We are about to undertake a series of renovations at Recycled HQ. While we would love to do major additions, we can not afford that, so we are focused on painting and floors, as well as some general decor changes. We have lived in the house for 20 years and it is time for some of the wear around the edges (and the middles) to be fixed! Part of this process will involve doing some of it ourselves, and other parts, we are hiring trades. This is due to time, energy, capability and balancing our lives. Mr Recycled is a carpenter but has so many projects on the go. I used to do a lot of my own painting but as I have issues with my hands, wrists, and shoulders, painting can be very hard for me. As well, I have not got a lot of patience for the prep work! I am starting myself in our small sitting room as part of our upcoming real room renovation challenge. Are you joining us?
During the challenge I will be:
- Removing everything from the room
- Painting the walls
- Painting the floors. I have never done this before, but we are using a product called Berger JetDry Aquatread Satin. It is waterbased and I want to use a light grey on the boards. We are then looking at doing this in our living rooms.
- I will also be adding some new pieces of furniture and decor.
I love the British Raj/Colonial style. I also love Boho, Vintage, Coastal and French styles! So I can imagine it will be in my usual eclectic style. On the larger scale, we are having the rest of the house painted, and looking at carpeting our bedrooms and hallway, as well as painting the floorboards in the entry way, lounge and dining room ourselves. We are using a painter to do the master bedroom and hall/entry way walls first, followed by the other areas of the house over time. We will do our office ourselves, which is the worst room in the house! We are also about to finally get solar panels and a battery installed – I will be back with some separate posts on that process very soon.
When undertaking a series of renovations it can feel overwhelming. The following steps can help you plan your renovation:
1. Set Your Budget
Work out your budget and allow some blow out. It is usual for something to end up costing more than you planned, or for you to forget to cost something in. Consider all costs, right down to the window dressings and rugs. Seek various quotes and consider recycled pieces and doing some things yourself. However always use trades where needed – we would not attempt plumbing or electricals ourselves. I am reusing many items, upcycling some, purchasing some on Gumtree, have used the ZipPay option for my bed head, so that it is paid over time, and we will also use interest free terms for our carpets – consider what you can manage and your options.
2. Get Help Where Needed
Decide if you want to do it yourself or not, or a combination like we are. Be realistic, as sometimes it can end up never getting completed. We decided to invest a little of the equity in our home, on improving it, because it will improve the quality of our lives, especially for me as I spend many days here working from home.
3. Consider what you have that can be reused, painted or upcycled.
I have some cupboards that have seen better days and plan to paint them with some of the sample pots I have from picking colours, mixed with a chalk paint powder to give a matte finish. We are not buying too many new items – a couple of things secondhand, and I have also bought a new cane bedhead from a sustainable and fair trade store online – the Family Love Tree.
4. Do your research
Take some time to get quotes from tradespeople, determine what is the priority, and be sure you are comfortable with their recommendations. Get more than one quote and ask any questions you have – never be worried about asking them to make changes. We have had the whole house quoted for paint but we are breaking it up over time, into various phases to work with budget. With the floors, we are looking at doing some of it ourselves to save a bit of money and having carpets installed.
When selecting colours for paint, use apps like the Dulux Colour App, but be sure to get samples. I have painted a series of testers on my walls to see different light etc You can use a brush out and move this around your rooms, or create one yourself if you don’t want to live for a bit with stripes of colours on the walls. Remember that light will change the colour from how it appears on screens and in other houses/rooms – and even within your own home, colour will shift across a day. I am going for greys, grey/olive greens, grey blues and purples, and white trims. I want to create a restful feeling through the house and plan on charcol carpets and a light grey floor paint. I am leaving my Coles and Sons Woods Wallpaper in my bedroom and sitting room feature walls, which is a dusky light grey purple. This is the colour I have picked for my other bedroom walls – Dulux Ruski
And the Sitting Room Colour –Dulux Herbalist.
5. Think about the flow of the project
For example we are getting painting done first followed by flooring, and then some bathroom tweaks. Consider the impact of each area of the project on other areas – your budget and your everyday life. You may need to move out for a day or more, depending on what you are having done.
6. Look for inspiration but go your own way
Use places like Pinterest and Houzz to seek inspiration and ideas – but in the end go with what you love -don’t be put off by what other people might think. However, seeking advice from a interior decorator or designer can be really useful. It always surprises me when people are not sure how to select colours and furniture, but the reality is that it is not something everyone feels comfortable doing. That is where people like me come in! Factor these costs into your budget as it can help you save money in the long run. Try creating your own moodboards or pinterest boards, which can help plan a room.
7. Mix and Match
Use places like Gumtree, eBay and your local op shop, to look for second hand items for your new look. Add in some sustainable pieces that are new, things you make or upcycle yourself – and get a totally new look you love.