For today's At Home, we speak to Emily about her simple, pared-back home. Can you believe two little ones live in this house?! Emily's home is a great example of how an uncluttered aesthetic has made way for a peaceful, calm space within which her family can grow.
Can you tell us about your home and who lives there?
I live in my 1930s semi-detached house in the suburbs with my husband, Danny and two children - Goldie and Chip.
How long have you lived there?
We bought our home in February 2021 and did a little bit of renovation in order to make it habitable! We moved in at the end of May 2021, so we’ve lived here for a year.
What was the house like before you moved in?
It was definitely lacking soul although it did have character under all the gritty carpets and Cadbury purple walls. The decor was dark and dull with little imagination as the house had been rented for 10 years before we purchased it. It definitely hadn’t been looked after so it needed some serious TLC.
Did you have to do much work to the house yourselves?
The short answer - yes! A lot more than we had anticipated. As well as aesthetic work we had to deal with damp, poor plumbing and bizarre wiring and it ended up quite a big job. Structurally, we knocked down a wall, put in a new kitchen and added a utility room and pantry. I was putting my name down for new builds around 6 months into our renovation (I was very pregnant and very frustrated), but we got there and I am genuinely so delighted that we stayed put.
Is there anything you’d still like to do to the house?
Oh the list is endless! We are hoping to add new patio doors to open up the dining area but it involves a beam and extensive building work so we won’t be rushing into it. We also want to convert the attic into a master bedroom with an en-suite. It’s a massive space and has some stunning features including exposed beams and an incredible brick wall with amazing markings from the chimney flues. All in good time though, we expect to be here for years to come.
What are some of your favourite things in your home?
I absolutely love our pantry. I’ve been dreaming of it since before we moved in! It’s a joy to have such a stylish, functional space. The arched doorways and bespoke reclaimed wooden doors are a firm favourite too (Manley Man Bespoke Joinery). We also love the garden - our last house was a 2 up, 2 down in East Belfast and we had little to no outdoor space, so our garden is a paradise.
Is there anything you would love to own for the house?
To be honest, I think I’m content for now with what we have. We’ve put so much into our house over the past year and I love everything about it - although I definitely wouldn’t say no to an antique gold, arched William Wood Mirror for above our mantel. It would be the perfect finishing touch!
Everything is very considered, does that come naturally to you?
I guess in a way it does. Although I would say a lot of our choices were very spontaneous and I was definitely holding my breath until it all came together! I travelled a lot throughout my twenties and I guess I gathered ideas in my mind of what I wanted my ‘dream house’ to look and feel like. My subconscious really came through with decision making and I can see elements of different countries in certain areas of our home.
How would you spend a perfect weekend?
We just bought outdoor furniture and our garden is south facing so some sun, a cold beer and some good food on our patio and I’d be in my element!