Ok, I’ll admit… it’s been a while between posts. I have nothing to say in my defence except that life got in the way, and of course we’ve been living in the house, so that makes it infinitely less photographable. Also there’s the fact that I haven’t really done any decorating yet, it’s still very much a work in progress and probably will be for some time. There is furniture to be bought and there are pictures to be hung, a few more lights to be installed, a few more naked windows to be dressed. I am forever gripped by indecisiveness when it comes to making purchases, and at the end of the crazy, exhausting day, there doesn’t really seem to be any spare time for ‘project’ work, just the normal rigours of household business as usual.
Anyway, as promised for months now, here are a few updates. Not by any means ‘the finished product’ but just some progress shots. I’ve had to zoom in close to crop out all the detritus and unpacked boxes, but I will post more down the track when I am more organised. (No really, I will.)
Disclaimer: I still haven’t done anything about my photographic skills, so I apologise for the dim lighting and dodgy angles.
I browsed for and deliberated over island bench lights for ages. Ages. But then I found these ones at Barn Light Australia for 99 smackers each, including shipping, (although currently $174 each) and I stopped looking. I love the little splash of colour they add to an otherwise very neutral space.
I found the dining table chandelier at Ivory and Deene for $395 including shipping, and spent quite a few neck-breaking hours threading all the beads and droplet things onto it. It sits above our new dining room table, which I bought on sale at Veranda Home & Garden.
I’ve included the photo above to show the chandelier from a distance – this was taken just after the new sofa was delivered but before we sorted out that mess you can see through the bifold doors.
So with a chandelier over the dining table and three pretty barn lights over the kitchen island, I wanted something a bit more subtle for the loungeroom. I ended up with two plain white drum pendants, which have three bulbs in each. There are no other down lights in that room so I was worried they might not provide enough light, but they’re fine. The only trouble is the collection of dead mozzies above the diffusers, but it’s nothing an occasional dust-bust doesn’t fix.
My favourite lights in the house (and the biggest splash out) are the six wall lights. There are two in the stairwell and four in the upstairs hallway. I was worried I might not have included enough light for these areas, but as there’s no living space upstairs I didn’t think it needed to have really strong lighting. Beaumonde’s electrician wanted to move the first wall light on the left hand side of the stairs to the opposite wall, ABOVE the staircase on the right, which would have looked ridiculous. It’s hard to visualise when the balustrades haven’t even been built yet, but I’m glad I stuck to my original request and the wires (eventually) came out in roughly the right place.
One of the original lights I’d considered for the entry void ended up getting a start in the stairwell. The only thing that bugs me slightly is that the chrome is quite a different finish to the shiny nickel*. I always thought silver was silver, but evidently I know nothing about metal. *First world problem, I know.
The first lights I ever bought for the house, back when it was still in the very early planning days, were these two rainbow chandeliers for the girls’ bedrooms. This was even before you could buy them online anywhere – my sister bought them for me at Ishka in Melbourne and they posted them over to me. I’m pretty sure you can get them around Perth now. Even though we haven’t got very far with decking out the girls’ rooms yet, they really love their chandeliers.
I bought this one from Sebastian Alexander. It’s American so I had to track down the correct bulbs (an E26 instead of an E27) which I found at Horner Bawden in Osborne Park. This is going to be my office/library but at the moment is an abomination of boxes, papers, school bags and other paraphernalia. Shelves and desk have been bought… so we will have it ready soon(ish).
Speaking of the library abomination, the only other thing I can show you from this room is the ‘add-on’ architraves, which you can just see in the photo above. We got them for the front and back of the library double doors, the playroom double doors and the pantry double doors…
They look so much better than the standard builders’ ones, but we couldn’t put them everywhere because we didn’t leave room for them (oh, the things I’d do differently next time!)
I went with Ikea lights for the laundry and the walk in robe in the master bedroom. All of them keep dropping away from the ceiling, despite repeated attempts to clip them back up.
That may well be the last time I ever take a photograph in the wardrobe… or floordrobe as Heath calls it. We ended up going with the Elfa white mesh system that I showed in my wishlist here. The laundry has two Ottava pendants, but I haven’t even bothered to take photos in the laundry. It’s not pretty.
What else… I bought an Armadillo & Co Marigold rug in last year’s 20% off sale at Eco Chic, which sits just inside the front door. It’s such a lovely rug and so beautifully made.
This is the view looking up from that rug…
I love the white/wood combo on the balustrades and the fact that the oak handrails match the floorboards and stair treads. My amazing uncle spent countless hours last year painting all the balusters, stair posts, skirting boards and architraves to match all the other white trim.
I bought two small drop pendants from Beacon Lighting for either side of the ensuite basins, although when they were installed they were cut shorter than I would have liked, and the huge amount of condensation and mould we are getting in that room is taking its toll on the metal fitting.
Heath has installed the mirrors that I bought. He painted the frames with a marine-grade sealer first, so hopefully they won’t rot. Two of these in the ensuite:
And two of these in the kids’ bathroom:
The shutters were installed by Boardwalk Shutters in December, after we finally got tired of waiting for Beaumonde to fix our screeching, stiff sash windows (and got tired of living in a fish bowl for months on end). Boardwalk did a great job, and we will be going back to them if we decide to put any more shutters in. There really aren’t many companies from this build that we can say that about!
We got our fireplace installed in time for Christmas, so I could hang my beloved Pottery Barn stockings up (we of course didn’t actually need the fireplace for heating until this past month). It’s a Real Flame Captiva 600 and has a granite hearth and a Richmond mantle from Subiaco Restoration.
Speaking of Pottery Barn, I must be the last person to hear about its imminent opening in Perth! 11 days to go! I always pop into the Bondi Junction store when I’m in Sydney, but the fact that it’s going to be right here on my doorstep is too exciting. And a bit dangerous actually.
One last thing that I promised to show was the linen curtains in the loungeroom. I bought them at Ikea as a stop-gap solution to the problem of the overlooking windows on the neighbouring property – I needed something to make us feel less on show at night, as we haven’t planted anything in the garden bed along that fence yet. They are the AINA curtains, which are slightly heavier than the VIVAN, but the downside is that the white isn’t nearly as white. Still, as far as finding something long enough to cover the French doors and the highlight windows above, they were unbeatable for price and they do the job.
The rods were cheap ones from Spotlight – for memory about $15 each.
Note my efforts at sustaining plant life in the corner there. Clearly there is not much progress going on in the back garden – we are still dithering on what to plant around the boundaries – but we have been busily planting roses, hedges and vines out the front. I will do a separate post on our external progress.