Hey everyone! I just wanted to put a quick post up about taking risks and a leap. In the latest update here AtNumer18 we have painted the panelling under the stairs to match the walls. I had a lot of fear about this and my partner and I have been discussing the virtues and vices of this decision ever since we bought the house in February 2017! Some people have asked why this decision was so hard, why such deliberation?! Well, we bought this 1890s house because its period features drew us to it. Everything from the front door, the swirling staircase the hand painted stained glass, the wood coving, the extra high skirting boards, the wood panelling under the stairs, the curved walls (a complete pain to re-plaster btw). These features are little stars of brilliance that makes this house unique and replacing such features would be prohibitively expensive.
Therefore when renovating this house we wanted to do right by these features and the house by doing a very sensitive restoration/renovation balance. We wanted to update the draughty issues and improve the energy efficiency of the house in keeping with modern standards bu at the same time keep true to the original design of the house. This is why we have spent a small fortune on the windows by encapsulating the stained glass with soundproof and laminated glass. This was a relatively easy decision, as the current windows were so draughty, some windows didn't close properly, missing window panes taped over with DUCT TAPE! (See above) and some were so bowed they were in danger of completely falling out and shattering! The new windows are super silent, warmer, draught proof and super easy to clean too as all you need to do is wipe them down rather than each individual small pane of glass in turn.
In relation to our latest tribulation, the decision to paint the panelling under the stairs! It has been stained a very dark mahogany colour and the flooring was chosen to match it, therefore the effect is that the whole hall, despite being relatively large, felt dark and the features were not appreciated. So a solution was needed. Unfortunately the original parquet floor was no longer present under the current floor and sadly we didn't have the budget to reinstate it currently.
I bought a massive antique mirror to hang in the hall to reflect as much light as possible, still too dark. The walls were, stripped from their cafe latte coloured wall paper, reskimmed and painted a bright warm white, a light jute rug was purchased, and still the space was not quite right.
So we took the plunge, brave face on and painted the panelling under the stairs the same colour as the wall. I was dreading it looking aweful, fearful that I would regret it and that I would spend hours the next day sanding it off and hunting to find the correct wood stain. Crying into my sand paper was the image that came to mind! Dramatic I know, but when you have spend so much time deliberating and trying to decide on balance what is the best plan for the house when maintaining its heritage and making it work for us, making a wrong decision can fill you with dread! Fear for the wasted expense, dreading the thought of time wasted, wishing you didn't waste so much brain power deliberating! And here it is, the hallway + gallery wall + painted panelling! All that is left is the stairs carpet and were done!
I've received some lovely compliments from you folk online and its really lovely that the internet can bring random people together over something like this! Hope you all like it, there is a series of stories on my Instagram under the Renovation and Hallway tour highlights if you want to have a more in-depth look.
I guess the moral of the story is: take the leap! Don't be afraid to experiment with your space. Nothing ventured, nothing gained!