Thursday, 28 August 2014

Picking the wrong colour paint

After several hours at the weekend spent in Homebase and much deliberating, we had finally agreed on the colour of paint for a master bedroom. With the house renovations into their second year and only having temporary bedroom space up until now getting our master bedroom perfect is an exciting challenge and choosing the paint colour is very important. With colour guide books with the paint's in use and rows of tins in front of us we narrow down the choices and there was a clear winner for our paint. We chose to use Homebase Home Of Colour in a shade called 'Cosy Mocha' The colour in the guide book looked a nice neutral grey. The colour on the tin was a nice neutral grey, the colour on the website was also a nice neutral grey. 
Homebase Home OF Colour 'Cosy Mocha' Paint
Image from

But after painting just one wall this pink tinged wall was staring back at me and i hated it. Calling in my other half to get his opinion he immediately hated it too and the decision to repaint it was easily decided. The problem is we have gloss cream wardrobe doors on order and a pink/grey wall is not the neutral natural colour we chose to go with them. 

Wrong colour paint on the walls

Homebase cosy mocha paint

I understand that different paints can look different colours in different shades of light so we tried looking at the wall with the light off in just natural light. We even changed the light bulb to a white light rather than a warm light but there was no getting away from the fact that this colour had to many tones of pink in the paint that we just didn't want.

Rather than agreeing on another colour in the shop we decided we would actually buy some test pots this time to sample the colours in the room to avoid making the same mistake again. Although we maybe should have done this in the first place we had managed to get the paint colours correct first time on the whole of the downstairs of the house and thought the luck might continue upstairs.

Now that we had seen how awful this colour was we even started to think out of the box slightly more and get some samples of colours that we hadn't even contemplated before and even opted for a green! The green looked lovely on the tin and were really tempted to just go for it and buy it there and then, but once bitten, twice as shy. We were glad we got the sample on the wall as it dried a lot darker than the sample on the tin suggested and very swiftly decided against it.
Homebase Camouflage paint
Image from
Homebase paint samples

With samples all coming up differently to what was on the tins we ended up choosing the colour 'Barely Haze' which was actually our wildcard choice, this was the colour neither of us really liked in the shop but thought we would take a punt on and as an outside choice that we both knew wouldn't work. As the colours were coming up so differently to what was on the tins 'Barely Haze' turned out to be the neutral colour that we were looking for.

The colour looked like it would work well with the sample from the gloss doors as well as the wallpaper choice for the insides of the wardrobes. so the following day it was back to Homebase to take the pink paint back and exchange for our new colour choice before screaming back and cracking on with the painting to finally make the most of the long weekend working on the house.
Mood board for our bedroom

Thursday, 21 August 2014

The bedroom gets a first coat of paint, Let the decorating begin

With the plasterer paying us a visit last week the three exposed walls in the bedroom were now freshly plastered and drying beautifully and so we were able to give the room it's first lick of paint and finally start to see what the bedroom will look like moving forwards. Below is a shot of the built in wardrobe made from moving the wall back into the bedroom behind it. All the exposed panels have been given an undercoat, the backs and sides to the wardrobe will have wallpapered backs and sides to give a little bit of our personality to the custom built wardrobe. 
Custom built wardrobe

Painting the bedroom
Although the old wardrobe is still in the middle of the room with clothes in it until they can be moved into their new home we are managing to work around it and get the first coat of painting done in the room. 
Decorating the bedroom
Now just to let the paint dry and we'll be onto the next coat and will start to see the bedroom taking it's final shape. After nearly two years since we bought the dilapidated property we can not wait to have a beautiful bedroom to sleep in. 
I'll keep you posted on the progress over the bank holiday weekend but hoping that if the paint ever arrives from Homebase we will be able to crack on. Yes we made the mistake of ordering paint from Homebase which was supposedly delivered on the 12th of August but no sign of it yet! You live and learn eh!

Friday, 15 August 2014

Grand Designs continue on our bedroom

As the time ticks by progress has slowed down over the last few months of the house renovation and although the downstairs is 90% complete the upstairs is proving quite a challenge. The savings and the loans that we took out 18 months ago have since run out and the only way to continue with the build is to do a little bit each month. 

With the weather in Cornwall being amazing we have spent some time at the beach and in the sea and efforts haven't been 100% on the house but we've the two year anniversary approaching of being first time home owners we are putting the pressure on to have a finished bedroom for our 2 year houseaversary. 

Plaster Boarding the bedroom
Here you can see that the walls are being lined with new plasterboard, the old walls were very wonky and old and after a few wall repairs the old plasterboard was ripped away and the new installed. To see how the bedroom looked before the new walls went in you can see the pictures here.
Fitting a door lining in the bedroom
A new door lining is hand made by my partner and inserted ready for a new door to be fitted. 
Plasterboarded bedroom

Plaster boarded bedroom

Plaster boarded bedroom
The room was then fully plaster boarded, except the ceiling as this was in good condition so will just need repainting saving us a bit of cash. You can see behind the wardrobe in the above image that we have also built a full width in built wardrobe. This new wardrobe will replace all the wardrobes and chests of draws in the bedroom creating more space around the bed.
plastered bedroom

plastered bedroom
Then just two days ago we have had a visit from our plasterer who has plastered the remaining three walls in the bedroom and this has transformed the place. The next job is to get the paint brushes and rollers out and start working hard on decorating the bedroom. The new electrics for the wall lights and sockets are in place, the radiator position has been moved and we are ready for the final push. With bank holiday weekend approaching we have a plan for one person to work on painting the in built wardrobe and the other person to work on painting the walls and after that it will hopefully be a simply case of adding wardrobe doors, handles and getting our clothes into the bedroom. 

As we currently have our clothes spread between the other two bedrooms and the old bedroom furniture storing our clothes in the living room getting this room complete will be a massive step forward and hopefully after living here nearly two years we will finally have a lovely bedroom to sleep in. 

But before we move in.... we will be getting carpet fitted :@) Although we will have to wait until we have done all the decorating and wait for another packet of wages but the thought of having carpet for the first time in two years is very exciting indeed and will certainly make me paint a lot faster! 

Monday, 2 June 2014

Renovating the master bedroom

With a slow start to 2014 the renovating of our home has been halted by lack of money. After Christmas hitting us hard financially and the Christmas holiday feeling of not doing any work the months drifted by and before we knew it summer was approaching us and the whole of the upstairs still needs attention.

With pay day upon us we blow all our cash by the 1st day of the month on plaster board and timber ready to start the process of renovating the master bedroom. First on the list of things to do was expose the two walls that need attention and these just happened to be the walls with the fitted wardrobes against. Clearing out the bedroom and then moving the wardrobes we now have access to the walls to strip off the old plaster board and re line with thermally insulated plaster board on the two external walls. The old plaster boarded walls were perfectly fine and we could have simply redecorated the room but we are doing everything we can to be environmentally friendly and retain as much heat as possible plus the benefits of saving money on heating.

Removing wardrobes
With the wardrobes emptied and moved to the other side we now have access to the walls that need insulating.
Renovating the bedroom
First we get to work ripping down the old plaster board and the old timbers that were holding them up. When I say holding them up, they were barely holding onto the crumbly wall and were not attached to the plaster board on the ceiling.
Removing old plaster board
With all the old plaster board and old timbers removed we make a few repairs to the wall and check for any cracks and apart from looking a little old and moth eaten we are pleased that it is perfect to plaster board straight back over.
Bedroom renovation
Separated at 400mm apart the timber's were secured in place, with the correct depth screws to hold the timbers firmly in place this time.
Timbers for plaster boarding
With all the timbers in place it would have been time to fit the plaster board and our room would be ready for the plasterers... However like most aspects of renovating our house we decide to change the plans again. All along we decided to place the bed against the right hand side, we've had the whole house rewired and this included running sockets and electrics for wall lights on the right. However now the room was gutted we could see the room in a different way and decided to move the bed to the left hand side so now we need to get our electrician back to change things around once more!
Bedroom decorating
It's a minor set back but both agreed the bed would be better on the left and whilst we are renovating the whole house want to do our bedroom exactly how we want it. 

Next job is to get the wiring done and then get the plaster board up ready for the plasterer, then all we need to do is decide how we want to decorate our new master bedroom.

Saturday, 29 March 2014

A slow start to 2014

When we bought our house in 2012 there was no stopping us whatsoever, we had picked up the keys on the Friday and by the Saturday morning the demolition had begun. Whilst the boys were ripping down walls the girls were busy moving boxes from our old house into the new one. When I say new, I guess I should really say old house/building site. It was a shock to the system moving from a new build home to something built nearly 90 years ago with prehistoric electrics and no heating. I was suddenly wondering what we had let ourselves in for but luckily my other half and his dad were working at the speed of light and it wasn't long before I was seeing progress on our little house and the worry began to subside.

However 18 months on and with the downstairs near completion the upstairs has come to a halt! Taking some time off for Christmas has really taken it's toll on us and the house, through the cold gloomy months of January and February we really struggled to get motivated to build any more of the house. However after a weeks holiday in the snow and an amazing time snowboarding we are now back and ready to start work on the house once again.

We have bits to finish off in the bathroom, all the bedrooms to plaster and decorate, carpets to eventually fit once all the other jobs are done and the loft to insulate not to mention the whole entire outside of the house needs landscaping. We have a lot of work still to do and have not worked very hard over the last few months so with the weather getting slightly warmer I think it's time to come out of hibernation and get lots more completed on our first ever little Cornish Home.

Friday, 21 March 2014

Decorating homes in Cornwall

We are very excited to be guesting on A Little Cornish Home. Home decor is a passion of ours at Decorate my Sett. Making a house a home is an instinct I think we all have deep down. We just love looking at good design, be that in architecture, furniture, home wares or soft furnishings. 
There are some great local businesses that have a gorgeous selection of designer brands. A favourite of ours is Just Fab Design in Launceston, right on the Cornwall, Devon border. They are actually the largest showroom of designer fabrics and wallpapers in the South West and they are like a treasure trove. So many options, so little space! 
The beauty of Just Fab Design is that they take as little or as much of the burden off your shoulders. Maybe you just need a little help choosing fabrics for upholstery, or paint colours to match your curtains. They offer expert advice,  or if you’re a little lost they can suggest colour schemes, measure up your windows and furniture and arrange for your curtains, blinds and upholstery to be made up and fitted in your home to your specification! Sounds great to me. 
Some of the more opulent fabrics available are swoon-worthy, the toiles are tempting, and anything by Manual Canovas would suit very nicely.   

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Thinking about the bedrooms

Now that Christmas is well and truly a distant memory thoughts turn back onto the house and in particular the bedrooms and how we are going to decorate them. Just before Christmas we spent our time removing the bedroom walls and restructuring the upstairs to how we wanted it.

Now it's time to think about getting these rooms plastered and then decorated. I actually feel a little bit sad that these are the last rooms that need decorating as I've enjoyed putting my personal stamp on the rest of the house. The second bedroom, the spare room from a very early stage already had it's colour theme chosen. One of the first things I bought before any of the work began down stairs was some gorgeous duck egg blue wallpaper with matching fluffy duck egg blue cushions and that was the theme for these room.

However our master bedroom has no theme, no plan and quite frankly I have no idea what to do in our room. We have already used feature wallpaper downstairs in the living room and will be using feature wallpaper in the second bedroom so are reluctant to do this same technique in the master bedroom. Then I had the idea of stencils or decals on the wall. Painting a feature wall in one colour then adding a unique decal that is personal to both me and James. I've found these websites and with some great designs and I'm now full of ideas.

I love this decal, it's perfect for us and what we've achieved with buying our first house and completely renovating it. I'm still liking the idea of having a feature wall in our bedroom so maybe a bold colour behind the bed with a statement like this above the bed. 

What do you think?

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Work begins in 2014

For the last few months leading up to Christmas we have worked so hard getting the house ready for the festive period and the visit from my parents, working every single night and all weekends for the last few months has been hard. We have missed festive drinks with friends and avoided Christmas shopping all together to get the house ready.

Once the family arrived tools were officially put down and they have stayed down until today. We enjoyed a nice two week break from Christmas into the new year and going back to full time work was definitely a shock to the system. Now we are nearly three weeks into the new year and officially rested and relaxed it's time to start work and hopefully get the house finally finished.

Today the boys are working in the porch, an area that has been completely ignored up until now, whilst the majority of the work was creating a comfortable living and kitchen area the door to the porch has been shut and forgotten about until today.

With a stack of slates delivered we are working out patterns on how to lay the floor in the porch. Pictures will most definitely follow when the new floor is laid.

Monday, 30 December 2013

Work stops to celebrate Christmas

When we bought our house in October 2012 we thought it would be a brilliant idea to invite my family down from Essex to spend Christmas 2013 with us. As the months of renovation went by the house was getting more and more like a home and ready for my family but it was hard work. We were grouting the bathroom the night before they arrived and working right until they knocked on the door. But once they arrived they downstairs was looking good but the upstairs still needed work but this had to be ignored and we were to ignore the plasterboard bedroom walls and lack of carpet and hope that some nice curtains and bedding would make it comfortable for my family until we were 100% finished on the house.

For our first Christmas in our new home and the first Christmas in Cornwall for my family the whole festive period was a success and we will definitely host Christmas again when the house is completely finished.

Ready for Christmas in Cornwall

Christmas in Cornwall

Roasting Chestnuts

Pigs in Blankets

Open fire in CornwallChristmas dinner table

Christmas in Cornwall 2013

Monday, 16 December 2013

Fitting oak doors in the bathroom and bedroom

With only 9 days until Christmas we really should be thinking about turkey dinners and wrapping presents but right now the DIY continues late into each night. Tonight we have added two new internal doors upstairs, these are on the newly created bedroom and the bathroom. Although we currently don't have the door handles or lock on the bathroom door we are hoping that these will arrive any day and we can get these fitted before the big day!
Fitting oak wooden doors

Bedroom oak door
We both know that the house won't be finished by Christmas but it will be really close and the only thing stopping us from getting it finished is a simple case of money. In the new year we will save up and go through the final big spend and hire a plasterer and order some carpet. Once these two big jobs are completed it will be time to decorate the upstairs and the house will be finished! 

I know it will never be 'finished' as we will then start on the outside and start renovating the currently untouched garden and patio, and then the driveway and front of the house will get a makeover not to forget the man cave that is the garage which I know will get a lot of love to make the perfect get away for James. When all this is done hopefully it will be time to enjoy the house that we have put so much time effort and money into building and I can enjoy baking during the weekends and James can enjoy tinkering in his garage. But right now we have 5 days until the family arrive so we must get on getting as many jobs finished before Christmas as possible!