THE CRITIC KENNETH TYNAN DESCRIBED LITERARY STYLE AS “THE EFFORTLESS PRESENTATION OF CONTENT.” HE WAS SPEAKING OF WRITING, BUT THIS IS JUST AS TRUE FOR ALL FORMS OF ART, INCLUDING A PERSON’S LIFESTYLE, BUSINESS STYLE, PARENTING STYLE, AND ALL PERSONAL CHOICES. LIFE IS THE CANVAS, AND STYLE IS THE GROOMING OF POINT OF VIEW.
This is how life works: you go to work every day, preferably doing something you enjoy, and life pays you back. At least that’s what I’ve discovered repeatedly.
Ed found a half dozen pieces he liked, and the directness with which he selected and installed them illustrates my belief that knowing what you like and being bold can serve utility and self-expression equally well. I haven’t asked Ed if he agrees with me—that style is the lifelong grooming of point of view—but my guess is that he would smile an agreement.
His first choice—a jail cell door —was straightforward. He liked it right away and was eager to join its “rescue team.” The only decision was whether it would best serve as an exterior door to the house or as the street entrance to the garden. He chose the garden, because the door’s “guard dog hardware” seemed more natural as the most exterior access to the home, and because in the garden he could more easily incorporate its authentic surround of Belgium bluestone, itself a beautiful feature.
Ed’s sense that he was joining a rescue team means a lot to me. In a very real way, each customer becomes an extension of my goal: to find fine architectural antiques before they are destroyed or eroded beyond the point of usefulness and relocate them to safe places where they can begin being beautiful and serviceable for another century or three.