Wednesday, 9 July 2014

mid year round up

I can't believe we are half way through the year. It really goes SO fast!

In January we made some plans for the house this year, and now is a pretty good time to check in to see how we're going. Like I said then, things happen, life gets in the way, things move up and down priority lists for a whole range of reasons. While I love lists, and find them really useful, I'm not totally attached to them either!
How we put in last weekend-painting our front verandah
    -Build raised vegie beds in the side garden-Done, and we love our veggies! 
    -Build a small retaining wall under the front of the house, (and dig out a whole heap of dirt!) 
     to put in at least 1 water tank for our garden-The digging and wall is done, we will get a 
     tank after the painting is finished and before summer
    -Build another 'feature fence' on the other side of the house near the garage-No
    -Fence the northern side of the block (currently unfenced)-No
    -Built some retaining walls in the back yard-No
    -Turf the back yard-No
    -Paint the rest of the railings-Slowly getting there, the top verandah is done. We will finish the 
     walls, and then get into trim and railings.
    -Refinish the other french doors- No, We will do these in the coming months
    -Fix up some of the windows (peeling paint and putty needing replacing) -Done. Our painters 
     did it! YAY!
    -Look at painting the exterior -Big done! Look at, and actually do it (well, we have the back 
     two verandahs to go, but almost there!)

    -I'd also like to paint the purple lounge and dining rooms, but this may or may not happen this 

    -I also hope to spend some more time doing some DIYs, including some more sewing, and hang 
    some more art on the walls. A bit less renovating, and a bit more decorating!

Plus, we went on our honeymoon to beautiful Sri Lanka. Love, love, loved it!

Looking like that-it looks like a lot of red. But we moved the house painting up, so the backyard has been put on the back burner. The back yard and the painting were two big and expensive jobs we knew we had to do when we bought. When we looked into it, the paint was still in ok condition, but was starting to dry out and feel dusty. If we had left it another year or two, and done the yard now, it would have needed a lot more prep when we got to it. 

Hopefully we will get to the purple paint this year, but we may be a bit painted out! And, slowly, slowly, I think the decorating is happening. Starting with the downstairs spare room, and we now have our hallway art too. I also have my eye on a few things at the Freedom Sale, and have been sewing this holidays!! I'll show you when I'm done (if it all works out!)! 

How are your plans for the year going?

Saturday, 28 June 2014

guest room mood board

Not too much is happening here, other than painting, painting, painting. We are getting there though, and wall wise we only have the verandahs left. And then some windows, and doors and railings. But we are getting there.

To occupy my mind I have been planning on decorating the downstairs guest room. Until now it was painted in Antique White USA, and had a queen and a single bed in there. Total.
It is quite a big room, has no built in storage at this stage, french doors out onto the bottom verandah, and a window that is also under the verandah. We have guests semi regularly, sometimes for a weekend or for longer stays and it is quite nice that they can be downstairs and have their own space. The single bed is great for the family and friends with kids.

Our guests, as well as coming to see us, also come for the beach, so we want to bring that relaxed, beachy, coastal feel throughout our house and into the guest bedroom, but without screaming Beach!

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.
Some of the artwork and cushions might change a little, (sadly especially the mandala, it might be a little over budget for the guest room, but maybe for our room!) and the bedside tables are definitely white, not pink! We own the drawers, I'm going to have a go at the headboard with some linen. The hat stand is for towels and clothing until we have some hanging storage. Maybe some hooks on the walls would work too. The floor mats are for our wooden floors and to stop sand.

I'm on holidays now-thank goodness!-and we have some visitors coming next week, so I'm going to start the headboard this weekend. Wish me luck!

Monday, 16 June 2014

house painting

It's so exciting to come home from work each day to see what else the painters have done while we've been out at work. And we love how it is looking.

First coat 
First coat-all the rest is the old blue
We wanted to keep the blue, but just tone it down to be more greyish blue. We live within walking distance from the beach, it is our 'beach house', and the blueish colour fit with the relaxed coasty house we have, and life we live. But it's really toned down the bright sky blue that our house was. It doesn't stick out quite as much and it feels like a much calmer colour. And day by day we are painting over the remaining yellow with a nice bright white. It's funny-mostly the blue doesn't look too different until you compare it to another unpainted part, when it is obviously different.

The wall with the window has 2 coats, the wall facing is still unpainted.
You can see some of the new colour just above the railing for a comparison.
We will have the painters for a few more days, and then L and I will keep going on the bits we can do ourselves-the low walls and the verandahs.

Old blue, with our old yellow railings but white eaves
Can't wait to change the rusted lights!
We painted the downstairs front wall through the week, and also the verandah railings white out the back while the scaffolding was up, and are about to start the side.

PS-We also need to replace our hot water heater as of today! GAH! 

Monday, 9 June 2014

painting the railings

We made a last minute decision to paint the upstairs back verandah railings over the long weekend. Even though we LOVED the front ones after they were painted we couldn't get started again. And now the roof had beautiful white paint!

There were 2 major problems, apart from needing to bring ourselves to face painting railings again-they are time consuming and fiddly!
1) The height-it's almost 3 stories up, which made it difficult to paint the far side
2) The railings weren't painted the right way the first time, meaning they weren't properly sealed. Which meant that water had made it in rusting out screws and nails. And potentially rotten wood.

Late last week we realised if we were going to do them, we needed to paint them now while the scaffolding was up. First we gave them a hit with a hammer to see if any of the boards were loose, and screwed any in that needed it, and replaced a few that were a bit too rotten.

While I was at work L scraped out the old rust stained putty, and re puttied the holes.

The next day he  sanded, and put a little paint over the new putty so he could wash the railings down.

Then we painted. We kind of worked together to minimise drips. He did the back and one side, I did the front and the other side.

After the first coat had dried L used gap filler to try to minimise more water getting in and tidy up the edges.
No gaps
Eventually we will need to replace these railings due to the water damage, but they should last a few years. We will just keep a close eye on them, and also hope the rust doesn't seep through and stain the putty again!

Before-very old befores!

I won't put an after-our verandah looks like a bit of a bomb site, it's dirty and messy, we still have a hole in the eaves and we haven't painted the walls yet.

*If you are building railings, paint EVERYTHING before you make it. Including the ends. If you make the railing, and then paint it water gets into the gaps and into the bare wood, causing the wood to rot and the screws to rust.

Sunday, 1 June 2014

back to the painting board

After narrowing down our paint choices we bought a sample pot of Sorcerer by Haymes, but it wasn't right when we put it on a big sheet of cardboard. It had a few drops of red tint added, it was too blue and too bright. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't what we were after. If it wasn't what we wanted on a piece of cardboard, a whole house would have been too much.

This was not too concerning, until the painters told us that they could start in a few days, rather than a few weeks!
We have a colour scheme!! Smokeytone.
Sorcerer was close though, so I went in and spoke to the staff at the local paint shop, who were really knowledgeable and helpful. I looked at the paint cards again, and a lot of the colours were throwing a bit purple or green or too blue. They got out the paint deck for us, and we found Smokeytone, which they didn't have on a card in the display. It looked good, and when they put it into the computer it had only black, blue and white tint. It was sounding good. 

It looks quite grey in comparison to the blue walls, but is blue-grey!
After painting it onto some cardboard we both loved it! We will also be having white and navy trim. No more yellow! Or cream!

I was feeling a bit sick about the colour, it's such a big and expensive decision, but I'm now really excited.
Smokeytone and Sorcerer behind
The scaffolding is up, the most of the walls are prepped (they mostly only needed cleaning, and a few small areas needed some minor sanding), and the painting should start on Monday. 

Our house is a LONG way off being painted-the painters are only doing the high, hard bits. L and I will spend a lot of weekends painting the lower parts and the verandahs, but we have a colour, and one day soonish our whole house will be painted!

*Sorry about the photos-its a grey miserable weekend here, hopefully the weather clears up for our painters.

Monday, 19 May 2014

choosing paint colours

I picked up some paint cards last weekend. Anything that in the shop seemed blueish or greyish, or blue-greyish. But not purplish.
Our starting selection. A lot of choices...
Originally I wasn't too fussed on any of them. None seemed quite right, either too blue, or too grey, or with a greenish undertone. And some are definitely purplish at home. 

But, we may have painters in June, which means we are going to have to pick a colour pretty quickly!
This morning I picked a few that were close and blu-taked them to the wall. Straight away took some off the list.

L and I both thought Pre School by Dulux was ok. Our painter will be using Haymes, so we tried to find the closest Haymes paint. But when we put it into the sun it was washed out and too pale.

Pre school in the daylight. A bit too washed out-it's centre top above
We ended up having to go two shades darker to Sorcerer by Haymes to find one that we liked in the sunlight.
This is in shadow. 

Unfortunately our local Haymes stockist doesn't open on Sundays, so we will pick up a test pot through the week and give it a go. Wish us luck!

What do you think? Any tips on choosing paint colours? 

Sunday, 11 May 2014

the wall

* I wrote this AGES ago, to go with The Hole, but my photos were stuck on the computer!

The slab and the retaining wall were a much simpler process. Especially since we ended up getting a bricklayer to do it for us.

Originally we had planned to lay the slab with the help of a friend, and build a pine retaining wall ourselves. But after researching it we realised a pine wall would only last about 10 years and would then probably need replacing, but a brick wall could last forever. So it was more expensive up front, but it was done right, and wouldn't rot away in the future and need redoing. Also, we were so over that area at the time, and had both gone back to work so it would have taken us multiple weekends. It took the bricklayers 2 mornings over about a week.

They came one day, and laid the slab, let it set for a few days and then came back and built the wall.

We did lay the drainage ourselves between the wall and the soil (side note-there was no drainage laid around our house slab, so when it would rain heavily, or the rain would come the right way, it would lie up against the slab and seep through into the garage. All sorted now, but what were they thinking??).

We lay some agi pipe between the soil and the wall. We made sure it had a slight fall so the water would drain away where we wanted it to go, and then covered it with drainage rock.

So now we are researching tanks at the moment. We are tossing up between a few-maybe 1 big tank, maybe 2 smaller ones that hold more than the 1 big one, not sure. We will put it in before next summer, but after we paint. Eventually we will put a new slab under the hot water system, but we will wait until it needs doing.

It already looks so much better, and tidier. As this is at the front of our house (but below street level-check out the first photo) we think we will plant something to hide the tanks. It will probably be in pots so we can cover up the clay and drainage, and finish the area off.


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