Bowtie Barbeque

We're happy that our friends at Bowtie Barbecue are having a great first month! It's wonderful to see another Savannah local business open with such enthusiasm, especially after the recent loss of Johnny Harris BBQ. 

The interior itself is a great story of reclamation, and local engagement. We were glad to help them get set up with a whole room full of hand crafted, locally and sustainably sourced restaurant tables, and wanted to give some pictures of the process, for you to see how much care went into the tables you'll soon (if you haven't already) be eating on! 

Be sure to follow them on Instagram:

But seriously! This menu is incredible: 

So between this menu, the restaurant, and our hand-crafted tables, I can't think of any reason why you shouldn't stop by! If you do, please tag us in a picture with the tables. And tell us what you liked from the menu!

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Old Coast Shiplap Ceiling

Our friends at Old Coast HVAC recently did some renovations to their Habersham office. Part of it required some aged heart pine boards, with a mixture of coloration and distress but milled into shiplap to fit properly. Having worked with us before, they knew we had exactly what they needed. The ceiling looked wonderful:

As you can see, their expert carpenters were able to curve the wood along their ceiling, giving a nearly nautical design. We enjoyed the experience of standing under a wooden curve! 

IF you're looking to spruce up your A/C for next summer (perhaps it will even be more brutal this this summer!), or want to outfit your ceiling with some antique wood, contact us or contact Old Coast. 

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Antique Victorian Siding at (a Treylor Park's) Hitch

We wanted to commemorate the recent opening of Treylor Park's new addition Hitch, (on 300 Drayton St!) with a short remark about their bar's new and historic siding. 

From our deconstruction work in the Victorian district of Savannah, we've accumulated quite a lot of these pieces of painted siding from the late 19th century. It's often cut with a v-grove of a bead, and after the years has accumulated layers of different coats of paint. One hundred years of flaking, change, and displacement has left an imitable patina which now sides this lovely new Savannah bar. 

 All photos courtesy of  Hitch  themselves. 

All photos courtesy of Hitch themselves. 

The assortment of paint jobs keeps the once stately look of these boards become eclectic by intermixing. 

And the tough installation!

Here's how they describe themselves:

"Treylor Park and Hitch are built on the motto "Quality over Quantity".  In everything we do, quality comes first.  Whether you are talking about our seasonal cocktails,  our craft beer, or our local fare, everything is done with quality in mind.  Treylor Park and Hitch are unique spaces that offer a fun and unique food/cocktail/beer menu day and night. Whether you are in the mood for a nice, smooth cocktail or a cool crisp draft beer, these unique classic restaurants are full of great music and great energy."

We're happy to help another restaurant (and bar!) out in Savannah, and hope you stop by to try their menu out.You can read more about them here.

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"Gestalt," and Installation by Chris Nitsche

This fall, our friend, our collaborator, and well-renowned visual artist, Chris Nitsche, has erected his impressive installation "Gestalt," an iconic refiguring of a ship's hull out of reclaimed wood. It will remain for the season at the Ships of the Sea Museum, a fitting location, but its visceral quality of the redesign of the hull over thousands of years of innovation creates what Gestalt psychology terms the "ground" on which the "figure" of any ship rests. Thus, his invocation of the summation of Gestalt's findings, that "the whole is greater than its parts," and in ship design, the hull would certainly be.  

We were happy to supply some of our offcuts from sawing down structural timbers of reclaimed antique heart pine. All the wood was salvaged from buildings in and around historic and victorian districts of Savannah, and finds a sort life like that of the ship of Theseus.

As the "dog days," ruled by that wet star Sirius, were fabled of the ancients as perilous to sailors, pirates, and Sinbad, offered a stern providence against sailing in the summer, so the christening and launch of "Gestalt" at the onset of fall could not have been more timely. 

Here are some pictures from the opening taken by our just retired, architecturally and design all-knowing, friend Chris Carr. 

 

You can find process photos and more information on Nitsche's blog information about the artist himself at his website, and information about the installation itself here

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Antique Heart Pine Table and Bench

We just recently put the final touches on this incredible, heirloom of a farm table and matching bench for a wonderful customer. But even more when she sent us these great pictures of them in situ, rehomed. 

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The table itself was a massive undertaking, as it's eight feet long and built with only our best saw-marked, distressed, antique old growth heart pine, salvaged from many buildings in the historic and Victorian districts of Savannah, including the old Ice Factory on Victory Dr., now one of our favorite restaurants, The Florence. It features our traditional skirt from Victorian painted bead-board porchwood, and tapered legs fashioned from salvaged, historic Savannah structural beams. This table will certainly last many more generations. 

If you would to adorn your home, and add to your family history with one of these heirloom, one-of-it's-kind, farm tables and/or benches, please contact us.

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Reclaimed Heart Pine Mantles

We've been sending out beam after beam for mantles all around the South East this summer, and just received a picture of one beam settled into its now home. The beam was provided to our client Ryan for a private home. He asked us where the beams came from, and it turns out they're from the original Savannah Ice Factory, currently the Florence and One West Victory, which we deconstructed a few years ago. The building was built in 1888, meaning the wood for the beams are closer to two-hundred years old. they still bear the nail holes form all those years of use, as well as some wonderful distress from age. We were asked to pick out something rough to top this pristine room, and were surprised with how much depth we were able to provide! 

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Twining Spindle Staircase

In the modern development on Berrien St., we were asked to make and install an antique heart pine staircase. Our client wanted it to be something special and original, with the appearance of being organic, and finally decided she wanted the spindles to twist. The issue was that she had no visual representation of it for us to work from. So Ramsey went to the web, googled "stair spindle," saved 500 different staircase images of all shapes, sizes and degree of twist, printed them 12 to a page. Our client sat down, flipped to page 2 and found her idea visual. Here was what we turned out:

The design was quite complicated, so much so that the members of the International Turners Association, who happened (?!) to be in town that week had trouble deciding a method. Our friend Steve Cook (masterful wood turner / woodworker) was visiting our shop and so we pointed out the spindle design. Even Steve couldn't, and so we were perplexed. And the banister went unsustained. 

Two weeks later, on a Monday, our equally skilled turner, Dennis, walked in and declared that he had figured out how to do it the night before. He turned it very slow, a minute and a half per turn, fashioned a jig along which he could run a router along, and turned it once per side in 90 second rotations. It come out wonderfully. 

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Billy's Nightstand

Today we received pictures of this lovely nightstand one of our clients just finished. It's quite lovely and made of antique reclaimed heart pine he selected from our warehouse. The design of the drawers is very subtle, and the finish work brings out the details of the old boards. Here's his before and after:

He came by today for extra wood to make a coffee table. We can't wait to see how it turns out! 

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Howard St. Cottage Deconstruction

In keeping with our normal workday, we received a seemingly unpremeditated call that a cottage on Howard street in the historic district was being demolished. We quickly rushed to the address and began salvaging before it could be dumpstered. It was a typical home, with antique heart pine siding, flooring, joists etc. from the original construction in 1882, exactly the kind of high grade grain we look for, and coincided with a shipment of antique heart pine flooring for a home in New Jersey we are about to begin. We took some pictures to show how it goes:

The house before it lost its second-floor hat. 

One of the many massive structural beams of the house. Like the bone of a skeleton. 

The true gold: massive inch and a half tongue and groove flooring, and its support joist. The white streaks are plaster marks from the original plaster coating. You can see the tightness of the grain from this beautiful old-growth wood. 

If you look closely there are visible saw marks on the beam, which we often use for tabletop wood, like those at NOLAJane

Lovely structural 2x4s holding up the walls. You can also see the old wooden siding used. 

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On the left: the wood as we brought in it, and on the right, a finished batch of flooring. It's really quite a transformation. To get there, we detail all the beams to make sure they can be safely processed, then size and cut them as we need. 

Just another day in the office! 

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Nola Jane's Reclaimed Heart Pine Tables

We just received some wonderful pictures from local boutique NOLAJane of a few of our reclaimed heart pine tables they won at our auction last year, looking lively and hard at work in their new home. 

These tables are variants of our standard farm and café tables. They're both made from reclaimed antique heart pine beams and boards, dated to the 19th century. The café table is embellished with antique painted Victorian porch wood. These are some of our more popular designs, as they're quite simple while aesthetically pleasing: just up a block and across the street you can find their cousins, a few café tables and a large farm table at Back In The Day Bakery

NOLAJane presents to the neighborhood home and lifestyle goods as well as books and clothing, hand-curated by husband and wife Nicholas Witchel, a SCAD graphic design student, and Jenny Jaquillard, a SCAD staff member. From industrial lamps to garden herb- and legume-scented candles, jeans and beach blankets, their stock adds variety to what was once a nearly empty block. They have worked hard to take advantage of the relative freedom to create in developing Savannah, which seems teeming with more possibility each year. 

For us in Savannah (and likely any other newly-popularized, historic city), small businesses and new, personable developments create a thriving community full of opportunities for local students, artists, and workers, and entice new transplants from other cities. NOLAJane is an earlier arrival in the new and thriving Starland District, next door to the wonderful reclaimed art supply store properly called Starlandia, and its presence has inspired movement into a once-neglected part of the greater historic district. It's important for us at Southern Pine Company to help promote the growth of Savannah, so providing tables like these is close to our heart. 

Nola Jane filling with Savannah's First Friday Art March attendees. Photo courtesy of their blog

If you find yourself on Bull St. headed to Victory, do stop by and say hi to them while having a look at their store! I fondly remember, and recommend (if they didn't all sell out!) the radish-scented candle I found last year. It worked wonders. You can also find NOLAJane on Facebook and Instagram. 

If you're interested in our café table, we have recently added them to our online store. Contact us for ideas or questions! 

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Designer Tables: Australian Red Gum and Heart Pine Timber

While trimming and mounting the massive slab of red gum and banksia for the large tables in Collins Quarter, we were left with one odd end of red gum, too small for a traditionally sized table. But in a moment of insight, we decided to make an oddly live modernist-style table out of it. For legs we cut two pieces of antique heart pine timber framing, with large mortices. These once were used with a correspondent tenon-ended boards to frame structures in older Savannah homes. The result:

This commixture of Australian exotic wood and reclaimed historic Savannah heart pine struck us as quite atypical and very stunning.

It's still in the shop and waiting to find a home. If you'd like it in yours, contact us

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Designer Tables: Lucite and Two Cherries

Exotic woods also often turn up in our shop, which we implement into our equally exotic designer furniture. Take this for example:

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This table bears a tabletop made from two boards of black cherry, with a center board of Brazilian cherry. The base is made of three pieces of lucite.

Despite its name, Brazilian cherry does not bear cherries, in fact it is not a cherry tree at all, it produces legumes. The tree's scientific designation is hymeneal courbaril, and commonly goes by stinktoe, stinking toe, or old man's toe, due to the disagreeable odor its seed pod's pulp emits. The wood, however, rates very high on the Birnell scale for hardness, and is in great demand for furniture. 

The other two boards, though less exotic than the Brazilian, are of black cherry, a favorite with cabinet and furniture makers. 

The lucite legs give an almost ethereal look to the table, as if the top is sustained by columns of cloud. It's probably one of our favorite pieces we've made. 

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Deconstruction

As I've mentioned before, much of our reclaimed heart pine and materials come from the extensive deconstruction projects we've engaged in over the last few decades. These have run the gamut of complexity, some requiring a few pairs of hands, others entire cranes stretched to their limit. 

To show some traces the actual process of reclaiming I've put together a few pictures: 

1 West Victory / the Florence

For over 1000 years, the corner of Bull Street and Victory drive housed the Savannah Ice Factory building. Built in 1898, the factory provided (for all who've experienced the Savannah heat) much needed ice for the city, but finally met its end and the abandoned building fell to squalor. What once was a magnificent yellow and red brick triangle of city block remained boarded up and on an architectural waiting list for demolition. Thankfully this never occurred. Instead the building was bought by property developers and converted into the Florence, an Italian restaurant by famous chef Hugh Acheson, and a luxury student housing building. In the spirit of preservation, they wished to keep as much of the old building as was viable, and had us perform the selective deconstruction, removing from the site all parts that could be of use. This included heart pine from the original 1898 structure, with beautiful visible saw marks. Some of this wood we returned to 1 West and the as flooring and other elements. Others we kept to turn into antique flooring and tabletops. The structure itself has provided much needed revitalization to Savannah, as documented by this article in the New York Times

 

Victory Gardens

Before this property foddered itself to demolition, we were able to deconstruct and carefully remove the old wood structural wood from the home, as well as old window sashes, flooring, all the be reincorporated into future projects, and perform metempsychosis on a moribund building. 

Drayton Towers

Among other services we provided to Drayton Tower, a renovated midcentury building in downtown Savannah, was deconstruction. This included removing limestone blocks (300lbs each!) up the side of the building to install an elevator shaft for construction. Rather than destroying and replacing them, we were able to preserve and reset them. 

Cotton Sail

The Cotton Sail hotel is located in the Cotton Warehouse along the riverfront. This structure was constructed in 1820 and has become a staple of the river walk, at the origin of historic Savannah. The hotel needed to modify the structure to install a rooftop bar, which required that the original 22 foot wooden beams and structural joists be replaced with steel. The wooden roof also needed to be removed and replaced with more appropriate decking. We suggested that the historic building be preserved by diverting this wood from the dumpster and into our shop, where we would turn it into the hotel's flooring.  They agreed, and we went to work.

 o, We used a large crane perched across Factor's Walk to carry out the beams, and sent the joists down a precarious chute. The beams were so large and the distance so far that the crane was stretched. Because the beams and joists were the structure of the brick building, we had to stop halfway and replace them with steel, so that the parapet wall didn't crumble over River Street. When finally finished, the hotel won the AIA Georgia's 2015 Design Award for Renovation. We were proud to have assisted.  

Former Liberty Plumbing, Currently Smith Brothers Butcher

This was a less extensive project, but was a deconstruction of what would become the lovely Smith Brothers Butcher shop down Liberty. 

37th and Ott

Here we were able to remove a structure's worth of old wood, as well as a surprising old 60,000 red common bricks. We used many of them to pave our courtyard:

 

Salvage or No?

Although it often seems less cost effective to painstakingly remove materials more easily thrown out, properly deconstructing and recycling materials can overcome this seeming ineffectiveness by providing new uses, historical value, and less harm to the environment. There's also certainly an aesthetic value to deconstruction:  

in contrast with demolition:

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Turner House

Reclaimed Antique Heart Pine Flooring

We were asked by a client to provide flooring for his lovely home just outside of Savannah. He wanted mixed heart pine flooring with a great degree of character and texture, and did not mind if it were somewhat atypical.

Some of our most interesting flooring comes from original 19th century floors salvaged from historic homes in Savannah. Their age typically spans between 1830s and 1870s, throughout which they bore many layers of wax, paint, polish, finishes and stains. Looking at just one piece reveals at least of hundred years of changing taste and new purpose.

For him, we selected the correct boards for the floor, resized them to fit, and installed them. To keep the patina, we just lightly sanded them, applied a sealing oil, and waxed them. The result was quite stunning. 

Reclaimed Heart Pine Cladding

While working on the floors, we were then asked to cover the 30 foot steel support beams with heart pine, so that the character of the flooring was matched from above. Our idea was to take saw-marked offcuts from cutting beams into floors, and apply them to the steel beam. To the eye, it looks as if there are massive 30 feet of antique heart pine suspended above, which is a very rare sight to see. 

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Twin Mantels

While Mr. Turner was visiting our shop, he saw a mantel we were finishing and asked for two for his own fireplaces. The difference was that he needed to identical seven foot beams, five inches by ten inches, and saw marked. After rummaging around the shop to find pieces large enough, we almost worried that the fireplace wouldn't hold the weight. Thankfully it was an old brick mantle, able to bear quite large loads. Cut and finished, it looked very nice after installation: 

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We're always looking for homes adventurous enough to have this irregular and historic antique flooring installed. If you're interested, please contact us

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Antique Heart Pine Flooring

Aside from all of our heart pine furniture and architectural accents, river reclaimed pieces, and restoration work, our work focuses mainly on the reclaimed flooring we're constantly milling and installing across the southeast.  

Ramsey with an order of flooring ready to be shipped out. This picture comes from a lovely photoessay on Savannah businesses by Wesley Verhoeve which you may read here: http://essays.oneofmany.co/savannah

The vast majority of our wood we've sourced ourselves from 25 years of preservation and deconstruction work in Savannah. Rather than let these pieces dating back to the first floors in the colony of Georgia end up in a landfill, we carefully remove them from their original home, or rescue them from dumpsters. The wood is priceless in its historical value, but also the fact that it is mostly old growth longleaf pine, which was deforested nearly to extinction. This wood's strength, age, and tight grain means it sometimes (especially in our case) can last longer than the home it floors. 

After salvaging these boards, our principle job is denailing. We can spend all day removing nails accrued in the wood from hundreds of years of use and reuse. Some are more difficult than others, but even when that's finished, we have lots of cleaning up to do until they're flooring: 

Once the boards have been planed and milled to the right size, we then stack and ship them off. If we install them, we almost always use only wax and mineral oil, leaving a coat over the old grain pattern, and sometimes even the original paint. 

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In the end the flooring gives a colorful and antique look to the room in which it has been installed, and bears weight on hundreds of years of history. 

We have stockpiled so much wood over the decades, that we'd love to send it to any and all floors. If you would like an antique heart pine floor to walk on, please contact us

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Reclaimed Heart Pine Range Hood

We recently shipped off a beautiful twelve-foot board of antique heart pine to be used as a kitchen's range hood cover. Of course the question was what exactly they'd be doing with the wood, and why for a range hood.

But to start, here's the hood cover:

As you can see, it functions as a simple accent or anchor to the predominantly white cabinets and walls. They wanted a means of contrast to comprehend the diversity of color and texture of the entire room. It happened they the floor of the room was a lovely dark wood, so they considered wood the proper material for the job. When we brought them by, they noticed our saw marked boards, which provide a series of curved traced of the original cut. These are much sought after, for just this reason, that it adds a different texture to traditionally angular rooms. 

Thus the kitchen:

And thus the 10" board:

We have stacks and stacks of boards just like these, so if you'd like one of your own, just contact us

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Customer's Work: Reclaimed Heart Pine Coffee Table

We've just received a new photo of a costumer's finished reclaimed heart pine coffee table, made from some of our reclaimed heart pine flooring. This flooring specifically came from a house on Jones St. 

The low profile, clean white skirt, and conduit legs all create a subtle commixture. We're proud to have supplied the top! If you have an instagram, go have a look at more of their work. 

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Antique Salvage: J.G. Wilson Wooden Partitions

Late last week we lent a hand to Bull Street Baptist Church while they deconstruct and renovate their ministry halls. The ministry dates back to 1891, and this year is celebrating its 125th anniversary. It seems that along with this century and a quarter of existence, they decided it was time to remodel the interior. So when we went over to assist, we ended up dismantling their horizontal rolling partitions:

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The partitions are made of wooden slats that can be cranked into a tight roll. When they're lowered, each slat tightly fits with each, creating a nearly air-tight, sound proof barrier. The handles are made of very old brass, and it was easy to see they were made of old growth and second growth heart pine, which to us was a happy coincidence. Puzzled at why they seemed to bear more significance than graspable by the material and purpose, I looked up the maker engraved into the brass handle. 

I figured I'd be sent through a labyrinth of eBay links, auction ads, and pintrest menageries, but ended up in this digitized catalog from 1920:

"Nearly 30,000 churches and schools are fitted with Wilson rolling partitions and wardrobes, and many hundreds of letters commending them have been sent to this company." We can assume that one of these 30,000 churches and schools was our Bull Street Baptist Church, and this post could be a belated letter of commendation in lieu of a postbox address. 

So we ended up with a large trove of antique horizontal partitions from over 100 years ago, that suddenly. Now we'll have to find something to do with them!

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If you have any ideas for, anecdotes of, or questions about these lovely partitions, please contact us!  

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Reclaimed Heart Pine "Sawbuck" Table

To celebrate this concurrent Full Moon and Friday the thirteenth (!), I'd like to bring back the table we made that was featured in the Longleaf Leader for their Artist Spotlight

This formal sawbuck table (Dutch ‘zaagebok’-trestle, or saw horse, or, taken literally saw-goat) was just finished for our friend at the Longleaf Alliance, comitted to providing a sustainable future to the longleaf pine ecosystem. In keeping with our tradition, and it’s new owner’s namesake, it is fashioned from reclaimed character longleaf pine, which dazzles the eye with its variety of grain patterning. 

Our plan was to make an heirloom, instilling formality, in the traditional, rustic, saw-buck table, making it appropriate for a dining room, and we hope will sustain Thanksgiving dinner perfectly! 

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What We're Reading: "Artists' Handmade Houses"

While we're spread out working on our plentitude of current projects, such as reclaimed flooring, furniture design, deconstruction, historic preservation and construction (this is a conservative list!), we like to take a moment, rest our minds and eyes, and collapse into an inspiring book. 

Today's pick was Artists' Handmade Houses, described as "a collection of 13 homes handcrafted by the finest artists and craftsmen in America, including George Nakashima, Henry Varnum Poor, Sam Maloof, Wharton Esherick, and Russel Wright. Built over the course of 75 years, from the late-19th century to the mid-20th century, these homes were each designed and built by the artists as an expression of their aesthetic sentiments, and in many cases, as extensions of their artwork."

 From the great  New York History  blog: go have a look! 

From the great New York History blog: go have a look! 

The aspect of artistic extension is certainly visible throughout these homes, always incorporating available materials and transmuting them into personal expression. 

 Photo found at a great review of the book on  Dwell . 

Photo found at a great review of the book on Dwell

We'd love to help make any of this book's inspiring designs come true, so if you have an idea, let us know. If you're in need of inspiration, you can find the book here

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