My custom designed front gate has finally been installed. It’s been an extremely time consuming and difficult project that began in 2011 with the original sloppy installation. Because it is the front gate, a custom solution was necessary. Since chain-link fencing is no longer as popular as it once was, I could not find a fencing contractor who would give me the time of day on the phone, much less show up for a meeting. They didn’t care if I had created detailed drawings with specifications. The word “custom” caused them too much brain pain. Plus using the traditional galvanized pipes and fittings would make the panels too heavy, causing them sag in the middle. So my architect Charley McKenney took my drawings to the metal artist who had created my fire screen and worked out how to create the two gate panels. It was critical that each frame corner be a sharp 90 degrees and each lace fabric panel be completely inset to the inside of the frame—not merely attached to the frame itself. Eighteen months later, January 2015, the completed gate panels were finally delivered. I had aged considerably since this whole thing started. But wait! There’s more!
A longtime dream has finally come true. Thank you Michael Parkey and Hadden Landscaping for the best looking backyard ever! Today the copper path lights are being installed, so you will not see them in this post’s photos. Don’t worry, I will be doing a photoshoot of them sometime in the near future. Except for the front gates, everything has been completed and is now ready for drive by viewings, and don’t be surprised if you spy me on my back screen porch sipping a cocktail and enjoying the view.
Note: You can click on each photo for a much larger version.
The fancy stonework has now been completed. Two expanses of random rectangular Pennsylvania stone paving in mixed colors — one at the base of the back steps and another in the front of the house — were carefully laid on a one inch setting bed of decomposed granite and compact soil. No mortar was used. Instead decomposed granite was swept into all the joints and compact surface.
The real name for it is “picot”, and it’s described by Wikipedia as a loop of thread created for functional or ornamental purposes along the edge of lace, ribbon, crocheted, knitted or tatted material. These loops vary in size, according to their intended function and to their creator’s artistic intention.
This makes my eyes bleed! Not in my wildest imagination did I fear such a mess. Why did I not anticipate this fiasco? Me, Miss OCD, who truly believes God is in the details! I have never seen a messy chain link gate. Old and battered maybe, but they always had nicely made frames before they were rammed by some random truck. This frame structure is a total reject and is to be redone to my specifications accompanied by a detailed drawing with a vibrant accent color. If the fabricator has any questions, he has been instructed to contact me and not make some crazy wild guesses. It may be several weeks before the new gates are ready for installation, but it will be worth the wait. Hopefully the fabric won’t become warped before then, and with luck, no neighbors will look too closely.
Day 14. Preparation for the lace fence installation. The fence contractor, Bryan Warrick of Allen Fence Company, is a full time firefighter who does this on his days off. On Tuesday, he had installed all but 3 fence posts when the University Park’s code enforcement swung by and shut us down because no permit had been issued. DRAT! I had warned all of them that a permit was needed, but they chose to fly under the radar. My landscape contractor thought that since we were replacing an old chin link with a newer one that the city’s approval wouldn’t be needed. Who would think that UP would be desperate for the cash? After all the Park Cities has some of the wealthiest folks living here who pay hefty property taxes. Go figure. Bryan then drove to the code enforcement offices, filed the drawings, requested a permit, and then called it a day. Thursday, his next day off, he would continue after picking up the permit.
The continuing saga of the lace fence. After arriving last week, the package was too long and heavy for one man and a dolly to maneuver from the truck, through the gates and into my garage. So it’s just been lying on my driveway ever since. From looking at the package, it appeared that they had shipped the fabric in separate panels and not in the continuous roll that I expected. This worried me, but after opening it up, we discovered that it was indeed one continuous piece of fabric. Yes! Yes! Yes! On closer inspection we realized that the woven lace designs were small and tight and would have never been able to conform to a compact rolling technique.
Demakersvan’s Lace Fence. Someday in the future, my backyard will be regraded and landscaped into a sun garden. And at that time, I will have to decide on a fence type. I’ve ruled out the typical wood stockade, because it’s ugly, hostile, blocks breezes, and keeps my dogs from seeing out and my neighbors from seeing in. I would like to share my garden visually with those who walk or drive by. Decorative iron fencing is not an option, because of the expense and the lack of interesting design options. “Boring” is a good word for this type.