Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Adventures In Medieval Living


Some time ago, I improvised a four-poster bed from the greenhouse couplings used to connect electrical conduit into hanging and display structures. Topped with plywood lashed to the conduit with zip ties and curtained with high thread-count cotton drop cloths, the four-poster has been an outstandingly successful experimental addition to the furnishings. It saves heat, adds flexible privacy, and muffles urban background sound.


A medieval room would have been lined with storage chests. At night while the dominant couple slept in the four-poster, the rest of the household slept on the chests. Not long ago I realized that the six foot lockers that have found their way into inventory over time might well line a room in a very old school strategy. I fiddled with the set-up a few months ago, disarranged it promptly, and set it up again last week.

Each foot locker is fitted with Magical Sliding castors to prevent back injury when moving the thing. Each foot locker is a slightly different size but all are similar enough to work together. Lined up along one wall in an upstairs “chamber”, as the architect called it, the foot lockers form a solid base for one of the Great Big Hiking Co-op’s super deluxe self-inflating air mattresses, the model with a layer of memory foam on top. Hacking the pad by cutting off the attached lashing system for rolling it up made it much easier to handle.

The lockers are twice as long in one horizontal dimension as in the other, making them easy to configure for maximum convenient access. They are working but not daily active storage units. A thick wool blanket pads the collection into an even surface and another colorful patterned Oregon Roundup blanket simulates upholstery. 

The pad is six inches narrower than the maximum width of the lockers, leaving a sort of gutter against the wall. A row of three standard bed pillows covered in hot-glued bird’s eye pique’ dishtowels turns the arrangement into a banquette. Non-skid rug matting will prevent slippage should that turn out to be a problem.

Word is going around my gym that sitting is the new smoking. I lived for a couple of years with no Western furniture during my art school days and found that shifting to conventional seating left me as willowy as an Egyptian statue. The foot locker banquette makes it easy to sit properly upright and cross-legged. At its foot is a thick wool rug underlain by a heated mat. The pair are a luxurious place to lounge and unkink at the end of a day’s office thrash. With stools substituted for most of the table seating on the main floor, we are approaching lift-off.

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