Hi all! It’s the start of a new week and I am delighted to be featuring Celine of @dasilvadesign telling us all about her renovation and how she’s designed and styled her current home in South East London. What can I say? I have loved reading this and hearing about Celine’s experience which I found myself nodding along to as everything that Celine talks about here really resonates with me.
Celine has completed a full house renovation and is now in the process of completing a loft conversion. I adore her interior design style influenced by her heritage creating a strong and contemporary style throughout her home. Some of the points that stood out for me were Celine’s love of wood panelling, her love of the build phase and a desire to do it again it a heartbeat. Likewise.
For anyone about to embark on a renovation or design project her tips are invaluable particularly if you’ll be living at home during the build and coping with the dust.
Oh wow, I’m a little bit in awe of all of this, and I’d love for you to have a read.
Tell us about your home and your renovation project. What did you do?
We moved around 100 metres down the road from our old house after I had contacted a lovely neighbour who happened to be selling and we were able to do a private sale. So I had a good few months of walking past the house to think through ideas and we were able to do a couple of long viewings where I took some detailed measurements. Before the sale went through I had already drawn up floor plans, elevations and ordered tile samples months before we exchanged on the sale! We had the builder that we used on our old house over to quote for the renovation work the day after we moved in. Most of the house hadn’t been renovated for several years which was exciting for me. Our sellers had already done an extension but we found that a lot of things were faulty, so we decided to strip everything back internally and start again. We created an opening between the living room and kitchen with sliding doors which has totally changed the flow around the ground floor space.
How would you describe your Interior Design style?
Contemporary and strongly influenced by my heritage, travelling and time living abroad, especially in places like Singapore, Finland and Spain. I’m obsessed with natural materials like rattan and wood and if I had my way, I’d have wood panelling covering every surface! But we all know how much the price of timber has gone up, so sadly those dreams will have to wait for another lifetime.
What did you enjoy the most about your house renovation?
I’m a sucker for structural changes. Seeing the impact of the kitchen chimney breast being removed and the new opening on the ground floor being created was huge for me. I loved the momentum at the beginning of the build and then the finishing touches towards the end. Meeting some amazing local craftspeople has been wonderful – our carpenter, upholsterer and curtain makers are all so talented and supportive.
What was your biggest challenge?
Living in the house whilst renovating. Both my husband and I worked, cooked and slept in one room for the whole renovation, but we had to circulate this setup between 4 different rooms as and when the builders tackled each room. No matter how much we tidied, the dust got everywhere and I was a sneezing mess most of the time!
Is there anything that you would have done differently?
I would have bitten the bullet, paid a little extra and gone for pocket doors between the living room and kitchen – our current doors look good and are a lot cheaper than several other options we looked at but they’re fiddly, so noisy and not as solid as I would have liked.
Share (max) three top tips to help inspire and help future home renovators?
– If you’re changing the layout of your space, try your best to sketch a rough floor plan with as many annotations as possible before the builder starts if you can – even if it’s really basic. It will make life a lot easier.
– If you already have furniture that you love, put it into storage. The destruction from the dust is not worth it!
– Be prepared for how available you might need to be for builders when they’re on site. It’s great when they have lots of questions for you as it means they’re communicating well, but it can be time-consuming.
What was your best purchase?
Our Pluck kitchen! We sold the kitchen that the previous owners had installed and used the funds from that towards our sustainable and locally made, beautiful Pluck kitchen.
Would you do it again?
In a heartbeat, yes. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a ridiculously stressful process, and it’s very different when you’re working on your own home compared to a client’s, especially if you’re living in the house while it’s all happening. I am a Graphic and Interior Designer and feel like it’s part of who I am to have an addiction to designing and then redesigning! Renovating my own home has been so beneficial for the knowledge and experience that I can utilise in my client projects.
What’s next? Any future renovation plans?
We’ve started work on our loft conversion! It’s a much more comfortable experience as the bulk of the work has been done from the outside of the house. The funniest thing is that we can now see our old house from the new loft bedroom – it’s a lovely reminder of how far we’ve come.
All photography by My Bespoke Room
What an amazing read that I hope resonates with you as much as it does with me. Thank you so much Celine for joining me to share your renovation and design story with us.
Do go and check out Celine on Instagram @dasilvadesignhouse where you can see more of her beautiful home and loft conversion progress. You can also see more of her interior design and graphic design projects on her website; Da Silva Design.
I’m always on the lookout for homes and renovation projects to feature, so please do drop me an email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in finding out more.