Hey folks, I realise its been way too long since I last posted but if you have been keeping up to date with my Instagram we have been working really hard at finishing off the attic bedroom which is now nearly complete. This is the biggest bedroom in the house and we stayed in it for the first few months and had it re-plastered over the summer which meant its been ready for a makeover for a while but we distracted by the staircase (see my previous post), but now we finally did it.
My design process with this room is that I wanted to create something calming and serene at the top of the house, somewhere to escape to. We wanted this room to be versatile as a guest bedroom with two twin beds that can be joined up to make a super king sized bed. We also wanted the design to be warm and modern but still layered, characterful and cosy. It posed its own challenges which I shall discuss below but here are a few before photos. The first two are the estate agents photos, and the panorama shot is when we moved in.
I think its safe to say that I absolutely hated this room. I hated the migraine inducing wallpaper in a velvety damask and bright pink/red. I hated the black high gloss wardrobe fronts and I hated the cracked plaster work. It was not a very relaxing room but we stayed in it as it had built in wardrobes and good storage. I'm still surprised that I didn't at least paint over that awful wallpaper which caused me such upset. Once we moved out of this room we got our revenge though.
Ripping off that wallpaper (and the 4 layers of paper below it) was so satisfying. From the pictures above you can already see how much more calming that room became without a wall screaming out at you. The other thing that struck me about this room is the lines. So many lines! The pitch of the ceiling, the joists, the chimney breasts, all at different slants to each other joined with a combination of sharp angles and soft curves. Our plasterer got to work on this room, and its fair to say that he did not enjoy it at all and one day once he finished I found him sat down looking particularly broken and said that he was going to retire as he didn't enjoy these complex projects any more!!!! oopsie!
The next thing to tackle was the wardrobes. I debated ripping them out for all of 3 seconds, I just hated their colour and finish, but they were solidly built and did use the space very well, so I would only be replacing them with something very similar. The other alternative was to change the doors, but unfortunately these doors are a custom height which uses as much space as possible which is great from a storage point of view but not so great from ease of change. We did find some companies online that did offer custom doors but the cost was higher than I had budgeted for so we went for the simplest option. Paint!
Now that the painting was all finished we had to get down to dressing the room! I wanted to again create more drama in this room by creating an apex curtain across the whole wall where the window was. The idea behind this was to create a cosier feel in the room with texture and add to the insulation of the thin outer wall. To create the whole wall of curtain I fixed tracks as close to the ceiling along the whole end wall of the room. The centre portion have a draw string to allow them to be opened easily, and the two end diagonal tracks were fixed and would never really be opened or drawn (as you can see there is only wall behind them). I used dark grey Ikea curtains which are also black out and textured to compliment the look of the room. The end panels didn't really hang straight down as I had imagined they would, so I gathered the fabric in the end panels to fill out the space properly. I might live with it for a bit and see if it bothers me, in which case some inventive sewing will be in order (I have never sewn anything in my life, apart from a button, hence the fear).
After an evening on my knees with Allen keys we got the beds and bedside tables up. The room came together super quickly after that with a few lamps I already had and some cosy throws and rugs we ended up with the nearly finished room below!
I hope you like the room as I am super chuffed with it. The only thing left is to create a headboard that allows the beds to be used as a twins and also as a super king. I have been mega inspired by the fabulous headboard over at frenchforpinapple (insta) which is pretty epic and would be great in this space and would stretch the whole length of the wall behind the beds and bedside tables. So I just need to find the correct fabric now... watch this space. If you want to see the whole process in video format, have a look at my Attic Bedroom Highlight on my Instagram page.
Lots more projects coming your way soon so stay tuned.
BTW I know there might be some comments about the fur throw in the bedroom, but this is farmed reindeer from Norway, they are farmed for their meat a cows are in this country, and skinned the same way sheep skins are used in this country (there is also a sheep skin in this room near the arm chair). I bought this when I was 16 and travelling in Scandinavia.
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!