She dreams up the ideas, and he turns dis­carded and ne­glected items into beau­ti­ful new re­al­i­ties in a home that speaks of cre­ativ­ity

Saturday Star - - HOME - By Ina Baard

RESTORA­TION is in the hearts of a Monte Vista, Cape Town cou­ple who have cre­ated a beau­ti­ful and prac­ti­cal home with fur­ni­ture cus­tom-made to their needs.

Gys­bert and Carin Eyge­laar love wood, es­pe­cially unique fur­ni­ture, and their cosy en­vi­ron­ment re­flects ded­i­ca­tion and skill in re­turn­ing to beauty many pieces which adorn their home.

“I love the way wood feels, its smell. Most of all, I see the po­ten­tial of pieces of wood, know­ing I can cre­ate some­thing spe­cial,” says Gys­bert.

From an in­ter­est in car­pen­try at school and the gift of be­ing dex­ter­ous, he started work­ing at home as a young man to help him re­lax af­ter the daily grind. He has not lost his zeal­ous­ness.

“Af­ter mar­ry­ing Carin, I built kitchen cabinets in our first home and since then have moved on to only mak­ing unique pieces. I hate con­form­ity.”

It was the ex­tra-large dou­ble garage, to­day ac­com­mo­dat­ing Gys­bert’s work­shop, which spurred them to buy their house. But Gys­bert, 52, cred­its Carin for his cre­ative in­spi­ra­tion.

“To­gether we make a dream team. Carin is the cre­ative mind who dreams up ideas. I am in­spired to cre­ate re­al­ity.”

Their prac­ti­cal, com­fort­able liv­ing space, filled with vin­tage and rus­tic pieces, en­hance a sense of home­li­ness and fam­ily.

Daugh­ter Jana, 23, does not live at home. Strap­ping ma­tric­u­lant and rugby-mad Petru, 18, also a cre­ator of amaz­ing fur­ni­ture from dis­carded ma­te­rial, leaves home next year. The Eyge­laars have York­shire terriers Jenna and Pepsi to yap their way into visi­tors’ hearts.

Few fur­ni­ture items were ac­quired as new. Most items were res­cued from for­got­ten piles of junk and from land­fills, and then re­stored to orig­i­nal beauty, sav­ing money.

One such piece was Carin’s grand­par­ents’ food cup­board, gath­er­ing dust in a room full of junk in an aunt’s house, its orig­i­nal beauty dis­guised be­hind lay­ers of paint.

Af­ter restor­ing miss­ing parts and strip­ping the paint, Gys­bert pol­ished the Ore­gon pine back to gleam­ing splen­dour.

“It now has pride of place in our din­ing room, dis­play­ing heir­loom crock­ery,” said Carin.

In their sit­ting room, the Eyge­laars have an old pi­ano, a relic from a ho­tel in Calvinia.

“It was worse for wear. The lid needed ten­der lov­ing care to erase marks from jovial nights and over­flow­ing beer glasses. If you look closely, you can still see where a can­de­labra was fit­ted, and one can imag­ine its can­dles flick­er­ing on en­ter­tain­ment from a long past era,” she says.

An an­cient cup­board made from paraf­fin crates was found in an un­cle’s garage. It held paint tins.

“One could still see the word paraf­fin im­printed on the wood. Carin de­clared she wanted it, we hauled it home. The in­te­rior was painted to cover dam­age. The out­side was gen­tly sanded to show off its hum­ble ori­gins,” says Gys­bert.

An old kist, orig­i­nally a tool­box, was dis­man­tled and turned into a cab­i­net. Its orig­i­nal paint was left un­touched, to pro­duce what Carin de­scribes as a shabby-chic cab­i­net. It now houses del­i­cate glasses, beau­ti­fully com­bin­ing past and present. “I will never throw wood away. There is al­ways some­thing to be made,” says Gys­bert.

His lat­est projects are a sink found on Gumtree and an old wooden broom cup­board a friend was go­ing to dis­card. Gys­bert dis­man­tled it, then built a pair of cus­tom-made cup­boards, which now stand on ei­ther side of their lounge fire­place.

A com­puter pro­gram­mer, Gys­bert’s motto is: “You can’t say can’t un­til you at least give it a try”.

Stair­case lead­ing to a guest room filled with re­stored trea­sures.

The bar­be­cue room pho­tographed from the mez­za­nine level. The home is filled with beau­ti­ful wooden fur­ni­ture.PIC­TURES: TRACEY ADAMS/AFRICAN NEWS AGENCY(ANA)

The tele­vi­sion room in the fam­ily home in Monte Vista.

An old wooden kist used as a tool­box was dis­man­tled and turned into a wine cab­i­net.

Th­ese cup­boards next to the fire­place in the tele­vi­sion room were re­stored from a broom cup­board.

Grand­par­ent’s re­stored food cup­board.

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