We’re revamping the house again.
Well, it’s 3.00am and I can’t sleep, so I might as well blog…
We are carrying on with our declutter-fest. Having disposed of 100 items of clothing recently, I just decided to keep going, and then I hit on another bright idea.
We live in a three-storey house, because the attic is converted. But it’s glacially cold up there, including our bedroom. It’s a lovely room, with a cathedral ceiling and full of light, with its huge Velux window and casement looking out across the garden and orchard. Waking up in the summer months is a great experience, but it’s a terrible struggle to keep it warm in winter.
Two years ago, it was 8 degrees, and this winter we managed to get it up to 13 or so degrees, but it cost a fortune in electricity (plug-in radiator, because we can’t run the central heating for more than a couple of hours a day, being oil-fired and very expensive), and 13 degrees is still cold enough to wake you up with a cold face.
Then, recently, I hit on a bright idea. On the first floor, right above the living room, is my sewing room. It’s long since ceased to be the room where I actually sew and become a repository for junk: fabrics, out of season clothing, my kimono collection and assorted storage (bedding, towels, old diaries, photos, etc) and furniture that’s migrated from elsewhere in the house.
However, it’s a relatively warm room as it has the chimney for the woodburner running through it and also benefits from the heat that builds up in the room below during the course of an evening. It used to be our guest room but we rejected it as a permanent bedroom for ourselves because it’s so dark, lit only by one deep-silled window facing west and a tiny arrow-slit window to the south.
But, in winter, it suddenly occured to me, this is not an issue, because you go to bed in the dark and you get up in the dark anyway. There’s nothing to stop us having a winter bedroom and a summer bedroom.
As often, when I mentioned it to the DH, it turned out he’d been thinking along similar lines (this often happens – probably a sign we should get married…).
I don’t know why we’d never thought of this before. It gives us a ready-made spare bedroom for the occasional visitor and there’s plenty of storage under (and on) each bed for items such as spare duvets, which do seem to take up a ridiculous amount of space. Clothing for each season can be stored in the relevant room and we’ll just migrate in spring and autumn.
Of course, the room will still have to do double-duty for sewing, but that is fairly easy, I think, as there is a deep alcove lined in shelving that can be curtained off fairly readily, and we have decided to hire a carpenter friend to build a storage wall on one side to make better use of the difficult space that goes around the spine beam and the sloping chimneypiece.
I have the above bed in mind for this room – the Fjell from Ikea – in order to keep the profile neat and not have dust bunnies under the bed. That, a couple of nightstands and a chair to sit on should suffice and since we want to move two of the four chairs out of our dining room anyway, in order to free up space, that kills another two birds with one stone.
So, this past couple of days I have set to and started chucking out, listing furniture for sale and getting rid of my old massage couch, which I haven’t used in years.
It is a good feeling, decluttering and lightening up. You find an enormous amount of crap you’ve kept for reasons you can’t fathom, and a lot of badly used storage (I had a bunch of empty shoe boxes, for instance). I’ve already filled two rubbish sacks with charity and chuckouts and have decided to start using up some of the sewing stash for quilts to sell on Etsy.
Right, back to bed…