The builders are back! Today I had planned to show you the culmination of a project I have been working on for a year but for publicity reasons I’m not allowed to share until next week (hopefully) so I’m going to give you an idea of what we are doing in the bedroom.
Oddly, although this house is significantly smaller than the last one, the main bedroom is only about 15cm smaller than the old one. They are essentially the same width from the street view (although the ceilings are lower) so we have decided to do the same false wall wardrobe that we did before. The measurements are slightly tighter – on the original plan we had 125cm at the end of the bed and the bed was 210cm long. We replaced that bed several years ago with one that is 220 long so we had just over 1m between the end of the bed and the wall and there was enough space to dress between the wardrobe and the fireplace. Now, we will have 1m at the end of the bed and the dressing space is more standing room than dressing room. But that’s fine – it will give us a lot of storage and, as I have said many times before, as long as there is space for the bed and all the mess is hidden away it will be calm and restful.
That said, we pondered if it would be better to put a wall of cupboards all along the wall facing the fireplace – the more conventional option – but there isn’t enough room between the wall and the window so we would have had to sit the cupboards away from the wall at both ends leaving a gap of useless space (or perhaps a breathing space depending on your point of view) and it seems as if the room would feel smaller that way. We would have been constantly walking round the bed, which would have been in the middle of the room facing the windows and the alcoves would have been decorative rather than useful.
This way we have a clear sleeping area with just a bed and side tables and a lot of room to store things – I’m having a double hanging rail and have incorporated shelves at the sides rather than sticking a freestanding (Ikea) unit along the bottom which was always difficult to access. The lower ceiling and double rail means the storage above (mostly suitcases) will disappear but we have funny a funny little cupboard under the stairs going up to the loft which holds four cases perfectly.
Floorplans sorted now what about the decor? Well we are going full on wallpaper this time. The Sarkozi taupe from Mind The Gap will wrap around all four walls and the front of the wardrobe – this will also merge the false wall into the wall behind so it isn’t a big slab of stand out colour in the middle of the room. In the last house it was a dark green feature wall designed to hide the bed but this time we are trying to hide the wall rather than make it stand out.
I think there’s a risk that this paper, while dramatic in pattern, could look old-fashioned so we are painting the woodwork, windows and door in Temple by Paint and Paper Library to give it a modern twist. The ceiling will be in Leather II (cream not actual leather although that would be modern!).
The floor will be sisal from Alternative Flooring. We weren’t sure until we lifted the carpet yesterday what state the boards would be in and I have to say, having spent eight weeks in a carpeted bedroom over the sitting room it does absorb the noise so well. I think I might be done with sanding original floorboards as, while they look great with rugs on, they are noisy and draughty. We also uncovered this pretty hearth by the fireplace which will be cleaned and left open. Some of the tile pieces are missing so the plan is just fill it in as best we can and leave polyfilla in the gaps.
The new windows will be in before Christmas along with the radiators from Castrads which are being moved from opposite the window to under the window. I know lots of people complain about radiators under windows but anywhere else in that room and they are taking up precious wall space so tucking them under the windows is the most practical and space-saving solution. By the time we have new double-glazed windows and sisal flooring I’m hoping they can be purely decorative and we will hardly need to turn them on!
Finally, in another break from the old house we are having curtains in this room rather than blinds. I have chosen an ivory velvet from Blinds2Go as they can be made before Christmas and once the new windows are in and the old shutters gone we will be in need of fast privacy. The wallpaper is busy so I have deliberately chosen a plain colour and style but in a rich fabric to contrast with the rougher Sisal floor.
I cannot wait to unpack all the boxes and move back into this room. The flooring will be the final touch and will fitting in January but I will, of course, show you when it’s all done.