Int.Desgn-Q. Sliding dining room / lv room c. 1912 doors

gardurnitJuly 29, 2009

This is not about the doors.

It's a tough subject to describe. It's not really about the doors. They run on

a track or just rollers and slide into the wall. They're heartwood pine and 100

years old and work fine. Doors , each, are 7' high x 7' long.

Envision yourself standing looking at the closed doors and on the right side is a

wall with the plaster badly damaged because of high back 'sofa chairs' being pushed

against them for years. You're in the living room.


It was a rental. (thus the damage)

I'm debating what to do with this wall. I have an opportunity to use it creatively. *

Right now it's covered with a nice but old vinyl wall covering which is torn at

the site of the line of breakage. It might be salvageable or not. Let's assume not.

If the wall is repaired I'd have a plaster covered wall with lath behind it.

Behind that lath I assume is the slot for the sliding door. I can repair the wall and

cover it or paint it and hang a picture on it.

There are not many walls like it in the entire house since much of the house is

heartwood or fine grain pin or fir from the 1900's. The exceptions are when you're

upstairs and the bedrooms have plaster walls.

I ignore them, in my mind, for some reason. I'm only now after

35 years planning to move into the house. I intend to get profession design help

someday for the parts of the house I don't think about right now.

The key areas of beauty have been the living / dining / entry and stairway all of which are

the finished wood. I thought I'd paint them blue or orange. j/k

About this post -

*Except for the slot for the door the wall thickness is wasted space. It's on the living room

side of the lv-rm/dining rm combo. It might make a beautiful location for shelves or a video

panel. The space I have is about 6' wide by 8 feet tall.


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Your house sounds beautiful! I think your question is whether you should make the remove the pocket doors and make the recess into a shelves/ entertainment area, or repair it to the original plaster and retain the pocket doors. It's possible that I've misunderstood that question, if so, you can disregard the following comments.

For me, the choice would be simple. You are fortunate to have a house with many original elements. I'd keep as many as possible, including the pocket doors. You can always put shelves or an entertainment unit right in front of the wall, but it would be tough to un-do the removal of working pocket doors. Dear friends of mine have a 1910 arts and crafts home that had a pocket door removed in the 1970's for a built-in fish tank. Although I know a fish tank is very different from shelves, the sorrow one feels 20-30 years later when an original element of the house is taken out is always the same.

Regardless, it is your home, and although it's always a little sad for me to see original elements removed from a house, it's so much better to see someone love and value an old home and breathe new life into it. Best of luck to you, I look forward to hearing more about your home- it sounds stunning.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2009 at 10:44AM
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Me tto. I would never consider removing the pocket doors. I'd love to have them.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2009 at 11:49AM
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I'm not sure if I am interpreting correctly, but it sounds like you have pocket doors on a long wall. The door only goes partway down the wall and you have a 6' section of wall beyond where the door recedes into.

If that is correct, that section of wall has some empty space inside that isn't being used. Theoretically, that could be built in shelves or an entertainment center without disrupting the sliding doors at all. If so, that could be a place where you can reclaim some space. Beware though, you probably aren't the first person to notice the extra space. An electrician, plumber or HVAC guy could have used that as a chase since it was big and relatively accessible. You never know what you are going to find when you start opening walls.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2009 at 1:48PM
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