How to make a home a home and not just an ikea showroom.
I would not go so far as to say interior design is one of my things, I am a (relatively) young person on a budget trying to renovate and furnish a home, whilst eating well, doing a lot of work ourselves and be sensible whilst maintaining time for a life.,.. phew exhausted much? I am!
The fiance and I bought this house about 2 years ago and it is a small ( 2 and a half bedroom) typical aussie 1950’s fibro house. We bought in a suburb only 4-5km to the city as location was important to us. As an english person I was not used to having to drive everywhere so I wanted some shops in walking distance and to be on a train line. The fiance wanted to be not right in the city, have a bit of a garden for his dog and be able to go fishing nearby. Easy! NOT. When we saw this house we fell in love except his ultimate dream would have been to knock it down and build a new build ( which seems to be quite popular over here) and I had never lived in a house less than 100 years old so hate new houses as there is no character. We got this house which was old but relatively well looked after a kind of happy medium.
The second challenge was the balance between spending too much, incase we did end up knocking it down and enough that it was nice to live in. We have also recently established that the house is not big enough for us to start a family. At a push we could but if we would start a family in Australia I would want extended visits from my family ( if a gal doesn’t need her mum then I don’t know when she would) and it really is a bit small for that. Also, we don’t know if we want to stay in Australia. I may well give birth and need to move home to England, this is exactly the kind of not thought through and dramatic decisions that I am famous for. Forget being intuitive when my gut speaks it ROARS and I can’t get happy until I do what it demands. So either way this house could get dozed, rented or sold!
What we have done is a lick of paint, a new bathroom and a few basic pieces of upkeep. When I say we have done I mean we are part way through as we keep being distracted by having fun at the weekend with friends etc. We owned approximately no furniture when we moved. Actually I lie we had a wicker laundry basket and bedroom set. The bedroom set we had to buy quite early in our relationship when we first moved in together as the rental had nothing. When we bought it ( on a whim as one of us dramatically announce ‘I cannot sleep in this rental bed any more’) the two of us ( both commitmentphobes to say the least) decided within 5 minutes on the set we wanted ( we have similar taste) and then to the embarrassment of the sales man spent about 15 minutes working out who got what if we broke up…
Tall boy and bed- him
dresser and side cabinets me
Anyhow, fast forward 3 years and we are still all good, and the furniture set remains together. We bought furniture which was solid wood ( important to me) but cheaper because it was just stained jarrah and it has served us well. other items came from gumtree where unloved furniture is sold on. We have couches from there ( 2 Chesterfield’s for a couple of hundred dollars) we have never seen another set in this colour, yes that have cat scratches but they are already worn in and comfy. We have not built-in any furniture as we are not planning to stay. All large furniture was relatively cheap as we may need to leave it or sell it should we move hemispheres.
We do have some more expensive lovely items.
A Kartel Bourgie lamp, more art than furniture I love it. The inside of the lampshade is gold so it throws out really sunny light to the room. We got ours from Germany as it was cheaper and just use an adaptor plug.
Source: Nest emporium
An old 50’s kelvinator fridge for the kitchen and a new old look radio which was a recent present.
We are by no means design geniuses, nor do we have the money for a show home and to be honest we are pretty plain taste people. We have tried to pick items which fit the house, but so all the expensive items can be easily taken and used elsewhere.
How do you strike a balance? in a non permanent house or rental? to be comfy but not wasteful and do it on a budget? You want to see more of our reno’s? let me know