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Tips From The Pros

Why Craftsmanship Matters
Sunday, July 24, 2016

In very old homes—historic or simply centuries old—you can often find carpenters’ marks, and, rarely, ritual marks. These speak strongly of the hands and hearts of craftsmen across the years, taking pride in their work. While some of these incised marks were guides for assembling complex construction, many were meant to lock in a memory of the craftsmen, carpenters and masons who built a home or building for the ages. They were proud of their work and knew it would long outlast them. Does anyone have that level of craftsmanship anymore? Does craftsmanship even matter anymore?

The Devil is in the Details

We have all had the unfortunate experience of feeling at first awed, and then disappointed, by a dazzling interior. Whether a home, a sleek office, or an imposing public structure, we are overwhelmed by superficialities such as high ceilings, sleek, smooth surfaces, dramatic lighting and dazzling flooring.

Then as you spend more time in a place, you begin to…notice…things. Baseboards that do not quite meet. Crown molding that ends in a mysterious dollop of caulking instead of solid wood. You notice more flaws: the hollowness of a cheaply made door, the odd tilt of a poorly installed window. Cheapness telegraphs itself to the discerning eye. Architects and builders know the catch-phrases that never appear on blueprints: budget, time-conscious, economical, affordable, adequate. Does anyone really aspire to live in an adequate home?

Signs of Good Craftsmanship

To see craftsmen set a granite countertop, or precisely trim and fit wainscoting, is to see them completely at peace with their materials. No do-it-yourself stumbling and making do with mismeasures and marred surfaces.

The harmony of a home begins with the dedicated workers who so perfectly know their trades that the thousands of pieces assemble like an exquisite piece of jewelry—beautifully, serenely, trouble-free. As a homeowner, you benefit from the craftsmanship of every skilled worker bringing your dream to life. You gain lasting beauty and perfection in details, such as flawless operation of cabinets and drawers.

For true craftsmen, excellence is ingrained in them. The reach for excellent, high-quality design and accomplishment—from baseboard to crown molding, from tile floor to decorative ceiling—is intrinsic. A good craftsman cannot do the job any other way. Good craftsmanship shows itself in the fine details that may, at first, escape notice. Everything in a well-designed, beautifully finished kitchen feels solid to the touch. You’ll find the cabinets are level, cabinet doors close quietly. Veneers match between cabinet faces; the granite countertop meets the backsplash perfectly. Nothing seems rushed or forced to fit

Technology Supports Craftsmanship

The lowly carpenter’s pencil—that strange, rectangular slab with a massive lead—is a piece of technology. A laser level is technology. Technology is only a tool to achieve perfection. Today’s craftsmen embrace technology just as much as 18th century barn builders adopted augers and braces.

In the hands of a skilled craftsman, your vision of a perfect kitchen or contemplative living room comes to life using technology, but you never see the technology in the finished product. Craftsmanship matters because, ideally, the labor, the technology and experience yields a transparent result: you simply enjoy the finished product. When a poor craftsman creates an inferior product, you know it. You see it, and worst of all, you may have to live with it. Technology cannot transform a poor craftsman into an expert, but a good craftsman can produce long-lasting, high quality work with the simplest technology.

When skilled craftsmen set themselves to transform dreams and mere drawings into livable spaces, they use every technology available. With advances in tools, remodeling can unwrap the mysteries behind walls before dismantling, solve plumbing and electrical dilemmas, and save you time and money. Modern equipment in the hands of skilled carpenters, masons, painters and roofers can give new life to old interiors, reshape exteriors, and update your lifestyle.

Where Craftsmanship Finds a Home

Good craftsmanship is often its own reward to the artisans and craftsman working to transform your home. But for you, good craftsmanship improves your home’s value, increases its curb appeal, and improves the quality of your life. A kitchen or bath remodel provides a solid return on investment (ROI) not only should you ever need to resell your home, but also by giving every family member a feeling of ease, peace and serenity. The well-built kitchen nourishes more than appetites; the perfectly remodeled bathroom soothes more than tired muscles. Craftsmanship matters long after the craftsmen have left.

To ensure the best quality and the finest craftsmanship for your home, contact us at Midwest Property Pros.



 

 
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