An Interiors To-Do List for 2018

There’s something about a new year that makes us want to change everything about our lives (don’t ask me why).

You’ve already written a long list of jobs for the OH to get done this year, and you’ve decided which rooms you want to change and freshen up. It can be an exciting prospect but also a bit daunting. Your interiors to-do list is never ending, and before you know it you’re looking for somewhere else to live on Zoopla. DON’T PANIC.

What you need to do is prioritise your jobs. Instead of looking at all the jobs as a whole, break them down either by priority or by how long they’ll take. I’ve listed a few things that me and Jay have already done on the house, and what still remains to be done (boy, is that a long list)

 

A Light Touch Up

As backwards as it sounds, it might be best to get all the little jobs out of the way. These are the jobs on my interiors to-do list that I dread, and the jobs that seem to take the longest because they’re so faffy. Fill in all the holes in the walls, change the handles on the kitchen cupboards, touch up some painting. These jobs will make a big difference.

 

Warmth

I believe warmth and insulation is a priority. It’s an annoying one because you spend £100 on loft insulation, as we have just done, and kind of feel like you have nothing to show for it. It’s not like a new chair which everyone will be able to see. BUT you will feel the benefits of this one every day. 

Take the time and spend the money on keeping your home warm in winter. Because with better heating, like underfloor heating, your house will feel so much more like the cosy home you want it to be.

 

An Extension

Okay, this is quite a big job. But if you’ve been umming and ahhing over extending, it could be time for you to bite the bullet this year. You might already have the money in savings and are too scared to hand it over. Or you might have to start saving for it. If it’s something that you’ve been thinking about for a while, then work on your extension before doing any other jobs on your house.

 

Security

One thing that often gets underestimated is security. When you live in a nice area, you always think you’re going to be okay. But that’s not always a given. So you may feel better, and more secure, by looking into CCTV installation for inside and outside. Again, it’s not the nicest thing to spend money on, but it might save you money on insurance claims in the future. With security in place, you’re going to be protecting everything that you’ve built, and it will give you more peace of mind.

 

Landscaping

The last thing on my interiors to-do list is landscaping and the garden. It’s so easy to forget about the outside of our homes, but it’s what everyone else sees. Me and Jay are desperate to get our driveway done. It’ll be completely flattened, paved, and will look so much nicer. It’s also currently a nightmare to park our cars, so we’ll extend the opening to the driveway so it’s not so much of a tight fit.  

 

 

Home Office Renovation Ideas (+ Competition!)

Last week, me and Jay decided to actually make a start on our home office renovation, so I wanted to share our home office renovation ideas.

As you can see from the above photo, our office is currently a bit of a mess (and I’ve just realised Jay has been using my lovely John Lewis desk as a workbench and my bookcase as a coaster).

We kept saying we’d get around to renovating it over Christmas, but to be honest, I couldn’t see it happening. But now, it is happening and we made a start this weekend.

The office currently has flooring and that’s it. We’ve got big plans so I wanted to share our home office renovation ideas with you.

 

Decor

The office will be my domain. It houses all my books (all 300 of them) and is the perfect space for me to blog. So naturally, I’ve decided to make it as girly as possible.

I’ve chosen this wallpaper from Graham and Brown:

 

Graham and Brown Linden wallpaper

 

I loved the subtle colours and pattern that will (hopefully) make the ceiling look higher thanks to the vertical stripes of the pattern. The room is quite small so I didn’t want wallpaper that was too dark. This one is perfect.

I’ve chosen this colour paint from Farrow and Ball:

 

Farrow and Ball Middleton Pink

 

I know…‘millennial pink’… I just love it and really think it will brighten up the room with some needed colour.

You can see how the complete room will look when it’s finished. I love the wallpaper combined with oak. I’ll finish the room off with white and gold accessories and we’ll be done!

 

Home office renovation ideas. Photo collage of wallpaper, pink paint, oak desk and wooden floor

 

Storage

I hate clutter. It ruins the look of a room and makes a space feel small and cramped. This is why handy storage solutions are an absolute must. www.furniture-work.co.uk have SO many options, from stationary cupboards to glass cupboard to desk-high cupboards.

Some sort of filing cabinet is essential in a home office, as well as somewhere to put folders, stationary, etc.

I love being organised. Everything is in folders and arranged properly. Being able to hide these sorts of folders is even better.

So, these are my home office renovation ideas. I’m sure they’ll change as the project progresses but I’ll be sharing the ‘During’ process, and the final result over January, so keep an eye out!

 

Competition!

Furniture at Work are giving one lucky person the chance to win £500 for their #DeckYourDesk campaign. Just decorate your office space with anything and everything Christmassy. Share a photo of your festive work space on the following channels to enter:  

 

  • Reply with your photo to the Competition Tweet on @Furniture_Work using the hashtag #DeckYourDesk
  • Reply with your photo to a Competition post on the Facebook page @FurnitureAtWork using the hashtag #DeckYourDesk
  • Valid Instagram entries will use the campaign hashtag #DeckYourDesk and will also tag the company page using @FurnitureAtWork

 

 

*Collaborative post

How to fund a home renovation

Financing a home renovation or extension can be a challenge.

Most people save up for weeks or even months to get enough money for a single renovation. So you may be wondering how you could realistically fund your project. In this article, we’re going to describe a couple of acceptable ways to fund a home renovation.

 

Use your savings

Once you start putting money into your savings, it can add up quickly. Instead of letting your money just sit in a bank account ‘for a rainy day’, use it.

Renovations can be expensive which is why people tend to save up a lot of money just to pay for them.

To help remedy this, your savings account could pay for the entire job. Or you could put some funds towards the renovation to offset the costs that you have to pay from your own ages and salary.

The point of a savings account is to have money for when you need it. If your renovation counts as a needed improvement, there’s no shame in breaking out the piggy bank.

 

Take out a loan

There aren’t many situations where it’s acceptable to take out a loan for the sake of a renovation.

However, if you require an urgent renovation then it does warrant the need for emergency funds. In this case, it’s perfectly acceptable to take out a loan (assuming you can pay for it before the interest piles on) for the sake of a home renovation.

If you’re dealing with bad credit history, you can take out adverse credit loans to help you pay for the renovation. In short, only consider taking out a loan if you need to fix something urgently.

Don’t rely on loans as a means to pay for a renovation that you want for the sake of luxury.

 

Doing it yourself

Although this isn’t a way to fund a home renovation, it’s a much cheaper way to get the job done. You don’t need to spend money on professional services all the time. Occasionally, you require someone with experience. It’s absolutely recommended to use a professional for some aspects like wiring or electric. But you can save a lot of money if done correctly.

If you want to save money and learn how to repair and maintain different parts of your home, then DIY training is perhaps the easiest way to do so.

You learn from your mistakes more than a book, so hands-on experience is always appreciated. As long as you have someone supervising or at least monitoring what you’re doing, you’ll find that it’s incredibly easy to get DIY work done as long as you put your mind to it.

 

Out of all the methods you might have to fund a home renovation, these three are arguably the most common and should be used when possible.

Tools to Home Make DIY Easier

For a lot of people, DIY isn’t a passion which fills them with joy and satisfaction, but you can make DIY easier.

Instead, this sort of work is done out of necessity, as you want to save money around your home. But it isn’t always easy.

In a lot of cases, barriers will be presented to you, and you won’t have a way to overcome them. To help you out with this, this post will be exploring some of the best tools out there to make DIY easier.

 

  • Cutting

 

One of the hardest jobs a novice DIYer will have to undertake is cutting. Unlike paper or other thin materials, wood and metal aren’t a simple matter of using scissors. Instead, you will need a saw, but you have to choose the right one.

For most jobs, a mitre saw will be enough to make all of the cuts you need. Along with this, you should also consider the idea of a cheap circular saw to help you out, too.

 

  • Measuring

 

Before you can make a cut, it’s always good to make sure that you’ve measured it twice. However, with all the modern tools on the market, you don’t really need to go to this effort.

Laser measuring tools have become very reliable over the last few years and make DIY easier. Offering unparalleled accuracy, this sort of tool is perfect for anyone who struggles to measure the right lines.

 

  • Joining

 

Once you’ve measured and made the cuts of the material you need, it’s time to start putting things together. For wood, one of the best ways to do this is using a nail gun. This sort of tool is perfectly safe if you use it correctly. You have to be careful, though. This sort of tool can often damage softer woods. Along with this, nails aren’t always the most attractive option, anyway.

To solve this issue, glue is here to save the day, and you have loads of examples to choose from. Spray adhesives have come a long way over the last few years, with a lot of companies offering options which can dry within minutes, giving you years of strong hold. We put brackets on our mantelpiece to hold our oak beam, but then glued the beam to the wall. Worked perfectly and saved using any nails to mount it!

This sort of material won’t always be appropriate for the job you’re doing. So, it’s always worth doing some research to make sure you’re getting the right glue for your project.

 

  • Painting

 

Finally, it’s time to think about one of the biggest jobs a DIYer will ever have to do; painting.

In a lot of cases, this work will take up a huge amount of your project time, and can be very hard to get right. To help you with this, there are loads of modern paint systems out there which take this work out of your hands. They dispense the paint for you at an even rate; it’s never been easier to give your walls a perfect coat.

 

Hopefully, this post will inspire you to start taking on some bigger projects, while also making them a lot easier for yourself. A lot of people will be daunted by a job they think they can’t do. Make DIY easier by finding some kind of tool to help you, and it doesn’t have to cost a fortune.

 



We’ve Moved In!

The day has finally come, and we’ve moved in to our new house.

I’m sharing some pictures with you, even though it’s still very messy, and we still have a LOT of sorting out to do because WE’VE MOVED IN. I can’t believe how instantly at home me and Jay felt: I thought it would be weird, and wouldn’t feel like our house, but we settled in so quickly.

I suppose that’s because we’ve been doing work on it for six months. Being here every day for that amount of time has obviously got us used to the place.

Our first night here was on Saturday. I don’t think either of us slept particularly well on a new mattress, and in a new place. The water tank makes an unusual ticking noise (and it’s in our bedroom) and the road is quite noisy in the mornings. I’ve always lived in a cul-de-sac, so I’m not used to the sound of cars whizzing by in the morning.

We have scrubbed the whole place, I’ve been hoovering every day, and we always have a number of visitors every afternoon. They’re all excited to see it after all the work and money we’ve put in.

So, onto the pictures!

This is right by the front door. As you come in, the stairs are in front of you, and the sideboard is to the right.

living room with sofa and lighting

This is the lounge. The front door is behind the sofa, as is the sideboard above.

You go through the lounge into the kitchen diner. The whole of downstairs is open plan, with only an archway separating the dining room and living room.

moved in to our house

As you might have guessed, by the green carpet, we haven’t touched the two big bedrooms upstairs. And the bed/bedding is going ASAP too.

The small bedroom is being turned into my office. It currently has the same floor as the kitchen, but no wallpaper/paint.

 

It still needs a lot of work. The next job is to dig a trench for drainage that means we can put a washing machine in the garage. We’d also like to tackle the outside of the house before we start on the bedrooms.

At the moment we can only get one car on the drive because of the plants. It would be good to flatten the whole thing, and then get two cars on. At least we’re moved in though!