Hello Again…

It’s been six months since my last post, oops. BUT, we have the very best of excuses, we were busy on a project of an entirely different type and we were overjoyed to welcome little baby Peony to our family in late June. Please bare with me on any posts containing extensive waffle and appalling spelling for the next few months, most likely I’ll be writing at 4am. 


Following that news, If you are now anticipating the nursery reveal, don’t hold your breath! It currently looks like this…  


Peony’s room will be stagnant until we have our attic conversion done as together with the master bedroom, it’s directly below the loft space and so will need ceilings replaced during the works. 
As always, we have curated a few bits and bobs which will shape the nursery, these include a Lloyd Loom blanket box I reupholstered, a mini rocking chair I need to reupholster, Victorian school desk and a string of acid-bright silk lanterns from a trip to Hoian, Vietnam. We are keen to have one wall as a world map, something like this from Murals Wallpaper. We don’t want Peony’s room to be over-girly, we want it to be a bright, fun & educational space that can evolve as she grows. 

Before I get too distracted by the decor, we need to get planning permission on our attic conversion. We are currently in talks with the council on pre planning. To save on architects fees, I’ve done basic plans to open negotiations with the relevant department ahead of professional plan submission. Planning is never easy, but even more difficult in this instance as our house is in a conservation area meaning the property is to be kept as original as possible, even though the proposed changes will only affect the back of the house which is mainly a 1980’s extension. Here are the before and (rather ropey) after visuals. 

 View looking back from the garden…
  View from the corner point…

 Roof view…

Ideally , we intend to add a dormer to the attic space, meaning we could accommodate an en suite bathroom directly above the first floor bathroom. We’d also like to add a Juliet balcony to the bedroom area to ensure the conversion is as light as possible, finally we’d like to render the 198o’s extension. When the new part of the house was built they used horridly cheap, modern bricks, which do nothing to help the extension blend in with the original building. Initial planning feedback has refused the render as it ‘is not in sympathy with the original fabric of the house’ frustratingly, it is difficult to communicate that the render only changes the 1980’s section of the house which has no relevance to the conservation area…We’ll discuss that at next stage. They also said the dormer housing the en-suite would be unlikely to be passed as it would overlook neighbours…even though there’s only a window at the back.

The revised plans below have been submitted and we are now waiting for feedback from the team, while getting architects to start pricing for us.

There’s plenty more to update you on, watch this space,  I’ll try not to leave it six months!

A mixed bag…

Where did the week go? We’ve both been off work, and had grand intentions of all that we were going to achieve. A Christmas tree, a birthday, a ‘spot check’ visit from parents and more trades people than I could count coming in to quote, slowed us up a little. We have got some things done though, all totally unrelated and in no particular order:

1. We (he) took the kitchen ceiling down, what started as an ‘investigative hole’ revealed there was no insulation in the 1980’s extension, eek. At least that explains why it’s so damn cold in there! For reasons I’m not entirely sure of, the kitchen, bathroom and lobby ceilings then got taken down. Apparently to make way for insulation, electrician and gas man, due in late January and March, I’d rather have have waited and had a ceiling for Christmas given the choice!


2. I put up my favourite snowflake garland, it needs extending for the super sized fireplace.


3. We said a sad goodbye to Flash Gordon, fact is, it was him, or a radiator, super powers alone can’t keep you warm. Most of it came off in full pieces, so we’ll put him somewhere else one of these days.


4. We stripped the main bedroom. Actually, I mean ‘I’ stripped the bedroom, all by myself AND the steamer didn’t blow up even once!


I found another epic wall covering, above the picture rail languished this teapot-on-shelf number!


It had been hung upside down, of all the papers you could get away with hanging wrongly, this is not the one! (But please don’t haunt me past occupant, I’m sure it was cool at the time). There’s now only the last bedroom and the hallway and then the stripping is done – boom!

5. We found this printed Lino under several layers of carpet in the guest bedroom…


There was a newspaper underneath from 1929, so I’m presuming the Lino is around that era… The pixelated camo could easily be on the high street today, though maybe not as a floor covering… I can confirm nothing of major interest occurred on 8th October 1929 in Birmingham, on the sports page West Bromich Albion managed to beat Aston Villa 6/1, had that have happened this weekend, their manager might still have a job!


6. The house plants came home, they have been in the expert care of my aunt and uncle during our moves. We also bought back a couple of Belfast sinks I’d squirreld, we inherited two more when we moved in and STILL have two more to come… There is such a thing as too much of a good thing! The garden plants are staying until March, giving us a little time to clear some clutter from the patio area.

7. And finally, in other news, we have reason to believe Dottie cat has got a sideline as a Christmas Card model… So that’s where she’s been disappearing to since the cat flap was installed!


Wallpaper Diaries…

Some of you are already familiar with my Flash Gordon wallpaper…

Maybe this belonged to the Flash fan when he was a little younger?

I’m especially in love with the skipping bunnies!

There are a couple of oriental styles from what we, rather too grandly, refer to as the library, especially as it is yet to contain any books!


There is also a few traces of this yellow and white beauty, looks hand blocked and vaguely Moorish…I love the colour of this, it’s going on my lounge moodboard.

Some sweet florals in the bedrooms, 1940’s maybe? Love the roses on the chimney breast in the master bedroom, I’d love to keep it, I can’t see that being allowed. Ever.


20131109-193642.jpg And finally, for now, these duck egg, white and gold papers from the hallway. Especially like the like Lilly of the Valley print.



Home at last…

So, a week in our new home, and at last, we have the internet! We’ve had a fantastic few days, with lots of visitors, discoveries and LOADS of plaster dust. I think the best place to start is with a few photos;