Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Tudor Houses are Awesome

Anyone who knows me knows my love of all things English-y. I have a particular adoration of wonky Tudor houses. They are also called half-timbered houses or timber frame, but to me they are just Tudor ala King Henry.
We in America have a version of these....they have it in England too....that is called Tudor revival. Drive through some fancy neighborhoods-and even some not so fancy ones-and you will see the decorative trim that is on gables that is a throwback to the real thing. These houses are not authentically timbered but have trim styled like they are--there is no relation from inside to outside of the house. I am not hating on these...they are cute and I like them fine, but that is not what I am talking about here.

In true, ancient half timbered houses, the entire house was made with a timber frame. There are no studs inside the walls like modern construction. The builder made a giant frame for the house out of big heavy timbers and pegged them together. In between the beams the space was filled with rocks, bricks, rubble, sticks or anything they could come up with to fill in the space and then they "stuccoed" over the filler. The walls were as thick as the beams they made them out of and the beams were exposed on the inside and outside of the house. This is what an authentic wall was filled with....minus the glass frame, obviously....
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There is modern timber framing....I live in a modern timber framed house. Kinda the same as the authentic, but not really. The whole "filling the walls with junk and stuccoing over it" thing is not very modernly energy efficient. This is what a modern timber frame looks like while being built....this is mine....
Our timber frame
All smallest upright in that frame is 6X6 inches....some are bigger than that. But now, instead of filling in between them, we attached SIPs to the outside of the frame. This means you can see the beams on the inside of our house, but not the outside....so we faked it on the outside.
Inside....drying in - 10
Outside..frontporch.JPG

Enough of all that construction talk....THIS is why I love them. We took these on our awesome trip to London that we just got back from....click on any of these to go to the photo-set and see all of the ones we took.
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And finally, here is a funny story. We were walking through Hampstead Heath and happened upon the most picturesque, perfect little cottage in the woods. It looked like something out of Hansel and Gretel and before we even got up to it we had discussed how lucky the resident was and wondered how they lucked up and got the gig that got them living in the cutest house ever in the middle of this awesome park, etc, etc.... This is the house....
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Okay, now wait for it.....


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It was the park bathroom....i would still live there forever....

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