A year and a half ago we bought a house by the sea and started on a pretty major renovation project. The house was build in the 1860’s and over the years its been a social club, tobacconist, boarding house and finally, our house. It was pretty rough around the edges, but we fell in love with the big rooms, high ceilings, stained glass windows and huge fireplaces. We knew if we spent a bit of time, effort and money on it, it could be fabulous. Just like they do on TV, we ran over budget and overtime, but does it matter? Not really!
Below: Here’s what it looked like when we moved in, see the big ugly radiator, huge fireplace, broken windows and general squat-like state….
When we first moved into the house, we didn’t actually live in the main part of the house. Instead, we lived in the extension at the side of the house, it was on the ground floor and it was probably the same size (if not bigger) than the flat we had in London. It didn’t look great, but it was pretty cosy and it meant we could have a team of builders working on the house whilst we were on-site, but out of the way. When we finally moved into the house, we moved into the back bedroom for a little while before we were ready to move into our actual bedroom. Sometimes I look back and wondered how it took us so much time and so much money to get here, but now I look back at these photos I realise quite how much needed to be done. Walls have been knocked down, rebuilt, a en-suite created, a dressing room built, floors sanded and painted, a fireplace halving, radiators changing and a whole lot of cleaning and accessorising has been done. Phew!
In case you haven’t noticed, the fireplace has had a major change. The whole of the top part was removed, because we felt it overwhelmed the room and made everything look out of proportion. We also took the original fireguard away as again, it was huge and intrusive Or builders recommended that we should remove the tiles in the hearth as they were slightly raised above the floorboards, but I just couldn’t bare to get rid of them, so instead we got a smaller, less intrusive guard custom made, which bridged the difference in height between the floorboards and the tiled hearth.
Sometimes it’s the small things which make all the difference! With this in mind, we also switched the radiators for traditional column style radiators (which you can see in the first image) and we spent a small fortune getting sash window renovators in to fix the windows and replace all the broken panes in the stained glass. Aside from that, we spent hours scraping paint off the wood panelling and repainting it, we also got the walls plastered, floors sanded and painted. Oh and my boyfriend insisted on getting speakers fitted flush into the ceiling because he thought it was cool. I have to agree, he was kind of right!
We are lucky enough to have a walk-in wardrobe, which is fantastic for keeping all our clutter away from the main bedroom. We wanted the bedroom to look and feel very calm, with just a few objects and pieces of furniture scattered around. Because of this, we splurged a little on the things we really wanted, rather than settling for budget versions in a similar style. The bedside tables are from Feather & Black, we managed to score them on sale, but the full price of them was £850 each, we love them so much, but it is admittedly more than I had ever planned to spend on bedside tables! Our lamps are from Anglepoise, these were less brutal on the budget at £250 for the pair. I picked up the books from Amazon and Very Exclusive (who have a beautifully curated selection of art and fashion books, FYI!). The chair is from Multiyork and costs £989, but it’s currently on sale for just over £700. As for the radio, this little cutie is a collaboration between VQ and Lulu Guinness, it costs around £100. The blankets, bedding, candles and throws are from BrandAlley.
So, there we have it, our bedroom renovation, before and after! Let me know what you think, I’d be so interested to hear your thoughts!