Never too late to get it done
I’d been putting it off. This Great Hall had become greater and needed another fireplace. I’d cut the hole in the wall, determining just how big, but spent many afternoons faffing about with ideas and bits and never ended up comfortable.
As the floor, tower and other two side walls were now attached there was no getting out of it.
Build it out how much?
Most images of grand fireplaces C1400-1600 were just that – grand: many were built out and some run to canopies under which you could take shelter and warmth from the draft. Despite building this section on the Hall in order to ‘get grander’, it probably wasn’t going to run to the space for the canopy I fancied.
That left the question of how far out to build the chimney breast and at what point does it disappear into the wall. I went for minimal lean and all the way to the ceiling.
I decided to use mount board for the chimney breast and make continuous pillars up the sides. I’d looked at pics where the pillar surrounds are two different pieces, top and bottom, but, for once, decided on a less cluttered, more stylised look.
The pillars are painted and shaped to so that they are thinner back to front at the top section, echoing the lean of the chimney breast. They’re topped off with metal capitals, which I hope to paint to match ceiling ornamentation. The plan is to have a further six pillars round the room as part of the ceiling support scheme – the others won’t be shaped.
For decoration I’d tried so many things in previous weeks and plumped for the ‘less is more’ approach. I used a thick embossed pattern paper on the diagonal, rubbed pastels of a suitable set of shades to bring out the design and take down the whiteness and applied the green and cream spare tiles from the floor design. They have been stuck down to give a bit of an armorial look, whereas on the floor they were used for striping on the diagonal.
This is the day after the construction and am still quite pleased.
How the Hall got bigger – lots of pics but not yet written up. It shall be done!
Links to things of interest:
- Fotolibra – fireplace restrained but grand
- Hanging chimneys and smoke canopies
- City of London, Tower of London – fireplace
- and again but from Loire valley
- Interesting blog – this page covers heating and includes a medieval fireplace
- and the super canopy of them all at bottom of this travel page