Welcome to my home! It’s a semidetached English Victorian, and according to the plaque on the front, it was built in 1895 and named Rose Villas. I just call her our Old Victorian though, because that’s the name we used when we first saw her and I guess it stuck. Anyway, Andrew and I have lived here for almost a year and a half with our two cats. In a few short weeks (or less!) we’ll bring our baby home to this house, so I know it will always have a special place in my heart. I’ve been meaning to put together a tour for ages because I love looking back on the places we’ve lived. (The iphone pics of our first apartment in San Diego and our previous home in England “Cottage 85” are also shared here on the blog.) Now that I’m stuck at home thanks to lockdown, I finally got around to taking 100 photos of each room. 😉
I’m calling this an honest tour because I didn’t do anything fancy before taking photos apart from tidying up, so it shows the unstyled truth of our home. We’ve kept things pretty simple since we’re renting and only plan to stay here another year or so. The furnishings are a combination of stuff from our previous home and pieces that belong to our landlord and came with the house. There’s things I’d love to change, but it’s home and perfect for us in this season of life. With that being said, let’s head on in!
It’s a typical Victorian terrace floorplan with an entry hallway leading upstairs and to the living and dining room. I love the old stained glass front door with its letter slot, though it does let in a draft. The entry is narrow but functional with shoe storage and hooks for coats and umbrellas.
The living room is the first door to the left as you walk in.
I’m mostly content with this room, except for the giant cabinet lurking behind the door. It’s not completely hideous, but it’s too large for the space and not practical. I’ve been at war with it since day one trying to ‘make it work,’ and I don’t know if I can put into words how much it irritates me. I’ve tried moving it, but that thing is solid and not going anywhere without . Tried taking it apart, but the only way to do that is with a saw – which I’ve considered. It belongs to our landlord, so Andrew said under no circumstances was I allowed to cut it to pieces or damage it in any way. *sigh* Unfortunately it won’t fit in the space next to the fireplace, so there’s no hope of symmetry on that wall. I just leave the door open and try not to look at it.
Apart from the annoying cabinet, there’s a lot I love about this room. It’s filled with our favorite personal items, and it’s cozy and comfortable which is the main thing.
Heading back into the entry, the dining room, kitchen, and bathroom are all through the second door.
All the furniture in the dining room came with the house, so it’s taken some time for it to feel like us. For a long time this was just a pass-through room to get to the kitchen and bathroom. It became a bit of a dumping ground, but fortunately I cleaned it up before lockdown. I also brought in the desk from our old guest room (now nursery) and it made the room more functional – especially since I’ve been working from home for the past 7 weeks! The final piece to the puzzle was adding artwork to and photos from our travels make the space feel more casual and personal.
The kitchen and bathroom are on the back of the house through the dining room. We’re pretty used to having an English kitchen now, so don’t think twice about the counter-height fridge, lack of dishwasher, or having a washing machine next to the sink. Andrew does all the cooking, and makes some pretty amazing meals here.
I love some of the original kitchen details like the window over the sink and door to the bathroom.
The bathroom isn’t that exciting, but I did take on one project in here refinishing the drawer unit. It was a dark wood before, and I got a wild hair one day and painted it white.
Time to head upstairs! This part of the house is what sold me on it. The original hardwood floors in the three bedrooms, natural light, and vintage wardrobes made me look past all the brown carpeting downstairs.
I shared about our bedroom recently and how we got it ready for a baby.
Andrew’s office is the only room I didn’t really take pictures of because it’s permanently a mess, but here’s a glimpse.
The third room is the nursery/guest bedroom. It’s easily my favourite room in the house these days, and I can’t wait for it to be put to use.
Last but not least is the garden. It’s looking a little overgrown at the moment, but we’ve loved being able to sit out here most days for a change of scene and some sunshine. Since the lockdown, a neighbour a few roads down has played music every Saturday at 5pm for ‘happy hour,’ and we can hear it from the patio.
That’s everything! If you managed to scroll down to the end of this picture-filled post, then thanks for sticking with me. 🙂