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DESCRIPTIONCustom Shingles provides and manufactures cedar shakes and shingles of nearly any size, specialty-cut or steam-bent cedar shingles, and everything in between. We are proud to be your source for high-quality cedar wood shakes and shingles, and bent wood shingles. The newest additions to our expanding product lines include Teak and Royalwood™ Wallaba Shingles. All of these shingles can also be made into Fancy-Cutt™ Shingles in the Diamond, Fishscale, Half-Round, Arrow, Sawtooth, Dragon's Tooth or Octagonal profiles. With nearly 40 years of experience, you can rely on our team to provide you with premium products and expertise. And as experts in our field, we are happy to assist you with your project.
Our company has completed some of the most challenging and unique roofing projects, primarily in the Cottage and Storybook genres of architecture, and specializes in steam-bending Cedar shingles for many diverse roof and wall ap-plications. An essential component in these geometrically complex, wavy and undulating roof lines are the curved Cedar shingles, which set apart any roof from the ordinary. Through the years you have likely seen our work; from a striking American Thatch home to pre-formed shingles on a towering church steeple, our work has been featured in dozens of maga-zines and achieved multiple awards for nearly four decades.
Make your next project aWork of Art
One of the tributaries of the mainstream of medieval craftsmanship flowed through the hands of peas-ants, who, with no formal training, graced the European countryside with their unpretentious cottages. Its an appearance of spontaneous and natural craft. A look the drawing board and tee square rarely achieves. The unselfconscious, delightful simplicity that radiates from these pastoral, vernacular dwell-ings has captured people for centuries. The peasants intuitive skill at beautifying the utilitarian is no where more evident than in the cottages thatch roofs, with their undulating roof lines which roll gently over the irregular contours, seems to have a way of making a building an integral part of the landscape.
In the 1920s, when English Tudor, French Norman and Cotswold design first came into prominence in this country, the European cottage style was also transplanted and took root. Since water reed thatch is a native plant to many parts of Europe, but rare in the United States, a building product indigenous to North America, Western Red Cedar, was used as a roof covering to create a thatch effect roof.
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Make your next project a Work of Art
A company headquartered in the Buffalo, New York area, called Creo-Dipt, pioneered the concept. They designed a framing system that produced all the rounded configurations of a thatch roof, and appeared in various architectural catalogues of their day. They also manufactured a bent shingle made from Western Red Cedar, which was used on the rounded area of the roof. The courses of shingles, rather than being laid in straight lines, were run in long, irregular waves to simulate the texture of thatch. Creo-Dipts detailing was excellent and their attempt to reproduce the flowing roof lines of the thatched European cottage was very successful. Before long, their thatch effect roofs were being constructed all over the United States. They soon had manufacturing plants in different parts of the country, as well as distributorships through regional lumberyards. But alas, the Great Depression did the company in, but not Americas love for the European cottage. In the early 1980s these original cottage roofs were worn out and many homeowners, desperate to stop leaks, re-roofed with composition shingles; a gross imitation of the natural beauty of the original wood roofs, not to mention the drastic deviation from the European thatched cottage they were designed to emulate. Many homeowners, realizing the architectural significance of their homes, patched and plugged leaks waiting for a roofer to come along who would accept the challenge of restoring their roofs.
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In 1982, we took the challenge of re-roofing a 60 year old home, which was a beautiful example of cottage architecture. After inventing and constructing our own steaming and bending equipment, we completed the sensitive restoration project, receiving national publicity for our work. Shortly thereafter, we were award-ed a U.S. patent for our steam-bending equipment. We had revived a lost art. The inquires began pouring in, and within half a year, we were traveling extensively throughout the United States, re-roofing these unique structures. With such a resurgence of interest in the country cottage style roof, Country Cottage Roof saw a viable market for producing pre-bent wood shingles like Creo-Dipt had done sixty years before. After considerable exposure in national magazines, we sensed that the public was tired of the straight, stark lines of modern architecture, and was waiting to discover the romantic charm of the European cottage. Real-izing there was a limited need for bent wood shingles without builders being familiar with the construction of roofs with curved configurations, we set out to design a framing system which would incorporate our spe-cialty shingles. As part of our newly trademarked roof system called Country Cottage Roof, we designed and marketed pre-fabricated, curved framing components which would give the builder the luxury of framing the roof conventionally and attaching our components to the existing roof structure. The finished product retains the integrity of its hand-crafted appeal, without pricing itself out of the market. 1987 was the first year the product was heavily marketed to new construction. Builder magazine, the official publication of the National Association of Home Builders, rated it among the top fifty new building products for reader interest in 1987. Model homes using Country Cottage Roof were built in major cities across the Unites States, in a number of instances winning top exterior awards in their local builder shows. In 1990 Country Living featured the Country Cottage Roof on its House of the Year. Since that time, the Country Cottage Roof has received wide acclaim with its constant exposure in the national media. Installations have been completed from coast to coast, beyond the borders, and as far away as Japan. Our work has continued to make waves, with our work being featured in Architectural Digest, and just recently, at the Southern California Institute of Architecture.
we had revived a lost art.
The most striking characteristic of the Coun-try Cottage Roof is the rolled eaves and rolled gables. These rolled edges can be achieved through our preassembled facia boards with attached radiused blocking. These are sold in ten foot sections and are nailed to existing roof framing members the same way a conventional fasica board is installed. Any method of gable construction is acceptable, as our preassembled gable sections are nailed on like a conventional facia board. The radius of the blocking is de-signed to work with our pre-formed shingles.
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The Sea Horse Palace in Barrington, Illinois was initially a conventionally framed structure, and was re-framed with curved roof edges, and installed using our steam-bent and pre-stained cedar shingle system.
Our company restored the historical roof at The MacNider Art Museum, in Mason City, Iowa, us-ing laminated photos of each roof plane, and precisely mimicking the roofs original wave pattern.
Being one of the pioneers in the 1920s, Roscoe Harold Zook began designing homes imitating an english reed thatch, created a significant and lasting impression. We roofed his iconic home and studio back in the 1980s. Nearly 25 years later, this historically significant building was divided into pieces and moved to another location. Although the roof was still in good condition prior to the re-location, we were priveleged to re-roof this project again.
portfolio CottagesCedar shingles can be pre-dipped with a preservative stain in nearly any color desired. Or, after installa-tion, the shingles can be sprayed using a preservative stain, which helps extend the life of the shingles. This can also be applied even decades later, and adds pigment, giving the roof a brand new appearance.
The semi-transparent stained shingles shown above are stacked at the roof edges, a faux english cottage appearance, but with the lasting beauty and durability of Cedar shingles.
The over-sized rolled roof edges are a create a visually striking element, cou-pled with the random flowing wave pattern, make this home truly spectacular.
Here is another amazing home with exaggerated rounded roof edges. The roof waves flow up and over the front entrance; a seamless transistion between the dormers and roof planes.
Necker Island is Sir Richard Bransons home and favorite hideaway. He first purchased the island in 1978 and it opened as a luxury retreat available for private hire in 1984. We had the privelege of roofing this logistically challenging resort, and is now adorned with Cedar shakes.
Our on-going relationship with many clients in the Caribbean has allowed us to provide and in-stall many projects there, including the beautiful Little Thatch Resort, also located in the B.V.I.
Cedar Shakes differ from Cedar shingles, as they are known for their handsplit surface texture, and are more characteristically rustic than sawn shingles. They also installed with felt in-between the courses, and depending on the specification, can be up to 1, or sometimes more, in thickness. Popular on traditional, ranch, vacation homes, or non-residential structures, they are designed to blend with the natural and/or rustic surroundings.
portfolio Cedar ShinglesCedar shingles can be used in many diverse applications, and are different from a Shake, as both sides are smooth sawn, providing a more refined and tailored appearance. Cedar shingles are what we use on our cottage roofs, but this gallery takes a look at the many other conventional and unconventional a