We moved to this house nearly 2 and a half years ago. Almost as soon as we moved in, I started making a list of things that I wanted to do in terms of decor. The house itself was fine, and didn’t need anything structural doing to it, but the decor did need some attention. Let’s just say, the previous owners had very different taste to us.
In that first year, after moving, we didn’t have much spare money for decorating. We had to buy quite a lot of furniture, as we’d sold a lot of ours from our previous house to the new buyers. So we had to buy a dining table and chairs, a sofa, two arm chairs, a desk… Actually, that seems like an awful lot!
Six months after moving, I was pregnant with Samuel, so we knew we’d have to sort the childrens’ bedrooms out. You can see what we did with the nursery and Ben’s bedroom if you’re interested. In an ideal world, we’d have replaced the carpet in Ben’s bedroom too, but that was beyond our budget at that stage.
After that, Tim announced that he was taking at least a year off building any flat pack furniture!
Throughout 2016, we did bits and pieces in the house. We sorted out storage in the playroom. Tim decided to build a patio which was a pretty big project considering I was well into my maternity leave. We did buy second hand patio furniture which looks great, and it had the added effect of lightening up the dining room as the patio slab were a lighter colour than the grass.
But the list remained. Carpets, curtains, paint. I spent hours on Pinterest, looking for Scandi-inspired interiors, grey walls and alternatives to the yellow tones and dark wood which still seemed to dominate our house.
This year, I’m determined that some things on the list will actually get done. So this month, we’ve bitten the bullet and got a professional decorator in to paint our hall, stairs and landing. Although I had started this job last August, there was no way I was going to get it finished with 2 small children, a job which takes 30-40 hours a week, a blog to write and other commitments at church and in our community.
He’s painted all the woodwork white, which I absolutely love. It has made such a difference to our dark hallway to get it all lightened up. The walls are in “Blank Slate” by Crown, which is part of their Hall, Stairs and Landing range. It’s a blue-toned pale grey. In the end (the end? When do you ever get to ‘the end’ of doing up a house?) I want the whole house to be in shades of blue, grey, white and cream.
Yes, we had to pay extra to have someone come in to do it for us, but I think we’re realising that actually, we simply don’t have the time to do things like that. It only took three days, two of which, I was working. So although there were some tricky moments wrestling both children upstairs without touching any paintwork, the upheaval was minimal.
We had the shoe cabinet built by a carpenter friend last year. Tim designed it, and it’s made to fit in the gap between the under stairs cupboard and the start of the stairs. It’s perfect really.
The landing isn’t properly finished yet. We need new carpets up the stairs and in the landing. We need to replace our lampshades and get some good curtains for the top window. But I feel like we’re going to get there now.
I know when you write a list like mine, it can feel completely overwhelming. It can feel like you’ve got so much to do, you don’t know where to start. When you stop to consider the cost, or the time it will take, you wonder if you’ll ever get there.
However, now, I feel that we will make a few big changes this year. New paint on the walls – check. New carpets – next. We just have to save up first!