Home Truths

In NI Homes & Lifestyle, Real Homes by Claire Craig

Louise and Phil’s terrace house is anything but typical.
Traditional and of its age from the outside, inside it is bright and contemporary. Louise commented: “When we were looking to buy our first house we had originally intended to go for a new build. It was a on a whim that we viewed this. The inside was a bit of a disaster and it needed gutted but it’s in a great location and the price meant we’d have money left over to do the work we wanted and decorate it without scrimping on costs.”
They stripped out the kitchen and bathroom, painted the entire house and put in all new flooring – resulting in a home that is completely personal to them.
Interior wise they have gone for a look that is a mix of Scandi, modern and retro with soft greys and monochrome beautifully clashed with more vibrant shades and metallics.
“We really took our time doing each room,” Louise explained. “The temptation is always to rush in and try to get it finished as quickly as possible but I wanted each room to have quite a unique look.
“Ultimately it had to be long-term liveable so we made sensible choices with the likes of the bathroom and kitchen and then were more adventurous in the living areas. That said there’s nothing that can’t be easily changed as we went for a neutral backdrop and then added in statement accessories.”
The previous kitchen in the house was a small galley style one but the couple knocked through to the separate utility room to open up the space allowing for a brighter scheme with more storage and a dining area.
“The last kitchen was barely functional,” said Louise. “We knew when we made the decision to buy the house that renovating it was going to be the biggest priority.
“It’s such a complete transformation now that I love showing people the pictures of how it used to look – they can’t believe it’s the same room!”
Another priority when it came to decorating was to ensure there was as much light flowing through the house as possible.
“The rooms are quite long and narrow so we chose colours that would create a sense of light and flow and also worked a lot of mirrors into the scheme to open up the space. We also opted for blinds rather than curtains and have a real mix of lighting in the rooms.”
When it came to flooring the couple chose a mix of carpet, wood and gloss tiles all in various tones of grey.
“I like carpet in the bedrooms because I think it’s warmer and more luxurious,” explained Louise. “I also think the different flooring makes the house seem bigger somehow as it stops it being predictable.”
The furniture in the house was all carefully researched and came from either high street stores, the internet or local designers.
“I scoured interior magazines for inspiration when we were moving,” said Louise. “Prior to this we’d been renting so a lot of our furniture was hand-me-downs that had more than served its time. It was exciting being able to start from scratch.
“We’re so proud of our home and I love that it’s never what people expect when they first see the house from the outside.”

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