Highs and Lows

This shot may seem rather dull, but to me it sums up some of the highs, lows and learning points from our refurbishment.

It includes two of my favourite things in the project, and one of its biggest lessons.

The lesson first: it seems incredible but the boxes for the two fittings below were installed by the same electrician, at the same time. Yes…we asked someone to put two electrical items in close proximity on the same wall, and he thought the best way to install them was (with apologies to Douglas Adams) almost, but not quite, entirely un-level.

You would not have thought I needed to spell out that they should be level, I did not think I needed to spell out that they should be level (and moreover did want to not spell it out, because I was already feeling like the world’s most demanding client, having spelt out so many other things). So I didn’t, and this is the result. ALWAYS SPELL IT OUT.


On the right of the shot is one of our fancy  light switches. These merit a whole post to themselves and I’ll return to the subject another day – suffice to say for now that the best German engineering and design is a lovely thing.

On the left, something that’s only coming into its now – the first full winter in the finished house – a programmable, app-controlled room thermostat.

The ability which the system gives you to set individual room temperatures to the correct ‘Comfort Level’, to switch between settings at the tap of a screen, and to set programmes appropriate for different circumstances (e.g. school holidays versus term-time) is really valuable. It’s good to know we can warm the boys’ bedrooms up for homework time, while keeping ours cool til bedtime. And set the guest bedroom at a steady (freezing) 18 to suit my Scottish mum, who can’t sleep comfortably if it gets even slightly cosy.

I’m also hoping that the selective heating will keep down the winter bills…we shall see…


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Working mum, love interiors, food and my neighbourhood - Forest Gate in East London. And my family of course...

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