14 October 2014

KITCHEN AND UTILITY RENOVATIONS

BEFORE (kitchen)


This is our kitchen as it was when we moved in....fantastic potential, great size, appliances that were on their 'last legs' and a dated space that didn't reflect our personalities.  

(above) Standing in the middle of the room, looking west towards the utility room which is just through the door in the middle of the room.


Standing at the utility room door, looking east to the other side of the room.  


To the right is an Aga.... a very old one, which probably dates back to the early 70's.  
We've had lots of discussions about whether we should have it re-conditioned, enameled a different colour or do without it and sell it.


(above) Going back into the middle of the room and looking north, the door goes into the pantry. 


The pantry has shelves all around it, a small window and a spice rack fitted on the door. There is a slight step down from the kitchen into the room.  


At the end of the kitchen, there is a 'sitting area', which has a wood burner.



In the same area, is also a cupboard that we believe is original to the house when built. Roughly a year ago, it was decided to take out the wooden panels on the top cupboard doors and add glass. It made a tremendous difference to us. This was a lovely asset to the kitchen that was used for salad bowls, jugs and wine glasses etc etc.  We'll continue to use this cupboard in the same way. Underneath houses, gas meter, sewing machine and various other bits and bobs.

BEFORE (utility room)


Moving from the kitchen to the utility room, highlights the need for a major update in this room.  


There is a window facing north and door beside it to the garden outside.


Washing machine and tumble dryer are positioned in the middle of the room, with the sink the other side of them.


It's easier to understand the layout, standing with the garden behind, sink in front and domestic appliances the other side of the small brick wall. We initially thought the brick pillars were added to hold up the ceiling but further research showed that this was not the case allowing us to take them down.


Another view from the back door showing the brick pillars and mock beams.


(above) These two doors off the utility room access a toilet and large cupboard. 


 

(above) Both photos show the toilet and sink and painted brick walls.  When we first moved into the house six years ago, there was signs of damp on the walls.  This has now been 'treated' by Rentokil who provided us with an effective treatment that sorted the problem.

  

(above) First stage of the renovations , saw a window being knocked through from the south side of the house into the utility room. This was essential to the changes we were to make.  It meant more natural light into the utility room as it was a very dark room and an end to constantly having to put the light on when entering the room. 

1 October 2014

APPLES, APPLES AND MORE APPLES


Apples galore........we've so many falling in the orchard.


There's more than we need unfortunately.  Some we use for stewed apples to add with our breakfast cereal. 




Some are made into simple Crumbles or delicious apple cakes and lots are collected in a basket for neighbours to use.



 The rest are left under the trees to be recycled by the insects and birds.

27 September 2014

TEXTURES IN THE HERB GARDEN


Above - Thyme
The herbs are nearing the end of their growth this year. Autumn is on its way. Cooler weather and less sunlight is not necessary the best conditions for growing but despite this, they still have a beauty.  

Above - Wild Marjoram
We grow sage, thyme, fennel, rosemary, marjoram, parsley, mint and few others in the Summer months.  With the aid of Photoshop, these images show what we are growing at the moment.


 Above - Fennel

Above - Sage

 Above - Oregano

17 September 2014

A REMINDER OF SUMMER


 

Just remembering the lovely warm summer we've had this year.  One of my favourite times of the day - dusk.  The sun is just about to disappear but there is still enough natural light to read.

Taken from the upstairs hall landing window, looking over to our neighbours field, where that day they harvested the grass into hay bales. 

Happy memories of Summer 2014.

5 August 2014

MAIN BEDROOM


We're well on the way with the renovations of the kitchen.  The building work has been completed and the units are being added.   It's reminiscent of other projects we have done whilst living in this house.  One memory that springs to mind is the main bedroom updates and the adding of our ensuite





Our main bedroom is at the front of the house built in the Regency era.  It is a square room with a tall ceiling, original fireplace and 2 large windows.  One looks north and the other east. There is plenty of natural light which is a great luxury. 

Beside the bedroom was a bathroom that was accessed from the hall.  This door was blocked up and a new one added, gaining access from the bedroom into what is now the ensuite to our bathroom.  



In order for these two rooms to 'flow' from one room to another, the decoration needed a palette that linked them. We chose white and taupe.  Knowing that we weren't going to carpet this room, we painted the floor boards which also mirror the staircase and floor of the ensuite. (see below)


 
(below) This is the bedroom before the renovations started...  


The day we moved into the house, the carpet was stripped out - in my opinion, it had been there too long for us to live with. We got used to the bare floor boards very quickly. Looking back at these images, I can't believe we lived like this for more than 4 years.

 


(below) The room stripped out, building work begun. 





Years and years worth of wallpaper removed from the walls, floor boards repaired and sanded, rewiring, new radiators and damp areas addressed. This room would have had a picture rail originally, so we hunted high and low to match the same one as in the bedroom next door, which luckily had not been taken down in the late 70's.


The fireplace is original to the house.  It needed some repairs and then was painted.


(above)  The fireplace before the mirror was added and below as it now with it.





This room has become one of my favourites. It has a calm and peaceful feel, which at the end of the day is conducive to a good nights sleep.

23 July 2014

AN OLD FIND

Everything has been stripped out of the kitchen and utility rooms. They are bare except for lots of dust and rubble. 
On the wall that the cooker was in front of, we found this...


Am I the only person to get excited about finding old wallpaper?

  

We believe it's from the 1940's, but would like to find out more information about it.  I've done some investigations myself, and found nothing specific.  If anybody has an idea of who produced it or what age it is, we'd be very interested to know.



Above is a detail of the carrots.


How glum do these fish look?


A closer look at the strawberries in a bowl and below the bowl in relationship to the bottles. I like the way the wooden shelves with chains interlink with each other and the various still life sits on them.




The closest wallpaper (below) similar to ours was found on The Vintage Galaxy It's described as beautiful antique piece of block printed wallpaper, hand printed dating back to the 1940's. 



The colours, style and printing technique are very similar to one found in our kitchen, obviously the subject is very different.