Thank Heavens We Missed That!

Yesterday we had a long-standing arrangement to go into Manhattan for a lunch meeting. Turns out to have been a very good thing because that was also the day the floors were being sanded. We got back just as they were finishing and boy are those sanders loud! But what a wonderful transformation took place while we were out.

Here’s the empty attic bedroom before they started plastering and sanding:

And here it is now, half finished:

Once they’ve finished plastering, they’ll be painting the room a neutral color and I suppose we should match the sanded floorboards to the rest of the house, but if I were staying here, I think I’d have the whole house sanded and then just use a natural stain because I really like the way they look now.

Having workmen in your house while you’re also in it is not pleasant – especially when you work from home – but I must admit this whole thing is a revelation. It turns out that I really like reviving an old house – especially if I’m not doing the work! Don’t get me wrong, most of the house is in good shape but it’s too big for us and we have two rooms that were just unused and unloved. Seeing them transformed into light, bright spaces is such a joy. Soon we’ll be having some old windows replaced, and I can’t wait for that. It was the same when we had the bathroom renovated last year – it was a costly and disruptive project, but once it was done, it made my mornings so much better.

If and when we buy a house in the UK, I would love it to be one that needs some work. Not major structural work – but cosmetic stuff like this. I think it would be a fun project to make every room in the house just the way you want it from the start, and very rewarding to bring an older house back to its former glory. That is, of course, as long as we can afford to pay people to do it for us, since neither of knows one end of a hammer from the other.

Have you ever done a project like that? Or have you done as we have – moved into a house and tackled bits and pieces as you go?


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