Dining · Home · House remodel · Kitchen · Living

Small details matter…

When we purchased our house and started this remodel/update project, Christopher promised that he will ensure that we finish and decorate each rooms and make sure they are presented nicely. And he is true to his words and quite a perfectionist too even down to the absolute smallest of details. But of course even those little things take time to install and sometimes they take the longest (and yes I do get really impatient as I just want it all to finish 😵). These past two weeks we decided to focus on installing and fitting those little details.

1. Adding Scotia trims to the skirting boards

Again we made are usual trip to our local DIY shop and purchased primed white Scotia trims to cover the gaps between the laminate flooring and the existing skirting boards. I think with the Scotia trims you can either choose and match it with the colour of your flooring or that of your skirting boards. We chose to match it with our white painted skirting boards as they are quite small and plain and the Scotia trim gives it a more polished look.

Before cutting them to size I first painted them white, and as soon as the paint dried, Chris cut the trim to the right sizes and finally fitted them using “no nails” glue.

Pictures below, with and without the Scotia trim (sorry for the bad photograph):

2. Lighting install

When the electricians did the electrical re-wirings they just installed standard, plain, boring pendant lightings for the living areas except for the kitchen and bathroom where we had spotlights installed. The pendant lightings definitely did not flatter the living/dining room 😲 and I was just keen to have them replaced ASAP. It was not easy to choose the right lighting, as yes the space is open plan but it it is not necessarily the biggest of rooms where you can just install grand statement chandeliers/lightings like what you see they do in Pinterest. It needs to be the type of lighting that can balance and pull the room together

In the end I decided to go with this (and Christopher did not disagree! Yey! 😆):

A 3 lamp spotlight in soft matt white finish and satin brushed gold fixtures…

…and I love it! 😊 The matt white colour blend perfectly in our living/dining area, but the satin brush gold finish detail gives it a little twist so it’s not just your average white spotlights.

3. Adding decorative kitchen plinths and panels

The kitchen​ took us the longest to install and we are not fully finished yet….ahhhhhhh it is just never ending. Thank goodness when Chris was about to  install the decorative plinths and panels his dad once again came to the rescue! So the install went much quicker thanks to the know how and carpentry skills of my father-in-law.

Here’s how the kitchen looks at the moment. We still need to cover the pipes underneath the boiler and tile the kitchen walls with white subway tiles. So this is unfortunately not the final look yet….. 😒 But we will get there somehow, for sure.

Christopher’s dad also bricked up the outside walls underneath our living room and kitchen windows. He also added steps to the front and back doors! He’s an absolute superstar! 😆🎉🎊

Spot the difference!?

Front:

Back: (sorry couldn’t find a before picture of the back of house without Joseph 😄, he is cute though!)

There’s more work to tackle but we will prevail! Ha!😝

 

Home · House remodel · Kitchen

Delight! It’s all slowly coming together!

It has been two weeks since my last post and it is definitely time for an update​.

Juggling parenthood, work, house remodel and trying to keep familiar routines especially for my three-year-old son whilst temporarily living in my mother-in-law’s home can be somewhat challenging, hence the delay of this blog post.  Despite​ busy schedules I am so grateful I get to write, every time I do, I get a sense of freedom and a bigger appreciation to the works my husband and I (especially that of my husband) have achieved in making our house to a home we want it to be.

So here’s what we have done these past two weeks:

1. Flooring:

After we have finished painting the living, dining and kitchen areas we moved on to cleaning and prepping the floorboards to finally lay the laminate flooring. Chris and I chose the flooring together which we bought from B&Q at a very good price. Yey! we absolutely love the “oak effect”!

Here’s Christopher laying the underlay and then his dad came along to help. I love their picture together, it perfectly captured their “father and son bonding moment” 😊

Here’s the before and after (excuse the mess! 😲):

2. Kitchen install:

Now this one was a bit more complicated and you think installing an IKEA kitchen would be easy peesy right!? Heck NO! Ensuring everything is level and even was definitely not an easy feat! I don’t even want to dare count the amount of times Christopher and his dad had to re-adjust the cabinets and cupboards to ensure that they were perfectly aligned and level from each other.

The worktop is a whole different story. Luckily Chris’ sister’s boyfriend is a carpenter, who kindly came to the rescue at such short notice! He brought his expertise and the right tools and voila we got our perfect kitchen worktop! 😆 (Thank you so much Jake!)

Here’s the kitchen as it looks at the moment, the side panels, trim mouldings and the rest of the doors and hardware still need to be added to give it’s final look and finish:

Ahhhhhhh! I have a feeling it’s going to be beautiful! And hats off to my husband who has done most of the work! He’s been working so hard to make everything perfect. Bless his socks! Ha! 😘

So this week the built-in appliances will be wired in and the washer/dryer and sink will be plumbed in. Exciting times!

Until next time y’all 😘

Home · House remodel · Kitchen

Painting, what a fun family affair!

My family and I are in a weird position at the moment, we are not tenants anymore, we are now home owners and yet we are homeless but at the same time we are not…..sorry guys my train of thoughts have been going loopy lately as  there is so much to think about!

As already mentioned in my previous post, we are currently staying at my mother-in-law’s place until the the downstairs living areas of the house have been sorted and the kitchen installed. And so without any hesitation my boys and I rolled up our sleeves this bank holiday weekend to paint and prep the kitchen and living/dining area (we have not included the hallway yet). But alas, I have learned that there is so much more to it than just painting the rooms and it involves A LOT of other little things too which are pretty time consuming!

All those DIY enthusiast out there might already know this, but….

Did you know that a freshly plastered wall needs to be sanded down to smooth out rough surfaces (which is my least favourite – what a dusty business!), it needs to be washed down by a damp cloth to remove excess dirt, also it needs be covered with a minimum of 2 “mist paint coats” (water down paint) and a normal coat before you can actually apply the top paint of your choice! It is crazy loads of work especially when you need to do a big area and did I mention that it is MESSY too!

This is Chris and I doing the sanding and washing down and applying the first mist coat:

 

If you are a girlie girl, concious about your perfectly styled outfit, coiffure and manicured nails and planning to do extreme DIY painting and decorating, then be prepared that all of that will go down the drains! There will be splashes of paint all over you, you will be covered in dirt and your hands will crack and blister as if they are out of this world (it will still happen even if you wear gloves…😖)! So yeah just heads up on that because I am currently experiencing all those things. But hey on the positive note it’s an amazing overall workout as you will definitely stretch, squat and use a lot of arm muscles! I was aching after two days of work! 🤣

However, whose to say we did not have fun!? My little boy absolutely loved painting with me and Chris which would last about 20 minutes and then he would either say: “I am tired” or “I am hungry”. Bless him, he was so good despite the fact that he had to stay in an unfinished house while his mummy and daddy are busy doing work on it.

 

We worked the whole day Saturday and yesterday we didn’t get home until past midnight. Luckily we managed to finish the kitchen and the dining area and we need to finish off the living area today to ensure the rooms are ready for floor laying and kitchen install this week.

Yup with house remodels I have observed that things rarely go as planned, unfortunately! But it’s ok  we work hard, we give our best and we will get there somehow. I keep on telling myself, “Just focus on the end goal, it will be worth it!” Chris got his own motivation mantra as well which is: “Let’s do this!” And he tries to say it in a very manly way which kind of makes me chuckle! 😄

Before and after the paint work, and my superman burning the midnight oil:

 

The new door and windows got installed by Chris’ dad last week and our IKEA kitchen got delivered spot on time last Tuesday! 😊 And I am sooooo in love with our brand new sage green door! 😍

Freshly delivered IKEA flat packed kitchen and electrical appliances:

Window frames before and after the install:

 

So this week, it’s the flooring and kitchen install we need to worry about. On that note: “We can do this!”

Home · House remodel · Kitchen

Kitchen remodel – with the promise of scrumptious cuisine in the making! (hopefully….)

I love trips to IKEA and yet I still remember those times that I never used to. I recall my mother spending hours in IKEA gathering ideas and buying stuff for the home whilst my brothers, dad and I used to tail behind her getting bored and nagging her when we are finally going to get to eat the infamous IKEA meatballs with chips and lingonberry jam. Funny enough I can now FINALLY UNDERSTAND why she enjoyed the occasional IKEA trips so much, however, this does not mean that Christopher enjoys it too….imagine lots of eye rolling, moaning and comments like: “This is a maze! How the heck do you find your way around here!” Luckily I can always bribe my boys with either food at the IKEA restaurant before the tour or sausage rolls and ice cream at the Bistro after the tour…..seriously those are major life savers and cleverly thought of by IKEA.

Anyhow yesterday Christopher, Joseph and I had our meeting with the in-store kitchen advisor to discuss and order our FINAL KITCHEN DESIGN for the remodel!! WOAHO!

(Exciting times! I can finally turn my dream kitchen into reality! Think big open space, kitchen island, gorgeous hardware, brass pendant lightings, amazing cooker and oven….aahhhh! heaven!

But hey I need to snap out of it quickly, back to reality!)

Just a little recap this is how the kitchen looked like before it got cleared over the weekend:

Yup! It definitely had to go, right!?

Chris and I spent some few days designing our new kitchen for the house. As exciting as this may sound, it was not necessarily smooth sailing, to begin with. IKEA’s online kitchen planner was super slow and lagging all time which was very frustrating. It was not until yesterday that we found out that the programme would’ve worked quicker if we had used Internet Explorer instead of Google Chrome! Gggrrrhh! (so yes keep this in mind people in case you are planning to order your kitchen from IKEA) Also, it took us a bit of time to figure out how to navigate around to find the products that we want for our kitchen. In some occasions, we also got a bit stuck in finding the perfect solution in preventing “dead space” as our kitchen is quite tiny and we want to maximise storage spaces as much as possible. However, that’s when the meeting with the IKEA kitchen professional comes in handy! (thank goodness we came in prepared!)

Here’s the kitchen floor view:

Kitchen floor view 001

Everything went smoothly and the lady who helped out certainly knew her stuff. We were given answers/solutions/alternatives to the things where we felt we got a bit stuck. Also, we were able to see/feel the actual products on-site which helped us a lot to finalise some of the smaller details. And after about an hour and a half, we placed the order! YES SIREEE!

During the design process, I explained to Chris that although the kitchen is tiny I still want it to be clean, streamlined and airy. Gorgeous and yet functional!  At first, I was thinking that instead of all cabinets being all off-white, why not make the bottom cabinets grey which would look gorgeous too. But then the room is too small and I am afraid the off-white and grey combo might make it look even smaller.   And so we opted for the classic off-white look for the cabinets and cupboards, to warm it up a bit we chose oak worktops and to give it a little modern twist I chose brass coloured hardware (which is one of my favourites!) I also managed to convince Chris that we install 2 glass cupboard doors on both sides of the extractor fan. In that way, the light coming in from the window would reflect even more so throughout the room and into the next (which is the dining area), giving the illusion that the room is somehow bigger  (To find out more about my style see my previous post: Interiors and Mood boards)

Here goes the final design with view from the dining area opening:

Kitchen line view 001

3D View:

Kitchen front 002

As the pictures hardly show how the hardware looks like here are some pictures. It’s all about the little details baby! Sadly, according to the kitchen advisor, these particular models/colour are being discontinued so we made sure to buy some extra ones. I seriously do not understand why they are doing that. These are absolutely gorgeous, they are gold-toned but not too loud, just perfect.:

The kitchen lighting is going to be spotlights, and the splashbacks will be the classic white subway tiles! (I seriously cannot wait for that!)

By the way, all the appliances we have ordered from IKEA as well (they are basically Whirlpool appliances), except for the integrated washing machine as we want a washer/dryer instead. So that means the cooker, oven, fridge freezer and extractor hood comes with the package.

So far everything is going well. Let’s just hope everything goes smoothly for the install in 2 weeks time.

And here we are with our silly faces selfie, poser selfies are not really our style 🙂 (excuse my meat head please):