The ups and downs of renovating a house

…or two

Archive for the tag “tile”

Week 32: not yet…but the small things I love

We’re not quite done.  I know, it seems so long.  It has been.  But we have had some good stuff happen.  We now have a working fridge.  Yay!  No more “not working so well” mini-fridge.  We have curtains on two of the rooms and at least privacy sheers on the front of the house.  Barney is adapting to living here (even if the people coming to work on the house freak him out a lot). The bathroom we use is amazing, the living room comfortable, we just got our alarm system put in (feeling safer already) and I’m almost completely unpacked.  Unfortunately, the dishwasher has been found to be blown and our washing machine decided to take a walk the first time I used it, so I still wash dishes by hand (not a big deal) and have been going to the old house to do laundry (boo), though I get to bring it back to a dryer which is amazing (soft towels for the first time in 12-1/2 years).  Luckily, after writing this draft, they fixed the washing machine so I’ll be able to do it all here.  They are still working on the exterior.  And the front and back gardens are a mess.

I decided to take pics of my favourite things for now.  I’ll post, finally, when I take the video of everything done (probably before the back garden is finished but that’s okay).  And I’ll post where we purchased everything in case something strikes your fancy.

So, here they are…my favourite things:

You can't really get a good feel of it from this photo but it's gorgeous. Such a lovely mix of blacks, blues and greys with little flecks of light (mica?).

You can’t really get a good feel of it from this photo but it’s gorgeous granite on the kitchen counters.  Such a lovely mix of blacks, blues and greys with little flecks of light (mica?).

 

We have some lovely fireplaces but this is my favourite. It's so different from anything else I've ever seen.

We have some lovely fireplaces but this is my favourite. It’s so different from anything else I’ve ever seen.

 

Our bathroom makes me so happy. The light coming in from the windows brings me joy. The whole thing has come together really nicely.

Our bathroom makes me so happy. The light coming in from the windows brings me joy. The whole thing has come together really nicely.

 

The door handles are so different from what was here before. They are soft on the hand and look elegant. A perfect fit for the age of the home (1920s/30s).

The door handles are so different from what was here before. They are soft on the hand and look elegant. A perfect fit for the age of the home (1920s/30s).

 

The rug under our dining table. It's a great mix of colours from navy blue to teal to pink to green, etc. Brings a shot of colour to a room that is very light, white and pale grey.

The rug under our dining table. It’s a great mix of colours from navy blue to teal to pink to green, etc. Brings a shot of colour to a room that is very light, white and pale grey.

 

Another bit of colour in our kitchen. And SO COMFY!

Another bit of colour in our kitchen. And SO COMFY!

 

The herringbone pattern of our white subway tiles in the kitchen is classic but a bit different. Perfect for the shaker kitchen.

The herringbone pattern of our white subway tiles in the kitchen is classic but a bit different. Perfect for the shaker kitchen.

 

It's not perfect or gorgeous but it works perfectly for us. Our front entry has enough hooks for all our coats, places to put our sneaker/trainers and any winter items, as well as Barney's leads and collars. It works.

It’s not perfect or gorgeous but it works perfectly for us. Our front entry has enough hooks for all our coats, places to put our sneaker/trainers and any winter items, as well as Barney’s leads and collars. It works.

 

Being organised. Having the space to be organised. It's tough to bring together two households worth of items (my mother-in-law had a LOT that we got rid of and I had a LOT that I got rid of), so it's nice that we could get it all put together. You should see the cabinet with the five types of dal - all organised in labelled jars as I'd have no clue).

Being organised. Having the space to be organised. It’s tough to bring together two households worth of items (my mother-in-law had a LOT that we got rid of and I had a LOT that I got rid of), so it’s nice that we could get it all put together. You should see the cabinet with the five types of dal – all organised in labelled jars as I’d have no clue).

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Week 13: new entry, under-flooring & bathroom stuff

Just back from scuba diving in Cornwall and went to take some pics of the house with my husband and mother-in-law.  There are some changes that have happened and it’s great.

The big one you notice when you first come in is the change to the entry and staircase.  Here’s the original stairs:

As you can see, you enter in the side and have a small entryway.  There was a closet against the wall and a door to the hallway/staircase.  We have removed everything in the hallway, the wall, doorway and we’re bringing the stairs straight down.  Here’s what it looks like right now:

It’s hard to see in the pic, but it really opens everything up.  My mother-in-law is so happy with it and my husband and I are thrilled.  It’s amazing.  Once it’s done, we’ll have to figure out where to put shoes and coats and all.  I’m doing all sorts of Pinterest searches on possibilities.

The bathroom furniture is going in slowly (the blue you’ll see is protective covering) in both the top and first floor.  We need to order a few things, but it’s starting to come together.

This is the main bathroom.  For us, it’ll be huge as we’ve had a tiny square of a bathroom to use.  It’ll only have a single sink in the middle, but it’ll still have so much more space to use.  The counter is laminate but looks pretty good.  It needs to be fitted to the sink area.  We still need to finalise the tiles, put in the mirror (it’s HUGE and has lights), put in the awesome heated towel rack/radiator and the toilet roll.  And then paint it, clean it, finish with all the grouting.

As you can see below, the base flooring for the underfloor heating on the ground floor is going in.  They have also insulated the area and left space for air to travel under it all.

I can’t wait to see what the next week will bring!

 

Colours

I thought I’d post something that wasn’t about the actual work going on in the house, namely, choosing colours.  When doing a house project, I find that choosing the colours of the rooms/house is the most difficult of all the choices to make.  And when you have three people involved (my mother-in-law (MIL), my husband and me), it gets even more complicated.

Clearly, my MIL got to choose the colours of tiles for her bathroom and will do so for her bedroom and the hallway/stairway paint and carpeting.  BUT as I want to have some continuity in the house, I did do a bit of ‘steering’ away from a few colours.  My MIL loves browns and pinky beiges.  I hate both.  I tend to like cooler or cleaner colours.  So, I steered her toward a creamy tile with a light beige streak (not a pink or orange tinge in sight).  She was happy (I hope) as was I.

Similar to bathroom tile for MIL

I know she’ll want a white/cream for her bedroom and the hallway, so I’ll steer her toward a white/cream that will work with the greys in the house.  And I’ll try to keep her away from patterned carpets. There were so, so many different patterned carpets in the house originally that it blew my mind (none of the colours worked together nor did the patterns).  But each to their own.  Perhaps we’ll find a lightly patterned carpet for the halls and stairs that we’ll all love.

My husband tends to like some colours that are not my favourite, such as baby sky blue.  It’s pretty in the sky or for a baby’s room, but not for our bedroom.  I tend to like dark and bold colours, which he’s not a huge fan of (as he thinks they’ll make rooms too cave-like).  So, we’ll try to compromise.  At least we both loved the pale grey cabinets for the kitchen and my MIL liked the simple Shaker style we chose.

Our most recent decision was about the main bathroom tiles.  As this will be the bathroom my husband and I will be using, we made the final decision.  And happily agreed.  This is what we’re going for:

similar matt white tiles on the walls (have a light sheen versus shiny)

Various grey hexagon tiles for floor

Now we just have to figure out what paint we’ll use on top of the metro tiles.  I know we’re leaning toward a blue…but which one to use?

These are just a few of the decisions you have to make while renovating a house.  It’s amazing all the small details that you never realised were “important”.

Week Ten – a video

This week’s focus of work has been to do the roof of the garage and storage shed (attached to the house) as well as working on the second and first floor bathrooms and putting in the new boiler.  We’re still waiting for the engineer and architect to return from holiday (ugh) so nothing can really be done this week on the ground floor (boo).

Youtube video

Week 10: almost there

Holy cow.  The work is almost finished, with an expectation that almost everything will be done by Friday.  Our builder is going away for the holidays, so we’ll come back together during the first or second week of January to do a final snag list and then the handover.  We’ll be able to move in February if we’d like.  This week I’m going to start really looking for carpet for the loft bedroom, small bedroom on the first floor, the hallway on the first floor and the staircases from the ground to first and first to second floor.  We’ll be keeping with greys for most of it.  I have a lot of pics of the work below.  Once we get the carpet in and furniture all set up, I’ll do another video to show the before and after.

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As you can see the scaffolding is finally down, so you can see how the loft has been built up.  Here’s the before:

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The hallways and small bedroom lights.  They fit with the other lights in the house.

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The staircase going up to the loft.  Needs another coat of paint, but I’m liking it so far.

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The handrail which will be painted a darker grey than the hall colour (which is a very pale grey).

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The shower is being fit…still needs some grout work done.  But I love, love, love these tiles.  We’ll add some glass shelved for shampoo & that stuff.

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Where the higher tiles end is where the glass panel will go for the shower. You can also see the grey floor tiles which I think compliments the teal metro tiles nicely.  I have to find a good toilet roll holder – not sure yet what to get.  It’ll be placed in front of the radiator.

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The corner sink & cabinet (not fully in place yet) were chosen due to the small size of the bathroom.  I think they will work well in there.

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I know it doesn’t look like much right now, but it will be the light fixture in the bedroom – there will be 8 bulbs and it will be placed in a pattern that works to light up the entire room.  Hoping it works and looks okay.

So glad that it’s almost over.  Next steps…the Vale house!

Week 9: paint and tile

The plaster has gone on and the primer has gone on as has the first layer of paint in the loft bedroom.  We’re still not sure about the bedroom colour but I think with the white ceiling it kinda works.  The grey floor tile and the blue wall tiles are going to look fabulous.  Very excited about this.

They’ve also started to take down the scaffolding so we can see what the house will look like in the end.

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