Monday, 13 August 2012

The big renovation

Once we did the roof and gutters we had to get to work inside the house.

We were lucky that we were living somewhere else while the works were done. It was an extremely messy job, and I don't think I could of coped with it all while the plastering was done.

We had to do every ceiling in the house apart from the office and the laundry, so it was a massive job. The plasterers camped in the house while they did it as our closest plasterers live 2 hours away. They loved to go out hunting and looking for pigs when they knocked off work, so it worked out well.

Here are some befores and progress pics.

The kitchen and sunroom on the north

The kitchen was in good order as it is only about 12 years old. It is a million times better than my old kitchen as it has a dishwasher in it!

Can you believe that I haven't had a dishwasher until now? No, I can't believe that I didn't either. It was a bone of contention for many, many years. 11 years in fact.

Our old kitchen was so fifties that a dishwasher would not fit properly at the sink under the bench. So we never put one in, as it would of meant re-doing the whole kitchen properly. Yes, I am still bitter that I put up with washing up by hand for a family of five for so long!

Anyway, the new kitchen is great compared to what I had. The bench tops are a bit worn and it could do with an update of hardware and tiling, but it is going to wait for now.

We had to renew this ceiling as the water damage was rotting it. You can see near the fan there is a bit of damage. (above picture)

There is a rotten floorboard in there which we ripped out and replaced. It looks a bit mismatched now, but we haven't done anything to the floors yet. Down the track we will re polish the floor boards eventually.

Here is a pic of the (during) stage. There is stuff everywhere and instead of pulling the ceilings out with 60 years of dirt and dust through the house, the ceilings were battened over the top of the old ones. We had insulation put in the roof which makes a massive amount of difference in summer. I wish the walls had some too!

Yeah, not fun to live in this trying to keep dust out of our belongings. I feel lucky that we didn't live through it all.

Check out the dining room. It was painted a pale green/beigey colour and had the hot pink feature wall. Very cool in the early 2000's. I think this room used to be the kitchen due to the cupboards on one side of the wall. 

Here is the hallway. I swore I took pics of the damage in here on the ceiling and now I can't find it. What you can't see in this pic is the ceiling with a bow in it ready to cave in. Most of the bedrooms lead off this hall and as far as old houses go, this is quite a good design. The house is much bigger than my old one.

A bit of hall progress, also a good spot to stack plasterboard. That is my linen cupboard. It has a little hatch that goes through to the bathroom so if you wanted shampoo or soaps you could get them without leaving the bathroom. Cute!

This is the lounge room. The wood heater is about 10 years old and it has a fan, so it pumps the hot air out. This is our only heating in the place at the moment so it is pretty chilly in other parts of the house. I love the built in bookcases flanking the fireplace. That plastic bowl on the ground is full of mouse poison. We are still blocking holes as we find them as the little mice are still getting in. Vomit.

Progress of the lounge room ceiling and cornices. The kids train was found by my father-in-law and it literally fell off the back of a truck somewhere in Ultimo. He found pieces of it randomly in the streets and he fixed it up for the boys to play with.

More new ceiling.

Here is my bedroom. It is massive but it has terrible storage. There aren't enough built ins and I have already given 70% of my wardrobe to charity. Under the bulkhead there was a fair bit of damage to it and we got it replaced too, along with the ceiling, and one wall was re plastered too.

Bad damage to ceiling and wall.

My bedroom in progress. Who knows what sort of nest is up in that wall cavity, birds nest? rats nest? I have no idea.

This is first son's bedroom. His wall was damaged along with the ceiling. It has the least amount of storage space. That cupboard is the only one in his room, so he really needs some storage. We haven't rectified it yet, so it is added to the millions of jobs we need to do when we have the $$.

Lots of ceiling and wall damage right there. And a really tasty looking light which has been removed now.

Third son's bedroom. It is the nursery which is beside our main bedroom. it has a few more cupboards than the other rooms so it is ok. There was a peeling Winnie the Pooh wallpaper border around the room and there was only a tiny bit left that was stuck fast. The french doors lead onto a gauzed in verandah which is great in summer. You leave all the doors open day and night to try to catch a breeze. All the bedrooms lead onto the verandah.

Since this is a looooong post, I am going to do another one with the remainder of the rooms on it. It feels like all this stuff was a million years ago, when it was only this time last year that the plasterwork was completed. We still don't have a lot of furniture yet and it feels quite minimalistic.

More rooms next post!


  1. Hi Jo, I just stumbled across your blog. (I am a blogging L-plater like yourself.) I started a reno blog as well - only we live in the city. I couldn't help notice the scenery in the background, which reminded me of our time down in Orange (well actually Millthorpe.) Hope the weather warms up for you soon. xx

    1. Hi Caroline, I just checked out your blog and it is fabulous! So now you have a new follower.

      Funny coincidence that I spend a fair bit of time in Millthorpe as my husband's sister lives there now. We visit them a couple of times a year. I love Millthorpe, such a cute and lovely place to live!
      Thanks for your comment! x

  2. Saw your latest posts and can’t help but think that it all started here. Those ceilings were a mess and we can’t deny that they’re an integral part of your roof’s integrity and your house’s too. These seemed to be a lot of work at the time, but kudos to you for pulling it all off. :D

    Neil Hirsh

    1. It did Neil, The ceilings are what gave us the clues that our roof was not terribly good. Also, the roof was 60 years old - so it's lifespan was over.

      I had a few people look at it and recommend ways we could do it before we took the plunge and put a lot of money into saving this house.

  3. Indeed, Neil. Imagine a whole house renovation project. That must be a lot of hard work, not to mention a lot of cash spent. And yes, if you want your house to last a long time, you would have to start with a perfectly built roof and ceiling. Anyway, is the project all done now? Hope you’ll post some photos, Jo!

    Linda Wise

    1. I will post some more one day Linda, I have been slack and busy at the same time. I agree that a perfect roof is going to save major heartache down the track!

  4. Was there leakage in your ceiling as well? It seems like it, because I can see how that part of the wall is damaged. It is scary to find out what’s in there, but there is no other way to improve your ceiling’s condition but to inspect it fully. So, what have you discovered upon inspecting the inside of your roofing? ^___^***Roslyn Petermann***

  5. Every ceiling had to be redone as there was water damage everywhere! Except the office and the laundry which are on the edge of the building. It really was a massive undertaking and this will be a long project as we are farmers we have to do things when we can and wait until we have good seasons and wonderful prices.