Sometimes In Life It’s Hard To Know Which Way Is Up



Last Thursday Paula at Lost in Translation gave us two weeks to come up with a conceptual photo. I’m afraid my brain is a bit sluggish at this time of year, so this is the best I could conjure.  However, I did enjoy playing on our spiral staircase. Our cottage being an 1830’s square extended into a 2001 rectangle, has two sets of stairs – one either end of the house, and both of them hopeless when it comes to moving items of furniture from one floor to the next. Also Graham and I go round and round the house missing one another. And then, just sometimes, I move so fast, he thinks there are two of me, simultaneously upstairs and downstairs. In fact recently he spotted me in triplicate. I’m not sure which of us should be the most worried by this phenomenon.

The stairs in the photo are in the corner of our kitchen. You might just be able to spot the oven gloves. An unintended inclusion, if matching.

Thursday’s Special

39 thoughts on “Sometimes In Life It’s Hard To Know Which Way Is Up

  1. How marvelous. An 1830s cottage. Did you have to get special permission for the extensions?
    Our house was also originally a two bedroom cottage that has undergone extensions from one or two previous owners. None of the building work is anything to write home about.
    Our house was built in 1924 and we have occasionally toyed with the idea of returning it to its original state as per the specs on the plans.

    I imagine only bendy furniture gets up those stairs.
    I am intrigued,though, as to how exactly you got/get furniture to the top floor?

    1. We use magic to get the furniture upstairs, Ark. And yes you do have to get permission for all extensions – if it’s only a room usually only building control clearance is needed. For something larger or in a conservation area, then full planning permission. We bought the house ready expanded. It has quite a few oddities – like the BIG chimney from the sitting room inglenook fireplace that was on the outside of the house originally, has not been brought indoors and is in the main bedroom. Sometimes you have too much upcycled Silurian Sea about the place. I like the idea of returning your house to 1924 though. And now I’ll come clean about the upstairs furniture a) we don’t have much, and b) what we do have comes completely to pieces, though we did have problems even with the headboard of an oak framed bed. I think we did use magic for that bit.

  2. I think you staircase are the perfect metaphor for the challenge, TIsh, and so very photogenic, as well. Even with your furniture in pieces, it could not have been an easy task getting everything onto the 2nd level. While in Rome 2 years ago, our flat had such a staircase which led to the bedrooms and terrace. Normally, it was easy enough to traverse but after enjoying a wonderful meal with the obligatory bottle(s) of wine, getting to that terrace for a nightcap became a challenge worthy of a medal ceremony, 🙂

  3. Great concept and pics Tish, and what a fabulous red staircase! What with your staircases and allotment, I doubt you ever need to think about going to the gym or to any other formalised exercise classes 🙂

  4. Dear Tish,
    Those are a wonderful set of photos and the workmanship of the staircase is incredible. I am an avid new follower of your post and with these intriguing photos of your house and garden even more so. Our house (1811 for the oldest section) also allows us to pass like ships in the dark for hours or even days on end. It is eerie. It has 4 staircases (6 if you count the ones to the basement) and 17 doors to the great out of doors all of which are currently allowing the wintry blasts off the West Meadow in though their cracks. I think I’d like to move to your corner of the world!
    (Angel in the dust)

    1. Your house sounds wonderfully mysterious, Holly. So many staircases! Our spiral one was cast locally by a company following in the footsteps of Shropshire’s 18th century ironmasters. I think the previous owner of our cottage – he who extended it, also worked for the castings company concerned. It’s great that there are still artisans carrying on traditional modes of production.

  5. What a wonderful old staircase, Tish! And kudos for doing this most challenging challenge…my brain resolutely refuses to come up with the goods….

  6. How splendid! And RED! Did they come like that? I’m thinking what a devil of a job it would be to paint them. You did make me chortle thinking about you and G going up and down the different stair cases. And much as I love looking at them I’m afraid I’d struggle to go up and down one now and the OH would have kittens!!

    1. The red is its ‘undercoat’. It’s more rust red in real life. Neither the previous owner (whose name is still painted underneath from the original factory order) or us could entertain painting it. Oh the dribbles there were would be. As to getting up and down it, it actually feels very safe and enclosing not at all as it looks.

  7. You OWN this staircase? I travel far for spiral delights. And of course I love your take on Paula’s challenge and delight in the thought of three of you. You (the central one) could subcontract different roles to each of the three and get three times as much done. Maybe rotating roles, so none of you missed out on the allotment, Windmill Hill, awakening history, Much Wenlock skies, revisiting Africa.

    1. Oh dear, Meg. You made me laugh. But you’ve sold me on the notion of Tish-cloning. As for the spiral staircase, it is a whizz, isn’t it, though much beloved by spider folk who love to work their own devices in every single angle and crevice 🙂

  8. I would say that you overcame the challenge! Very suggestive pictures. And by the way, I find this old red staircase very cute!

  9. I like the take on the concept photo-
    And the LINEs are my fav – along with this red black and neutral coloring – to give it the swirl and round and round vibe you write about.
    Such a good life synopsis here –
    Sometimes life feels this way…
    The up down and around –
    Anyhow – the lines and geometric shapes with the patterns and swirls make this a busy and tasty full composition 😉

  10. It absolutely is, Tish, especially at this time of year. I’m beguiled at the thought of you playing hard to get with Graham. And also very covetous of those stairs. 🙂 🙂
    Wishing you both a wonderful festive season, in case I don’t make it back this way. Just the two of you at Christmas, or a social one? Sending hugs!

    1. Hello, Jo. Wishing you all the very bestest for Christmas and beyond. Hygge as the Danes say, if I’ve spelled it properly. Or all-over cosiness. We’re having a bit of family gathering ourselves, but nothing too rowdy 🙂

  11. Oven gloves the colour of American flag :D. This is a very amusing entry, and I find your staircase challenging. Also, both of you must be very fit going up and down the whole day. The interpretation is clever beyond expectation; a very philosophical approach with a quaint, pictorial representation. Thank you and well done!

    1. Thank you, Paula. I’m so glad you had a quick break at the sea. I may not be on line at Christmas, so in case I’m not, here’s wishing you all the very best for the festive season and beyond 🙂

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