Home, Home and Garden

Stylish Secondhand London Flat

vintage styled home

I wanted to share with you today this stylish London flat filled with secondhand, vintage and upcycled finds.

It’s rented by Cat, who blogs at the beautiful lifestyle blog Take Courage.  Lately she shared how they’ve furnished and decorated the London flat that they moved into last year, taking it from average flat into a stunning and homely space.  As renters I’m amazed at how much personality and uniqueness that they’ve managed to inject into the space through their furniture and accessory choices, and without making any major alterations to the place.

Cat is a lover of all things vintage and secondhand – regularly attending markets and visiting vintage shops – and this really shines through in her lovely home.  And as well as the enormous luck Cat seems to have in finding such great vintage finds, she’s also pretty darned crafty and has upcycled a lot of their furniture to fit with her taste.

Have a little look for yourself:

vintage styled living room

secondhand dresser

The kitchen is just as homely as the living room:

homemade home

vintage styled kitchen

And the quirky vintage feel continues into the bedroom:

vintage styled home

Cat and her boyfriend made the fabric covered headboard themselves, and customised their Ikea chest of drawers.

vintage home

vintage dressing tableornamentsKienzle tam tam alarm clock

ikea wardrobe hack

Cat inherited the wardrobe from the previous tenants of the flat.  It wasn’t to her taste so she got busy with paint and wallpaper and transformed it into something beautiful that fits perfectly with their flat.  She upcycled the suitcases on top of the wardrobe too!

stylish london flat

Cat and Chutney the cat!

To see more photos of Cat’s stunning London flat and to see some of her upcycling talents in action then you can visit her blog, Take Courage.  You can see more photos of her living room/kitchen here, and her bedroom – you won’t be disappointed!

All photos c/o Take Courage

ps: check out my interiors tag for more secondhand home inspiration!

Energy Saving, Home, Home and Garden

Free Cavity Wall Insulation for Everyone!

free cavity wall insulation

Hello!  How are you?  The good news is we survived our house move in one piece (just!) and are settling into our new house nicely – which now comes with electricity, gas, and importantly, internet access and wifi!  Got to have my wifi!

We went down the DIY route and did the move ourselves, with the kind help of family and friends, and while it went well we have both vowed we are never moving again!  The whole house buying and moving process was the most stressful thing ever!  We’re now trying to put that stress behind us and right now we are busy poring over paint swatches, and getting quotes left right and centre for various work that needs done on the house.

One thing that is pressing on my mind right now in particular is cavity wall insulation, or rather lack of.  Our house is really old, and we have ridiculously high ceilings – about 11/12 foot high in the living room and hall.  Even though it’s April we’ve found it to be particularly nippy at night and really hard to heat and then keep warm.

Thankfully our property has cavity walls so is a prime candidate for cavity wall insulation.  I had a search on the internet to see what the cost of cavity wall insulation might be and was pretty over the moon to discover that British Gas are currently offering people in uninsulated homes free cavity wall insulation.  You don’t have to be a British Gas customer, and you don’t have to be in receipt of certain benefits or of pension age or over to benefit – the offer of free cavity wall insulation is open to everyone regardless of age or income.

You can find out more on the British Gas website and you can find out if your home is suitable here.

cavity wall insulation

There are a few exceptions – it’s for residential properties only; and you can’t get it if you live in a Council or housing association owned property.  If you rent you’ll need to get your landlord’s permission and if you live in a flat your neighbours have to agree to the insulation too.  British Gas won’t top up existing cavity wall insulation; and if you have damp problems they should be sorted first but apart from that, as long as you live in a house that’s suitable for cavity wall insulation then it’s yours!

Cavity wall insulation is pretty amazing – over a third of heat lost from un-insulated homes escapes through the walls, and according to Which? our heating bills could be reduced by up to £145 a year, without spending a single penny.  Even if you did have to pay for it, because some much heat leaches through un-insulated walls, it’s actually one of the single most cost effective ways to save energy in the home, so I’d completely recommend getting your hands on the free cavity wall insulation if you don’t have insulation already!

In case you’re wondering, I’m not sponsored by British Gas – I just wanted to pass on my fortuitous find!  I’ve got my appointment booked and hopefully will have it installed before long!