Sunday, August 23, 2015

New Jewelry for Decomama Downunder

Another weekend of renovating has come and gone dear readers and I regret to inform you that there will not be a reveal shot again today. That is not to say that things are not progressing along quite nicely here at Deb and Steve's Tropical Oasis (my new name for our humble abode). No, on the contrary, we got quite a bit done this weekend. Some of it major (new laundry tub and upper cabinet installed) and some of it leaning more to the tedious but necessary (replacing 3 small floor tiles that had cracked over time and caulking the throne in place and the final sanding and painting of the linen closet doors). 

One day in the hopefully not too distant future there will come a time when all prior oil based painted trims and doors will become a "remember when?" and we will be able to just slap a fresh coat of latex paint over everything without having to sand and prime. Most older houses are unfortunately slathered with that stuff from the past. It requires so much more prepping and time to complete what should be a quick wash and two coats of paint. However, the finished product is so great that the painstaking journey to get there is soon forgotten, not unlike the labour of giving birth. 

The jewelry in the laundry room is next. The washing machine taps are on and I am thrilled with the design we chose. They remind me of Paloma Picasso X's, without the swirled tips. Now one would argue as to why the design mattered for these, but when your laundry room is also the mud room and back entrance and pantry and linen storage and entry to the toilet, you can imagine how many times per day I walk past these taps. The old ones were ugly utilitarian plastic relics from the 70's that screamed "Look how cheap I am!" Ugh! They have now gone to join that ghastly toilet roll holder in the land fill, or the next garage sale. I removed the hinges from the closet doors as they were covered in at least three coats of paint. Apparently they are brass and there might be someone who will want to buy them at that same sale. One man's junk is another man's treasure I suppose. I might have been tempted in the 80's to polish them up and re-use them, but brass is not going to work in the current plan,  unless it is some sort of fabulous modern light fixture just to mix the metals up a bit. We'll see.

About a week ago, I decided that I wanted to hang some large white letters that spelled some word related to laundry. Two days later I was out for coffee with the tennis gals and there was a gift and decorating shop attached to the cafe and as I walked in the door...BAM!, there they were. Exactly what I was looking for! How's that for manifesting? They will go up last. The finishing touches are always the most fun. 

I may not have mentioned it thus far, but this renovation is not supported by an unlimited budget. In fact, we are trying to save where we can and splurge where we think we will get the most bang for our buck. For instance, as I mentioned earlier in this blog, we replaced three cracked floor tiles. The original tiles were no longer available. The cracked tiles were right at the entry to the room and the entry to the toilet. We searched around in vain for replacements and then it occurred to me we could cut three tiles out of the floor under the laundry tub where they would not be missed! This simple solution saved us hundreds of dollars on new flooring that was otherwise not bad at all. It is simple off white 2 inch squares that actually quite suit the space. With the cracked ones gone, the floor is now restored to it's original former glory. Sure, new flooring would have been nice, but the colour was fine and it works with the  new palette. This will free up more money for more important flooring changes elsewhere in the house.

The palette of greys we have used are offset by white which is always a fresh clean look, especially in laundry and bathrooms. The stainless steel laundry sink and backsplash
 ( splashback in Australian-yet to be installed) work well with the greys as well. Now we are going to add some warmth with some open shelving in wood...Kwila to be exact. It is a wood used often here in Oz and I really love it. It is used for fencing and decking and various other outdoor applications, but I like it for indoor shelving as well. It is also a part of the new wall design we are mounting in the toilet so the two rooms will tie together nicely when they are finished. 

Further down this renovation road we will be using Kwila on the exterior changes too, so knowing this, we are blending the outside with the inside so the end result with give us a nice smooth flow and feeling as you transition from outside to inside and room to room. It works well with mid-century modern furniture and as I mentioned, adds some warmth to greys and stainless steel which will also be a big feature in the kitchen as we plan to do a more restaurant/industrial style look in there.

That's it for today. Decomama Downunder has to get back to work. These peach walls ain't gonna paint themselves!

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