Stone cill samples..decision made! Finally..

So we had originally decided to go with Portland stone for our stone cills and heads, but I’m not going to lie…I think it may have been because the architect had written this stone on the plans, and we didn’t really give it alot of thought! Needless to say we decided to bite the bullet and get some samples because it was a nightmare finding any good examples of the options online! And thought it may be helpful to others to share some photos!

As you can see above they can vary! The portland stone is the third one from the bottom and it is probably whiter than we would want to go with

Very luckily we’ve been able to try the samples against our bricks, always a bonus living on site!

We managed to narrow it down to these two above…left to right “Bath” and “Grey”…not an easy name to forget! Ha!

And we are going with the grey! It looks fab against the bricks and the soon to be anthracite grey windows plus its something a little different to the usual creams!

Here are all of them if it helps anyone, and we’ve also popped our YouTube video below to give a little more detail

And this is them wet, because inevitably they will get does rain in Britain…go figure!


Caz and Andy x

Week 12 – Site Progress! Plus the first 3 months timelapse!!

More blockwork this week, going up to first floor level, it is deceptively high! Our ceiling height is 2.415 which is a little higher than standard but still…and obviously the floor levels will differ to now, it does feel high though! And I’m not complaining

Love love love our exposed brick wall! We are so glad we decided to go with it

Its definitely getting high now, and one of the brickies has made a start on the fireplace…

The chevron pattern works so well, we plan on going almost to ceiling height and having it all open, however we will probably have a concrete lintel and maybe a pattern of bricks just above it rather than go all the way up to ceiling as it will impact the walk in wardrobe upstairs

We have also made some decisions this week on stone cills and heads which I will go into in a little more detail, now that we have samples, on another post.

Another big decision, we are able to go with double height in the hallway! The partial glass floor we were going to go with was abit of a compromise but now we can go with our favourite option…again watch out for more details on this!!

We have done a 3 month timelapse with our brinno tlc2020 (gifted), and tlc200 camera…..


Caz and Andy x

Wren kitchen design!

We have decided to go with wren for our kitchen and utility design. They have a beautiful milano elements range with cupboard doors that are exactly what we are looking for…

Left to right Copper, Slate and Bronze all matt

Yes we are going to use all we are having an island as well, so copper for the island, bronze for the kitchen and slate for the utility

Still undecided on the positioning of the island but these are some 3D starters…

We will be making our own worktops with poured concrete and the floor will be microcement rather than tiles. If you are thing of going with something similar wren did advise that the three cupboards above the sink on the wall could be done flush with the double height units to give a more bespoke feel

The glass doors to one side will also be one floor to ceiling black framed window. Unfortunately we couldn’t go to this level of detail with wren

Andy likes the idea of the island dipping into the central part of the room but I think we will need to have a play around once we have a better idea of the space, these 3Ds can be somewhat deceiving!

We did originally have an L shaped kitchen design however we’ve decided to go for more glass and champion the island a little more!

Original inspo from wren…I do like the wood idea on the island as well

Watch this space…there will no doubt be more changes!


Caz and Andy x

Week 11 – Site progress!

The third week of brick laying has entailed the last of the ground floor external bricks at the front of the house, and then blockwork continued!

The brickies have also completed our exposed brick wall in the kitchen! Its so strange having a finished internal wall, and its beautiful. We decided to go with the same bricks as the external, and add in some of the painted white bricks to make them look a little more reclaimed….

More decisions as well in week 11, we have chosen the size of our stone heads and colour. If you aren’t aware and having stone cills and heads there are different size options for the heads. The cills are always 2 bricks high, however 2 or 3 bricks high can be chosen for the heads. We had a good chat with our brickies and decided to go with two high so that there is brick between the head and the roof, luckily we have neighbours who have both options for us to look at rather than trying to imagine how it would look

Week 12 should see more internal blockwork and the fireplace!!! Andy’s artist impression of what it should like….

Check out our HD brinno timelapse footage for week 11 using the new tlc2020 camera – gifted by brinno, and our tlc200pro camera


Caz and Andy x

My very own ensuite..

We will have mentioned in our plans posts, the numerous ideas we’ve had flying around for the upstairs layout, and have settled on connecting our bedroom with the fourth bedroom, essentially making our own dressing rooms and ensuitesĀ 

Basically, rather than have a “bathroom” Andy will have his own ensuite, as will I, together with his own dressing room and it will work so well for us, rather than having a spare room we won’t use

With that in mind, I’ve been giving alot of thought to my ensuite and dressing room, check out a previous post for details about my dressing room and the Ikea PAX system

As for my ensuite, I really want to go girly because well why not! And I think if we go with some pale pinks and greens in our bedroom it could flow really well!

I’m thinking herringbone pink tiles on parts of the walls, a marble hextagon tiled floor, a free standing bath..probably not pink though! Gold taps and mirrors, and potentially sealing the plastered wall in places to give a pinky/peachy look but we shall see with that one! I’ve seen it on Grand Designs and I love it! But I’m not sure how it looks in reality!

B & Q have an online 3D tool so we had a play around with the layout too…

Watch this space for more ideas!


Caz and Andy x

Week 10 – Site Progress!

More brick laying this week! We are pretty much up to first floor now. There is just the front of the house to do, which will be in week 11 then next up is the blockwork!

The majority of our internal walls will be solid, we are close to needing scaffolding now, people really weren’t kidding about the speed!

Stone cills and heads have been decided too…last blog post. We have also decided to go with a precast concrete stair which could potentially be craned in in September! Honestly when we have stairs that will feel like real progress!

Also this week we became brinno influencers and have their new HD camera TLC2020 to test, you can really see the improved quality, we have kept the old camera so now have multiple angles on our time lapses!

On a sidenote after months of discussion about hot tubs and whether we would actually use one we decided to get an inflatable one to try, after trying multiple shops and online we finally managed to get one from B&Q, called cleverspa, it took a while to heat up but should be worth it! Not much garden left though now! Watch out for a review!

The dogs aren’t impressed…


Caz and Andy x

Stone heads and cills..

As you may have seen on our Instagram the brickwork is progressing nicely and with that new decisions!

During the planning process we decided to go with stone heads and cills. I LOVE these against a grey window and grey roof tiles. Initially I wanted stone surrounds however planning rejected this as they felt it would look too grand


Unfortunately we can’t have the stone above the bay windows but these 3Ds are very close to the finished look. We could go with bigger bay windows and lose the stones cills but I really think we need them for balance!

We are going with head type 1

And cill type 2

And also a 2020 stone and a house name stone…just undecided where at the minute!


Caz and Andy x

Week 9 (and week 8) progress!!

So we managed to get our second bricklayers! Whoop! Another father and son team who have worked with our builder before on previous builds. Nothing happened in week 8 but plenty in week 9.

They were due to start on the Monday of week 9 but frustratingly rain called off the first day, better weather the rest of the week meant some good progress and apart from a half day on the Friday due to one of the hottest days ever lots of bricks have been laid already. We have a full wall down the neighbours side and the have started a few of the other corners.

Rather than the bricklayer and labourer that we were going to have we now have two bricklayers with a bit of labour from us (mainly moving bricks) so it should be quicker than planned and we may catch up some of the lost time. They have estimated around 15 weeks for all the brickwork so we may have a roof on this year!

We really love the bricks and the brickies are doing a really good job of mixing the different colour bricks so it looks random

Check out our brinno timelapse footage…

Watch this space for more updates!


Caz and Andy x

Dressing room ideas – The Ikea PAX system

We have had a play around with our plans a number of times as you may have noticed (!) And decided to have a dressing room each, I really don’t think I could share with Andy and deal with his messiness!

He is basically having bedroom 4 and we have kept it open from room to room. We have tweaked this slightly, i.e. moved some walls around so that there is one opening from bedroom 3 to my dressing area now, rather than 2 openings. Simply because, having had a playaround with Ikeas online PAX tool, this would work much better!

This is a really good online tool if you aren’t sure about layout etc. We actually had an online appt with someone as well however we had a good playaround with it ourselves. Obviously it isn’t bespoke, however with a little creativity, such as attaching skirting boards to the fronts of the frames or using flower walls (!) if there is a slight gap could work really well and I love how modular the Ikea system is and versatile!!

I am blown away by this one!

I really like the glass shelves too!

And the LED lighting option….

The inserts are so cute!!

The options for Andy’s are so classy too! They definitely have a Ralph Lauren feel to them

As you can see you could definitely box in the frames and give it a bespoke look, and add in a central island!!

Let’s see if he keeps it this tidy!!

Needless to say I think we will be going with Ikea because we love the versatility! I think it will work really well for us and I’m impressed with the quality up close!


Caz and Andy x

Week 6 and 7 – Not a lot of progress!

Not a lot to report unfortunately! This was expected for one of the weeks but not for the other…

We knew that our brickies, whom I hasten to add had been working on the last two houses that Andy’s uncle had been building, were going to be on another little job in week 6 . Which was okay because the bricks would be arriving mid week

The bricks by the way are a furness ember blend, really beautiful and have a reclaimed look. They will definitely be in keeping with the other houses in the area

Anyway, we had all the materials ready on site and then in week 7 they told us that they weren’t coming back as they had a more permanent job so that was that. I was shocked! I didn’t know people did things like that! Apparently “back in the day” it used to be quite common

Very luckily Andy’s uncle got out his little black book and we now have someone who will be starting week 9, and so we have had 3 weeks with no site progress. As we live pretty much on site, its quite sad not being able to watch our little ring videos during the day and get excited about the daily progress

Oh well…onwards and upwards as they say! Hopefully there won’t be many more delays and we can keep our new brickie Dave happy! Watch this space…

Caz and Andy x