Thursday, November 17, 2011

Porch Railings For A Song

"6 pieces of old wooden porch railing. 36" tall and 71 to 81 inches long. Was painted white, but most of the paint has come off. Could be cleaned up and re-painted. If you can use it, it's yours."

Don't you just love Craigslist? I may have had to drive with my boobs wedged against the steering wheel in order to fit them in the back of the Blazer, but you can't beat free!

Now, what do I have in store for these lovelies?

This is what the front of our house looks like today.

Okay, okay, this is what the front of our house looked like back in June.

When we first bought our house, we found evidence that the front porch and the porch roof had once had a railing.

I was told by the Realtor that the previous landlord took the railings down because they were so old that they had become a hazard. He was concerned that the next person to lean against them would take a tumble and get badly hurt. 

Um. Anyone else notice that the top of the existing railing post is the same style as my newel post? Eee!

However, it's easy to see exactly where the railings used to be attached on both the porch and the roof.

Especially since the post supports on the roof are still going strong.

The roof needs some sanding and a paint job... but that's a thought for another day. Or year.

Although I knew that there used to be a railing, I had no notion of what style of railing had been there. That's why I was insanely excited the first time I got a look at an old picture of our house. (Ha! You thought I was done with house history for the week! What a silly notion!)

As I lovingly clutched my new find to my chest, I turned to Stephen and said, "We are recreating the "Coffee Shop" sign!!! And the railing! Look at the railing! We are SO doing that!" I thought the plain, simple style of the railings perfectly suited the front of the house.

As I gathered more information about the house, I obtained a xeroxed picture of the house in the 1980s or 90s. The quality may be bad, but it was the first time I'd ever seen the side of the house in an older picture. And the railing!! The railing!! It continues down the side of the Sandwich Shoppe. Must. Replicate.

In the 40s picture, there are 4 sections of railings across the front of the porch roof. In this xeroxed picture, there are 5 segments of railings. So, we know that the railing was probably replaced at some point between the 1940s and the 1980s/90s.

I even have a bad quality color picture of the house with the railing (probably in the 80s or 90s).

Altogether, we need 13 or 14 segments of railings for the porch and porch roof (depends on whether we go for 4 or 5 segments on the front of the roof porch).

Right now, we have 6 sections.

They need a little love from a pressure washer and some new paint, but the wood is sturdy and solid. Judging by the marks left from the old porch railings, these ones are a little taller than the originals, but that's ok. The style is perfect!

I leaned two of the sections against the porch columns to get an idea of how they will look:

I like it! We should be able to install the porch sections easily enough. The porch roof railing is going to have to wait a while because we'll need to buy supplies and build the other 7 or 8 sections. It will happen eventually because our home owners insurance felt that the lack of a roof railing coupled with the door leading out onto the roof was a hazard. I'm inclined to agree, but for now, we keep that door locked.

I'm looking forward to seeing these "new" railings installed.

And I really like that they came off of another old house.

And that they were free. We all know how I feel about free stuff... :)

1 comment:

  1. These are going to look awesome! What a find! We very much need railings at our house, too!


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