The pursuit of...A house to home

Labour of love - my home renovation project

Welcome back!...

When I brought my first house nearly 3 years ago, it was the start of a burgeoning love affair with interior design. 
I have always had an interest...back in the early 90's when I was in my teens and still living at home, my parents gave me free roam to makeover my bedroom. Armed with a tin of petrol blue paint (don't ask!) I painted the walls and the ceiling in the colour (!).  I then stuck loads of those tiny solar plastic star things on the ceiling so I had a 'starry night' display when the lights went out. Then on one wall (thinking back, I guess it was like a 'feature wall' - I was ahead of my time!) I had a 'shrine'  to Michael Jackson...poster upon poster of The King Of Pop was stuck up with drawing pins and blue-tac!.  I was so proud of that room, my first creation and I still remember it vividly (It's hard to erase that colour from my was everywhere!).

When I brought my first house nearly 3 years ago, again I had a very sure idea of what I wanted.
I would eat, sleep and breath interior design magazines, home exhibitions (I went to every Ideal Home and Christmas Show) and I was constantly online ordering samples and swatches and trying to find matches for my designer inspiration.

Love the Farrow and Ball colours

My house needed a lot of refurbishment as it had not been modernised in over 40 years and I loved the fact that I was really going to be able to transform it and put my own stamp on it.

Now all the hard grafting is over I have been able to enjoy it by putting all the extra finishing touches to it and making it more a reflection of me and my style.
Below, I'll share with you some of my favourites:

Large Clock - TK Maxx

This clock is huge! You can't tell from this picture, but I have this clock hanging on my chimney breast in my reception room and it almost takes up the whole width!  It is a very pale yellow and I just love the vintage 'Parisienne' style of it.  The small dent right at the bottom only happened a few weeks ago when it crashed to the floor and sadly shattered the glass front, as I did not secure it to the wall properly. - luckily though, I think it just adds to its beautiful character.

Magnetic wall map - Dwell

My house wouldn't have been my home without a world map on the is too big a part of my identity for me not to display it somehow creatively.
I love this one from Dwell as its monochrome and very stylish.  I brought the coloured magnets from Amazon and have used them to show countries I have visited and also to display postcards from some of my favourite places.  It always draws attention.

Phaidon Wallpaper City Guides

Staying with the travel theme, I have these Wallpaper City Guides from Phaidon on my mantelpiece in my front room (see top picture). 
I saw them in The Sunday Times magazine and thought the colours were so pretty, that I just had to buy them! I chose the destinations that I would class as my top 6 cities (Hong Kong would have been in there too but I couldn't locate one!).
The guides contain information that you wouldn't necessarily see in other travel guides including the ultimate places to eat and notable architecture and design.

French style ornate mirror

I love this style of mirror and looked everywhere to find one for my bedroom.  I eventually found one in a shop in Hatfield that I cannot for the life of me remember the name.  It's really heavy and is so beautiful to look at.
It is hung on a chimney breast feature wall that I painted in Fired Earth's 'Aquamarine Ashes', a gorgeous pastel green/grey that again I saw on the front cover of an edition of Ideal Home magazine.  I ordered a sample and fell in love with it.  Everyone comments on how lovely the colour is when they see it.  It's perfect for the bedroom as it is so relaxing and serene.

I love my bathroom...everything that I had envisioned in my mind for my bathroom to become, happily came to fruition.  I scoured the internet until I found the right shade of mosaic tiles...I can't tell you how many samples I ordered.  I was constantly looking at magazines to try and find the right free standing sink (Bathstore) and shower enclosure (Victoria Plumb).  I knew exactly what style of taps I wanted (Waterfall - Victoria Plumb) even down to what coloured grout I wanted for the walls aswell as the floor (not white, I went for a warm beige colour from ToppsTiles).  This was a labour of love and I probably drove my father mad as luckily (or unluckily for him) he was doing all the work. 
It is one of my favourite places in my home...

My tip for renovating or even just sprucing up a room for summer is to look around as much as you can until you find what you are looking for.  Try not to let anyone dissuade you or put you off something that you can realistically have as you're the one that will be living with the choices you have made.
Lastly enjoy it all, don't try to do too much too soon and take time for the house to evolve into what it is naturally.

I'll leave you with a few more pictures of things I love from around my home...I hope you enjoyed this post or found it inspiring.

I'll be back on Thursday with a post about my review of the 'Grace of Monaco' film which I'm seeing tomorrow evening - till then...

Love, Ivy George x

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