Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Ceiling Medallions

Rather than bore you with more pictures of plumbing, tonight I'm gonna showcase the old plaster ceiling medallions. Rest assured, there is progress being made elsewhere in the house though. I spent several hours this evening down in the basement soldering copper water lines and hanging PVC drain pipe from the floor joists. But back to the ceiling medallions. These are one of the aspects of the house that make it very unique, three of the rooms have the original, very ornate, plaster medallions on the ceiling. If you look closely you can see I've hung my lighting from the hooks that were used to hang the old oil lamps from (the house was built almost 20 years before the lightbulb was invented). I've heard that beside from being decorative, the medallions were used to collect the soot from the oil lamps, as it didn't stand out as much as a smoky stain on a flat white ceiling would.

This is the parlor ceiling, which right now is acting as our office/bedroom. Eventually it will be our library.




Here's the smaller one in the front entryway, it has a few extra colors of paint around the edges that we will eventually strip off there.




My favorite one is in the living room, its about 4' long with a cool star design.



Each medallion incorporates a different shape as the focal point in the center. But all three of them have a common theme with some sort of tree leaf being used in the design.

7 comments:

Vagabond said...

Your house is pretty cool.. Those medallions are made out of plaster?? what is a parlor??

Patti said...

they are even prettier in person

Jaydub said...

I figured you would have googled "parlor" by now. Anyway, in the old houses it was basically a room near the main entry that was set aside for entertaining guests. It can be closed off from the rest of the house. I've also seen them referred to as a "smoking room" where the men would get together and smoke pipes. I guess in a modern sense it would be a family room, but like I said, you can close it off from the rest of the house unlike modern family rooms where things tend to be more open. We normally leave it open to the rest of the house, there are 2 giant pocket doors that are 9' tall and together 6' wide.

Jack said...

i thought a parlor was a man cave!

mismike said...

Absolutely beautiful pieces of art...My gosh your home is a place of treasures......just a little trivia, Early plaster artisans directly plastered medallions to the ceilings, but in 1856 in France, "Desachy" took out a patent for producing architectural moldings from plaster to be made off-site...this allowed these casting's made off-site to be much more affordable for the home owners..
The designs on the ones in your home are really nice...and I agree, I think I like the star one best as well...but they are all awesome....
Will you keep them gold as they are now.....? and is the gold appear to be original to the home?
Love your updates.....

Jaydub said...

Thanks for the info! Now if you could tell me who made mine I'd really be impressed! Judging by that year you said, mine were probably made off-site and brought in I would guess. I have no idea about the gold being original... or if we will keep them that color. We did discuss painting them multiple colors to accent the details in them.

mismike said...

I am sure you will find the right colors to accent the lovely pieces you have........Sure would be interesting to know who made yours...any markings on them....perhaps when you take them down you will find markings or some sort and be able to pinpoint perhaps who made yours.....How neat that would be!

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