Well you might not find it on any official calendar but for me January is home improvement planning month. I will do anything to get out of thinking about my tax return. Or indeed paying off my Christmas spending on my credit card. Anything at all. So generally I plan holidays in my head, some of them that will actually be happening, and then the ones that let you dream for hours because they involve private cabins on beaches and butlers.
Once that is done I turn to things closer to home, and completely redesigning our entire house. When we moved in twelve years ago the first thing we were going to do is rip out the bathroom. Yes the developers gave us a gorgeous two person jacuzzi bath but they also gave us a combination boiler so you can only get an inch of hot water in it before it goes tepid. So it’s basically just a bit white elephant that takes up half the room. The whole room is white, which looks lovely on the estate agent details, but in reality it looks like an operating theatre. Can you tell I hate our bathroom? We got as far as having plans drawn up for replacing it, but never got any further than that. Procrastinate? Us? Yep. We wrote the book.
This year though I have set myself the task of writing down exactly what needs to be done in each room, so I can see at a glance a list of jobs. Then I can slowly tick them all off. Some can be done in a weekend, like painting the skirting boards in the en suite. Others will take considerably longer, see above re the bathroom.
My thinking is that if I break it down into tasks it won’t seem quite so gargantuan, or bank account draining. By just changing a few things I can make a big difference. Starting with our spare bedroom which has always been a bit of a “dumping ground”. We don’t have an airing cupboard so all the towels and linen are stacked on an old linen press that looks less than tidy. The ironing board is always up in there (not because we use it, but because the cats sleep on it), and my yoga mat is always out. It would be lovely to turn this into a bit of retreat type space. That the bed is more of a day bed, or even a sofa bed since we don’t often have people staying the night with us. A little tranquil space to escape the mess and clutter in the rest of the house.
Starting with a centre piece. Every room needs a centre piece, right? Something like the above, a wooden chandelier. I didn’t know that they even existed but now I do know about them I really want one. A bit like the tap I heard about last night that dispenses carbonated water. Genius.
The above is from Cox and Cox, and costs £350, though they start from as little as £70. I always thought that chandeliers were huge, expensive and predominantly glass which means I would be sure to break something every time I cleaned it (who am I kidding, I would never clean it, so it would end up looking like a prop from the Adams Family home). A simple wooden one would be perfect.
Especially if I then teamed it up with the dressing table above. It could even double as a writing table rather than being “just” a dressing table, don’t you think?
Then I could have an occasional sofa. I have always wanted an occasional piece of furniture, haven’t you? Sounds so grown up. “Oh that is our occasional table” . I can see myself curled up on this, early in the morning with a mug of tea, watching it get light and plotting and planning the day ahead.
And maybe finally getting around to the bathroom too.