Taking on this house is a long term project to create a lovely home over time – we definitely can’t afford to make it perfect from the start. In this first round of works our main focus is to make it liveable for a start and then to create a blank canvas on which we can build and add to in the future – fresh walls, floors and a layout that will work for us is the aim. Any ‘luxuries’, as I like to call them, such as the wood burning stove that I was talking about in my last post, a new front door to replace the UPVC one and cabinetry work for example has got to wait. Therefore, all I am really thinking about this point is creating a canvas that will last and that we won’t get bored of.
The big thing for me about the house is creating a sense of space as it is very small. I have never, ever been into big, bold colours and I am definitely not into the current trend for dark interiors even though I can appreciate it in other peoples homes. For me, it is really important to have as much light and space as possible as this is what makes me feel calm and centred. A white uncluttered space is my priority dotted with interesting furniture and textiles.
However, to make the space feel as big as possible, whilst also adding a cosy feel, I want to add some colour to create a sense of cohesion so each room flows to another, almost as if each room is an extension of the one before it. For some, this is the absolute opposite of their design philosophy; they want each room to be completely different in colour, tone and style. But for this house I don’t think that would work. Therefore, I plan for the woodwork throughout the house (skirting, architraves, doors) to be painted in Farrow and Ball’s Light Blue, which is a colour I absolutely love and have used before here. The walls will be All White to give me the all important light I want and the woodwork and below the dado rail in the hallway will be the gorgeous Inchyra Blue. Although this is a dark colour the fact that above the dado rail and the ceilings will be All White will keep it bright. Also, I really love the idea of going from a dark colour in the hallway and opening up onto lighter colours in the living space. This is similar to the effect I would like to achieve in our hallway:
I also really love the paint effect in this house that uses the same colour throughout on all the woodwork (wishful thinking that our house was this size!):
I don’t plan to recreate the room below but I really like the soft, relaxed vibe of this room and that’s the feeling I would like to recreate throughout the new house. I want it to be bright, light, comfy, cosy and welcoming with a mixture of textiles and interesting furniture and objects.
Another project that I have found really inspiring is a 1930s house designed by Doris Lee. I particularly like the bathrooms and hallway.
I haven’t really planned the furniture around the house too much yet as I would quite like to move in and let that happen a bit more organically but I hope I will have achieved a lovely canvas by that point.