo moulding has an adjusted profile utilizing a fourth of an oval (from the Latin ōvum egg). Sheep’s Tongue has a progressively fine profile with compliment curves.

Explicit, marginally particular when originally experienced, bolections, sheep’s tongues, ovolos, and muntins are all now part of my delight in the language of period front doors. The term bolection, by chance was first used in London in the mid-eighteenth century but past that, its inceptions are shockingly unfamiliar.

How bricks make doors

Lucy Greenslade finds the remarkable significance of the use of common brick.

Two hundred years ago, before the middle of the 20th century, the fired mud brick was the building material mostly used for the making buildings in London. The happening to the canal framework and afterward the railroads in the 19th century implied that huge amounts of bricks could be provided economically to London from furnaces in Middlesex, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Suffolk, and Essex. The pre-memorable Wealden muds of Kent and Sussex – with well-known names, for example, Funton and Chailey – also gave London stock bricks their trademark appearance, mixing warm tones of yellows and browns.

Sometimes before a Danish craftsman designed Lego, Londoners were building using the common bricks and strict modular system. Brick measurements are neither irregular nor accidental. Prior to metrication, the normal London brick was around 9 inches in length by 4 inches wide by 2½ inches high. The metric equal is 215mm long by 102.5mm wide by 65mm high. Metric or royal, the genuinely significant thought is that bricks must be the ideal size to fit a human hand.

It begins with the width. Take a look at the distance between your thumb and fingers. It’s probably going to associate with four inches i.e.102mm. Bricks must be appropriate for lifting with just one hand – leaving the other one allowed to use a trowel loaded down with cement. If two hands were expected to move the brick, the rhythm and speed of brick passing would be lost.

The width of the brick defines its length in the modular system. Two bricks laid one next to the other with 10mm of cement between them measure 215mm over. This is significant for holding; in a customary structure, alternate bricks placed at right-edges hold a wall together. A brick placed with its long side uncovered is defined as a ‘Stretcher’: appearing short side makes it a ‘Header’.

Victorian front doors
Solid masonry laid in English Bond: Headers and Stretchers in alternate courses

The brick size 65mm depends on two factors. One is weight – we are utilizing just one hand, and the other is cutting. In the event that bricks were a lot thicker than 65mm cutting them by man force become wasteful and irregular.

In the time period front doors, to work proficiently, bricklayers abstain from cutting blocks thus the widths and height of the openings into which our entryways must fit are brick measurements. Level measurements should be products of 215mm and 102.5mm not overlooking 10mm for every one of the vertical edges. Usually, builders use coordinating measurements of 225 x 112.5 x 75mm with the goal that the edges are not overlooked.

Victorian front door
Co-ordinating size is the brick plus 10mm of mortar

The London front door required to be more attractive than the other internal doors would be at least 2082mm in height and 915mm in width this means 82 inches by 3 feet to a Victorian woodworker.

It should be 28 courses of brickwork give 2110mm high for internal doors. This is the reason, after considering planks of flooring and the frame head, the resulting doors are for the most part around 2032mm (80 inches) in height. Widths are more important in building a structure of four bricks layer with 820mm of width.

Making an Entrance: How Your Front Door Matters Part 2

London does not happen to be one of Europe’s well-touted planned cities. Rather, it’s more a collection of different districts (that could even be called villages). The City of London has been continuously inhabited and restricted by people ever since the Roman times. However, the outer areas to the north, south, east, and west of the original ‘square mile’ were developed at different times. This gave rise to certain characteristics such as ‘Greater London’.

New districts continued to join the fold in the subsequent centuries, with the suburbs developing rapidly during the Victorian and Edwardian times. From then on, the 1890s saw the inception of the underground railway which helped accelerate London’s urban spread rapidly. In the twentieth century, as the expansion continued, some of the inner suburbs turned into less desirable areas and were suffering an era of neglect and decline during the mid-century. During the 1920s and 1930s, London’s outwards expansion continued so rapidly that it had to be forcefully stopped with the imposition of the ‘Green Belt’ in the late 1940s.

Unlike most of all the other major European cities, well-to-do Londoners have always found it better to live in individual houses rather than apartments or shared buildings. In fact, the Victorian era London inhabitants would often even call small terraced residences as ‘villas’, even though they knew that the world itself is used for houses down by the countryside. While grand architectural schemes have been a rarity in London’s history, when they have occurred, the design often took precedence over identifying separated residences via entrances. As you can see in the photograph below, paired ionic columns showcase a colonnade at street-level, which at once joins and dominates both quadrant arms. Nash’s colonnade (from John Nash’s Park Crescent) was illusory, with railings, steps, and light-wells preventing its use as an actual place to promenade. The various shared entrances were often not visible until a person came level with them.

London front door
Park Crescent 1812: only two quadrants were actually built of the huge circus Nash planned at the southern end of Regent’s Park

With urban spaces always being in short supply, London’s buildings are crammed together and one of the best ways to distinguish from another is by looking at the entrance. Contrasting with Park Crescent, the photograph below shows a building conceived as a unitary design, with the projecting porches setting up a rhythm with their neo-classical detailing to set up and confirm the existence of separate buildings and households.

Bespoke Front Door
Notting Hill: A grand 1840s terrace with a clearly expressed piano nobile above the individual projecting porches.

Furthermore, building houses in square around a central garden worked as a successful design solution in the early Victorian and Georgian periods. The giant structure and character of the buildings, along each side of the square, is relieved by building the houses in a way that sets the houses at the ends forward, or do so in the centre of the terraces, and also by deliberate variations in the detailing and spacing of the windows. Once more, the attention allotted to entrances helps establish unique and individual identity within great numbers.

Victorian front door
Mid 19th century terraced housing in Highbury, north London.

Bespoke Front Door

Colouring In

There’s a number of things you have to be extra careful of when it comes to your front door. One of them happens to be picking the right colour for it. Choosing the correct colour for your  period front door is a matter which requires serious thought. Over the last decade or so, the variations that Londoners have been prone to explore include putty, pale grey, and sage green. These murky colours have proven to be the definitive colours for London front doors of late.

period front door

The inception of these colours in the London scene came about due the championing of historic colour palettes by various companies. These palettes were deemed to be of good use for both internal walls and for woodwork. Very soon, these colours made their way from the interior to the front doors of houses. Although these colours originated from the Victorian era, they would never have been used on the front doors traditionally. Victorian and Georgian era homes would usually have their Victorian front doors painted in colours such as dark green, dark brown, sometimes white, black, and navy blue; all conservative colours. Hence, the idea of using traditional colours actually turned front doors more contemporary in an ironic turn of events.

Bespoke front door

Traditional front doors with a contemporary feel to them are still a popular fixture among homeowners nowadays. Using pale subtle tones on front doors is very common. However, the recent shift towards more vintage designs is turning everything else towards traditional norms as well. The hardware is becoming more traditional, with all colours seeing a more traditional shift as well.

Mid to pale blues, dark greens, black, white, very dark greys, bright yellow, and traditional pillar box red are all becoming increasingly popular with London home owners. Furthermore, brass has somehow made a major comeback as well! Unlacquered brass is becoming an increasingly popular fixture, along with reclaimed vintage hardware. The former is often simply left to oxidise to give a more rusty or tarnished look. It can be polished to give off a more gleaming and lustrous look too.

London front door

Your front door says a lot about who you are and how you feel about your house. It lets anyone who looks at your house, be it a neighbour or a random passer-by, what your tastes are, along with your choice of style too. Simply, your front door is an extension of your style choices. Hence you have to pick the colours that suit your palette. If you like a more contemporary look, then go for colours such as blue or grey, off white, or even a warm mushroom hue. These all look great with some polished chrome door furniture. If you’re more traditional, your colour choices will be quite different. It all depends on what you like after all.

The way of opening the Front Doors in London

When it comes to getting a Bespoke front door, there’s a lot on your plate that you need to take care of. From the direction in which the door opens to the placement of the latches and hinges, it’s all something that you need to take care of when having a door installed as the front door of your home. The door opening choice is the simplest one here. Building London front doors usually open indoors so that they don’t strike a person when they are being opened, while back doors and garden doors usually open towards the outside.

London front doors

What You Will Need to Check and Decide

When it comes to looking at your period front door from a security point of view, doors that open outwards are usually better than the ones that open inward. This is because pushing against the door means it’ll be more tightly shut, and any intruder would have to push extra hard in order to go past the resistance of the door and open it, with the back of the sill helping as well. However, an inward opening door can open quite easily, with high quality locks being needed in multiple amounts in order to keep the door secured.

Period front doors

 

French windows, which are also known as garden doors, open outwards into the garden and have become the basis for this convention. In London, where the climate’s so murky for most of the year, there’s no real need for us to open our garden doors. They are going to be closed for most of the winter. Hence, having them open towards the inside means having to rearrange a lot of the furniture and the room that the door opens into.

When there’s a pair of doors making up your front door, you need to decide which door has the handle and will open first. Since most of human beings are right-handed, the door with a right-hander handle is the one that should first and open towards the inside. At the same time, the left-hander door handle should open towards you when you come from the other side.

London front doors

 

Even if you may think deciding the opening way for internal room doors might be easy, but they need care as well. Most doors off a hallway open inwards since they would block the hallway if they opened towards the outside. Only doors that do open towards the outside are those for walk-in storage cupboards. As they are shut most of the time, opening outwards is not a problem for them.

At the end you need to take note of what kind of room you’re attaching the door to, since receptions, bathrooms, and bedrooms have their doors left ajar, with blocking still necessary for them. Furthermore, you need to make sure that the opening of the door towards the inside does not keep you from approaching the light switches.