A quick renovation update. A lot of the work over the past month has been bits and pieces that don't make for particularly satisfying photos.... lots of paint touch ups/ fitting of door hardware etc.



But last week the stairs down to Mr AV's study and the cellar were finally enclosed with the steel windows (ordered from a different manufacturer than our main windows, and blessedly easy to deal with, and a straightforward install). The glass went in a week later, and then the wallpaper guy came to finish the feature wall of the Andrew Martin "Library" wallpaper in Sepia tones at the back of the stairs.






Not only does the glass let a lot of light down to the cellar area, but it's now a real feature in the living room, and provides me with a nice view from the kitchen island, which is opposite.



From the living room, this is the view above. We've also taken delivery of the new side tables for the sofas. At last... I chose a pair of the Pottery Barn "Bourke" nesting side tables. They're made of black steel so work well with the steel windows, and when we have people over I can pull out the smaller ones and use them around the seating area. Pottery Barn had a 20% off deal on at the time, and just three days later they arrived - I was very pleased. No more spilling of cups of tea or wine over the new sofas.




I've styled them up with the (one) lamp we have - it's rustic wood, and I think contrasts well with the metal elements. It also ties in our side board and the dining table to this area. It's still woefully empty in here, and I'd dearly love a rug to cut down on the echo, but these things take time.... and money.




I realised I hadn't shown the changes to the old back door either. I quite like having a real emphasis on the threshold between old and new in a modern extension to a house, and this is achieved here with the single step down to the new extension, with the existing old slate step between the timber floorboards and the linoleum in the extension. We kept the old leadight highlight window and the pretty and original brass opening hardware on it, but the old door was in pretty bad shape, was not at all attractive, and opened over the new opening to the guest loo/ powder room adjacent to it. We have had glass french doors installed instead - they let light through when closed (although are almost always open), and we just shut them to dampen noise down when we have people over for dinner and the children are asleep.




Looking from the hall to the extension




Looking from the extension to the hall, with an attractive bank of modern life adjacent to it - intercom/ air conditioning controls/ thermostat for heating/ burglar alarm pad etc etc.... unavoidable. They had to go somewhere.

Here's the old door



The powder room/ guest loo has been finished. The beautiful Celerie Kemble for Schumacher "Hot House Flowers" wallpaper has been installed. It's an overprint on grasscloth and is truly beautiful in person. I've been shutting myself in there to admire it and enjoy the peace! This room has been difficult to photograph, so my apologies. It's small and the light is a bit odd in the photographs (maybe because of the skylight?). I still have to get a mirror for it, but for the moment, it is beautiful as it is.







 I have more photos to show, but might break it into a few posts - we're nearly finished! Hooray!

49 comments:

  1. Brilliant. And beautiful. The "library" wallpaper is genius and the floral in the bathroom is stunning. I would lock myself in there, too, if I had that paper. For years I had wallpaper in baths and kitchen. Then I decided I'm off wallpaper. No more for me - only paint. After seeing this, I WANT WALLPAPER again. But only if it could be this gorgeous.

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    1. Thank you! You need to do some wallpaper then - there are such beautiful options now... wallpaper really did go into the doldrums for years and years, but it's back and better than ever xx

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  2. The stair enclosure with library wallpaper looks exceptional! I'd be pulling up a chair and just staring at that perfection all day long.
    I'd be tempted to put a gold frame around all those air/con/intercom & light switches, turn it into an art piece as an ode to modern life.

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    1. I'm just trying to mentally photoshop out the wall of controls when I look at it Cybill! xx

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  3. The library wallpaper is a triumph! I would never have thought to use book paper, but it truly looks amazing.
    Also love the old lead light window over your doors leading into the extension!
    The guest loo wallpaper is divine too!

    We still have no internet. Telstra still haven't fixed it grrrrrr. A letter to the ombudsman is in order I think.
    And, I can't imagine that we will ever start our renovation, let alone finish it!

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    1. I love the book wallpaper - have recently seen it used behind actual shelves - looks fab when there aren't any books in the shelves too. That leadlight is one of my favourite features in the house, so pretty.

      Definitely do an online application to the Ombudsman. That's ridiculous when you're in central Sydney! xx

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  4. Love it! All of it! The book wallpaper is just perfect balance between statement and neutral and the loo does indeed look so nice that you could hang out there! The builders did an amazing job! The treated grass cloth is just so nice. I would love that in a bedroom. Meanwhile I still have my paper rolled up waiting...it might turn to dust before I get mine done! Xx

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    1. I'd love that paper in a bedroom too. I was saying to Mr AV today that if I had the funds I'd definitely paper a whole bedroom in it. But it would be crippingly expensive, due to the fact that I would only get one drop a roll from it, and it costs and arm and a leg to start with. Definitely in the Lotto win category. Hope you find a wallpaper guy pronto. Surely it isn't hard in London??! xx

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  5. It's just so beautiful Heidi, you are very good at what you do. Half of the chairs in my house come from Andrew Martin, great little shop in London. I have the hothouse flower print in my conservatory cushions, I luff the wallpaper in the loo.

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    1. I love the Andrew Martin shop! I remember back when I was at the Inchbald it was full of Balinese furniture (this was around 15 years ago now), and was all the go. It used to make me laugh as that stuff was so cheap and easy to get here, as we are on the doorstep to Bali, but in London was the height of exotica. All that Madeline Weinrib stuff he has now is v. nice. Oh for funds! xx

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  6. I adore the library wallpaper. It just stands out and the neutral color blends perfectly with the rest of the house. laura

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    1. Thank you Laura - I admit I was quite nervous about how it would work with the colours in the room. I worried the tones were too off, but happily it seems to all come together well. xx

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  7. I love the library wallpaper Heidi... it combines so well with the black steel frames! How is the garden coming along and isn't Autumn taking a long time to arrive?

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    1. I've just started getting quotes in this week - we've been waiting for the builders to officially finish, and they're now doing the veranda posts, so the end is in sight! Autumn is taking a while, but it's my favourite time of year - the salvias and roses are out in force and the garden is looking beautiful. When are you going to put up a post on your progress? Not long now until you get the keys... the 14th right? xx

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    2. It's moved again!... 23rd is move-in date. I have just posted about our family holiday and hope to follow shortly after with a house update! We have started on the garden (my favourite part of the whole project) and as it is the first garden I have designed on my own, I am very cautiously optimistic! xx

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  8. I don't know where to begin! I love the book wallpaper - how fantastic!!! And your bathroom is making me swoon! I love the end tables - I keep meaning to ask: how do you heat the cellar area? Does it get very cold where you are in winter? Keep thinking of that with the floors as we need thick carpeting on our basement floors here or in floor heating to make it bearable and i can't recall what you've said about the heating in the past! Love this Heidi - you are so talented!

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    1. It's not horribly cold in Winter, although cold enough - around 14C is probably a day time average high. We are doing an electric wall heater for the downstairs study, and the cellar itself is, naturally, unheated. Mr AV's room has carpet though, so will feel fairly cosy. On our ground level we have in slab heating, and heaters in each room all on the English style radiators. I don't like feeling cold! xx

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  9. Hello Heidi,

    Your renovations certainly show how confidently you handle shape, space and light. The stairs leading down to the study are perfectly contained within the glass structure which illuminates the stairs but also affords an enticing glimpse from the sitting room. The Library wallpaper is a stroke of genius. It looks so stylish and interesting, drawing one in to investigate. Very clever!

    You must be so pleased with all your efforts and the fact that you are nearing the end. A labour of love indeed.

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    1. Hi Jane and Lance, thank you so much for your lovely comment. I'm SO pleased we're nearing the end, and am heartily sick of it, but it has definitely been worth it. It's been a great privilege to have the opportunity to see what I've dreamt up in my head coming to life. xx

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  10. I love it all, it is completely gorgeous. The windows looking into the stairwell and the library wallpaper are truly a stroke of genius!
    I'd shut myself into that loo as well.;)

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    1. Honestly Dani - that loo is my favourite room now! With the skylight and the door shut it feels wonderfully private and quiet too. xx

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  11. What a beautiful place! And the idea with wall paper and steel windows is simply gorgeous... just stunning, really. x

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    1. Thank you Natalia, I'm still pinching myself that we live here - all the light is such a contrast to how the house was before. xx

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  12. W.O.W! Your choice of the book wallpaper in that situation is just inspired. It all looks so beautiful Heidi. Am in awe!

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    1. Thanks KL! I have so enjoyed picking out the wallpapers. Have you found an alternative paper for your entry yet?xx

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  13. Wow, everything is just absolutely stunning!! The wallpapers you chose are amazing: I love the library wallpaper, it's quirky, witty, modern and old school all at the same time. I also love the little square lights that are inset into the wall going down into the basement, such a cool touch. I am in awe. Congratulations on a fantastically successful renovation!!

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    1. Thanks Louise, the wall lights have been ideal - I had to try to bring light down the stairs as the ceiling was so high (think we have a 5.5m drop?), so the wall lights were the perfect solution. I was very nervous about seeing the paper go up, as we'd got used to a blank wall, but am so happy with how it all looks xx

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  14. it is divine!!! 'specially luff the wallpaper with books! xxx

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  15. I don't remember reading it already but why did you decide to enclose the stairway down to the office and cellar? I'm clueless about these things and always curious about the background behind decisions like that.

    You're very confident in your style. It shows. I really like that about the way you dress and decorate even though it's not my taste at all.

    I love how you manage to incorporate functionality in too. You're very good at what you do.

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    1. I don't think I've really written a lot about the stair well, but we had a couple of problems - one is that you have to have a 1.2m balustrade around a stair well, and we have two steps going up to the children's playroom at one end. That meant we would have had to have a 1.7m high balustrade at that point. I wanted a consistent height on the balustrade, rather than having a bit that went up just at those stairs, so it seemed better to run the glass up to the ceiling the entire way around - more dramatic and more of a feature. We had originally thought we'd do a plasterboard wall around it, but it seemed too boxy in the room, so we scrapped that idea. The second reason was that my husband works from home a couple of days a week, and spends a lot of time on conference calls, so it was also to keep it quiet in his home office if the children are home and playing. So no one specific reason, more a bunch of them and it kind of evolved as a concept.
      Thanks for your kind comments, I really think it's better not to play it safe and really go for it with style - it's not going to please everyone, but then again it's not going to be boring and the same. I had a client a very long time ago who asked everyone's opinion on every design decision in her house she was trying to make - she wanted everyone to like what she was doing, and was terrified of making a mistake. I think the end result was incredibly bland. No one would say it was awful, but no one would say it was amazing either. xx

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  16. Looks fabulous. I, too, would be locking myself in the powder room….

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    1. It's a nice, peaceful spot T. I may spend quite a while in there during the school holidays I feel...! xx

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  17. Hi Heidi
    The wallpapers are fabulous and I adore the powder room.
    Who doesn't love a great 'after' shot. Really enjoy your blog.

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    1. I've always been a fan of the before and after shot - can't wait to be able to do it with the back elevation of the house too! Almost there....xx

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  18. I could almost live in that powder room - it's so beautiful! The wonderful colour and texture combinations of the panelling and paper. Looking forward to seeing what you've chosen for the mirror too! Love the library wallpaper as well. Anything with books gets me in, every time. But this is particularly subtle and understated. Also love the steel and glass around the stairwell, practical and stunning! Pammie xxx

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    1. No mirror yet! I may have to wait for the right one. I should have bought the antique one I liked last year, but when I went back it had been sold (just the day before, naturally) and I haven't seen anything I like since. Always the way...!xx

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  19. Suddenly it all comes together at the end! The library wallpaper and black framed glazing is perfect - a witty solution to what could have been a dark & gloomy entrance - but which is, instead, incredibly intriguing. I bet all your guests demand to be allowed to go and take a look! How wonderful you have got to the bit where all the hard work has paid off.

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    1. I know! So true, that it's the one day of wallpapering that makes such a difference! Before that the endless weeks of sanding etc... and you're right, everyone wants to see whats down the stairs. I've often heard Kevin McCloud's voice in my head in the past few weeks saying "hold your nerve". So glad I went for it with the paper choice, I did get the wobbles on it a few weeks ago! xx

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  20. Love everything in this post Heidi. The powder room, glass stair enclosure and library wallpaper are all stunning. Can't wait to see what mirror choice you come up with. What weird weather in Adelaide today - I went to Mannum for a work trip today and it was like all four seasons in one day! Hopefully we have seen the last of the scorching weather for a really long time. Have a great week. Jo xx

    P.S. Love all your recent posts too, but a bit late to the party with my comments xx

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    1. You sound like you've been busy Jo! The weather is very odd at the moment, and all humid now - I feel like I'm in Sydney. xx

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  21. So much to love in all these details Heidi. I love the view from the bottom of the cellar stairs up - the wallpaper looks wonderful. The nesting tables look great and practical. The powder room is looking fantastic. Looking forward to seeing it with an antique mirror in the future. x

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    1. I'm looking forward to an antique mirror too Charlotte, but it may be a while. There's not a huge choice in Adelaide (or Australia for that matter)... I envy you the ability to find these things so easily in London! Nothing around at the moment, so I will have to sit tight and wait it out. xx

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  22. Oh my goodness Love!! Gosh love so much. First the book wallpaper is so perfect and your living room things are so comfy and chic looking. Everywhere is something special, like yes, the nesting tables, tableaus galore! Love how you mix in so many styles and details and yet overall simple and restful. Must get a shot of pink in our house like that.

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    1. So funny, Mr AV is not a fan of the Vignette. He keeps asking me what the purpose of the books is for (are you reading them at the moment?) Too funny on the pink though - that's E's former high chair, now booster seat! It works though, so I'm not visually offended by having it in the room. S's is the red chair. Think your kids are past that point, so maybe find something else as your shot of pink?! xx

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  23. I love everything about your house. That book wallpaper is a favourite of mine. Am a teeny bit jealous. One day I hope to renovate- Once these toddlers, are past their destructive days, and Bubbles has graduated from his puppy ways. I think it's going to take a while!

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    1. Don't feel jealous... you'll get your chance... plus there's been a fair amount of pain, suffering and tears in the past year too! I live in fear of the art supplies in the kids playroom and the wallpaper. Fingers crossed the 3 year old doesn't have a spontaneous crayon drawing moment. I think we're past it.... xx

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Architect & Interior Designer. Mother of three. A sometimes Cook, Baker, Reader, Gardener, Fashion Lover, Renovator, Writer of random things in South Australia email me on anadelaidevilla@bigpond.com
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