HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED WHY WOODPECKERS PECK? ME EITHER! But now that we’re both thinking about it, do they peck those big holes all alone? How do they choose their wood?
Hello Fabulous Farmers,if you’re having a sleepy Sunday, I hope I just helped you wake up!
This post isn’t going to be about peckers, but it is going to be a little bit about wood - AND the new TV/music room I'm designing here on the farm. In a previous post I showed you my new kitchen design boards and the location of where a wall will be removed. That wall is between what will be the new, much larger kitchen and the existing dining room. I love to design and decorate a formal dining room, in fact, I have a huge formal dining room in my current home complete with beautiful wainscoting and built-in corner cupboards. The problem is, we hardly ever use it. So, at the farm I’m going in a different direction. My desire is to take some of the formal out of this space to create a kitchen open to a TV/music room, eliminating the dining room. Our desire is to live in this entire home and not have a room rarely used. (Don't worry, there will be a dining space in another location, or two, actually three!)
Here is the diagram I showed you previously where the wall will be removed.
And here is the dining room on the other side of that wall.
It would appear from this photo that the room is quite dark. However, once I took all the window treatments down, the room became much brighter and airier.
I will be taking out most of the wall, however, I’m going to leave just enough to create a cased opening, so it leaves a hint of what the original architecture was. This will also ensure that the large crown molding can stay in place.
A new fireplace will be installed to bring the “cozy” in, and to give the room a focal point. It will be on the long wall across from the kitchen in between the two windows. The width of this room isn’t immense so the depth of the fireplace needs to be minimal. Ideally, I would want to install a wood burning fireplace supplemented with gas, but the location and city codes make that impossible. So, I’ll use an electric fireplace box fueled by the solar panels we’ll be installing on the farm. An electric unit will also have a shorter profile ensuring I have plenty of room above to install a TV that won’t be so high as to put a kink in anyone’s neck who is trying to view it.
If you've been following me from the beginning of this journey, you know I like to put together simple design boards from items I find on the web to give you an idea of my design direction and the vibe I'd like to achieve. For this room, I got a little carried away and came up with two ideas.
TV/MUSIC ROOM - DESIGN IDEA NO. 1
In this design I'll bring in a pop of saturated color on the hood (or upper portion of the fireplace). It will be constructed out of wood with a heavy dose of molding detail. The lower portion of the fireplace will be cement tile, with a rustic wood mantel above. I've anchored the space with a custom cowhide rug in gray to relate to the stone and tile in the kitchen (and because I just have a thing for gray)! I'll be bringing in some metal and stone in accent pieces, some mirror, and a beautiful chandelier will bring the bling. We have a baby grand piano that's been handed down from my husband's Grandmother which will bring the music to the room.
I love adding wood elements to a room and this fireplace affords me the opportunity to do just that. I only want to use a little, just enough to tie this room into the kitchen and the other wood elements I'll have installed there. This room will also have hardwood flooring so I need to make sure whatever wood I choose for the fireplace reads well with the floor. Anyone know where I'm headed?
TV/MUSIC ROOM - DESIGN IDEA NO. 2
You guessed it, PECKY CYPRESS for the upper portion of the fireplace feature, with a cement tile below. I love this wood so much that I just have to use it somewhere. And I say, "Why not install it in one of the rooms we'll be using the most"? If you'd like to see more Pecky Cypress inspiration, you can see more here on one of my Pinterest boards.
I'm sure you all know this wood doesn’t get its name because of any association to woodpeckers. Pecky Cypress and its cavities are achieved from a wood-decaying fungus that attacks the core of older trees. You can't tell if a tree has the pecking cavities because they are not visible on the outside, and only about 10% of cypress trees have this pecking characteristic. Sadly, Pecky Cypress has become an endangered species and the demand far outweighs the supply. Today, most of the wood comes from fallen logs at the bottom of rivers and swamps, so it's not exactly cheap!
I wish it WAS created from woodpeckers pecking because we have a whole lot of these birds on the farm and it would be really nice to get something beautiful from them.
Instead, we get this:
Unfortunately, the woodpecker who made this hole had a long fall inside the column to the bricks below. He must have been alive after he hit because he tried to peck his way out. He failed and his beautifully feathered body lies on the porch floor just inside a partially pecked hole. I guess the moral of this story could be, don’t let your pecker lead the way because you may create a “hole” lot of trouble for yourself!
Thanks for stopping by today. Cheers to a wonderful summer!