First of all I feel I should apologise as I have sort of lost my blogging mojo. I started this blog to improve my IT/writing skills and four months in, I sometimes wonder if I have made any progress. I must push myself harder! It has been hard to get motivated as the house is in such a disorganised and dusty state while we are mid kitchen renovation so I have not wanted to take any photos. Plus I still cannot cook as although the oven has been delivered, it is not wired in yet, so we are still pinging ready meal slop in a 30+year old microwave, and eating rubbish. So no posts about what this domestic goddess has been cooking. Plus I have had gastric flu for about a week. Plus really I am lazy!
Well lets pick up again from here, in my topsy-turvey non chronological way of blogging, which is pretty much is a reflection of my muddled brain! Also I figure if I am not taking pics at the moment lets post someone else’s!
So Rob and I managed to buy our first house in 2005, and we were so happy! This house exceeded our expectations in that it was a good sized two bed with a hallway, upstairs bathroom and a small front garden meaning that the front door was away from the street – bonus! We loved the house but sadly hated the location, me especially. The area deserved its bad reputation and the town was so grim and depressing. Our friends and some family members had voiced their concerns about us living in a rundown area, but we did not have much choice with our budget.
Chatham was not that bad as Rob found work and many friends in the area, and I only had to step over the junkies sitting on the steps up to our road (Chatham is really hilly!) from the bus stop a few times. All I am left with from Chatham is a
bad worse habit of swearing too much and I do occasionally gob in the street. Please don’t judge me! I think I escaped relatively unharmed!
We had planned for the house to be our 3-5 year house before we moved up the ladder and we managed to stick to the plan. We were also really lucky to buy the house from a builder yep that’s right a BUILDER! So that meant that the work that had been carried out by the previous owners, which although it was not to our taste had been done to a professional standard. Sorry I had to make that clear/SHOUT IT as we were so spoilt in our last house and decorating it was a piece of wee (I will not swear on my blog – promise!) compared to our current house which was formally a student share house (yes it was your stereotypical Bottom type student state) and it had no love shown to it for many years. Any previous *cough* improvements made to our house were up to pre-DIY SOS/homes under the hammer before’s/house that Jack built/the money pit standards making any DIY task we undertake twice as long/hard/expensive undoing the all previous bodges.
Back to our last house all we had to do was strip some wallpaper, put a lick of paint to each room, re-tile the bathroom – we kept the clean beige suite and decorated around it and put in a new kitchen which cost us less than £1000. Oh and we re-carpeted it through out which was kindly paid for by Rob’s Dad. So all in all after 5 years we had added value to the house, so when we sold it in the middle of the property slump in 2010 we had still made a profit and all our hard work and sacrifices paid off like we had hoped for.
In our last house we decorated it with one eye on increasing the properties value so this meant lots of beige, neutral wall colours. I also did not fully know what my interior tastes were so I played it safe. We bought nearly all our furniture from either Argos or Ikea partly because of budget and partly because I did not know where else to look! By the time we got around to putting in the kitchen I had a clearer idea of my so called style which was leaning towards 50’s/retro/Cath Kidston vibe.
By the time we bought our current house in March 2010 I knew how I wanted it to look. In this house we plan on staying here for 10+years before we go through the horrors of moving again. I have always loved retro (sorry I find it hard to use the universal blogging term vintage) things in particular the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s. BTW I must digress here that in college I had to have the biggest flares and mad second hand clothes but now I dress really boring! Plus I had discovered home decor blogs like Apartment Therapy, Design Sponge and Decor8 which confirmed my love of mid-century design.
Thankfully our current house is not quite as bad!
Our new house is a semi detached three bed ex-council house built in 1950 which we are very lucky to own (thank you housing price slump). It has a huge driveway so Rob can park his babies – his 1972 vw beetle and ourT25, with room for a third vehicle and huge back garden which when we eventually landscape, we can grow our own veggies and I hope to keep some chickens, plus so much more potential.
In this house I am being braver with my wall colour choices and after 7+years and 3 moves most of our furniture from Argos and Ikea fell to bits, so I am slowly replacing items with secondhand pieces from EBay and other sources which are still within our budget and much better environmentally and better built.
As our house is from the fifties I can decorate it with mid-century pieces from the period, but I do not want to make it look to “themed”. I am also taking my time to find the right pieces to fit our house instead of buying furniture as cheaply and as quickly as possible because I need it. After two years of living here we are slowly making it ours and I will eventually show you the improvements we have made on here.
Next up a tour of my last house in Chatham!