Our Renovation: Kitchen Before vs. Now

We are finally nearing the end of our full house renovation journey (hallelujah!), so it seems like a good time to start posting some renovation updates! Our kitchen was probably the room in the worst condition when we bought the place. The oven wasn’t working, the washing machine was in THE most awkward position you could ever imagine (tucked away behind the fridge, so you couldn’t actually fully open the door), and there were clear signs of well meaning but poorly executed owner DIY.

Excuse the dust, grime, and floor cover over the kitchen floor in the photos. The building work in the house hasn’t completely finished yet, so we will remove all the protectors and get the entire house professionally cleaned once everything in the house is done. But the photos below will give you an idea of the style of our kitchen.

Before

Now

So there you have it. A pretty drastic change! There are still bits to be filled, sanded, and tidied up, but it’s almost there. I don’t actually have proper photos of the other side of the kitchen yet, but we’re making a kitchen banquette. We had a corner bench with storage made which arrived last week, and it’s both gorgeous and practical. I can’t wait to get seat cushions for it, and a round table to go with it!

There are lots more updates to come on the rest of the house, so watch this space! This renovation has been a long and crazy journey, but one brilliant part is that Dan and I have got to stay in lots of different houses around London, so we’ve explored super cool areas that we would have never thought of spending time in. We’ve lived in Kings Cross, Leyton, Bow, Orpington and Wapping and it has actually been a blast! For every cloud, there’s definitely a silver lining.

It has also made us think about what we will do with our house once we’ve finished. While I am excited to make this house a home, we have toyed with the idea of renting the whole thing out, or letting it out on AirBnb as we live pretty centrally in a very popular location. Let’s see. All I know is that once it’s done, I will just sit in front of our open fire (YES WE HAVE A WORKING OPEN FIRE!!) and just be still. For hours, maybe days, possibly weeks. I can’t wait to just be still.

We Bought A House!!

We are so excited to be moving into our new house in London! I’ve become strangely used to living in a high-rise, but I certainly won’t miss the task of climbing up 20 flights of stairs whenever the lifts break down 🙈

Our search for a house was unusually quick and painless. I booked viewings for three houses in our area which we viewed in one day. When we arrived at the third viewing, we saw so much potential in the house and quickly put in an offer on it. The house came with no chain, and we had no chain, so the process of buying only took a couple months from start to finish! However, buying a house was definitely a learning experience, and I really wish that they taught this stuff in schools. Thankfully, our mortgage advisor is brilliant helped us to become mortgage literate, and he continues to help us on our quest to becoming financially woke.

We were looking for an imperfect house, with lots of potential as we have always intended to completely renovate it. However, we had to be able to tolerate living in it as it was.

Have a look at our house as it is now, and some pictures of inspiration for what we want it to look like post-renovation!

Our House

Reception Room 1

Reception Room 2 (currently being used as bedroom no. 4)

Hallway

Kitchen

Bedroom no. 1

Bedroom no. 2

Bedroom no. 3

Bathroom

Garden

Renovation Inspiration

We would love to have a kitchen island, but our kitchen is pretty narrow so weren’t sure if it would be possible to have the island size that we wanted. Then, I stumbled across this genius mini side-return extension that makes space for a good-sized kitchen island, without the requirement for planning permission and astronomical costs that come with getting a full side-return extension.

For our kitchen, we want to go for a fusion of traditional and industrial styles. Our new kitchen will feature white and navy cabinets with gold handles and white marble surfaces, New York inspired exposed brick, a kitchen island, floor-to-ceiling glass windows on the side wall, and floor-to-ceiling glass doors leading out onto the garden.

We will continue with the exposed brick theme for the fireplaces and knock down the wall between reception rooms 1 and 2 to create more open space. However, I want to install folding double doors between the rooms so that reception room 2 can still be used as a bedroom in future, if needed. In terms of decor, I am obsessed with Parisian inspired interiors! 😍

It was a little bit harder for me to decide on a design for the bathroom. I have now fallen in love with black and white as a colour scheme for the bathroom, with marble walls and floors to boot.

Renovating our bedrooms will be pretty simple (replacing the flooring, windows and painting the walls).

We’re also considering a loft conversion, adding one ensuite bedroom and a roof terrace. But we’re just going to have to see how far our budget will be able to stretch, because this renovation stuff is expensiiiiveeeeee!!!