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Time For A Change – Updating The Girls’ Room

Time For A Change

 

I’m bored with all the rooms in this house. We’ve been here nearly 4 years and it’s all still magnolia. Except for the shower room. That is now a dark grey and I love it! It’s not a usual colour choice for me, I’m usually more reserved but, I went for it and it paid off! I still hate the old pink bathroom suite though and can’t wait until that’s gone!

I was inspired to start updating the house after reading an e-book that gives you hints and tips for redecorating and renovating by making small changes.

One of the rooms that bug me the most is the girls’ room. They’ve have been complaining a lot just lately about not having enough storage space in there. They have bookcases stuffed full of books, ornaments, and craft kits. There are drawers and a wardrobe for clothes storage as well as a desk for Kaycee to do her homework on and a bed each. It sounds like ample storage but they have too much stuff!
The amount of furniture in the room means it isn’t easy to change things around.

Updating Bedroom

Last week I decided we had to do something about the storage problem. After talking to Ant, we came up with a plan for him to build loft beds with clothes storage and desks underneath. Something like this one but Ant’s going to design them to our needs.

change bedroom - loft bed with wardrobe, desk and storage
I love this idea and have pinned lots of images on Pinterest but with Christmas coming, I didn’t want to start a big expensive project.
With this in mind, I figured we could make lots of small changes now that would have a big impact on the way the girls use the room. It’s a temporary solution until next year but it’s already making a massive difference.

One of the easiest ways to refresh a bedroom and make it feel like new is to change the colour scheme. The curtains and bedding the girls have at the moment are very pink. They’re growing up now so I wanted to pick a more grown up colour scheme.

New Wardrobes, Bed, and Bedding.

The first thing I did was hit eBay to find some cheap, black canvas covered wardrobes. They have a small space for hanging things and lots of shelves. Kaycee’s wooden wardrobe was huge and took up quite a bit of space but the amount of actual storage was rubbish.
We’d taken out Ella’s wardrobe last year so we could fit Kaycee’s desk in when she started secondary school. Ella was then left with two sets of pink plastic drawers for all of her clothes.

homework station makeover challenge

When the wardrobes arrived, we put the first one together and realised that I hadn’t measured properly and they weren’t going to fit in with the two beds we have.
The only solution was to buy new beds so I ordered a cheap set of bunk beds from eBay and waited for them to come.

I didn’t have to wait long! They were dispatched on Saturday and came yesterday (Monday). They’re purple and I love them! I’ve been looking at bedding from Julian Charles. There’s a lovely lilac set which will go perfectly with the beds. They have matching curtains as well which is great. I like the curtains to match the duvets!

Julian Charles bedding with lilac flowers

Painting The Walls

Another cheap and easy way to renovate a room is to paint the walls so our next project is to take them to choose paint. We’ll probably get some wall stickers and new pictures as well to complete the look.

I can’t wait until it’s all finished. I’ll post photos later in the week showing our progress 🙂

 

This is a collaborative post

Shower Room Makeover – Before And After

Shower Room Makeover

We’ve never really liked the pink fittings in the shower room. We’re saving up to have them changed but until then, we’ve decided to embrace the pink!

I’ve been searching Google and Pinterest for ideas on the best way to decorate a room with pink fittings.

I can’t say I’ve ever thought about decorating with grey. When the first coat had gone on the walls, I have to admit that I got a bit worried.
I asked Anthony if he thought we should go and buy the lighter grey that we’d seen at B&M but he said I should wait and see how it looked when the room was done.

He was totally right because I absolutely LOVE it!

Before

It always looked messy because there wasn’t enough storage. Only one of the cupboard doors opened which was annoying, especially for me because I can’t bend very well due to having a bad back. I couldn’t reach into the far corner of the side with the fixed door.

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

After

Taking the doors off opened up all that storage space and looked so much better.

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

Before

The paint didn’t cover very well when we first did it. You can’t see it on the photo, but when you go in the bathroom you can clearly see it looks all cracked.

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

After

We stripped off the wallpaper and painted the wall directly. It covered much better.

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

Before

This corner always looked grubby, no matter how many times it was cleaned.

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

After

I love it now, it always looks clean!

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

Before

You can see how this set of shelves got everything dumped on them. I really didn’t like it and was happy to see it gone!

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

After

It’s so much easier to get out of the shower without the shelves in the way 🙂

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

You can read more about shower systems here

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

My favourite new addition to the bathroom has to be the shelves Ant built. They’re perfect for our needs 🙂

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

I love reed and essential oil diffusers. This black reed diffuser was a cheap one from B&M. I bought it because it was black; I don’t usually buy cheap ones because they don’t usually work very well, but this one makes the bathroom smell wonderful.

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

I know these wall stickers have gone out of favour, but I still love them!

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

Shower Room Makeover Before and After

The room was done on quite a small budget. Most things were bought at B&M. The wall stickers were from eBay and the wood for the shelves came from B&Q.

B&M

  • Grey Emulsion Paint – £10
  • White One Coat Gloss – 10.99
  • Off Cut Lino – £20
  • You Only Live Once Picture – £1.99
  • Crystal Towel Ring – £5.99
  • Crystal Toilet Roll Holder – £4.99
  • 4 Pce Bathroom Set (soap dispenser, toothbrush holder, cup, soap dish) – £5.99
  • Wallpaper – £2.50
  • Overdoor Hanger – 3.99
  • Bathmat – £3.99
  • Shower curtain – £5.99
  • 3 Pce stacking baskets x 2 – £2.99 for 3
  • Medicine caddy – £2.49
  • Reed diffuser – £1.00
  • Shower head – £5.99
  • Bin and toilet brush – £5.99
  • Glass heart clip jar – £1.99

Ebay

  • 10 Pce towel bale – £13.99
  • Flower hair girl wall sticker – £3.49
  • Fairy wall sticker – £5.49
  • Shower track hooks and gliders – £2.69

B&Q

  • Conti Board – £27.50
  • Fixings – £6.00
  • Fascia tape – £15.00

Approximate total cost – £175

Homework station makeover challenge

Homework station makeover challenge

Kaycee’s been given a budget to take part in a homework station makeover challenge. She was really excited when we took her shopping and got her to pick out all the things she wanted 🙂

homework station makeover challenge

We recently changed rooms around so we could fit a desk in her room for when she started secondary school. We scavenged some things from other parts of the house, like the desk tidy from my desk and a pot of coloured pencils Aiden no longer needed but her desk was a bit empty and boring.

homework station makeover challenge
Homework station BEFORE

This is what she bought

homework station makeover challenge

 

homework station makeover challenge
Homework station AFTER

homework station makeover challenge

homework station makeover challenge

homework station makeover challenge

homework station makeover challenge

homework station makeover challenge

homework station makeover challenge

She loves all her new things and seeing her desk has also made Ella more interested in doing her homework! She’s asked Kaycee if they can share the desk. Kaycee agreed as long as Ella promises to keep it as tidy as it looks now!

 

Thanks to Action Storage who provide lockers for schools.

Fashion – How many clothes do two girls need?

Girls and clothes!

I’ve never been a girly girl who loves clothes and fashion so it’s come as a bit shock to me, having two girls who love both. They have more clothes each than I’ve ever owned!

We bought new wardrobes a few years ago and Kaycee still has one with her clothes in but she’s struggling to fit everything. Ella’s wardrobe was put in Aiden’s room last year because he didn’t have room for his clothes in the drawers we gave him.
His old drawers were taken downstairs to the living room and used to store all the craft stuff instead. Ella had 2 sets of pink plastic drawers for her clothes which worked well for a while. They’re quite deep and fit a lot of clothes in. One set was used for her school uniform clothes and the other for her play clothes.

More clothes!

Their clothes seem to have multiplied this summer and it’s not all my fault! Admittedly, I did buy a bag of girls clothes from the charity shop. They were in brilliant condition and I couldn’t say no. Their sister also spoilt them, as usual when they went to stay for a weekend in the holidays!

Add to that, birthday presents containing more clothes and birthday money to buy even more clothes all followed!

The end result is that Kaycee tried to put all Ella’s clothes away and couldn’t fit them in so she tried making space in her wardrobe and that didn’t work either!

Seeing as Aiden’s staying home now (he was planning to go and live with his dad when he was 16) and bedroom plans changed, we’re not going to be getting the big room anytime soon.
We wanted to have made-to-measure fitted wardrobes when we moved into the big bedroom. I’m thinking we might have to have them fitted sooner rather than later so the girls can fit everything in!

The following are my two favourites:

iwardobe made-to-measure fitted wardrobe cream

iwardrobe made-to-measure fitted wardrobe blue

 

The ultimate dream, for the girls, would be to have bespoke walk-in-wardrobes each! It’s not a dream of mine because I’d never have enough clothes/shoes/bags/accessories to fill even a small one!

 

This is a collaborative post

New kitchen floor – finally done!!

New floor, yay!!

If you’ve seen my monthly bucket lists posts, you’ll know how long I’ve wanted the new floor in the kitchen. We bought it back in April and it’s been sat in the garage waiting to be laid.

We finally decided to go for it while the girls were away with family and I absolutely LOVE it. It looks so much nicer than the lino that was down. I was really fed up of the floor looking dirty all the time because that lino just wouldn’t come clean.
Add to that the 2 different kinds of lino because of a slight miscalculation and you have a floor that bugged me every time I went in there!

old floor

It now looks like this:

new-floor-in-kitchen-01

As well as laying the flooring, we made some other changes in the kitchen because we needed more storage.

No more display shelves

We removed the open shelves that I had in the corner, to display the old teacups and saucers and various other items.

 

kitchen_after_018

They were pretty but a big waste of space so we bought a corner unit and Ant made shelves either side to make it look like it was all built in.

new-floor-in-kitchen-02

We put the cream shelf unit that was opposite the cooker, outside and Ant made a new built-in unit with a black counter to match the rest of the kitchen.

It’s given us more counter space which we needed and more storage space. We can now store the wash basket under the counter. It did my head in sat in front of the shelves and you had to keep moving it out of the way when you wanted to cook. (It’s not in the following before photo. I’d moved it to the bathroom in order to take a nicer photo. You can see it in the top photo though!)

shelves before new floor

New unit

unit after new floor

It’s a bit lower than the other counters so that it’s easier to knead the dough when Ant’s making pasta. He uses the mixer for the bread dough but pasta is harder, so he tells me and it’s better done by hand.

The counter was a piece he had stored in the shed. When we can afford it, he wants to get a longer piece because he needs a bit more room when making spaghetti!

The floor and storage changes have made a massive difference to the kitchen. We had a space saving table in the middle of the kitchen where the chairs all stored underneath it. It’s now been taken down and put somewhere outside because I didn’t want it anymore. It got on my nerves every time I had to walk around it. It was also annoying with the amount of stuff that collected underneath it. Moving it out of the kitchen means keeping the floor swept and clean is so much easier.
The kids just take their breakfast to the dining table in the living room now instead 🙂

If you’re thinking of making some changes to your living space, here are 15 renovation ideas to give you some inspiration.

We’ve made a start on the new kitchen flooring!

New flooring, finally!

If you’ve read my bucket list posts this year you’ll have seen me saying, (every month since April!) that I want to get the new flooring down in the kitchen.
We finally made a start today but I have to confess to not only getting the flooring down, I’ve decided to decorate the kitchen as well!

I started emptying the shelf unit in preparation for the floor and thought that seeing as I was emptying the kitchen anyway, it would be the best time to get the paint out and freshen it up.

I’ve only washed, sanded and painted the skirting board and door so far but already it’s starting to feel all nice and fresh.

Changes afoot

Ant wants to make some changes to the kitchen; he wants to make a built in unit with a cupboard at the bottom, some shelves above the counter and a proving cupboard above the shelves, in the place where we currently have an open shelving unit.

open shelf unit in kitchen

It makes sense because even though I LOVE the shelf unit, we need more storage space in the kitchen.

He’s also wanting to put in a breakfast bar, (like the one we took out because I didn’t like it!) in the same place as the one we took out!

Breakfast bar we removed
Before
kitchen_after_03
After

I compromised and said I wouldn’t mind having an island in the middle instead of the table and chairs. The more I think about it, the more I can see his point of view.  It will give us so much extra counter and storage space.

I must admit, I won’t be sorry to see the back of the space saving table. The chairs are not comfy for me and it’s gone very wobbly. It probably just needs tightening but the space it takes up can be put to much better use.

Whatever we decide, the kitchen is going through changes. The most important one, that I can’t wait to see is that new flooring, finally in place!

Updated Stairs Project – Before and After

Updated Stairs

I took ‘before’ photos of my stairs last July because I didn’t like the carpet and wanted to do something fun instead. I scoured Pinterest and found and some wonderful ways to decorate stairs. We decided to paint the steps and wallpaper the risers.

We finally bought the wallpaper and paint last month and Ant’s done the first set of stairs. The middle landing and the stairs round the corner are still to be done but so far, I LOVE it!

It’s taken a few weeks to get these first ones done because obviously, we still have to get upstairs so Ant’s been doing alternate steps and putting masking tape on the ones we can step on.
As expected, people (not naming names but not just the kids and not me!) forgot a few times resulting in footprints in the wet paint that had to dry before they could be sanded and repainted!

Before

Updated stairs project - Carpeted stairs

After

 

Updated stairs project - painted and wallpapered stairs

Updated stairs project - painted and wallpapered stairs

 

It’s so much nicer than the carpet. I don’t have to lug a hoover up each step when they need cleaning. I can now sweep them with a brush and dustpan and give them a wipe with a damp cloth 🙂

Changing bedroom plans, again!

Bedroom Plans

I wrote last year about Aiden turning 16 and going to live with his dad when he’d finished school.

He’s had a change of heart now and has decided to stay with us and go to Lincoln college instead of Derby college.
I’m really happy that he’s staying.

The girls, well, that’s a different story!

They were looking forward to having a bedroom of their own and they’d planned how they were going to have the furniture arranged and the colour scheme they wanted and now they have to share for another 2 years, at least!

I had wanted to get Kaycee a day bed and Ella a cabin bed but now we have to rethink all the plans because Kaycee’s going to need room for a desk to do her homework.

Cabin Beds

We’re going to go with cabin beds that have clothes storage underneath as well as a desk.
I’ve been perusing Pinterest for high sleeper bed ideas and saw quite a few I like.

I like this one for Kaycee

High bed with drawers and desk
Image source – Bedstar.co.uk

and this one for Ella

High sleeper with wardrobe and desk

Aiden’s already got a high sleeper with a desk underneath but he rarely uses it and he has another desk in his room so he’d like a bed he doesn’t have to climb up to get in!
I’m thinking of getting him a metal single bed but I’m not sure whether to get black or white. I think he’d prefer black but if I get a white one, we can use it for the girls if needed when he does move out.
I like this one from Bedstar.

Single metal bed
Image source Bedstar.co.uk

We need to get rid of a couple of the bookcases and the wardrobes from Kaycee and Ella’s room to create more space for the beds but we don’t get rid of books so we’ll need to try and relocate them somewhere else in the house!

Bedroom plans - Girls room after

I’m not sure how we’re going to fit everything in that they need but Ant’s pretty good at making the best use of space so I’m sure he’ll have some good ideas 🙂

We’re going to let them choose their own bedding so they can personalise their own part of the room. They’ll have to work together to choose new pictures and the curtains will be switched out for new ones. The ones have now are a bit too pink for Kaycee’s liking!

Getting them to work together will be a task in itself as they don’t often agree on anything!

It’s going to be fun 🙂

Before and after – Built in Bookcases :)

Earlier this year the super wonderful husband made me some built-in bookcases in the alcoves at the side of the fireplace.

I’d been fawning over photos of built-in bookcases on Pinterest and couldn’t wait for ours to be done.
As you can see from the post I linked up, it’s taken quite a few months for us to finish the project! That post is from March and we’ve only just got them painted.

I’m even more in love with them now they’ve been painted and are not stuffed to the gills with books!
We’ve had to put up ten more shelves and get another small bookcase to accommodate all the books we took off the built-in shelves and we’re still struggling for book space but that’s what happens when you have two people who love books so much, they can’t get rid of them 🙂

Before

Before - Built-in bookcases

After

After - built-in bookcase

Before

Before - built-in bookcases

After

After - Built-in bookcases

 

Finally!! – Before and After photos -New Kitchen :D

Finally!! – Before and After photos – New Kitchen 😀

At times it felt like we were never going to have a nice kitchen again!
We had to have a new boiler installed when we first moved in (if you’re in need a new boiler, you can get a free, no obligation home survey from 2RED Ltd) then we installed new units, fitted new tiles, put new flooring down, had the entire kitchen re-wired and then decorated.

It took a while and some very hard work, mainly by the super wonderful husband, but we finally did it 🙂
This is a before photo from the estate agent….
old kitchen
and after….
new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen
new kitchen

This is the before photo (taken by the estate agent) of the other side of the kitchen…

old kitchen
and after….
new kitchen
new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

 

new kitchen

New Table

I love our new table. It’s the perfect size for the kids to have their breakfast on in the morning and we can have dinner in the evening if Ant’s not back from in time.
When we all have dinner together we have a drop leaf table in the living room 🙂

More Painting To Do

There are still a few little jobs to be done, for example, the shelves need a fresh coat of paint, as does the door and Ant’s going to build me a little bookcase that will fit under the counter near the back door. It won’t be big enough for all my cookbooks but I’ll be able to keep my favourites on there.

100 Times Better!

So there it is, our new kitchen 😀 Not only does it look 100 times better, having a modern kitchen is one of the best ways to increase the value of your home, which is something I never had to think about while renting!

Thank you S.W.H. (Super Wonderful Husband)

I can’t finish this post without saying a huge thank you to my S.W.H. who has worked tirelessly, day after day, to get the kitchen done the way I wanted it. Every spare moment he’s had has been spent in there, working away.

Thank you my darling, I love you ZILLIONS xxx

*Apologies for the rubbish quality on some of the photos. Seems I can sometimes take good pics on the iPhone, sometimes, not so much!
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