At my first-ever “yard sale,” I sold an original soundtrack album of Star Wars I, to a major collector. As a result, the Central Florida man invited me to his home. It had been designed, specifically, to display, and preserve the integrity of, the amazing collection of “sci-fi, adventure and fantasy-themed pieces.”
Included in the collection were soundtrack albums, DVDs, CDs, videos; ad posters, banners and trailers; autographed photos, letters and books; costumes, masks, make-up kits, and props; pens and paperweights; plates, mugs and trays; toys, dolls and games; jackets, t-shirts, caps, and jewelry; paintings, drawings, sketches; set and scene models. Even a vehicle.
The 7,000 plus piece collection “lived” in a climate-environment controlled atmosphere. Marble, natural woods, glass, and special plexiglass were used extensively. Commercial wall vinyls covered non-wood areas such as closets, pantry and storage. Metals such as brass and chrome were seen in few areas.
What captivated me most was the hardwoods and veneers used throughout the home. A tasteful, colorful blending of temperate and tropical hardwoods, as well as a few softwoods.
“R”, the engineering department’s assistant supervisor at the Seralago Hotel & Suites, would have gone speechless. A carpenter craftsman and finisher, he would have been fascinated with the selection, combination, and use of the various woods.
The hardwoods and veneers carried your eye from room-to-room, and area-to-area, in a smooth and effortless way. Master woodcrafter at work. Paneling, built-in shelves and cases; cabinetry and cutting blocks; general and decorative mouldings, trims and joinings; doors and frames, windows and trims; flooring; furniture, work stations, picture frames, etc.
Here is a list of the woods used. For non-wood craftsmen and wood loving readers of this blog, I’ve tried to include a brief description for each:
1. Ash (white) – Colors: Pale honey. Properties: Good working and bending, fine finish.
2. Beech – Colors: Pale brown, flecked. Properties: Hard, good working, finish.
3. Oak (European) – Colors: Pale/Dark brown, with growth rings and silver rays. Properties: Hard to work, strong, durable.
4. Elm (European) – Colors: Brown, with twisted grain. Properties: Attractive, hard to work.
5. Sycamore (American) – Colors: Light brown, with straight grain-lacewood.
6. Black Walnut (Virginia Walnut) – Colors: Dark brown, with purple tints. Properties: Coarse grain.
1. Rosewood (Brazilian) – Colors: Dark brown, with variegated streaks. Properties: Attractive. Use: Veneering. Note: Product now banned from international trade.
2. Cedar (Brazilian) – Colors: Dark to Mahogany-colored heartwood. Properties: durable, resinous.
3. Cocobolo (Nicaragua Rosewood) – Colors: Dark brown, with colorful streaks. Properties: Tough, dense, lustrous.
4. Kingwood – Colors: Brown to Violet, even-textured, variegated. Properties: Lustrous. Uses: Turning, veneers.
5. Mahogany (Brazilian) – Colors: Light to dark reddish brown, with straight/even grain. Properties: Stable, good finish.
1. Walnut – Colors: Grayish to dark brown, with dark streaks and tints (eg. purple), wavy-grains. Uses: Veneering, Burring
2. Pommelle-grained – Colors: Dark brown. Uses: Veneering.
3. Birds-eye Maple-grained – Colors: Light yellow/tan. Uses: Veneering.
1. Douglas Fir – Colors: Yellow to Pink brown. Properties: Coarse, dense, durable.
2. Ponderosa Pine – Colors: Yellow white, with delicate figure. Properties: Sable, excellent finish.
3. Scots Pine – Colors: Pink-Red heartwood. Properties: Resinous.
Comparatively few homes will feature so many woods under one roof. For it to work, everyone involved in the design-engineering-build-decoration-finishing process must be on the same page.
They must know the customer well. What he or she says and points out – and what is left out, accidentally or intentionally.
They must know woods. Each one’s unique color, tints, grain, streaks. Each one’s unique properties and characteristics. Each one’s uses, and limitations.
Then, every specialist, and every craftsperson, must cooperate and collaborate from pre-Phase 1 to post-Phase 10/20/whatever. Until way after the complete project is done.
I would have loved to be the finisher/painter/decorator that worked on the collector’s home. Many aspects of the project would have offered immense opportunities in fine wood preparation and finishing. I’ve worked on a few similar properties. A maximum of seven types of woods, excluding furniture, were installed.
Whatever you collect…whatever size your home may be, invite fine wood into your life.
Even a little wood will do wonders for your living style, your spirit, and your soul!
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Thank you for visiting “Painting with Bob.”