Worst 2 Best

Renovation and extention of a 1921 Californian Bungalow

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Auction Results

We didn’t win the beautiful Monk Bench! The Numbers man said I should have bid more, but from past experience this is not always looked upon fondly! I will go back every Monday until the reno is finished and I’m sure to pick something up.

Shopping with an numbers man #1

Often my husband (the numbers man) and my taste clash and my expectation of money available to spend are far different from his.  Hence endless searches on ebay for unique items that make our home perfect.  I have yet to purchase a single thing for fear of it not suiting the house, it not fitting or simply not having the room to store it while the renovation happens.

Yesterday we (the numbers man) and I got to have a rare lunch together in Bridge Road Richmond, how lovely! Across the road from the cafe was E.J. Ainger, an auction house filled with antiques and rarities I just die for! I manager to convince Numbers Man to pop into the auction hall to check out things for the next days sale. He said “why are we going in here??” to which I replied “because I’ve always wanted to and your not in a hurry today”.

We;; you could have knocked me over with a feather when from the other side of the shop I hear him say “hey come and have a look at this!!” He had found the most beautiful hand carved Monk Bench, he thought it would be perfect for the hall, where I had in mind a church pew.  I fell in love with it and couldn’t believe how spot on his taste was for this item.

As I couldn’t be there on the day of auction I put in an absentee bid and will find out tomorrow if it was sucessful, fingers crossed!!

I will go back next week, there were plenty of other things that caught my eye, too bad I didn’t bid on these gems!


Builders are briefed

Yesterday the last builder received a set of working drawings to quote on. In total there were five builders, but we have already discounted one because he was an negative idiot!
The second builder (one of our fav’s) noticed the designer had put 3m tall windows in the back room with 600mm top windows, so they reached from floor to ceiling….WTF! We felt like a couple of duds as we had not realised that, it is certainly isn’t what we want. So we had to redesign all the windows and let the builders all know about the change. It should bring the cost down considerably.

and now we play the waiting game…. quote take around 4 weeks to complete, and given our level of experience I’m sure my brief is full of holes that they will need to fill, so big few weeks back and forth emails.

I can’t wait to find out how much this is going to cost, nervous too!!

It’s the little things…

What do I long for, really it’s the little things.

I want ….

  1. to have a laundry bigger than a postage stamp (currently 1.5 x 1.3m)
  2. to be able to open the dishwasher and fridge at the same time (currently impossible)
  3. to be able to open all kitchen cabinets (one next to oven only opens 20cm)
  4. To have room in the kitchen for everything to go away (it’s an Amish heaven with everything hanging up)
  5. to go into my son’s room to check on him before I go to sleep and not smell tonight’s dinner (curry).
  6. To have more than one inside toilet (not ideal to say the least)
  7. To have the dryer inside the house (Stored in the bungalow…oh I mean guest house)
  8. To have friends over and not be stuck in the little kitchen away from everyone. (the cleaning part is the worst, everyone is having a good time by then and I need to leave to pack the dishwasher, and hope no one wants anything from the fridge!)
  9. to let my kids run from inside to out side while still in eye sight
  10. to be able to hide away my office mess (Organised chaos)
  11. to have my parents and in-laws stay over inside the house, not in the bungalow. (then they can get up with the kids at 6.30am on the weekends)
  12. to drive up a smooth driveway (it currently feels like we are going off roading).
  13. have a shower without getting water all over the bathroom (slipping on the beautiful lino floor is a constant hazard).
  14. have a bath that I fit into  (I’m not huge, it’s just a small bath)
  15. to have somewhere safe to store the pusher that isn’t inside the front door.

I could go on, but I think you get the picture, and if not here is a picture….

Let there be light!

Can you have too many power points? I have just completed the electrical plan for the build, every light fitting, power point and appliance.

I’ve been told the key is to imagine walking through and how you intend to use the space.  So it’s done, off to the designer and hopeing to have everything through council in the next four weeks.

Things I love … mirror walls

I’d like to make our main bedroom a little more romantic, one way I thought of was a wall of antique and vintage mirrors. I’ve found a few examples I like.

Pantry Palava

Who would have thought a pantry could present so many choices of style and function! The dimensions of our pantry will be 2.5 x 1.4m, it will have a small but deep sink and shelving to the ceiling, which is 3.6m high.
I am around 165cm tall (around 5’5″), so getting to the top shelves of the pantry will be difficult, I thought about hanging some kind of trapeze or Tarzan rope but neither really sounds like a safe idea. So I thought maybe a library ladder? We are getting a huge book shelf in the living room, around 5m long to the ceiling again (3.6m) so I could use the ladder for both, just get the railing system on each. This was a great idea, until I got a quote and it will cost around $2.2K…..bummer!
So the next idea is to get an old timber step ladder, maybe 8 rungs high that is stored in the pantry, maybe even have a little nook made so it’s out of the way. Then I can use is when I please in either room. So far tracking on ebay they are going for around the $150 – $200. What a saving!

This is the one pantry I think hits the mark for me.  Love the open shelves and the ladder!! The only difference will be a narrow work bench will go around the room in ours.

This is it! I LOVE this and will do something very similar

Pendant Lighting for the kitchen

I found a pic in a mag that I love, I’ve contacted the supplier to get a price which I hope comes through next week. What do you think? Keep in mind the ceiling height in the kitchen is 3.65m (12ft) so there is plenty of room to make these a feature and not upset the effect of the high ceiling.

UPDATE: Price in for these, $1150 each….WOW!

Great Pendant Lighting

Close to pushing the button!

Hello again, it has been quite some time since I started to this blog, and at the time I anticipated starting our renovation/extension with in 6 months.   We put everything on hold for personal reasons and around 3 months ago everything got sorted and we started planning again.

We are so close to completing the working drawings to get quotes from our builders.  We have seen their work and are happy with the finish they are able to provide.

Last thing we need to do is provide the electrical plan.  This is a little harder that we first thought, it need to be reasonably accurate so the quote comes back as close as possible to the actual cost….. time to sit down and imagine walking through he house turning lights off and on.

I will do my best to update this a little more regularily.



Things I love … Panel Pop

I’ve just had a couple of really nice people visit to fix my table (large crack appeared a few weeks ago) and they told me about Panel Pop.

They print your photos onto a ceramic tile then frame them in a rustic timber box frame. A little pricey but gorgeous!!

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