Material Girls

Where have the past six weeks gone?

We’ve been back in Chez Wayville that long: unpacking, building new routines or patterns in our new spaces and generally nesting.

The feature wallpaper wall has gone up – am thrilled with the results.

 Wallpaper - Anna Spiro for Porter Paints Rosey Posey Trellis in Pink Ginger - spot the new blue and white lamp on the bedside table - waiting for a new shade.

Wallpaper - Anna Spiro for Porter Paints Rosey Posey Trellis in Pink Ginger - spot the new blue and white lamp on the bedside table - waiting for a new shade.

All while waiting for our new furniture. Emails from Cult Living this week say the kitchen stools and two of our dining chairs will be here next Tuesday/Wednesday. Yay.

I also got to test out the foam for our new sofa during the week during a visit to the upholsterers. Exciting

Meanwhile, Christine and I have looked at dozens of fabric samples to narrow down our choices for cushions for the bench seat and sofa. To be honest, Christine has done all the leg work or searching and I got to pick from her curated results.

This is what we’ve chosen.

Week #11– Above ground action

My last attempt at updating our renovation was dated Week #6; I note I had headed it “At last some above ground action”.

In the intervening weeks, since Week 3-6, most of the work was below ground.

There has been activity on-site weekly; finding time to diarise what’s been going on has been difficult – I’ve been flat out working and organising a Women in Media SA event in the little spare time available.

Four weeks ago, my sister Christine Rady was over from Sydney; we had a great site meeting with our joinery contractors, Gawler Custom Specialist Joinery.

 Sis inspects the works inspired by her designs.

Sis inspects the works inspired by her designs.

So much was achieved during her visit – including completely changing the colour of the ensuite joinery, after putting the paint samples up against the tiles at International Ceramics.

While I still haven’t chosen much in the way of furniture (more on that later) a great hour at Mokum, at Norwood, certainly helped in setting a fabric direction.

Here are some highlights from recent weeks, in no particular order:

·      Found our chosen pendant light for the main bathroom on sale at Décor Lighting, Norwood;

·      Chosen Dulux “Love Note” as the main white colour for the whole house, with Vivid White as the ceiling colour

·      Chose white subways for kitchen

·      Approved joiner’s American Oak veneer for the dining/lounge room joinery

·      Approved the joiner’s deep gloss black for the main bathroom vanity

·      Christine found gorgeous double light to go in mirror in ensuite

·      Chose Miele induction cooktop for kitchen

·      Decided on an integrated Miele dishwasher for the kitchen

·      Redesigned the kitchen to make our existing Neff oven (only bought a year before we started this process) a wall-oven, with a Westinghouse convection microwave built in above it.

·      Agreed a bulk head should be installed over the hallway to disguise a bow in cornice (the old archway did the same the trick)

·      Upscaled the kitchen sink tapware after seeing a hose-spout at Routleys.

·      Opted against an invertor for the tapware in the showers – going for separate taps for the large shower rose and hand-held sprays.

·      Realised we haven’t made any provision for speakers for music/TV both inside and out; engaged with entertainment/sound contractor to source speakers, amplifier, woofer etc and an electronic arm to move the TV.

·      Double cabling throughout the house – in preparation for NBN next year, after advice from my IT consultant.

·      Ordered new draw handles for main bathroom vanity after deciding my first pick were too small

·      Took new handles and previously purchased antique brass Chinese door handles to be matched at Delway, Edwardstown, where they chrome goods

The most exciting additions since Christine's trip has been the installation of the window frames (see pic below). Loving the black industrial window door frames - looking forward to seeing the glass and cross beams going in next.

Meanwhile, Christine and I are going to Melbourne in late-May for two days of intensive interior design shopping. Hopefully we can make all of our outstanding choices:

·      Dining table

·      Modular sofa

·      Armchair

·      Kitchen stools

·      Kitchen pendant lights

·      Main bathroom mirror light

That's enough!!

 Love the frames - looking forward to the rest of the sliding doors going in.

Love the frames - looking forward to the rest of the sliding doors going in.

 

 Plasterboard has gone up - and new fireplace installed in living room. You can just make out the black window frames across the kitchen and dining/living area.

Plasterboard has gone up - and new fireplace installed in living room. You can just make out the black window frames across the kitchen and dining/living area.

 Plasterboard in the kitchen looking towards living area.

Plasterboard in the kitchen looking towards living area.

 Kitchen void waiting to be filled with all that lovely veneer.

Kitchen void waiting to be filled with all that lovely veneer.

 American Oak veneer we're using in the dining/living room area is lined up against some potential Hokum fabrics.

American Oak veneer we're using in the dining/living room area is lined up against some potential Hokum fabrics.

Week #3: Getting down and dirty, Muuto and a Scandi find

A slow start but by week’s end there was a lot of PVC.

First though, Matt our site supervisor sent me a photo of a digger inside our little house excavating for the re-routing the pipework.

 Excavating for the new laundry.

Excavating for the new laundry.

It was a tad shocking to see such a large piece of equipment at work inside Chez Wayville. It was invasive but necessary.

It seems a slow start but all the plumbing has been done for the new bathrooms and laundry. Yay.

 New ensuite.

New ensuite.

 New pipework in the laundry and main bathroom.

New pipework in the laundry and main bathroom.

Meanwhile, Monsieur D and I came back to retrieve the fridge, TV, sofa and arm chair, beds and other assorted bits and pieces – like our pantry goods, kitchenware, laundry items – and moved into our new temporary home. They've been locked away behind one of those boarded up doors you can see in the image above.

For the next 20 or so weeks we’re living around the corner from Chez Wayville, which is incredibly handy and lucky. Between us this is our fourth address in Wayville, we’ve only ever moved about 300m-400m. Creatures of habitat.

We worked non-stop from 10am to 6pm even though we move the bare minimum. Dreading the move back.


Two steps forward one step back with our fittings choices this week. We’ve (that’s Christine and me) have settled on the kitchen pendants.

This will give a clue to the part of the kitchen colour-way.

 Muuto Unfold Pendant in Grey

Muuto Unfold Pendant in Grey

Muuto is a Scandanavian design company and we have liked a few of their designs, particularly an oak dining table.  The Unfold Pendant is actually made of rubber! However a stockist in Sydney put us off Muuto's furniture after telling Christine they'd had a lot returns; wooden furniture routinely arrived chipped. That's triggered a rethink, except for these lights. This pic from Surrounding, an Australian design website, shows them in use:

 

Christine also found some ideal pendants to hang over the dining area. They're Danish by the design outfit Frandsen. Apparently they're sold out. Fingers-crossed she can negotiate a re-supply. I love them.

 Frandsen Kobe Smoke Glass and Copper Pendant Lamp

Frandsen Kobe Smoke Glass and Copper Pendant Lamp

Here's what the Australian website Design Stuff says about Frandsen: "The Danish company Frandsen Lighting has been designing and making lamps since 1968. The collections interpret the best of Scandinavian lighting aesthetics and signal quality and taste with key emphasis on design and quality."

Roll on next week.

  

Week #2: Shock and awe plus 6cm worth of trouble with Australia Post

So everything but the bedrooms, study and entrance hall has been gutted.

Even though you know what’s coming , it’s still a surprise to see your interior completely exfoliated.

 Looking towards the front of the house - main bathroom and old atrium gone.

Looking towards the front of the house - main bathroom and old atrium gone.

By week’s end new pipework for the ensuite has gone in, and a trench dug in the kitchen to relocate its wet area. An alternate plan has also been found to resolve a nasty sewerage issue that emerged just days before our start date.  It won’t be any cheaper but will involve less disruptive work.

 Kitchen and former laundry gone.

Kitchen and former laundry gone.

Chez Wayville dates to 1920 and we still had some original earthenware pipes apparently. These have to be replaced with PVC. Instead of having to pull down fences and excavate externally, disrupting the neighbour’s build, they’ll now be replaced under the original slab. The new main bathroom and laundry pipework will be connected to the PVC put in when the previous owners built our extension in the 1990s.

 Digging down to replace the pipework for the new bathroom and laundry

Digging down to replace the pipework for the new bathroom and laundry

A pipe specialist with a camera on the end of a probe was brought in to trace the pipe network. Wish I’d been there to see that.

So, we’re slightly behind after two weeks; footings should have been laid for the new bathrooms and laundry but I’m told they’ll be a cracking pace this coming week.

Meanwhile, this stunning mirror for the main bathroom is languishing in an Australia Post mail centre in Portland, Oregon. All because of 6cm.

The Ojai mirror was found by my sister Christine on a US homewares website Serena & Lily. It’s absolutely perfect for the new main bathroom. And it was a reasonable price. Unfortunately they didn’t ship to Australia.

So I decided to give Australia Post’s new US postal service ShopMate a go.

It’s free to register and you get a US address. I previously belonged to myus.com – wish I hadn’t cancelled my subscription now.

It’s a mirror – it’s not a table or sofa or something large, I never dreamed there would be an issue. It’s under Australia Post’s ShopMate weight limit by 2kg (including the extra weight from the packaging) but apparently it exceeds the length limit of 105cm by 6cm.

Australia Post’s options are: throw it away and charge me $5; I arrange return to sender (as in online seller) and charge me $5; or I make alternative arrangements. The latter is what I’m attempting to do. FedEx quoted me $950. I said no thank you. I’ll update next week how the freight fiasco is going.

Meanwhile, a second attempt at using ShopMate worked for these cute handles for the main bathroom vanity.

They’re from another US retailer Hickory Hardware. They only cost $27 to ship to Australia. Maybe I was a bit harsh when I filled out the Australia Post customer service survey based on my mirror experience.

Postscript: Christine tells me she's ordered these door handles for the vanity as well - and she's still waiting for them to arrive.

They have to be dipped to match the bamboo draw handles. I'm thinking tybuy.com is starting to sound like a bit of a dodgy site. Hope not because they are gorgeous.

Are you getting a feel for theme in the main bathroom yet?