So the reason for the silence on edit by eleven lately is that I’ve (well we’ve) moved house. For those of you who follow me on Instagram (@editbyeleven) you’ll have seen all about it. My sadness at packing up and leaving 11a and East Dulwich, and all the highs and lows – it started with a lot of lows and a lot of wine.
We had to spend three nights in a hotel in Twickenham and put all of our worldly belongings into storage, only to pack them back into the van three days later when we finally moved into no. 41.
Now this wasn’t the dream moment I had planned where we would pick up our keys and walk through the front door together to start our new life. Instead we still hadn’t completed but were sitting outside our new house waiting to complete on the Monday morning. Pops being so keen to get in as soon as we could that we had unpacked the loaded car and were waiting on the pavement with suitcases.
We got confirmation of completion and ran around the corner to pick up the keys only to return to the house (and our belongings on the pavement) to see the old owners still in the house. It took a while for them to leave and we ended up helping them carry their things out so we could get in, the dreamy first moments now a distant memory.
All the stress and anger suddenly seemed worth it (almost) when we eventually stepped into the house and we had at last got rid of the old owners.
As soon as we were in I was already planning what I would do, with the ambition to get it done as soon as possible. Everyone tells you to take your time and to get used to the house – but to me that just sounded really boring – and I thought I knew exactly what I wanted and thought I could do it cheaply.
I’d already chosen the paint colour for the entire house, and had decided to have a white with a slight grey tone, I had chosen Wivet from Farrow and Ball (but a Leyland mix of it).
The day after we moved in I was like a mad woman and with my move team helpers (Ma and Pops as Jack had to go back to work) we had unpacked most of the kitchen, managed to get a semblance of a lounge, cleaned the bathroom for several hours with Viacal (my favourite product, if you haven’t used it you must, it works wonders) and painted the main bedroom and ceiling with one coat.
When I moved into 11a I decorated the entire flat in 2 weeks and it was basically perfect. It’s now been just over one month since we moved into no. 41 and apart from giving the bedroom a second coat we have paused on all decorating. This wasn’t a conscious decision but life has just been busy and are waiting to save up for some carpentry work to be done and to buy some furniture.
It turns out I don’t know exactly what I wanted and I can’t do it all, who knew?! We’ve even been sleeping on the floor on a mattress for 6 weeks in total now but fingers crossed the bed arrives this week. It would have been sooner but I couldn’t make up my mind on what I wanted.
All my friends who see the house on Instagram are always impressed about how finished it looks. Instagram is deceiving as everything that doesn’t have a home yet goes straight in the spare room. I have reorganised it about 4 times now but then I just end up moving other things into it as there is room to put it in. I have finally unpacked all our clothes, this happened last week. I didn’t want to unpack because I want the built in wardrobe between the two bedrooms ripped out but I’ve realised this is not going to happen in the immediate future so I’ve given in am now using it.
I’ve decided to kick start project no.41 when we return from Spain, yes I am writing this whilst sitting looking out over the Andalusian hills. I’m planning on breaking it down into some projects over the next few months so I don’t try to tackle everything at once and you can follow my story on here and on Instagram.
This is my initial list so let’s see how it goes as I’m sure I’ll be adding as we go:
1 | Upcycle – I bought a cheap table from the local Sue Ryder for £100, an absolute bargain. This is an interim table whilst I wait for Pops to make me the dining table I’ve designed but I really hate the chairs and the colour of the top so have to do something about it.
2 | The spare room. We have a lot of people coming to stay over the next few months and we sold it into them all that we’ve now got a spare room and they don’t have to sleep on the sofa bed in the lounge. Current state of this room means they will be sleeping on the sofa bed so I need to get moving pronto, this will be a temporary fix whilst we wait to sort out the wardrobe and until we can actually afford a new bed for the room.
3 | The kitchen. On Instagram last week I asked for some advice of what to do with the kitchen and I was overwhelmed by the response. I don’t hate the kitchen and it is pretty new but it’s just not me. So I think my plan of attack after all the wonderful suggestions is to spray paint the handles, sand the worktops and get a few new accessories. I might also look at the tiles but still making a decision on that.
4 | The lounge/dining room. I am struggling to work out how to lay out the main room downstairs. The kitchen is separate but the lounge and dining room are one big open plan room. Before I’ve always had individual rooms with one purpose so this is definitely a challenge for me. I want it to feel cosy and I want the two rooms to have a different feel to them to so I think Pinterest will be in inspiration for this one.
5 | The windows. I am not a lover of curtains, I don’t actually know why this is and I like curtains in other people’s houses but I don’t think it suits my style. We have seven windows which is quite an increase from the two at 11a so I think shutters are totally out of the question. I’ve been looking for some decent white blinds which look simple but still feel cosy and this is something I would like to sort sooner rather than later as the current red blinds in the bedroom just upset me.
I’ll keep you updated and if you have any tips please do let me know as you can never be too prepared!