PROJECT:KITCHEN/UTILITY ROOM

It’s been a lovely spring day today and we have had the back door open to try and help the plaster in the utility room dry out so we may even have paint on the walls in the next week or so…

Over the last few weeks one of the main areas of focus has been on building the dividing wall between the utility room and downstairs loo and getting the room plastered:

Lots of ‘hidden’ work has also been done to get all the wiring updated.  What was the old dining room has had the prep work done for all of the new spot lights (as well as being insulated):

The fireplace has been opened up for the oven to fit into and the supporting steel has been put in place.

We’ve now ordered all the units but the builder really helped by mocking out all their positions on the floor for us:

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The ceiling has also been plastered in the old dining room and the prep work has been started for the other half of the room:

We’ve been told that the sink will be going this week so we’ll have to do our washing up in the bathroom but it’s been good to have it for this long so we can’t really moan:

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As the sun shone throw the windows today it was really nice to be able to stand in the doorway and see it come through both windows:

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PROJECT: KITCHEN/UTILITY ROOM

We’re now nearly a month into Project Kitchen Whoop Whoop!  I have been taking 100s of pictures but this is the first opportunity I have had to update the blog.  Overall things are going really well and we’re both very excited with how things are progressing.

We’re getting used to our new kitchen in the back bedroom and have so far survived without needing to buy a microwave but I’m not sure how much longer I will be able to resist one for.  The Husband and I are both trying to have our main/hot meal at work to keep the catering requirements at home as simple as possible but I have not been at work for the last few days which has complicated things a bit…

Anyway, the builders seem great and their attention to detail is just what we were looking for so they have been worth the wait.

Before they started, The Husband and his dad spent two days ripping out the old kitchen units to save us a bit of money.  They actually managed to take off some of the plasterboard too:

It was great to see the original fireplace and  chimney and it had a fabulous stone lintel but on the downside it was completely full of soot!  I was a bit worried about all the pipes hidden behind the units where the old water tank was.  We’ve known from the start that it was a bit of a nightmare behind there but there seemed to be pipes coming in from all directions:

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As well as clearing out the kitchen, The Husband and his dad also made a start on clearing out the old shower room which we are turning into a utility room and downstairs loo.

A door lead off from the kitchen into a tiny corridor with a door in front leading into the bathroom and then the back door was on the left leading outside.  The bathroom was ‘L’ shaped with the shower hidden down the bottom behind the door.  It had one remaining bay window but another by the sink had been blocked up by previous owners.  It was freezing cold and damp and while I was never much of a fan it has served us well and was the only source of heat when we first moved in so I used to stand under the shower for ages just to warm up!  It did look like this:

After The Husband and his dad had been at it it was looking like this:

Before the builders started we also drew out our plan for the kitchen on the walls:

They started on February 13th and started work on the walls between the kitchen door and the dining room initially:

They then started on neatening up the mess left by the old water tank:

All was going too well!  We had always known that the log burner flue might end up causing us an issue and unfortunately it has turned out to be worst case scenario.  We’ve looked into lots of options but it looks like we were given the wrong advice initially and we will now have to have an external flue fitted.  We knew it was potentially going to happen but it was still really annoying when we found out…:

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Work then started on clearing out the utility room and tearing down all the internal walls and the roof as well as blocking up the window:

I didn’t really understand what the plumb line was for but The Husband seemed to think it was important:

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I was really excited when I got home to discover the steel in the garden and the acro props in the kitchen:

It then looked like this:

Before the exciting full unveiling:

and we also had new light switches (with the old wall paper on show):

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We’ve actually been able to reduce the number of steels that we needed which we’re hoping will make the roof look a lot smoother:

And since then the focus has been on the utility room.  As of this evening, we have a nice high roof, with new windows in place and have been working out exactly where all the bathroom suite is going to go:

It has also confirmed that we need to change the direction of the back door.  Lots has happened but we’re still a long way off cooking in our own house.

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PROJECT: KITCHEN

We have been planing the kitchen for years now and it seems that we’re finally close to starting work of it.  I can not wait to get rid of what we have as it is too crowded and lots of it is broken.  This is what we currently have:

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It is long and thin but unfortunately there is not enough storage for all the cooking bits and bobs that we have so everything ends up looking cluttered and it always seems to be a mess.

To make things worse, we also have:

  • An ugly hole where the freezer used to be that now reveals the old water tank and loads of pipes
  • A plumping system under the sink that is held together with tape that fails regularly
  • A kitchen floor covered in drawings where The Husband has tried to sketch out where the new table will go
  • A hole in the wall where we decided to check what was behind it…in case there were any surprises (we’re pretty confident it is just the chimney as planned)

The plan is to knock down the wall behind the oven to combine the ‘dining room’ with the kitchen and open up the space.  I’m really excited about walking into the kitchen from the hall and being able to see both windows but the dining room is currently nothing more than a room completely full of stuff that has nowhere else to go:

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This archway and corridor between the two rooms will also be removed as we open up the whole space:

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There is so much to do but fingers crossed there won’t be too many surprises.

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A LOOK BACK AT 2016

I wrote back in October that we thought we had a start date from the builder but I was a bit optimistic as we just had a rough time frame (the end of the year).  However, we now have a specific date of Monday 13th February so we have a busy few weekends ahead of us to get ready for that.

As I write this The Husband is sanding back all the panelling on the stairs and cornicing that he doesn’t think is good enough.  He’s definitely a perfectionist and there have been several bits bothering him since he installed it.  It took a bit longer than planned and so he felt we ended up rushing it as we tried to get it done before the carpets were fitted.  He is hoping to get it all finished before he rips out our existing kitchen.

We’re both fairly optimistic that 2017 will see us finish the majority of the house project but it’s been nice having a look back at the blog and reminding myself what we managed to tick off the list during the last 12 month.  Jobs included:

  1. Adding the bookcases to the basement
  2. Installing the bar down there
  3. Getting a rug and coffee table to finish off the basement (for now!)
  4. Buying a coffee table and console table for the living room
  5. Agreeing on and buying a picture to brighten up the living room wall
  6. Adding some further colour to the living room with the coral rug and blue lamp
  7. Buying a bathroom cupboard and adding some pictures to the room (although they are due to be changed shortly!)
  8. Adding pictures to the stairs.

Overall it seems that the majority of the jobs were ‘finishing touches’ as we near the end of this project but that said, we’re about to take on our biggest project yet with the kitchen and outside space being completely changed.  It’s exciting but also quite scary!

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PROJECT: FINISHING TOUCHES

We think we now have a date for the builder to start on the kitchen and so we are trying to finish off all the smaller jobs so that by the time the kitchen is done everything else will be too.

We have:

  • Repainted the bathroom to neaten up the woodwork and have put up some pictures (although the husband now wants to try some white frames)

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  • Finally framed a picture I was given as a leaving present five years ago – we’ve put  it on the first floor landing and it has made such a difference to the space

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  • Started to put pictures up on the staircase – we’ve chosen to put up black and white pictures of some of our favourite places.  We’ve had them in a pile in our bedroom for so long that it’s nice to have them framed and up at last

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  • Finally put a lock on the back of the bathroom door as well as a hook

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  • Bought a mirror for the living room – we’ve had a temporary one resting on the fire place for years so it looks really different having the gap underneath it now

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  • Started to unpack some of our wedding gifts and have put pictures up in our bedroom in some of the frames we were given (lots of the frames used for the pictures on the stairs were wedding gifts too)

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  • Bought a bright coral rug for the living room – it took us quite a long time to pluck up the courage to go for such a bright colour and we weren’t quite sure when it arrived either but think we are now happy to keep it.  We do however need to reupholster the wing back chair you can see in the picture.  We have a pair of them and they used to belong to my Nana so mean a lot to me

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As well as getting the chairs done, one of the other jobs we have planned for the coming few weeks is to replace the glass by the front door.  We’re going to have one panel frosted and the other is going to have our house number on it

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PROJECT: BASEMENT

As well as adding the finishing touches to the living room we have also been trying to finish off the basement and I think we are almost there.  Once again it is the lack of cushions that is holding us back from ticking it off the completed list!

The book cases are now full and have instantly added some much needed colour to the space:

We still need to sort the books out properly as they have just been thrown on for now but it was really nice to finally be able to unpack lots of the boxes that were in the back room.

We have also got a new coffee table for down there and our most recent addition is a new rug.  It’s so new that I’m still not 100% sure but it definitely fits the space so I’m coming around to it:IMG_7158

We also finally got around to choosing the blinds.  We have gone for black-out ones which definitely make it feel very cosy when watching a film:

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As well as needing to make a decision on the cushions we also want to re-varnish the  nest of coffee tables and start to put up some pictures on the far wall but we feel like we are slowly getting there:

 

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PROJECT: BATHROOM

It seemed to take us a ridiculously long time to decide on a bathroom cupboard.  We saw one that we liked from a design and functionality point of view but The Husband didn’t like what it was made of!  We were looking for two drawers and then two cupboards with shelves and in the end we decided to have it made.

Even then The Husband didn’t like any of the handles on offer and insisted on getting his own but we have finally been able to get rid of the clear plastic boxes from the bathroom:

We’re now looking to touch-up some of the paint work in there, hang some hooks on the door, add some paintings and get some nice storage jars to go on top of the cupboard but it feels like a step forward:

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