Making a space a home – Tom & Katherine’s royal transformation part two
As you read last month, Tom and Katherine moved back to London after some time away and started with their sleeping space to make the home more cosy. This time around, they focused on the other living areas to really put their stamp on it.
Think beyond traditions and embrace all-in-one living
Next, we focussed on downstairs and what to do with the living room and kitchen. Once again, top-to-bottom cleaning came first, whilst everything was still in boxes and out the way. Our kitchen hadn’t been treated very well over the years. A few DIY disasters had also left some areas impossible to get clean. So we cleaned what we could, and decided to use the kitchen as a utility room for all of our cleaning products, and have the sink for washing up. We would create our own mini-kitchen in the living room, which despite being enforced, also would help us prepare for our future – we hope to one day build a tiny home of our own.
We designated one corner of the living room to be our kitchen and one corner to be the sitting area. To save money, and add a personal touch, we sourced some used scaffold boards from Rugged London – and used some as shelves, and some for a small unit on wheels. On top of the unit we put a Baby Belling – a low-power, small oven, grill and hob designed for small-scale living. It doesn’t need a special plug, and cooks meals to exactly the same standard as we would get from a large oven. We wheel it over the door when we cook, so the smells escape easily. The only compromise we’ve had to make is learning to use oven and hobs separately. The machine’s low-power means you can’t use them both at the same time. To remedy this, we often start something on the hob until it boils, and place it in the
Wonderbag – an amazing invention used by campers to keep something cooking even when off the stove. It needs to be seen to be believed, but trust us, it works!
All that was left to do was paint the chimney-breast white, put in our furniture (collected over the years, mainly from Ikea) and we had our living area.
No wallpaper challenge is too big
The office was going to be the biggest challenge. The room was covered in fairly cheap and badly applied wallpaper. It felt like a massive under-taking just getting it off, and ready to paint. Previous tenants had even wallpapered over a wooden door and and a mirror! Our biggest recommendation is to buy a wallpaper stripping steamer from a hardware store. They cost around £30 and are a brilliant investment – it made the job of stripping the paper so much easier. Once a weekend was spent stripping, we then filled in any loose and removed plaster with Polyfilla, and then we sugar scrubbed and painted. Next was the furniture, and finally the extras. We’ve always had a London Underground themed office, and this is the first time we’ve been able to decorate and put things on walls. We were delighted to get our framed posters up for the very first time! Blackout blinds were also put up, and we now had our office.
Another great set of ideas from Tom and Katherine from their space to home ideas. It’s amazing what you can do when you spend a bit of time upcycling and using your imagination. There’s one final installment to come with a garden makeover and some great tips for sorting through what to keep and what to get rid of when you’re making a home. Watch this space!