Sunday 16 March 2014

Leadlight finished, carspace resurfaced, splashback decided on

Arcadia Leadlight finished and installed my stained glass window above my front door. It looks wonderful! In the end, Arcadia tweaked my design. It features a sulphur crested cockatoo, 2 rosellas, a gumtree and some clouds sweeping across the sky. I can hear people as they walk past "Oh wow look, she's put in a stained glass, that's a nice one"

Carrie from Arcadia Leadlight installing the window

It is the first thing you notice as you walk down the hallway now. 

Unfortunately the border looks navy (ugh ugh) but is actually a deep purple. I picked the wrong one.

So beautiful (not the bin)

How it looks on approach.  The first coat of pink is on my front door by the way... 

Not as noticeable from the outside of course.

Here are some of the tiles that were shortlisted for my kitchen splashback. The shortlisted-shortlisted items were the silver hexagons and the pink glass tile.

I have finally settled on the splashback material:  pink glass. This was aided by my wonderfully talented friend Bronwyn who WHIPPED up some visualisations in minutes to help me see what the room would look like. She also quickly inserted the feature wallpaper as the feature wall will communicate heavily with the splashback. The first shot shows  the pink glass tile and the second the spacey hexagonal tiles. I think I will just get a single sheet of glass. I am starting to get people saying "are you .. sure the styling won't be a bit.. much" ?  The answer is no and believe me this is NOTHING compared to what's in my brain.

I wrote a letter to the council complaining about several things like an old lady. Some of the complaints were about how much rubbish is in Footscray and perhaps the locals need training / signs. I also said that my rear laneway was full of rubbish. To my surprise, I got home one day and they cleaned out the laneway! I don't have a before photo, but let me assure you it looked a lot worse than this. 

One Sunday we got a team together and rendered the big side brick wall in the back. This involved mixing together mortar and slopping it/ massaging in to the brickwork. The idea is to get all the differend brick sections looking uniform. It will then be painted. Unfortunately it needs another coat.

Nick angle grinded the old metal washing line out which really opened up the side walkway. 

I have had my backgarden / carspace resurfaced with "exposed aggregate" concrete. This involved them removing all the old concrete with a bobcat, laying mesh, pouring concrete, coming back later, applying acid over the top then blasting the top off with a high pressure water cleaner to reveal a nice natural hard stony surface underneath. It isn't quite finished yet- they still have to shine and seal it. I can't drive on it for 2 weeks while it dries.

Washing the top layer off to expose the finished stony look.

One of them came inside and asked me if I live alone which I found a pretty irrelevant question. You really take a risk when you're constantly opening the house for tradesmen, leaving the back and side gate open, leaving them alone, having them privy to your schedule. I only leave the key for the tradies I have good relationships with. Even this blog is opening myself up for security mishaps...

In short, I will be relieved when I no longer have to call, text, email, meet and greet tradies.

There has been a mountain of boxes in the backgarden which I've been slowly recycling every week every which way I can. We affectionately dubbed it "Box Hill"  (Melbourners will get it. I was born there, I unfortunately briefly went to school there and my first sharehouse was there)
 However last weekend I discovered Visy Recycling in Laverton. They took the boxes free in special bins. They also took pity on me and took my paint cans which are notoriously hard to get rid of! 

Wednesday 26 February 2014

Moving in, styling and enjoying the new life

I have moved in to my house!!  I really never thought this time would ever come, but it has. The inside is virtually done. 

Piece by piece I've been unpacking everything and finding a place for it. Everything within easy reach. Not in a box or suitcase. 

OK SO HERE'S THE MONEY SHOTS! Look back at old photos if you want to remember how bad it looked before! 

Slow decorating the insides and sorting through boxes of stuff. 

Can't wait to get my coloured strip lighting in the kitchen. 

Finished dining setting with all furniture assembled! The feature wall behind it will really set it off. 

My Mum sanding, filling, sanding, filling the party toilet door ready for painting.  The car space still needs to be resurfaced and I'm currently getting quotes to use exposed aggregate (a type of stony concrete)

The door is now nearly finished. The rest of the brick walls will be painted charcoal. I will bag/ render all the brick walls if I have the time/patience/ endurance for the filthy mess it would create.

My bathroom is VERY hard to photograph because .. well it's tiny. These photographs really don't do it justice. It's beautiful. However the lighting isn't quite right and will take some adjusting. I need warmer light with diffusers so I don't look dead and shadowy in the mirror. 

The shower is so luxurious - I chose a very large rainhead shower with the option of a side hose. I find it very hard to get out of the shower now. 

The European laundry sits nicely in that cupobard but we had to move the toilet to get the washing machine in :/  May it never break down.

What I've kept banging on about (for years really) is the fact that all my CDs have been in storage. They are all happily reunited and on my specially fitted shelving. All my cassette and VCR tapes are also there. Some I may get digitised. 

I have been listening to my CDs extensively and am enjoying having decent speakers for the first time in over 2 years.  Music sounds so different! Maybe I better go back over any albums I overlooked!

Guest bedroom. I need proper photographer friends to come over and photograph it once I've finished all the styling! Curtains were hard to find for ceilings that high. I got the longest block out curtains I could and will add some fabric to extend it..... one day.

Arcadia Leadlight are currently making up my design! For the border, they lined up the purples - I chose the third one.

I found a rather jolly handyman who finished off lots of bits and bobs for me. 

 My plumber. Wow. Poor guy.

The hot water problem was sorted and he has finally finished installing the appliances and connecting all the taps and sinks. However it took him many many visits. 
Turns out he lost his license due to drink driving. So then he had to get his wife to drop him off in the rare instance it was convenient for her. Then he started taking the train, but he did a 3 hour charity walk so his feet were so sore that he could hardly walk. So he couldn't go get supplies. So often I was going to Bunnings before or after work for him. Or he'd get a supplier to deliver it to my house. Then he'd realise he'd forgotten something and have to walk tenderly. Which would lead to him having to go to the Doctor. 
Well, he is cheap so .. you get what you pay for. Nice guy but........ 

The stone masons truck arriving to give me a benchtop. My house is still looking pretty plain without all the front finished. I have lots of bright pink paint left and really feel like using it somewhere...  Maybe the side gate.

Still really unsure about what to use as a splashback. These are obviously what I'd choose if I could have anything. Everyone who comes over suggests a different thing - fabric behind glass, coloured glass, pressed patterned metal, mirror etc. I'm leaning towards metallic silver tiles or something reflective.

I've been walking around exploring the local areas and getting ideas for my frontage.

The night after we moved in was Chinese New Year. Thousands of people descended on Footscray! Walking around felt like we were on holiday in Asia. Mainly because of the crowds and the fact it was still 40C late at night.
We splashed out on one of the rides - I was screaming that I could hear the bolts loosening. 

I have of course been eating out every night but now I have my kitchen I can start cooking again with some bits and bobs I've found in storage. 
Some of the meals I've been eating out:

Tofu Vermicelli  - served hot but with fresh vegies in it. My palate loves hot with cold. 

Tofu coleslaw. I love how Vietnamese food is often covered in chopped peanuts.

Hot stone bibimbap (Korean) 

Night out at Dumpling place with friends of the Western suburbs.. metres from my house. Special mention to potato salad- shredded potato fried in chilli and oil.

Black bean tacos at the Reverence Hotel. (Side of tomato salsa, rice and salad with walnuts, sweet potato and rocket. Drool!

Been enjoying all the cafes in the area. My new favourite is Seddon Deadly Sins. Sorry Milking Station! I will still visit you as my closest. 

Friday 31 January 2014


The other morning I woke up like any other morning but the it was different. It was Kitchen Install Day! Officially the second most exciting stage after plastering. 

I did a teary eyed salute to the van as it was parking. They luckily didn't see me. 

Laying it out and setting up

I got them do to me a favour of cutting the heating vent in to the kitchen kick plate. 

TA DA! Arrving home from work to Phase 1 complete!! 

Very happy with how it looks and the amount of bench space in the end. It weirdly makes the room seem bigger. Now for the white stone bench top. Then the appliances. Then the plumbing and electrical. Then the pendant lights... then the splashback .. then zzz etc

They also installed my European Laundry and broom cupboard which match my wardrobes. The bathroom is a very tight squeeze! The space was given to the dining area instead which I think was the right decision. 

By the way the fence has been painted. Still yet to do the gate, letterbox and garden bed.