Minds change again and it is thought better to render the walls first and then attempt the terrace afterwards as covering the curved walls with crepie could be quite a messy business. Countless colours of render are mixed using yellow and white sand, different cements and colorants before the ideal wall finishes are found. We go to the local builders merchants to get the materials only to find a locally limited range. Changes and adaptations are needed to recreate the mixes needed and the project surges ahead once more.
Not only can I create level foundations, consistent mixes of mortar and impressively curved blockwork walls, I can render them to a passable finish too. It takes time, an understanding of the materials and a fair amount of guesswork to achieve some of these things, especially when the people around you have limited knowledge too, but we are definitely getting there. Who would have thought that a gritty mixture with the consistency of runny porridge would stick to a vertical wall and even more surprisingly that once it has started to harden, if it is slightly wetted and reworked, a passably smooth finish can be obtained. By no means perfect but great for its setting outside a period french farmhouse. It was a messy business and definitely best done before the paving. In fact, I have run out of time, just managing to get the walls finished during my last day at the house. Everyone is pleased with the results and it was great to complete, although I am disappointed to have left without completing the whole project, it’ll be a good project for the next unsuspecting helpXer and Ben to get their teeth into before the winter sets in.