I often feel impatient with this 70's house and all the renovations I want to do in the future. (New kitchen + new carpet, come at me! Bring cash.)
But there ARE little changes we've made that have made this place feel like home, so in an effort to see how far we've come and encourage myself...
Here's our bedroom when I was towards the end of my pregnancy with Ella and was trying to do it up. This was my 'after' at the time but it still lacked so much and didn't feel like 'us' at all.
And here's our bedroom today:
This is probably the one room that feels almost 'done' to me and kind of sums up my style. It's warm, colourful-yet-calm, and just feels inviting.
It came together slowwwwlllyy over time as bits were added here and there. Now that I think about it, it's probably the only room in the house we've actually purchased new furnishings for (other than our couches). The bedside tables were the cheapest dresser/drawers available from Freedom Furniture. But at $600 each, in a flat pack, and COMPLETELY RAW unvarnished bleached wood which stained even from touching it with your fingertips... we had to coat them with 5 coats of polyurethane each... I wouldn't actually call them cheap. But we needed drawers desperately and now that they're all done, I really love the look and the way they fit our back wall, unlike normal small bedside tables.
The 'office' when we first moved in. It's the darkest room in our house but still gets all that glare from the back yard which makes it super hard to photograph:
We're in the lengthy process of transitioning it into what will probably end up being Ella's bedroom one day. Assuming we ever pluck up the courage to move her out of her cot and into a bed with no rails that stop her from roaming the house - a scary thought! Right now we're calling it the playroom but it's a bit of an odd one - Calum uses the wardrobe in here for all his clothes as we can't fit everything into our bedroom wardrobe. It also houses a chest of drawers that I can't wait to get rid of as the old-lady-perfume smell saturated into the wood inside the drawers makes me nauseated. Ah pregnancy memories (we bought it second hand online when I was preg, not knowing it came with that smell... which by the way doesn't bother anyone except me). As for the old office - we just don't have an office anymore. Literally it was just a storage room for books and files which we've majorly purged or gone paperless with.
Don't mind the tissue paper flowers randomly on the wall... long story.
Also, the hallway. I don't have a before picture but basically all the walls were blank until recently when I finally moved our framed pictures from a pile on the floor to the walls. On the right you see the little wall shelf with hooks underneath - just added that recently and it has been so so useful. You don't realise how amazing these functional items are until you have them! When I come up the stairs from outside I can put everything I'm carrying - bag, + Ella's jacket and hat and bag - all on the hooks immediately instead of dumping them on the bed or couch and then having to find them later.
Ella's bedroom/nursery when I first got it ready for her, whilst pregnant:
I had painted it a stark white which combined with the large glarey window makes it nearly impossible to take pictures of.
Today the base is the same, but with the cream rug and rearranged furniture plus the addition of some old wooden drawers (kauri or rimu) and a chair it looks much warmer:
To get this room 'done' I would make my own curtains that actually fit and hang nicely - maybe in a soft minty blue, change the wardrobe door to something more functional and white, and have a light neutral coloured carpet throughout the house instead of this greeny blue grey stuff.
Oh and last but not least - this wardrobe system works perfectly for us and has been great since Ella was born. On the bottom of the wardrobe I have several large plastic boxes with lids that fold in the middle and can have one side kept open (from The Warehouse). As Ella grows out of clothes I wash them and then tuck them into the open end of the container on top. It's as simple as getting out say, a top for her and realising it's not going to fit. So I just have to bend down and tuck it under the lid of the upper container. Done.
When a container fills up, I move it to the bottom (or to the side) and put a new container on top. We have 4 of these containers and at 2 years old, I now have all 4 filled. It's so nice knowing they are all sorted by size and everything already.