1st floor beam and column complete

June 24, 2010

As a follow up to previous posts, Ipe prep and Beam me up, I wanted to share a couple of photos of the final first floor support beam and column (please don’t mind the mess).

We left the beam totally untreated and think it looks fantastic.  We had been wondering whether to seal it or not, but since it’s not in a high-humidity area, I think we may leave it natural. 

The column, as you can see, we ended up drywalling (which we had to wait to do until we had our countertops installed).  Originally we had thought it might be cool to continue the ipe treatment on the column, but the more we thought about it, the more we decided that we preferred to have the column just blend into the background, rather than stand out.  We didn’t want an obvious division of living and dining spaces, we wanted to keep the open concept feel.

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Beam me up

May 3, 2010

Stopped by the house this morning and the beam is faced.  It looks fantastic! I love the modern look.  It needs a bottom cap.  The column will get wrapped after we install the kitchen cabinets – the island in particular, which will bump up against the column.

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Ipe prep

May 2, 2010

This weekend began the process of having the first floor support beam faced with ipe.  The wood was delivered last week, and it’s beautiful. Every piece has a totally unique array of rich chocolately tones.

We first fell in love with the look of ipe decking, and started to see it used more and more as a siding accent on modern homes.  Ipe is an exotic hardwood that is naturally resistant to rot, decay and insects and is known to maintain its integrity for 20 years without preservatives.

When we first opened up the first floor and installed the reinforcing beam, it actually looked kind of cool and industrial, but we didn’t love the look of the composit woods and honestly didn’t love the factory painted codes on the wood either.  The contractor suggested drywalling and staining options, neither of which really sounded all that appealing.

When we were designing our bathrooms, however (spoiler alert!), and started to consider using ipe as an accent in the master, it occurred to us that ipe could be a unique look for facing the first floor support beam.

See prep below.  I’m planning on taking reveal photos tomorrow.

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