January 28, 2022
Our workshop is located in Poets Corner a sleepy suburban area of Hove close to Brighton town and close to the sunny seaside. We have been crafting orders and cooking feasts in this workshop space since 2016. During this time we have reconstructed this room to suit all of our needs adding polishing, packing and post stations over time to help organise our production line.
After working in the workshop day to day we have found it a slight struggle to find a comfortable place to work on our important office work and photograph.
We were thrilled to discover that in a building adjacent to our current workshop there was a spacious loft room upstairs that had been untouched for over 20 years.
We decided to expand our business into this promising (yet dusty) space for a launch in spring 2022 with plans to renovate it to become our Proper Copper Design showroom with an office and a photography studio so that we can grow our product ranges and welcome local visitors for the first time since our exhibiting in London.
Khan the Director of Proper Copper was very excited about the potential of the space and created drawings and refurb plans including a handcrafted staircase in which the building work will be shared across our workshop- team effort.
The goal is to create a tranquil design studio that our team can enjoy using throughout the week to innovate, photograph, design and display our products, this space will be called “The Hayloft”.
Restoring the Floors and Walls
We started working on the Hayloft at the beginning of the year drawing up plans to restore the unit using team effort and our skills in design and woodcraft, whilst learning new trades along the way such as plastering.
The wooden flooring was very old and stained, it was in need of some love! We set to work sanding the floors back with a belt sander which was quite a satisfying process. After this the wood flooring was treated and varnished to bring out the natural shine of the beams with a glossy satin finish.
A great aspect of The Hayloft is that the ceilings are high and there are four large sash windows, the original features of the room bringing in plenty of natural light . This high ceiling did however make it difficult to reach the ceiling beams which we varnished and we had to use a tower to paint the entire room white, lightening up and creating a blank canvas.
Copper Meeting Table
As a central aspect of the Hayloft we were keen to create a large meeting table that our team can hop onto to use their laptops and come together for weekly team meetings. Khan designed a statement copper table from a chunky copper frame which is strong enough to support reclaimed structural timbers. Crafting this table was a labour of love including stripping back the timbers, vicing them together to create a smooth table top and bench tops.
The frame was carefully soldered from very thick copper bars to create the frame which was carefully polished to a glowing shine. This bold meeting table and two office desks with benches seats up to six people comfortably and it is totally unique in its structural sturdy design.
The sash windows in this derelict room were out of use and also in need of some care and attention from our workshop team. It took quite some time to refurbish the old sash windows taking each out individually to replace missing glass and recondition the wood. We then lay them out for a re-paint and new pulleys to balance the windows so that they roll with ease once again!
At this stage we have enjoyed the challenge of getting the building into a better working order and turning our hand to many new skills and getting involved painting and sanding together bringing some life into The Hayloft.
We will be posting Our Hayloft renovation journey including building the staircase and lighting the entire place very soon.
Written by Charlie at Proper Copper Design