Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Downstairs revamp


Our downstairs configuration has been a topic of conversation lately. It turns out the current cloakroom isn't big enough for the Roca toilet and sink combo. Rob then had the genius idea of swapping everything around - moving the shower/loo/sink into what was going to be our utility room, and moving the washer and dryer into our current cloakroom (NB cloakroom is what the British call a small toilet, usually positioned under the stairs).

It's such an obvious solution I can't think why we didn't come up with it in the first place. It might be because the stack (plumbing arrangement involving large pipes) is about two feet up the wall - which might be tricky when plumbing in a loo and shower waste pipe. I'm sure there's a solution - maybe smashing up the floor until we find the outgoing pipe and joining it up there. Additionally we'll need a dedicated hot water system - gas or some kind of electric pump - otherwise the top floor bathroom will have no pressure when the downstairs one is in use.

As the room will have no natural light we'll need to consider lighting, and of course heating and venting out the steam. For inspiration I quite like these two bathrooms - large slate tiles and a glass shower door - practical.

(Both photos via


Saturday, 3 September 2011

Tidy house, tidy mind


Ah surfaces - how I love thee. In addition to de-junking the spare room last month, I also made us of the extra storage provided by our new sideboard to clear away the various piles of stuff. Amazing how many unread bits of mail, magazines and debris just accumulate and if you leave them long enough, they turn out to be irrelevant and can be chucked. The trick is to biff the kid's creations into the wheelie bin, if they see their efforts in the kitchen bin they tend to go a bit hysterical.


So now when I look around our room my eyes don't land on anything that should be tidied away. Unsurprisingly this has allowed me to spend more time doing nothing instead of making piles of stuff to deal with. (Doing nothing when you have house guests is considered polite FYI.)


Below is a panorama of the downstairs space to show a continuous expanse of room rather than what was there before, which was a mishmash of newspapers and kids toys. With any luck we can keep this up at least until school starts back next week.