Thursday, December 29, 2016

Long, slow task of the chapel interior...


It's been quite a long time since I've posted an update on the chapel, and that's because the interior work is going more slowly than I had hoped. But, a month here, a month there, eventually you've actually made some progress. Here's what's happened since the last post...

Finishing the exterior (painting, final windows, grading, and gutters)

Door frame design and installation and door finishing

The door is stain-grade poplar and a design we liked as a chapel door. It's 8 ft tall and fitting for entering a sacred space, a different type of door than anywhere else in the house.

For the frame design I started the process of looking up classical sources, which is the basis for the interior of the chapel. I found the following set of temple doorway designs from a well-known classical source (Vitruvius' The Ten Books on Architecture - free online):

I liked elements of both doorways and also needed to consider the book cases near the door which would limit any overhang. I made the final design in SketchUp:

Each part of the door trim I created from scratch (either with a router or simply planed to the right thickness and cut with a table saw).

I've had to learn how to create cove molding from a table saw, passing laminated boards over the saw blade diagonally at a calculated angle.

All pieces are glued together on all surfaces to keep movement to a minimum. Then after sanding, all seams are caulked, all surfaces primed, sanded again, then 2-3 coats of enamel with sanding between each coat.

I stained the door with two coats of stain and two coats of polyurethane and installed the door knob.

Eventually I'll add the name of the chapel in the flat space above the door.

Interior priming, painting, and flooring installation

We chose travertine tile for the floor because it's a beautiful natural stone and incredibly cheap at a big box retailer as a stock item (somewhere around $2 per sq ft). Unfortunately each tile is also very heavy and easy to crack or break, and a pain to install. Definitely likely to be my least fun step of the whole chapel process :-)

All the tiles had to be sorted and mixed among boxes so that there was variation in color.

Finished product:

I didn't take pics of the painting and priming process on the interior walls but this pic shows some of this. Nothing is final at this point, just enough to be able to move forward with the interior woodworking. 

There's a good deal more progress, but I'll end this post here and start the next with the design I created for the interior.


Michelle Gelineau said...

Absolutely beautiful! Thank you for sharing.

Karla Baca said...

Love the craftsmanship and detail of the door to the chapel, beautiful! Great choice on the tile as well...looking forward to seeing the rest!

Karla Baca said...
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