Friday, 12 June 2009

One you start....

Well as you can guess ripping apart your house is a messy business....ok it's a horrible messy dusty business (and it's the reason I've given up cleaning my house). Just for an example here was pile of rubble outside my house #1.

Luckily all this filth was not in vain and we quite quickly saw some good progress with the work. Look it has wood and walls and bricks and some huge red thing in my living room wall.

Now you are probably wondering why a window is looking into our extension. No this isn't some piece of modern art finery. It was soon to meet its demise just like everything else. Oh and that big red thing. That's a RSJ (Reinforced Steel Joist I'm guessing) that is going to stop my spare room from falling into my kitchen. Or at least that's what it will do now that we've realised the idiot architect drew it two feet too high.

The big stuff should move pretty quickly, but here is a pic of the bathroom....let's just say as it is above the kitchen the facilities are a bit al fresco!

Things should move pretty quickly so will post more soon!

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

The real destruction begins

Most people after starting to destroy their own bedroom while living in it would wait until they are finished to start the next project, but no we had to hit that thing like a fat person at an all you can eat buffet. Plus the kitchen was asking for it. Since we moved in the microwave, oven and cold water tap have all broken. In my humble opinion the kitchen was asking for it.

Most people when they leave for a wedding expect to come home to a house with all the walls and their stuff where they left it. So while I was busy partying with the beautiful couple my
builders were busy partying with El Sledgehammer.

The beautiful couple:
My not so beautiful house:

Quite obviously we're not most people.

Not sure how happy I am missing a whole wall to myself, but as long as the local foxes don't have rabies and stay off the couch I guess it's ok.

Ps. Just a side note to say that I had the best time ever in New Orleans and am so happy for my brother (Mr. This Old House) and his lovely bride. Now they just need to come over and visit me. : (

Monday, 8 June 2009

And for my next trick...

Well no sooner did we finish with the spare room (I promise pictures soon) then I decided I enjoyed locking myself all weekend in sweaty steamy rooms. So I dragged out the Steam Master and attached our room. Quite frankly anything that was painted those two colours (see before pictures below) was asking for it.

Unfortunately my lovely furniture does not go with baby sh*t brown so it all had to go....the carpet, cupboards, the randome shelf covering the chimney, the shelf that actually wasn't attached to the wall, the ceiling...anything that was there when we moved in really. I've never felt such hatred towards paint before.

Now despite our best efforts we've only gotten 90% of the way through our room. We have no carpet (very rural french chic) and something that doesn't really count as cupboards. So despite having most of my clothes in bags I think it is a big improvement. Plus my lovely husband is all ready to finish off our custom cupboards when the builders finally get out of my house! Here are the part way through pics.

Just a note of apology to anyone on the buses that stop right outside my house. I'm sorry we don't have curtains and you might occassionally see more than you want to. But you're the sicko looking get what you ask for.

Friday, 5 June 2009

The inspiration and the spare room

Thought I might as well give an idea of why this blog got its name. It has nothing to do with the fact that our house is old....and it is very old. It's really an homage to that bastion of PBS and obsession of my brother This Old House.

Now I will be the first to say that I couldn't stand the show when I was forced to watch it, but somehow somewhere the TOH gods were putting all that renovation goodness into my head. Now I'm not saying that I know how to use a router, but I have been known to put shingles onto a treehouse with a mean staple gun. So I'm hoping that all my complaining won't stop a little Bob Villa and Norm Abram magic rubbing off on this project.

So now you've seen the lovely "before" pictures of our house and our promise to do nothing to it for a while. But we had grand plans and Dom's friend moving into our spare room. So there was nothing for it, but to buy an industrial grade wallpaper stripper, rip out the carpet and commit general mayhem on the cupboards and other fittings. Just a reminder here's how it looks before we got the tools out.

I can honestly say that I've never had more fun destroying this room and whoever built these cupboards should never EVER be allowed to lift a tool again. The worst part is that as soon as you start you can't really stop.

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Moving up and down all at once

So our new house can only be described as an upgrade and a downgrade all in one. First off we have more room, we don't have to deal with the council (who are quite possibly dumber than pond scum) and I have a garden. Now as mentioned earlier I plan to use this space entirely to drink wine and cook meat. Any plant life that chooses to live there does so at its own risk. Here's how it looks from the outside. So this lovely little thing with the green door is our new home! Just to give you an idea of how filthy London is our brick is actually yellow. Mmmm....yummy!
Now for the inside....that's where it gets even worse. Here are some of the worst culprits in all their broken, should be thrown out as soon as possible glory.
All I can say is the girls we bought it from should have saved the £2k they paid to have it painted and made a donation to a blind charity. At least they could have picked better colors. I mean since when has baby sick yellow gone with red carpet and varnished 1980s bad country twee wood detailing? Honestly, the era of bad taste called...they want their house back.
There is only one solution complete and utter destruction. In an homage to music as bad as this decorating....It's Hammer Time.

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

How it all began!

In November Dom and I decided to move up and out of our lovely, but small (450sq ft) 1 bedroom apartment. While I love my little apartment and it was all perfect (except for the bathroom window) I really wanted an excuse to burn meat on a gril and you can't do that in your living room or at least you're not supposed to.

Here's a brief look at what we left behind....

So search and move we did. Our destination.....a 2 bed "cottage" just around the corner. It came with it's own front door and yard and everything! Next up....a brief look at where we've moved into and our failure to not keep the tools in the shed. Ahhh the calm before the storm.