Those of you who follow me on Instagram will know that after months of searching, we finally found a new, bigger house to rent. In our usual haphazard style, we’ve taken on something that needs a bit of work – but this time the landlord is happy to chip in *squeeee*
The house itself is just what we wanted; three bedrooms, a lounge, a kitchen big enough to hold a big wooden table (my actual dream!), a separate room downstairs for me to use as an office-cross-craft-cross-photography space, and two decent sized gardens. But…. there are awful carpets, and some of the skirting boards are hanging off and the tiles need changing and there is SO. MUCH. ARTEX. I’ve spent a bit of time (to my husband’s horror) making a list of all the things we need to do – it pretty much unrolls like a scroll, but today I’m sharing my top five must-do’s.
Bring in the Light
Having a light, bright house is one of the most important things – our current house is so dark downstairs, that even on a dull day in the height of summer, you still need to put the lamp on. The new house is bigger, and more spacious, but creating extra light is still going to be on the top of my list. Obviously we can’t start knocking through walls and so on, but a few well positioned mirrors, some lighter carpets and crisp white paint should do the job – although I do quite fancy a skylight on the landing!
Organise a Work Space that Works
My approach to working for myself has always been a bit…. haphazard and laid back. I have no proper accounting system (I know, I KNOW!), no method of storing paperwork and everything is basically shoved in cupboards out of the way. When we move, I’m determined to have everything set up from the beginning; I’m aiming for storage for craft materials, a filing cabinet for paperwork, and with any luck, one desk to work at and one to shoot photographs on.
Create an Inside-Outside Space
One thing I’ve loved in our current house is having a conservatory; although it’s absolutely FREEZING in Winter, it’s been such a lovely place to sit in the summer and watch thunderstorms, listen to the rain and just be that bit closer to the garden. The new house doesn’t have anything similar, so I’m thinking about getting a small shed at the bottom of the garden – nothing fancy, just some space to pot plants and sit with the radio or a book. Obviously in my head, I’d love a glorious plant-filled orangery, but we’ve all got to start somewhere!
Modernise the Kitchen
The bones of the kitchen are actually not too bad – white tiles, white cupboards…. but the rest is pretty dire. Think peeling lino, old worktops and artex walls, and you’d be pretty much there. The plan is to pretty much recreate what we did in the current house; replace the flooring (I’m hoping for proper, actual tiles this time!), swap the worktops for modern, solid wood ones and re-plaster the walls. What could be simpler?!
I know that the doors and windows in the new place are fairly modern, so I’ve got no worries about security from an external point of view – but one thing I worry about more than anything is the danger of the kiddos falling out of an upstairs window. They’ve been taught not to open them, and they know never to lean out, but…. they’re children, and they get overexcited about things that usually tend to happen on the other side of the window – like next doors cat, or a butterfly, or a bee, or the ice-cream man. Jackloc window locks have been designed specifically to prevent falls from windows, and we’re seriously considering having them fitted – they’re not hugely expensive, and I really think you can’t put a price on safety.
This is a collaborative post.