Wednesday 22 August 2018

My Flat in Progress: Autumn 2017

By the end of last summer we'd got two rooms in my fixer-upper flat mostly sorted: the living room and the little spare bedroom were both decorated and carpeted, and I finally had some shelves to unpack my stuff onto.

The living room was still looking pretty empty! I had some shelves, a desk and a chair (and a little step-stool I use when I'm taking photos on the desk)... and that was about it. It was great to have lots of space to spread out and make a crafty mess in, but it was a bit too minimal for my taste.

The first new addition I made in the autumn was a cheap rug from IKEA. I needed a rug quite urgently as my bargain basement carpet isn't very hard wearing and shows every mark (not ideal).

I think the grey is a bit dark for the space, but it does the job for the moment and is a vast improvement on the carpet offcuts I was using before. (I'm still using a carpet offcut under my desk and chair in the bay window, though. One problem at a time...).

I took a small carpet offcut along with me to IKEA, to hold it against all the rugs and also to start looking at possible sofas - this one matches my living room carpet perfectly!

I love bright colours but I've decided to opt for neutrals and lots of white paint when initially decorating and furnishing my flat. I want the space to be nice and light but I also want to fill my flat with colourful things without it getting overwhelming, and honestly it's making the decision-making process so much simpler at this early stage! I may well gradually start adding in more colour later on, but for now this Buy All The Neutral Things strategy is working for me and I'm sticking to it.

The second (very important) addition to the living room: a pair of china dogs in the fireplace!

These fellas belonged to my grandparents, and I adore them. They just fit in the little alcove where the fireplace used to be, and they look great with the black tiles which were there when I moved in and which I'll be keeping until I can afford to reinstate the fireplace (so, probably for a few years at least!).

Next, I rescued my coffee table from the kitchen where it was buried under lots of DIY supplies. The coffee table (a hand-me-down from my parents) is in serious need of repainting, but I love it. It's actually a set of three tables - one large table and two smaller ones which slot underneath it - but the second small table was still in the kitchen covered in DIY supplies at this point.

I moved a couple of pot plants from the shelves onto the end of the table, to give them more light and to make room for a third plant on the shelves. Teeny little changes, but positive ones.

(I'm not sure why there's printer paper in the printer in that photo because my printer hasn't worked since I moved in!).

I didn't get round to putting up a noticeboard at the "office" end of the living room... but I thought about it! I decided to put it in the space above the printer (which will hopefully be replaced by one that actually works at some point), and made a start on the most important part of this process: covering it in pretty things.

My parents moved house last summer and bought a few things for their new place, which meant I gained some more hand-me-down furniture: lots of 1970s Habitat chests of drawers. Sadly the matching wardrobes got left behind when my parents moved, but the drawers will be super useful.

As you can see, I was wearing suitably retro (and suitably orange) trousers when I moved them all into my flat and started cleaning them. For a few days my flat was full of drawers piled everywhere as I cleaned them all then carefully matched up the woodgrain to put them back in the right place.
There are four sets of drawers in total; I'm not sure what I'm going to be doing with them all long-term, but for the moment two are on the landing, one went in my (still very chaotic) bedroom, and I had space for the fourth in my living room.

It was great to finally be able to get my TV out of its box and watch DVDs on something other than my laptop. I can't get a TV signal yet as I need to sort out a new arial, but: baby steps! There was also just enough space next to the drawers to tuck a teeny side-table, one of a set of three currently dotted about my flat and another very welcome hand-me-down from my folks

Elsewhere in my flat, my spare room was finally looking like a bedroom (I'll share some photos of it next time) and the main bedroom was still looking a bit chaotic but emptier than it had been for months. It was so nice having some floorspace again and not having to climb over and around two beds, a desk, and stacks of boxes to get to anything.

All the most stylish bedroom walls had doors propped against them in 2017, you know.

(Please also note the laundry basket: that photo is the very definition of keeping it real).

Aaaand, that's about it for 2017, I think! I had lots more things on my To Do list, of course, but with life and work (and helping my parents get their new place looking shipshape) my home renovation was largely on pause until this spring.

I did spend a lot of time in the autumn and winter thinking about pictures, though! What to hang where, what to keep, how best to frame them, and so on. I hadn't hung any pictures up since moving out of my old flat way back in 2011, so the prospect of finally getting some art on the walls again was very exciting. As I type this, the picture-hanging project is still very much a work in progress but hopefully I'll have some nice snaps to share with you sometime soon...

 Catch up on all my flat renovation posts here.


Kay said...

It's nice to be organised and t find a place for things, I am a much calmer person when things are tidy. I especially like the china dogs fitting into the fireplace. x

bairozan said...

It's looking better and better with cozy spots all around! I like your idea of a subdued background to which to add colorful things :)

Bugs and Fishes said...

Kay - Yes, keeping things tidy always helps me feel calm, too! That doesn't always mean I manage to keep things tidy, though ;)

bairozan - Thanks! There's a lot still to do but I'm getting there... slowly :)