A lot can happen..(part 2)

A lot can happen..(part 2)

Welcome to part two of my blog posts about the renovation of our 110-year-old villa. If you haven't done so you can read part one here

As I said in the previous blog post at times it can feel overwhelming with what there is left to do, especially when most of what we have finished or are in the process of renovating is what I call structural and not any of the fun stuff like a new kitchen, bathroom, and laundry. But I am grateful for what we have achieved given tradespeople shortages and Covid lockdowns. 

  • Removal of the fireplace between the living and dining areas.

The photo below is from our first Christmas in the Villa but as you can see the fireplace was awkwardly positioned in the middle of the room.


We had to get council permission to remove the fireplace and had an architect draw up the plans and submit all the paperwork. The fireplace was load-bearing which meant a new support beam was needed for the roof.

Chimney and fireplace being taken down

A temporary wall was put in place while the builders jack hammered and cut up the concrete base of the old fireplace.

Temporary support wall

New Kauri flooring. At this time we also removed the wallpaper and started painting the living/dining room. Walls waiting to be skimmed with plaster.

New flooring

Ceiling plasterboard over the new support beam

new beam

Painting starts.


Nearly finished. Just waiting on the ceiling cornice. A section had to be removed and a plaster mould cast created.

Even though the ceiling was still unfinished our living area had been a building site for two months so we decided to put everything back in its place.

The couch is where the fireplace used to be. Space is transformed. Our furniture now fits in the room.

Room nearly finished

  • New roof on house and garage

The house and garage were surrounded by scaffolding for about a month. A new colour steel roof in iron grey and some new support beams were installed. With all the rain we have had in northland for the last 18 months I am so grateful our roof doesn't leak.

Scaffolding around garage

  •  Linen cupboard doors

In the hallway, there was an alcove that served no purpose. We got our joiner to make it into a linen cupboard with Villa-style doors. Though narrow, the extra storage is wonderful.

Linen cupboard doors before being painted

Painted in Resene alabaster white.

Finished linen cupboard

  • Replaced the aluminium brown bi-fold doors with new French villa-style doors and a new side panel. French doors now match the front.

Look no doors.

Getting new french doors

     New side panel waiting to be installed

    Side panel

    French doors were installed with a temporary door handle.

     New French doors

    When all is finished I will share recent after photos until then I hope you have enjoyed part 2. Yes I know I promised to share details about my studio but I think that can be a topic for the next blog.