Thursday, 3 June 2010

Sweating the small stuff

The big jobs have been done, more or less, and I'm wandering round the house noting all the small things that I should attend to. Like touching up masonry paint in the yard. Like washing the front door, and polishing the brass.

Like extending some TLC to the fireplace in the spare room.... O, be still, my prickling conscience!

When we bought the house, this little iron fireplace and its pretty pansy tiles were hidden behind enormous suspended sliding door wardrobes, its mantel shelf brutally removed.

We improvised a replacement with a wooden shelf, and left it at that. So much more to do in this house in those days! Rewiring, damp proofing, central heating, locating old marble fireplaces to replace those long broken up as un-modern, throwing out nasty rippled glass doors, and removing acres of polystyrene tiles and woodchip wallpaper.



There was a great deal of wardrobe door paint on the pansy tiles, and for 28 years I have intended to scrape it off. But an old towel rail always stood in front of the fire, and somehow, the intention never translated into action. Until today.

Scrape, scrape, scrape, with the blade of a Stanley knife, till my fingers hurt. So worthwhile!


Just a little more work with some fine wire wool, and it'll be done.

Sorry for the long years of neglect, little fireplace; you've had your smiling pansy-faces washed at last, and very pretty you look for it.

26 comments:

liZZie said...

Hey lady! You are some awesome house doer upperer... and well done summoning a valuation. That is a huge step into a new direction. ♥

judy in ky said...

Such a sweet little fireplace. I'm glad to see it in all its proper glory. You are doing such nice things to your place, I don't know how you will be able to leave it.

Pam said...

My goodness! That fireplace is so pretty! Who in their right mind would hide that away. You've done a great job with the renovation, and the pansies have come up beautifully!

Mac n' Janet said...

Love the fireplace, isn't it amazing how many hideous things are done to houses in the name of "updating".

Val said...

Those pansy tiles are so pretty and I do wish you would come and visit. Your unending energy, incredible work ethic and eye for detail are sorely needed as we're winding down to the last 10 days of the building. Feeling I might not make it to the end ...

the veg artist said...

Stop fussing. Your house is wonderful! Relax! Have a cup of tea! Have another one! Have some cake, even!

Fran said...

I bet that feels SO good.

Shelagh said...

Absolutely beautiful! Well done!

Lesley said...

Gorgeous - isn't it weird though how, the nicer your house starts to look, the more you can see that needs to be done?! It's as though you owe it to the house...

Lesley x

Lucille said...

I hope this work is appreciated by the agent. It was definitely value-adding effort.

Rattling On said...

Amazing what one can put up with...we bought a period replacement internal door in our last house, threw away the existing modern one. MrH found the hanging of it beyond him, so it leaned against the living room wall for almost 3 years, with me dusting it and cleaning around it. One day a neighbour turned up with his tool kit and said he'd had enough of it being there!! Took him about half an hour...

Isabelle said...

It's such a lovely house!

It's amazing how 28 years can slip by unnoticed, isn't it?

mountainear said...

What a pretty fireplace and tiles - I feel your bijoux quarters in 'Bacteria Gardens' are a bit like Dr Who's Tardis - full of unexpected and hidden depths and delights. I'm beginning to think I might want to move in myself...

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

Such a pretty little fireplace ... and still more or less intact ! I envy whoever is going to move in , the house is looking very comfortable .

rachel said...

It IS a lovely house, in its tall, thin way. I wish it had a garden, or that I could take it with me. But instead I'm trying to leave it as I would like to remember it, calm, homely, comfortable, light and airy, rather than the Forth Road Bridge painting project that it has sometimes resembled.

I'll start again somewhere else, older and wiser!

Annie (Lady M) x said...

I can soooo relate to this post. I renovated a Victorian house, and even though the past owners had done stuff like box in all the fireplaces, I loved uncovering them and restoring them to their former glory.

That fireplace that you were working on is gorgeous.

Sweet Virginia Breeze said...

I love the fireplace! Those tiles are so pretty.

Sue said...

The fireplace is beautiful especially after all your hard work. Whoever buys your house will be very lucky, you have made it look wonderful.

annie hoff said...

Those tiles are so pretty.
Polystyrene tiles and woodchip wallpaper bring back many unpleasant memories of many years ago trying to renovate an old flat in Copenhagen. I have an awful feeling the woodchip wallpaper may have won - I think we gave up in one of the rooms!

Friko said...

There, I bet that feels good. A job worth doing done well, always works for me.
Now get out into the sunshine!

Lynda (Granny K) said...

The house is lovely and I hope someone moves in who appreciates it's beauty.
We are all rooting for you and ready to move with you! (A bit like the Clampetts?!)all the way to the glorious SW! :o)

Saranne said...

Just stumbled upon your blog, and am quite enjoying reading it! Am fixing up my house (slowly but surely) for sale too, and, like you, am not at all certain as to where I will end up! Saranne OX

Marie said...

Oh my what beautiful tiles in that fireplace surround! I Just love it. You did a wonderful job of restoring it! xxoo

Dan said...

Love that fireplace! I think they look great painted white. The pansy tiles are lovely too. Isn't it funny how you get round to doing all of those niggling things when you are getting ready to put your house on the market. We are exactly the same, made me wonder why we couldn't do it for ourselves!
Dan
-x-

love those cupcakes said...

Number 25! Nice work on the tiles.

Marcheline said...

Egads... how long have I been away? I thought I was caught up with my blog reading, I come back, and there are veritable SCADS of posts I've missed on your blog! Sigh. I need another cup of coffee.

I could eat that fireplace with butter on it. Too delicious!

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