Saturday, 31 August 2013

The ceiling beams sanded and painted

This is the one job that I have been dreading and avoiding for a long time! Sanding the old wooden beams and repainting. I sanded a few beams but instantly got very achy arms and my face, hair and eyes covered in dust and shards of flaky paint. 
Restoring old wooden beams
After avoiding for a few more weeks my lovely James gave in and sanded the remaining beams so that they could be painted. 

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Boxing in the RSJ's, No more steel beams on show.

Today feels like quite a momentous occasion where the last of the steel beams are boxed in with plasterboard. When we moved into the house it was liveable but totally not to our liking. Over the last 10 months we have completely gutted the place, removing most of the downstairs internal walls, raising kitchen ceilings and re-lining all the walls in the house with thermally insulated plasterboard. All this work has seen demolition and destruction but finally the last of the steel beams is being hidden away by new plaster board. It's quite nice knowing that moving forwards all the jobs will be decorating and making good and that there will be no more major renovations... well downstairs at least!
Plaster boarding the steel beams

Boxing in RSJ's, Rolled Steel Joists

Ready for plastering
Now all the ceiling needs is some plaster and some paint and that's another job ticked off the massive list!

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Fitting the new ceramic kitchen sink.

One of the first things I made clear to my partner when we bought our first house was that I wanted an old fashioned butler style sink. I didn't care about the layout of the kitchen, or the style of cupboard doors as long as I got the sink of my dreams. 

However I soon realised that buying a traditional butler style sink would be setting me back nearly £1000 and our plans soon had to change. However on a recent trip up to Ikea in Bristol we noticed this ceramic sink in a butler style at a quarter of the cost. It was a no brainer, the sink was ordered and would arrive in a few days. 
Ceramic kitchen sink from Ikea
Unpacking the sink was a little nerve wracking, and once unpacked looked a whole heap bigger than it did in the store. 
Fitting a kitchen sink
James then got to work adjusting the base unit that would house the new sink.
Butler sink pictures
Next on the job list is to sort out the water connection and drainage to the new sink before finally fitting the unit. 
Ikea domsjo sink
Now all we need to do is buy a beautiful wooden draining rack. (not a plank of wood on plinths) and choose our kitchen cupboard doors and that's another section of kitchen completed. Oh... and keep it tidy unlike the picture!

Sunday, 25 August 2013

With the new worktops in, the house could pass as finished, well nearly....Camera never lies eh!

We are making steady progress on the house, it might be a little bit slow but things are coming along nicely. The kitchen is really starting to take shape, the appliances have been wired in and the work tops fitted and the electrical sockets wired in throughout the kitchen.
DIY fitting a new kitchen

Fitting new kitchen work tops

New kitchen pictures
If you ignore the lack of tiles on the walls and ignore the plastered walls and the lack of flooring and perhaps squint a bit the kitchen actually looks like a kitchen at last. 
Enjoying our DIY kitchen

New fitted kitchen
I can't believe the transformation in just a few months we have gone from a dungeon to an impressive kitchen. I just can't wait to choose the tiles and give it further finishing touches. 

Friday, 23 August 2013

Fitting the electrics for the new oven and extractor

As the house is coming together it feels like progress has slowed right down, but there is a lot of work going on behind the scenes that takes time but doesn't have a dramatic effect. Previously we've been removing walls, gutting interiors, and painting rooms. All of these have started the day looking one way and ended the day looking totally different and leaving us feeling that we are really cracking on with the house build. However it is a lot of the second fix jobs that take the time to complete and make it feel like not much is happening. 

Today the wiring for the oven, extractor and hob are being worked on. With the help of an electrician the wiring is slowly getting replaced throughout the whole house but today we are concentrating in the kitchen. 
Fitting a double oven

Fitting a kitchen hob

Fitting an extractor hood
Although after a whole evenings work we now have the appliances wired in safely and correctly, there is not much to see in the way of progress and can't wait for the next big visual change to happen. 

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

DIY Kitchens, the new worktop arrives.

As we are doing the whole of the house renovations on a very tight budget we are trying to make savings all the time yet still make the house our own with the things that we want. We managed to buy a second hand kitchen and used all the kitchen units from this kitchen as a starting point and then bought the work tops of our choice. Next is to buy new kitchen doors to make it look like a new kitchen of our dreams but at only half the cost of buying it all new. 
Kitchen worktops

Fitting new kitchen worktops

Monday, 19 August 2013

Fitting new double glazed windows in our kitchen

One of the big jobs that we need to do throughout the house is replace all the windows. The windows at the front of the house are actually double glazed windows but these are very old and the wooden frames around them definitely need a lick of paint. The windows at the back of the house however are even older and the old metal windows, are brittle, falling apart and made from very thin glass.

With the house sucking away every penny we own we can only afford to replace one window at a time, starting with the worst windows at the back of the house in the kitchen.
Removing old windowsRemoving rotten windows
The old window didn't take much effort to get out and once the glass was out the metal frame pretty much fell out of the wall.
Fitting new windows
The new double glazed window is now in place and being fixed in before the glass goes into place.
Rotten metal window frameDIY Double glazing
It's amazing what a difference a new window has made to the appearance on the back of the house, not to mention the effects it has made on how much warmer the house is with the draughty old window removed.

Saturday, 17 August 2013

Gaining access to the back garden

I'm a little behind on my blog posts recently as we've both been busy working and not finding time to write, but with the weather wet and miserable outside I thought I would take the time to update the blog with the house progress. 

Now that the footpath alongside the garage has finally been cleared it gives us the opportunity to gain access to the back garden. With the help of a very dear friend who was visiting us all the way from Essex we used his muscle to knock down the brick wall that blocks up the beautiful brick archway.
Demolishing a wall
Our good friend Brian smashing his way through the block work.
Removing brick wallBuilding demolition
Finally after several hours of smashing the bricks away we now have gained the original access back to our home. Next job is to dig out the raised bed and remove the wall around it. 
Demolishing buildings
Big thanks to Brian for all your help on our little Cornish home renovation.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

clearing down the side of the garage

When we moved into the house we knew that down the side of the garage was a complete mess, but we just kind of ignored it and concentrated on the inside of the house. Now with the summer weather on our side we took to the massive task of clearing down the side of the garage and gaining the space back.

This task was a massive task, and just clearing back the weeds to even get to the side of the garage was a big job that involved lots of stinging nettle wounds.
Clearing out the footpath to the garage
It now appears that the previous owners of this house used the side of the garage as a dumping ground for everything possible. We found 7 car tyres, 2 empty gas bottles and several plastic tubs with signs on some of them saying hazardous waste... the list goes on.
Dumped waste at our house
Then we found several lengths of metal pipe, a metal oil drum and a pond! 
Rubbish found in our new house
After one full weekend of clearing rubbish, weeds and mud we finally have a clear path down by the garage.