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Mad About . . .

2023 Here We Go

4th January 2023
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Happy New Year to you all and welcome back to The Mad House. I ended up taking a rather longer break than scheduled but it has been lovely to have a pause and some time for thinking. The builders are also back and work continues at a rate – one bedroom is complete, one is waiting for its new window and radiator and then it, and ours, can have their flooring laid. Meanwhile, as I type, the shelves are being prepared for the books in the back half of the sitting room and the new back door is going in. Work on the bathroom starts in 10 days. It’s a frantic pace but as all the planning was done well in advance it’s working reasonably well.

ivory velvet curtains from curtains2go, sarkozi wallpaper from mindthegap, radiators from castrads and windows painted in temple from paint and paper library

ivory velvet curtains from curtains2go, sarkozi wallpaper from mindthegap, radiators from castrads and windows painted in temple from paint and paper library

Of course there are hiccups. The window for one of the bedrooms is the wrong size and needs to be remade, so instead of being fitted today it will be the end of the month when the sitting room windows go in. It’s mildly inconvenient as the desk can’t be fitted until the window goes in as they sit next to each other but even with all the best laid plans things don’t always run completely like clockwork. It will be sorted by the end of the month. Which is when work starts on the kitchen and pantry….

sarkozi wallpaper from mindthegap, radiators from castrads and windows painted in temple from paint and paper library

sarkozi wallpaper from mindthegap, door painted in temple from paint and paper library

Anyway, I will, of course, keep you up to date on all of this. In the meantime what about the blog in 2023? I have to admit to slight feelings of overwhelm last year – as did many of us I imagine. I kept it going throughout the lockdowns and during the pandemic and last year – when we thought it was just about over – there were so many other things happening and of course we were selling a house against this background which is up there in the pantheon of stressful things to do.

wall painted in middle buff from little greene paint company with ceiling in masquerade light and door and woodwork in masquerade mid

wall painted in middle buff from little greene paint company with ceiling in masquerade light and door and woodwork in masquerade mid – although it really doesn’t read pink on the pictures.

But moving on from that, regular readers will know that The Mad Husband and I have long dreamt of a house in Italy. We had originally planned to downsize in London to a two bed flat but things happened more quickly than we thought (an unexpected offer on the house) which accelerated our plans and meant we still needed a family home. When the offer came in on the London house we had assumed we would move and spend a while looking for the right place in Italy over the next year or so. And then we found it. Quite unexpectedly. So while I’m not going to share any more details for now – negotiations and contracts are underway – I will tell you more about that as soon as I can. Which means, of course, there will be lots of renovation content coming your way this year.

sarkozi wallpaper from mindthegap, radiators from castrads and windows painted in temple from paint and paper library

wall painted in middle buff from little greene paint company with ceiling in masquerade light and door and woodwork in masquerade mid, dust on mantelpiece owner’s own

Ah yes, content. The plan is as follows: Monday will remain as a discussion of Beautiful Rooms. It seems to segue into discussions of ideas and how to’s and so, I feel, provides both inspiration and information in the same place. Sometimes it will be just one room in depth so we can dive more deeply into what works and what doesn’t.

Tuesdays will be reserved for new drops on Design Storey as it was towards the end of last year. While not one for new year’s resolutions the plan is definitely to keep that updated more regularly. I also have plans for some extra content around that in the form of a newsletter but that’s for later in the year.

the new doors are in: walls painted in graphenstone, floor by recork,

Wednesdays will be for house renovation updates – I think there’s enough going on to keep that going for a while and, as has previously, been the case, if there is advertising or sponsored content it will also be posted on a Wednesday but it will be clear what’s what.

I plan on Thursdays to just send you a postcard from the podcast which is now weekly. This will give you a link to listen if you wish and just let you what we are talking about that week so, if you don’t subscribe, you can dip in and out.

wallpaper Sarkozi by Mind The Gap, Bedside lights Margaret Howell for Anglepoise in Sienna, pink paint Temple by Paint and Paper Library, ceiling in Leather II

Wallpaper Sarkozi by Mind The Gap, Bedside lights Margaret Howell for Anglepoise in Sienna, pink paint Temple by Paint and Paper Library, ceiling in Leather II

And Fridays will remain as The Househunter. Again, this is a mix of the joy of looking around other people’s houses with some forensic discussion of what works and hopefully provides a mix of new ideas and information.

So I hope you will stick around for another year of all things interiors. I’ve got lots to share and I am, of course, always grateful and thankful for your continued engagement and readership of these pages. This is the 11th year of Mad About The House and I’m excited for all the plans and ideas that we’re going to discover together.

PS: My new book is out in April too. More on that nearer the time…. I’m just waiting for the advance copy to arrive now. But if you do want to pre-order then the link is above.

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26 Comments

  • Reply Roxana 9th January 2023 at 9:11 am

    Happy New Year, Kate! Lovely to have you back. I discovered the podcast during lockdown and have listened all the way through twice! We’ve just bought our first home so love reading the blog for all things interior and of course I had to buy all books 😆

    Looking forward to the coming years content, exciting! Oh and congrats on the Italian project ♥️

  • Reply Ursula in Cádiz 7th January 2023 at 7:16 pm

    Congratulations on the casa italiana! Another reader very excited to see all the newness in two houses. Thank you in advance: I learn SO much from your writing.

  • Reply Miriam 6th January 2023 at 3:58 pm

    Thank you for all the content you provide. This is one of my favourite corners of the Internet.

    • Reply Kate Watson-Smyth 8th January 2023 at 12:18 pm

      Thank you so much, I can’t tell you how happy that makes me.

  • Reply Charlotte Carter 5th January 2023 at 5:54 pm

    I’m excited, two new houses to look forward to.

  • Reply Mouli Gani 5th January 2023 at 9:48 am

    Been a long time follower – you are a huge inspiration !
    Thank you for the very planned itinerary – look forward to all that’s coming

  • Reply Joanna 5th January 2023 at 8:05 am

    Without fail I read every one of your blogs – it cheers my day to find them in my inbox to read with my morning cup of tea. There’s always a little disappointment on the days you don’t send them! So delighted you’re back in the groove! Loving the documentation of your renovation as I moved not so long ago myself so am totally in the same zone – I’ve had all the structural work done and now it’s over to me to DIY and decorate – it’s going very slowly as funds and time allow – but I’m enjoying the process having learnt so much from you!

    • Reply Kate Watson-Smyth 5th January 2023 at 2:03 pm

      Thank you so much, comments like that make it all worth while.

  • Reply R Crocker 4th January 2023 at 9:58 pm

    So glad you are back for the new year. You are always inspiring, funny and practical. Congrats on all the details of the current purchase ironing out and for the new excitement ahead. Eager to see when you are ready to share. All the best to you and yours for the year and growth ahead.

  • Reply Mrs. Ainee C. Beland 4th January 2023 at 8:46 pm

    Happy New Year and stay blessed! Thank you for sharing.

  • Reply Lindsay 4th January 2023 at 6:24 pm

    Dear Kate, yes most of the above. I always get a little thrill of excitement looking at your interiors and ideas, long may you continue…

  • Reply Vicky Wilford 4th January 2023 at 2:35 pm

    Happy New Year Kate!! Looking forward to another exciting year of interiors with you at the helm, unbelievable how you fit it all in, exciting to see your new house taking shape and another house on the way too! X

  • Reply Bonnie Foster Abel 4th January 2023 at 2:05 pm

    Hi Kate,
    Organization is key and you must be super at this! Looking forward to your posts for 2023.

  • Reply Helena McCann 4th January 2023 at 12:56 pm

    Congratulations on the Italian purchase. So happy that the blog continues. Just for the techno silly could you post a link to the preorder for the book in the comments, can access it in the infographic above.

    Helena

  • Reply Ally 4th January 2023 at 12:24 pm

    HNY Kate! Very excited to have the regular blog posts back, although how on earth will you fit it all in? What a thrilling year for you. Also, that mid buff colour looks fab and has a distinct hint of yellow about it! Welcome to the sunny side 💛💛💛

  • Reply Catherine 4th January 2023 at 11:13 am

    Happy new year Kate! All the best with work at the London house and can’t wait to see the Italian one! The best blog, podcast and interior books by a mile, thank you!

  • Reply Pia 4th January 2023 at 10:49 am

    You have The Best Blog. My Nr One Read. Just saying that. Thank you.

  • Reply Rach with an E 4th January 2023 at 10:18 am

    Do you have plans to televise your Italian job?

    • Reply Emma 4th January 2023 at 8:22 pm

      That would be fantastic.

  • Reply Ruth Butros 4th January 2023 at 8:29 am

    Thanks for the updates and really enjoying the gold tone! Are you acting as general contractor yourself?

  • Reply Suneiah 4th January 2023 at 8:08 am

    Love the line up. Congrats on the purchase too.
    Exciting times indeed

  • Reply Claire 4th January 2023 at 7:53 am

    Lovely pictures, and we appreciate all your work into these posts, exciting times for 2023

    • Reply Christina Flint 9th January 2023 at 11:57 am

      It’s coming together!
      Curious to know why the radiators have those visible bolts? Is it becase they are waiting to be plmbed in?
      Oris it a health and safety thing I don’t know about?

      • Reply Kate Watson-Smyth 10th January 2023 at 8:25 am

        They are the stays that fix them to the wall- they are cast iron and very heavy so it means they won’t fall over. They are brass and, I think, decorative. It would probably be fine without them as they are unlikely to fall over but it’s part of the kit.

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