Category Archives: HOUSE RENOVATION 2011

Kitchen Ceiling – last chance

The kitchen ceiling has always been a problem. When we moved in in 2003 it was covered with wooden planks and there was a sort of outdoor render on the walls.

We took the planks of wood off and could see why they guy had put them up to begin with. It looked as though the builder hadn’t really finished the ceiling and he had put on some sort of greasy rendering that couldn’t be painted over. Over the years we’ve tried to paint, put up wallpaper, paint, put up another type of wallpaper and nothing sticks – everything we’ve tried has come ‘unstuck’!

So Rudy’s back with us for another week. We came up with an idea as to lower one part of the ceiling without it looking like an after-thought and here are the fruits of three days labor:

Taken from the sofa
Sunday night before the Tuesday start


So, as you can see there is no visible join between the kitchen and the old dining room.

Tuesday Evening :

Tuesday Night 1st day
Tuesday Night 1st day.


Rudy’s fixed straight onto the ceiling joists so it’s pretty solid.


Friday night Day 4:

Friday night and it's looking about right
Friday night and it’s looking about right

In all there will be 7 spots on two different switches: two above the bar area and the other five above the sink, oven and one in the centre of the kitchen. According to Rudy if we were to have all 7 at the same time it would like like the “Palais de Verseilles” (Think Ally Pally)


More to follow


Painting…at least in Audrey & Liams rooms.

Rudy Quatrato started at the beginning of June with a ‘delivery date’ of mid September.

Here we are in late October and there is still much to be done. To be honest, the lateness is really down to the previous owner of this house the ‘Right Honorable C$$t’ Mister Carole of the French Army.

We both warned Rudy as to the terrible way that M Carole had undertaken work in the house; DIY was definately not his strong point. Our neighbours have all explained that M Carole was a tight git and that when the house was built he asked the builders to leave the interior decorating to him. The git [as we shall now refer to M Carole {can’t stand even saying his name never mind writing it down}] simply stuck polystyrene tiles on all the ceilings without even bothering to put an undercoat on to pretect the drywall panels. When you try and take these tiles off half the ceiling comes away with it; especially since the git didn’t even protect the joints of the drywall.  The git obviously tried it himself in the dining room and rather than repair the damage the git just nailed up wooden panels onto the ceiling. He did the same thing with every wall in the house simply sticking wallpaper directly onto the drywall panels again not even protecting the joints.

So, Rudys lateness, if you can really call it that, is down to the fact that he had to skim every ceiling [except in the kitchen and we’ll come back to that when it’s done] and every wall in order to put them right. It cost a few thousand extra and added a few weeks onto the schedule but well worth the money and Rudy is very good at what he does.

As the title mentions we’re now in the painting stage in the kids bedrooms. Ours is still the storage room at the moment but I hope to be back in it before Christmas.

Both Audrey and Liam chose their own colours [not my style, but hey if that’s what they want, why not] and Carine pushed them into deciding to have coloured bands across the walls. As you can see from the photos below it took a while to prepare the walls but the result is OK. The white bands at the top and bottom of the walls are there : (1) so that I do not have to cut colour into a white ceiling and (2) to protect the new skirting boards.


So, I’m left with the following to paint, at least an undercoat before the winter sets in..

1. Our Bedroom.
2. The bathroom when finished.
3. The toilet when finished.
4. The kitchen when finished.
5. The lounge and old dining room.
6. The extension across the terrace when finished.
7. The ‘wet room/utility room’ when accessible [another temporary storage area]

I’ve already gone through 20 litres of undercoat, 40 litres of white paint, 5 litres of aubergine, and a couple of litres of each of the other colours. And I’m only a quater of the way through…I’ll need to buy new rollers tomorrow and try to get as much done as I can before I go back to work next Monday.

Building cont.


The problem with renovating a home whilst actually living in it is that all possessions are strewn everywhere. My camera is here somewhere, just not sure where. So here are a couple of quick pictures taken with my iphone. When I find my camera I’ll modify the post…








Planning Permission

The local town hall has finally come through.
We can start to renovate this delapidated house.

Every room will have a make over. The garage will become a spare bedroom with en-suite shower room.
We’ll add a study and a utility room.

The outside terrace will be closed off to create a new veranda type dining room.

The kitchen will be completely replaced.

The bathroom will be completely replaced.

All bedroom walls and ceilings will be re-plastered.

All new floor tiles.

New doors and shutters.

Landscape garden and terrace.


Budget of 50.000€…

Pictures to follow.