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New Cloakroom – Finished At Last!!

As I have mentioned in my recent Sunday Sevens posts, we are getting the house ready for sale.

I know that doesn’t sound like it’s anything major, but I’m a stickler for detail and have delayed putting it on the market until I’m happy that all the little things have been finished.

Things like painting the inside of the cloakroom door, for example. In theory, no potential buyer would even see the back of the door as they’ll only poke their head in for a quick glance.

As I said, I’m a stickler for detail.

Last year (and indeed, for the previous ten years) this was a Cloakroom-in-waiting, (not so) dressed up as a cupboard/dumping ground, measuring an extremely modest 3ft x 5ft.


Now, as it’s the room in the house in which you spend just a few minutes a day, I had visions of going crazy with the décor. I seriously considered going this bonkers!


Thankfully, my sensible head kicked in just in the nick of time, as my finger was hovering over the ‘Add to basket’ button. Not the best choice for a house you’re hoping to sell in the near future.

Searching the ‘net for viable options, I came across this image and thought “Wow!”

The space was almost identical to ours and it had the unexpected ‘in your face’ kind of reaction when you opened the door.


Decision made, I ordered two rolls of wallpaper in the charcoal and gold colourway (there are five different options). At the regal cost of £146, you’d like to think that the fish are real gold leaf!!

I held up the wallpaper against the Farrow and Ball paint chart and was pleased to find that “Charleston Grey” was a pretty good match, so ordered a 5l tin of water-based eggshell for the woodwork.


Hubby installed the tongue and groove panelling and it took three coats of paint to get a good coverage – all to be done overnight before the plumbers came back the next day to fit the suite!


We have a fair division of labour – he does all the construction stuff and I do all the painting and decorating.


Decorating complete, it was time to gild the old mirror I picked up in a vintage shop.



Mirror up and then……..that was it for a year.

Last month I finally persuaded Mr H-L that it really was time to box-in the pipework and add skirting boards. I think it was the phrase “So you’ll have somewhere to put your coffee mug” was what clinched it!


No sooner up than painted.


Drum roll please, for the big reveal…..


A closer look at the details: –

The Oriental style Koi Carp wallpaper.


Mr H-L did a bloomin’ good job of installing floorboards that match the ones in the hallway that he did ten years earlier.


Downlights are much nicer than a central pendant.


A towel radiator heats the tiny space in Winter.


We even managed to find the tiniest of sinks complete with storage for the essentials. The sink measures just 16″ x 9″ and is the perfect solution.


A single lever tap was the obvious choice for such a diminutive sink.


A swivel plug is so much sleeker than the old fashioned chain that wrapped around the tap and dangled annoyingly.


This ceramic light pull is better than the bare cord.


Chrome loo roll holder and towel hook match the radiator.


This is the view from the loo….


….and when they’re bored of looking at that, I even put a few books in to entertain the men. Well, it IS only men that like to sit on the loo until their legs go numb, isn’t it?


For those (like me) who love them, here’s a good old ‘before and after’ comparison:

Finally, I would just like to say that I have never slavishly followed any design inspiration before, but this was so perfect for the space that I shamelessly copied it almost identically, apart from the floor.


Inspiration VS Reality

Yes, we could have played safe and done the usual beige thing of white ‘contrasting’ against magnolia……


…..but why would you when you can have gold Koi Carp on the walls?!


Who else has been bold with a downstairs loo?

I wanna see some of your photos, so put your link in the comments!


Sunday Sevens #119

1. Progress in the downstairs loo is rapid and, in an effort to get the loo fitted in time for the weekend, we had to lay and varnish a wooden floor overnight so the plumber could get on with it the following morning. I did all the sawing to length and Mr. H-L did the actual laying of the floor.

2. Oh, and fit and paint the panelling, which meant getting up at 6am to put a second coat on before they returned at 8.30am.

It wasn’t decorated, but we did have a functional loo in time for the weekend when we had a houseful of guests.

3. Having been forewarned by the electric company that there would be a temporary disruption to services, it was an excuse to go out so I popped to Wells one morning. I often have lunch in The City Arms, an historic old former jail dating from the 1500s but, as it was only 9.30am, I went elsewhere for breakfast.

4. Un-dyed smoked haddock with poached eggs in André’s Café – delicious!

5. When in Wells I make a beeline for Sew Vintage in the Craft Quarter. It’s in a lovely old building – can you see the hand-cranked sewing machine on the wall?

6. It’s stuffed full of quirky décor and haberdashery items and I spend ages just browsing.

7. They sell mainly Tilda-type fabrics for crafts rather than for dressmaking, and yarn.

8. I came away with some lovely Regia sock yarn and a pattern for knee high socks – the first of my handmade presents for next Christmas!

9. I also made a stop at Wells Trading Post on the hunt for vintage 1940’s frameless mirrors and managed to find two that were just the job for my vision.

10. Back home, the electricity was off until about 7pm but that didn’t stop The Boys from playing by candlelight.

11. Cake fail – I made a fabulous carrot cake…..then dropped it on the coffee table. 

It might look awful, but it tasted amazing and didn’t put my lot off and they made short work of it!

12. Cheeky relaxing lunch out with the Mister at The Sparkford Inn before a busy-but-wonderful weekend entertaining family.

Linking up with Natalie at Threads & Bobbins, Sunday Sevens is a weekly blog post showing bits of your life outside the blog.