Rove Concepts

DHgate has all for travelling


And I thought I had problems before


You have to laugh or you'd start crying. That is my lovely old floor after my painters started "painting".  Not what I was expecting. It's a long and involved story that can be summed up simply ... they were cowboys. A supposedly reputable firm sends a cowboy crew to my home to "paint". First they didn't start in the room they said they would (the bedroom which we had stripped of furniture). They decided to start with the office and spray it (I was not informed this was how they were going to "paint"). I have seen rooms that have been professionally sprayed and they can turn out OK ... if the room is cleared of furniture, heavy drop cloths or plastic used, lots of masking and taping and covering up everything that isn't to be sprayed. This is what I found when I got home. I don't need to explain the carnage.



Painters had gone home for the day but quick as a flash I was on the phone. I remember threats and profanities were used by me and profuse apologies by the painter. "We'll fix it! I promise." I wanted to sack them then and there but they had the keys to my house and I was worried that they would take "payment" by way of computers or TVs when we weren't home. With trepidation I let them come back the next day to clean up. They were there when I got home. It was worse!



The floors that were covered in paint spots and a fine mist of white paint which they tried to wipe off turning it into a "whitewash" were now splotchy and discoloured. They had used methylated spirits, sponges and a scraper and preceded to ruin my floors even further if possible. "Don't worry we'll fix it with varnish." It was at that stage I screamed at them to get out :)

I have spent a day trying to fix the problem but I'm admitting defeat for the moment. My 150 year old cedar floors had been shellaced at some stage of their lives and the metho had removed the finish. Worse still it softened the finish and mixed it with the remains of the paint producing muddy white clouds of now reset shellac/paint all over my floor. The beautiful thick waxy finish is stripped away and well you can see the results. Wine helped last night and jam and cream donuts have made today's efforts a little more bearable but it's f*cked. Want to see what it was like before?

It was never perfect. There were some areas of slight discolouration, some scratches but there was also this lovely richness, a thick, smooth and silky finish underfoot darkened with age. Like a lovely old piece of furniture you have polished over and over. It was what I loved about these rooms. People have said sand it back, refinish it and most likely I will have to but what I will be losing is the history. The boards are cupped with age. You can see shallow trails worn into the timber over 150 years where people have walked the same path from door to door or door to bed. I love that. Now I'll have to rip its history away with a belt sander and have a "brand spanking new floor". I think I need another donut! Here's my before video. Goodbye floors. I miss you.


Houston we have a problem ...


Edward and Tom have started stripping the wallpaper. Scratch that. They have finished stripping the wallpaper and I must say despite the mess and chaos it looks fab. I can see where it is going and I love it. One problem though. They found damp. Ouch! Not surprising as large parts of my ground floor are underground. The building report showed nothing and we were surprised. We definitely expected some moisture. Might have something to do with years of drought finally breaking with a big momma of a la Nina. Wet, wet, wet for months. Good news is that it can be fixed. Bad news is the price goes up. But my mad Irish painters are very competitive on price so it is onwards and upwards ... or is that downwards and underground. Plaster off, sealant x lots, plaster on, paint and then address the drainage problems. Fun! Paint soon though. Oooooh paint!!!!!!




House tour continues and recent finds


This is my kitchen before. So much potential but what a state it was in when we first moved in. I think I mopped the floor three times! Not much will happen here for a year or two. We need to spend our money on other parts of the house ... like an upstairs bathroom! It's about a 25m walk to the little girl's room from where we sleep, down two lots of stairs and several level changes. But back to the kitchen. Slap white paint everywhere. Thinking black paint on the lower cabinets. Pull the top of the 50s wall unit off and put up rustic wooden open shelves. If any money is spent it will be for wooden benchtops, maybe IKEA and I'll change out the lampshades for some industrial ones I have. That's it all done for the time being. At least the stove is new.


I'm loving the thrifting and antiquing here in Ipswich. Great finds at great prices. Here are just a few treasures I have found. The little industrial side table/stool was a steal and will find a home in the living room or Kelvin's office next to his leather chair. I totally love this little handmade piece right down to the name burned into the underside. Ipswich has a history of railway workshops and I'm thinking this may have been made in one of them.


The murano glass bowl is like liquid caramel. I really want to lick it ... almost. It has the most beautiful aventurine sparkles in it. I haven't unpacked my art glass yet. I can't wait to find permanent homes for my favourite pieces. The metal "pot" is a chinese incense burner. Just what every girl needs. Two heavy bronze "chalices" will sit with my tribal pieces quite nicely and that piece of Indonesian ikat was only $3 at Vinnies! It's a couple of metres long. Might use it as a throw.


I've always wanted some Indian clubs so when I saw these three at The Vintage Advantage I just had to have them. If you are in Ipswich anytime you must drop in to this store. It's a treasure trove! The coffee pot is a thrift store find. Made in England I love its cartoon shape.


I've started another box to send to Kim and today I found the perfect piece to include. How cute is this little trophy! It's for the best short hair cat at a cat show in 1972. Too much fun and how apt! I found something else for someone else too. (Hey I'm running out of space to keep collecting for myself and I'm seriously addicted to thrifting.) Anita does son No.3 need a horse pillow to go with his soldiers? Or was it son No.1 who was doing horses in his room? Either way vintage barkcloth for $1 is too good to pass up.

The painters start Monday. Hooray!!! I am so excited to finally get started on my own house after several years renting. Can't wait to have some afters to share with you!


Jumping the queue ... my messy office

Think of this as a before. Not unpacked. The right furniture isn't in. Latest box from Kim with fabulous Mexican tin and textiles as well as retro fabric and all sorts of thrifted goodness is piled on my desk. (Thanks buddy I love all of it!) I can't go any further with the set up because THE PAINTERS ARE STARTING MONDAY!!!!!! Everything white. Brilliant white. Except the floors. It has taken 150 years for them to get that wonderful beaten up patina so they are staying just as they are. Not sure about that kilim there. I have several others so I'll wait till it's painted and the furniture is in. Think mid century and recycled furniture and found objects, lots of art and natural timber touches. My desk is an old wooden trestle table with loads of character (read as dings and dents). Hopefully this will be the first room completed ... or almost completed because I plan to change my mind ALL the time. The soft toy dolphin is not an accessory. It's a Mickey toy. And I really should have moved the duster. Oh well it is a before!


Third bedroom back through the dining room and into the breezeway 


That was a mouthful! I just realised that I was missing lots of video. Seems that flickr only uploads a max of 90 seconds (ish). Here is just a taste of the grand dining room, guest room, breezeway and kitchen spectacular ... just kidding. Just a few befores for the archives :) Apologies too. My editing skills are very crude (read no software just a stop button).