Restoring period decorative cornice for a whole house renovation.

Since January, we have been working on a fabulous home renovation project in North Yorkshire, a Regency Villa built in 1833. Originally lived in by a famous York family (The Rowntrees), then a hotel for 3 decades, the house even in its run down state had retained many of it's original features. We were asked to reinstate and make repairs to some of the original decorative cornice around the house.

After Catherine's initial visit to assess works required, our craftsman visited the property and took templates of the cornice profiles and a section of a detailed strip from the cornice in 2 reception rooms. Both pieces were disguised with years and years worth of paint layers, so much so that you couldn't see the pattern underneath - in fact they looked blobby and ugly.  Once back in the workshop Jack started the careful process of removing the paint layers and we were thrilled to see a beautiful and delicate floral design emerge on both tiles, one with 'bonus' enrichments; from both we were able to make new moulds and cast hundreds of new pieces.

Fortunately, instead of using the 'remove and destroy' approach, the homeowners with their love of period detail, could see that it was worth the time and expense of removing the clogged paint build up and use the original features from their property. I think we were justly rewarded with the fantastic result.

The reproduced detail sections are now back in situ within the cornice, looking elegant and befitting the period of the property. Most of the hand repairs to damaged cornice sections have also been completed. We still have to complete the entrance hall area with more beautiful decorative detail and cornice, plus we have some wonderful ceiling roses to fit. These centre-piece designs have been selected by our customer after we painstakingly searched the Ryedale Plasterers vaults for historically accurate moulds to present as ideas for this beautiful renovation. We were looking for designs that would enhance and fit with the decorative plaster detail in each room. Watch this space for more!

Here are some progress pictures that depict the progress of works carried out on this project so far. We hope to post project updates over the next 2 months with final finished photos after the summer.


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