Introducing the #FFHouseReno

Well where did January go?! Over here it was in a constant state of anticipation for our extension project to get underway, under leaden skies, flat light and constant rain. I for one will not be sad to see the back of January!

How the house will hopefully look when it’s finished!

On a more positive note I thought I would share with you our plans for the building project we have just embarked on (yes, it’s underway as I write – you can follow along on Instagram and I usually update my stories daily with progress if you’re really keen on keeping up!) and get a little bit excited about the planned results! It’s been a long time in the making and what we are doing has evolved through the planning process too, so I’ll talk you all through it here.

The current layout of the house.

Initially the brief was ‘a glass box extension to create a living/dining family space adjacent to the kitchen.’ As you will see from the existing plans below, we currently have a living room, a dining room and a kitchen downstairs, plus the W.C. but the rooms are all off the hallway and just not ideal for family life. We very quickly realised after having Bea that we needed space where we could watch her while we cooked etc and this is even more necessary with Cora as she is a little terror! Also, our Kitchen is just that, a kitchen. We have a peninsula with seating at the worktop which is where we often feed Bea or eat together, but it’s a bit like the three monkeys sitting in a row, isn’t ideal for incorporating a high chair, and I long for a kitchen table to eat around. Although we are lucky to have a dining room it’s a total pain hauling everything in there and then it means there are two rooms to tidy after dinner instead of one!

The ground floor plans: The blue area is the new living space where the deck used to be, the utility area is green and the new WC is pink.

As the plans progressed I started to think about other things that would make family life easier and the biggest thing I wanted was a utility room. Currently our washing machine and tumble dryer are in the cellar, which although dry is damp and dusty and cold, not to mention filthy. It’s a bit like having it in a cross between a garden shed and a garage, and tricky to go down there when there are children crawling or toddling about the house too, that I can’t trust not to come after me. The stone steps to get down are the stuff of nightmares where parenting is concerned. To have those upstairs, with a sink for dirty jobs and a second fridge/freezer plus some storage is pretty much the holy grail for me and I set about trying to convince Pete we needed one. As it happened the back of our house is a bit like a tetris block when viewed from above and extending just the kitchen didn’t square off the house without going around the corner too – this meant a bigger living/dining space and making use of the space which is currently a bin store, into a utility room.

The first floor plans – the purple area shows the new extended bathroom.

As time went on this project became the final stage in creating our medium to long term home, (I’ll never say never to moving again but we plan to be here a while!) and once the idea of the utility room worked out we then had the option to build upwards and extend our family bathroom which is currently a bit awkward and certainly not ideal for the whole family to be in at bath time. Extending the bathroom also meant we could do something I had seen a neighbour down the road do which was take the awkwardly placed separate toilet off the landing and put it into the bathroom. The landing currently doglegs around the toilet, so removing it meant the landing would be much more spacious and we could put in a window to bring light onto that level as it currently only gets borrowed light from other rooms.

How the exterior looks to the rear currently.

Initially we (well, Pete,) discussed the plans as phase one and two. Living/dining area first then the rest later, but as the scale of the project became apparent I became more certain that I was not going to do it twice, especially with the kids living through it too. We can’t afford to move out while the work goes on so I certainly don’t want to put ourselves through it again and it’s all so interlinked that it wouldn’t have made sense to stop and come back to it later either. There was no easy way of splitting the project.

What the exterior will look like.

As this also represents the final stage of our renovation, we can finally sort out the hall, stairs and landing which I have hated looking at since we moved in but it didn’t make sense to tackle (and later have builders traipsing through,) before we did the rest. As there will be walls knocked through into the hall and landing we will be replacing the floor, carpets, plastering, decorating and finally making it just the way I have imagined it.

So you can look forward to a lot more posts from me on bathrooms, living spaces, utility rooms, hallways, and all the details in-between, plus the smallest room in the house, our W.C. 😉 Now the work has started although I’m anxious to see it progress I really cannot wait to have it finished and am so excited to crack on with the fun decorating part. So many decisions though!

Until next time…!


*All architectural plans and drawings by our Architects SpaceAP.

Old House Tour… Part 1

Hi guys!

It’s good to be back and I’m excited after a very refreshing break and some headspace. Thanks for coming back 🙂

Today I’m going to share some of the fab pictures of my house that The Lawsons (Laura and Pete) took for the Good Homes feature I mentioned last month. There were so many good ones that didn’t go in to the magazine that I’m going to do the downstairs first and then come back to the upstairs next week. I was thinking that you guys had seen all of this but in fact we had changed quite a few things (decorative accents wise) since I last featured any pictures, so I hope you’ll see something new if you’re already familiar with the house.

Photography courtesy of Lawson Photography

Since I last shared it, the lounge had had even more colour added, with a selection of mis-matched patterned cushions, the easy lamp DIY I did, and a few more homely touches…

Photography courtesy of Lawson Photography

It also features the first new thing we bought for the ‘new house’, the (reproduction) Eames RAR rocker.

Photography courtesy of Lawson Photography

Then adjoining it is the dining room, also looking a lot better than when you last saw it for a bit of styling 😉 (I hasten to add, my house did not always look like this, I wish!)

Photography courtesy of Lawson Photography

I think the dining room might have been my favourite room in the house, if not my bedroom, as it seemed to be the most interesting. This corner has our film lamp in it and an antique Japanese rice cabinet that my step-dad passed onto us and I topped with a sprayed white tray and some bar paraphernalia. With the picture and (cheap ikea) linen curtains, it seemed to evoke old colonialism to me.

Photography courtesy of Lawson Photography

It also has my other favourite bit of furniture, the oak servery unit we have that holds our wedding dinner set (and a lot of other junk!)

Photography courtesy of Lawson Photography

I’m going to leave it there for now because that’s a lot of pictures already and I’ll come back to the kitchen and bedrooms. There’s too much ‘stuff’ to list here but if you want to know anything about the house or it’s contents, just drop me a comment. Hope you enjoyed the tour and thanks again so much to Laura and Pete for doing the photography honours!


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