The Househunter: Room by Room

12th October 2018

Good Morning and hurray for the approaching weekend. I’m planning to take it easy over the next couple of days after two trips south of the river this week (Londoners will know that’s a big thing), one trip to Brighton to record the next episodes of our podcast and a day of the house working as a location for a magazine. Not to mention the blog posts and work round the edges.

So where shall we go first? Well how about not far – for me anyway – to see this three bedroom mews cottage arranged over three floors  in Belgravia which is on the market for £3,250,000 with The Modern House.

Given the unseasonably warm weather this week I was immediately drawn to this pretty courtyard garden with thoughts of weekend breakfasts reading the newspapers and sitting in the autumn sunshine. Mind you at 3.25m quid that’s quite an expensive croissant.

But never mind the practicalities, come and have a look at this rather wonderful kitchen. I suspected the island was a reclaimed haberdashery unit, which is a brilliant idea as there is so much storage but the particulars say it was made from woodblocks. I’m not entirely sure I know what that means do you?

I have always loved the idea of a kitchen made from vintage pieces rather than a sleek modern feel although, as The Mad Husband likes to point out it’s harder to keep clean and hygienic. Still, since this is my fantasy kitchen I don’t have to worry about that as there will be an army of housekeeping fairies to sort out details like that.

On a more practical note look at this tiny pantry. The sink in the island is pretty tiny so perhaps this is where they hide the washing up and, of, course there is more storage tucked away in here. It’s even smaller than my pantry/larder and that’s saying something. Mine houses the washing machine and the boiler as well as the hoover, cleaning stuff and storecupboard items like tins and pasta.

Moving upstairs and there’s a bath in the bedroom, which was terribly fashionable for a while. I think, but by all means tell me I’m wrong, that it might have come from the first Soho Houses, which did this, I’m sure, for reasons of practicality and space and not having to build a separate room for the bath.

It has since fallen out of fashion but this one does at least give you the option of putting up a curtain or even a sliding door which, since there is a loo in there too, I might prefer.

It is, however, a clever loft conversion as this so-called walk-in wardrobe is at the other end making good use of the lower ceilings at either side and allowing you more space for the bedroom. It won’t work for everyone and it won’t work for the very tall but if you are faced with a space like this that you want to convert, it’s worth having a think to see if it can work for you. You can see the floorplan here.

It could also work if you had a very long bedroom and wanted to include both wardrobe and bathroom without compromising the position of the windows. I make the point only because so many of us accept the classic floorplans that are suggested by loft conversion companies, or even architects, without stopping to think about what we might actually need from the space when we are the ones who are going to be living in it. Always test these things by asking more questions, not just of your builders but of yourselves as well.

Next we’re heading to Sleaford, near Lincoln, to see this five bedroom house which looks so classic from the front. It’s on the market with Savills for £550,000, which just goes to show what you can get for your money in this part of the world.

It’s 15 miles from Grantham, which is, in turn, just over an hour from Kings Cross, London if you’re heading that way.

But we’re not hear to talk about the realities of commuting (two hours from Birmingham) but take a look round the back. This  modern extension at the back won two awards last year and is a really clever blend of old and new.

Inside it’s fairly classic style with lots of exposed brick and original windows versus floor to ceiling glass in the modern extension. If this is in the right location it would be a wonderful house to live in.

So once again it’s town versus country. Forget the prices we’re not here for that. By the power of my blog magic I have granted you enough fantasy money to pick whichever one you prefer. What say you?

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  • Valentina 12th October 2018 at 7:09 pm

    I’m trying to figure out how I didn’t know your blog before now? LOVE your style and your GREAT articles! Xo from Atlanta!

  • sue 12th October 2018 at 10:38 am

    The Mews house just does it for me, it has a light and ethereal feel from the pics, which I love. The island worktop looks like it is made with blocks like woodblock flooring. Changing the subject to cushions, the great thing is you can change the look easily by matching or mismatching, depending how you feel. The Scandinavians seem to change their soft furnishings by Season, which keeps things fresh all the time.

  • Betty 12th October 2018 at 9:36 am

    That mews house is the most perfect thing ever. I just had a look at the other photos on the modern house website – check out the living room – it would seem that the current owner is in the movie business

  • Sally 12th October 2018 at 9:01 am

    Gill- you should have exactly what YOU want on your sofa! Never mind what other people/blogs say! Personally my sofa is grey and the cushions all have different patterns but with similar colours (green, gold/mustard and pink), but have whatever you love…..

    • Gill 13th October 2018 at 10:03 am

      Thanks for this. It’s just that whatever I do it never looks right whether that’s matchy matchy or clash city rocker! Oh well, another trip to John Lewis beckons……

  • Sharon 12th October 2018 at 8:51 am

    If the second house was near the coast, I’d fight you for it!
    With regards to the island in the first house’s kitchen, I think the agent is referring to the wooden blocks used by typesetters – they would have been stored in drawers like these, often different sizes depending on the size of the fonts.

  • Bridget Whelan 12th October 2018 at 8:49 am

    I’d go for the Belgravia Mews, but only if they throw in a new set of knees

  • Sandra 12th October 2018 at 8:27 am

    Is it greedy to ask for both properties? The mews house in London to enjoy the capital and I could decamp to the country for weekends and leisure. Perfect.

  • Gill 12th October 2018 at 8:26 am

    I’ll take the first one as I live in a top floor flat and would love a little garden.
    Can I ask a question? Nothing related to these houses but something I always look for in these pictures…..on my sofas should I have matching cushions to “pull it together” or have different ones on each? I’m keen to know what you folks do out there? Thanks!

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