homestEAd ~ rEAdy…stEAdy…decorate

After sorting out a few things at home yesterday it was time to go back to my daughter’s house across town to continue helping them get their house in order.

When I say in order I am not referring to a bit of tidying or cleaning – no, by order I mean the complete works – decorating, finishing off half completed jobs and revamping not to mention the outside of the house, painting the front door and window sills, laying turf and putting down gravel.  Then there is the shed (needs a coat of paint) and the garage (ditto).

So welcome to Where the journey takes me 2 – Painters, Decorators, Odd Jobbers and Landscape Gardeners Limited.

My daughter has a small house but in the eight years they have lived there they have only finished the two bedrooms and put in a new bathroom.  We offered to help them sort the rest of the house out ready to put on the market at some future date and to make it a nicer environment for them to live in until then.

About 3 years ago they removed the dividing wall between the tiny kitchen and the dining room to make one large space and all the cabinets, worktops and the laminate floor were put in place.  It just needed decorating and the dishwasher installing which DH and SIL were responsible for doing and was finished just before our holiday.

At last they have a fully functioning kitchen and dining room and it is looking much more like a usable space.  In the dining area they have a dining suite that belonged to my mum and dad, it was one of the first pieces of furniture that they saved up to buy when they got married.

The suite is an original vintage 1950’s  – The sideboard design was first shown at the Festival of Britain, 1951 and there is one permanently displayed at the V&A.  It is mahogany with Bombay rosewood veneered doors that feature a striking double helix pattern cut to reveal white birch beneath.  It was designed by David Booth, made by Gordon Russell of Broadway and sold in Heal’s of London – although I believe my mum and dad bought it from Robert Brothers department store in Sheffield.  We have lovingly cleaned and polished it and this little family treasure looks really quite nice in its new home.

My role in this makeover (when not polishing furniture and making cups of tea) is as the landscape gardener – before our holiday I removed many old woody shrubs that had grown far too large for the space and extended the lawn – not the best time to lay turf with the hot weather but it has survived and is looking green and ready for cutting.

They have quite a few Hydrangeas which adds a nice bit of colour to the garden along with these lovely yellow flowers.  The name escapes me, I have never grown them but they do have a really long flowering time.

Tomorrow if the weather holds I will be preparing another area of the garden to lay gravel and make a seating area.  The ground is so hard now I am having to break it up with the pick.

It has been a lot of hard work, some days we have been there until 8 o’clock at night and we were glad of the break when we went on holiday.  It took a lot of ‘getting back into it’ today first day back on the job – I estimate it will take us another three weeks to complete everything if we are lucky.

I hope everyone is enjoying the rain and a rest from all the watering.

Back soon x

10 Replies to “homestEAd ~ rEAdy…stEAdy…decorate”

  1. It would seem you have already discovered your new vocation!
    It’s great that you are able to help out your daughter in this way.
    The furniture looks amazing, and how lovely to have it passed down the family. Definitely to be treasured. X


    1. I think you are right about the vocation as if we don’t have enough of our own decorating and gardening to do!
      The sideboard is quite amazing – we didn’t even know it was valuable until recently. My daughter was the only one with any room for it and decided on it at the last minute when we packed up my mum’s family home. When she sees it now she might want it back!


  2. No rain here – yet. I’m glad you have some though.
    That sideboard is just lovely – full of character and great quality. Something worth treasuring.


  3. Since I am an original vintage 1950 :), I can certainly appreciate how well your family has taken care of that beautiful sideboard. Can’t say I look quite so polished!

    Laughed at your comment about needing a pick to garden. Think Rusty Duck made a similar comment on Freda’s blog about her garden in Cornwall, as she had yet to have any rain. We had massive amounts of rain in May and now nothing for weeks and weeks, and not much in sight. With our withering temps (30+ every day), even large potted plants on our deck can’t even make it one day without being water. So very glad you are getting some rain at last…although it would be nice if it let you finish your daughter’s landscape first. Good luck!


    1. The rain yesterday was so refreshing – it would be lovely if it rained for an hour each evening and we could have a cloud or two in the sky during this hot weather to keep blocking that burning sun for a little while, also a degree or two cooler then it would all be just perfect.


    2. PS I really did have to garden with the pick – it was no joke – I had to break through the earth and dowse it with water to be able to dig with the fork – it was like concrete! My garden has a higher amount of compost in it so doesn’t compact even in dry weather.


  4. It’s amazing how sturdy old furniture is, we cleared out my husband’s aunts house four years ago when she moved into a flat and had to leave a wardrobe and bed she’d had for over 60 years as we couldn’t separate the pieces to enable us to get it down the stairs. The furniture we bought to replace it was rather cheap and nasty and certainly wasn’t going to last 60 years.


    1. My MIL had a beautiful walnut wood bedroom suite that my SIL decided to keep. That was really heavy too and I found the original literature for it in some old papers with the price on it. Not sure if it was £1/1/6d.

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