Kitchen Update Project

Hi all! It’s been quite a while since I’ve done an interior design related blog and so apologies to those of you that expected more of them from me at the time. The past year has been so busy for me that the little head space I found I had left at the end of my day was taken up with trying to practice mindfulness. This is why my updates have really focussed on that.

At any rate, here I am and I’m about to give my kitchen a bit of a going over, so I thought what better time to get back in contact with you and let you in on what I’m planning! How the fuck are you all? I’m good.

So last week I visited New York. As you do over there, you spend a lot of time in subways staring at walls. Unlike the rest of the world, when I do this, my mind wanders in all kinds of directions and I find myself making patterns out of what I see. One particular morning I saw a dark (damp stained I suspect!) wall with a flash of purple running across it (God knows what that was), broken up by a crisp white tile. Being me I suddenly realised and understood I must return to my kitchen posthaste and recreate this mess in my own home. Don’t ask.

 Just down there, just down where the black bit begins.
Just down there, just down where the black bit begins.

So later on that day and with the help of a vino or three, a realisation came to light. This year I have been really getting excited about Christmas. I can’t really ever remember feeling that way about the season so I’m embracing it. Thinking more about it though I started to dig into the whole idea behind Christmas decoration, how people put tinsel and trees up that last for a week or two (or three months if you’re really committed), we’ll decorate for events but not for seasons. Even though it costs less than £100 to redecorate a room on a budget and may take a day or two out of your life, we just don’t commit in that way to our interior.

I’m not saying that’s wrong or anything, at the end of the day we are busy people with lives to lead. All I really am saying here is, if you have the time and a bit of spare cash, and the inclination takes you, then why not pick up a cheeky can of new paint every six months or so and change your rooms up? I’m planning on having winter and summer colour schemes from now on I think. I may get carried away with work and so this may not be something that I can stick to in every room all the time but I’m certainly not sticking anymore to that idea that once a room is done, it’s done.

 My kitchen currently.
My kitchen currently.

So basically what I’m saying here is I’m taking the influence of the time of year and using that to direct the room that needs decorating at the moment, and that is the kitchen. I’m taking the ideas I got in that subway for dark, warm shades and crisp white and translating that into the black kitchen units I already have and oak worktop with white metro tiles and adding deep, deep, berry tones with flashes of brass and greenery. I’ve put together a cheeky mood board for you.

Because the room is part of an open plan scheme, i’ll be taking aspects of it and running them into the dining area next. I’ve picked a completely different shade for in there, which once again will either be fabulous or a total disaster. GO HARD OR GO HOME!

If you follow my instagram and check my stories over the next week or so you’ll see all the updates.

I like chatting with you, so let me know your ideas and responses to my blog.

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On the Homes Rahe Stress inventory, renovating your home in fact only appears at number 28 in the list. Although the more savvy of us will be aware that any stage of the act could in fact propel you straight into first place of ‘death of a spouse’ with just the flick of a colour chart.

 

I have renovated.  Have you renovated?  It’s such an idealistic notion isn’t it?  I mean at the end of the day, we all watch Grand Designs and I am totally familiar with George Clarke’s moon face and determination to be the most Sunderlandish person ever born.  I’ll be honest and say at times I can’t even fathom what he’s actually saying. 

 

Any one can renovate can’t they? If you’re in a relationship then it’ll be even easier won’t it – because there’s two of you to shoulder the load isn’t there.  Just be prepared – have a contingency plan, order everything ahead and get a good builder. Get a good builder.  Easy enough.

 

Two months of consistent arguing about what kind of bidet tap to order.  One solid week of shrieking about why anyone would actually want a fucking bidet. Objects thrown over ‘someones’ idea of having slate window cills (yes that someone was me and yes I stand by the decision). Generic, consistent, discontent at pretty much all decisions for one reason or another. Chippy dinners for two full weeks due to no functioning kitchen, leading to extreme wall climbing and possible rickets. Everything covered in dust leading to the daily Catherine Wheel bicker match which normally will result in one giant mud slinging contest.  Yes, it’s easy enough.  Renovate a house – they do it all the time on Grand Designs.

 

What you don’t see on Grand Designs is all the epic editing that is required to make it appear like the couple are still able to be in the same room as each other at the end of it all. We were lucky, and that’s all I can describe it as.  We managed to find a middle ground that allowed us to either a) agree to disagree on decisions that would then allow us to progress with the build or b) kick up such a cavalcade of discontent that by the end of it we couldn’t actually remember what had started the drama in the first place by which point our builder would have just made the decision for us.

A slate cill is a good idea.  Repeat until you agree.

Yes, renovating truly is wonderful.  Of course, as I sit here in my luxurious palace now sheathed in marble and Swarovski, whilst my wild cats languidly pace their gilt cages I realise that it has all been worth it.  Not really – it’s all a lot more Scandinavian with the odd cow hide but it has of course been worth it. Would I do it again?  Not without the right builder.  We were exceptionally fortunate to find someone that was human and not a liar; rare traits from my experience. Apologies to all those exceptional builders out there that have the morals of Mother Theresa – In the words of Michael Bublé ‘ I just haven’t met you yet’.  I’m not the kind to give advice.  Let me give you some advice; get the right builder if you are going to dip your toe into the hell ocean of doing a place up.  Indeed – get my builder if you need one and you’re local to me.  Also, get wine.  Lots and lots of wine.  Lots and lots and lots of wine.