In honor of the people of Paris I am reposting below my article on the hinges of the doors of the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris.
The Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris has many unique and exquisite attributes.
Even before entering the great stone edifice the doors grab attention. Not the doors so much as the hinges.
They are made from wrought iron by Biscornette who was a very mysterious worker. Legend has it no one ever saw him constructing the hinges. Reports went round that he had sold his soul to the devil to get him to help. The design is supposed to represent the Earthly Paradise.
An iron master named Gaegart broke off fragments of the iron to try and figure out how Notre Dame’s hinges were created. Some experts think that they are cast, and then treated with a file; others say they must have been created solely by casting, with no soldering. In any case, the secret will never be divulged, it died with Biscornette.
I had purchased an original 8-inch square oil painting while we were visiting Smith Island.
I was going to hang it in the powder room which used to be a “biblotheque” but is now “The Grand Tour” but the painting just looked too plain.
I had seen other paintings simply framed with a strip of wood on the sides as detailed in this YouTube video. I stopped by Lowe’s and bought an eight-foot piece (the smallest it comes) of 1/4″ by 1.5″ pine lattice which I planned to stain.
I had on hand some 1/4″ by 3/4″ screen door molding which I spray painted black.
The screen door molding was cut to 8-inch sections and nailed to the sides of the painting’s stretcher aligned with the back edge.
Then I applied the stained lattice to the top and bottom of the painting with small finish nails. The nails were recessed and the nail holes filled.
The side pieces of lattice were cut long enough to cover the ends of the top and bottom of the frame.
Now the painting is ready to hang in the “The Grand Tour” — a remembrance from our travels.
I bought some on Smith Island in the Chesapeake Bay.
Silhouettes of local crab boats and scrapes were made by a young man with certain physical challenges on the island. I got everyone in the family one for Christmas ornaments this year.
Especially for Sug I found another handmade hummingbird to hang in her reading corner. This one came with a sweet remembrance of the man who made it by the saleswoman behind the counter. The man has since passed on but when he was alive he carried a stone in one pocket and a cross in the other. If a conversation started to go downhill he would put his hands in his pockets and say, “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.”
Finally I bought a piece of original art for the newly-decorated powder room with a travel theme. The painting is a depiction of a Smith island cake which is Maryland’s state dessert.
What type of souvenirs do you purchase when traveling?
As most people know Charlie is a church pianist/organist and I, Jo, am a church choir director.
A few Sundays ago a couple that sits in the back of the church asked us to come out to their car because they had something for us. I figured it was something to eat because people are always giving Charlie food.
Instead we were presented two beautifully cross-stitched hymns which had been framed. This intricate work was created by the wife and extolled by a very proud-of-his-spouse husband.
We are so delighted with this gift that I have made a place for it on the wall of the conservatory so we and everyone else can see it often.
In order to hang the new pieces I moved the red flower print into the conservatory bathroom and now the chart has nowhere to go.