What Lies Beneath


I wasn’t sure how to illustrate this post, so here’s a bunch of wall shots from around the house. As an aside, it shows how hard it is to take a true colour picture of paint, under artificial light, on an iPhone.

But what I actually want to write about is the stuff under the paper/ paint/ tiles.  INSULATED PLASTERBOARD. Guys, this stuff is genius. All it is is some regular plasterboard with a layer of polystyrene about an inch thick fused to it, but boy does it make a difference.

As you probably already know if you live in one, a lot of our lovely Edwardian houses have rattly old sash windows. img_0098Although ours actually had knackered aluminium mixed with new PVC.

And so you move in, and you save up and install the best window replacements that you can afford, and still the house feels freezing. And so you stand at the window with your hands stretched out, and you realise that now you’ve fixed the windows, the bloody cold is coming in through the walls. Because as well as single glazed windows, they also have extremely thin brick skins.

It’s not an approach that would work for everyone, but when we bought this place we already knew that, with a myriad of ‘interesting’ wall  and ceiling treatments to deal with, we’d better off going back to the brick.



Plus with older neighbours on both sides we wanted to protect them from noisy boyishness. img_3236And we wanted to replace the windows with double glazed timber sashes which finished flush with the wall on the inside, but we couldn’t run to the higher spec super expensive slimline versions. Finally the rooms were all of a decent size.

So while we couldn’t be sure how much it would help, losing 5cm of width for an unspecified but hopefully significant amount of warmth and peace seemed a gamble worth taking. And I’m pleased to report it’s worked. Admittedly we’ve not had the coldest of winters but the house is definitely cosier. In fact it’s 5pm* on a February Saturday, there’s not a radiator on in the house, and I’m sitting here in my PJs feeling comfortably warm.

*Disclaimer, I am usually dressed by 5pm on a Saturday, but I’m having a duvet day because of a cold.


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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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