In case you missed it… WE BOUGHT A FLAT!!!
The past 6 months have been an absolutely whirlwind, so I thought I’d write this blog post just to catch you up on what the process was like, because it was a process, let me tell you.
A Quick Recap…
We fell in love with our Little Bow Home back in July after several months of searching for what would be our first home together. We moved out of our rented flat and in with Rory’s parents after our offer was accepted, naively assuming that within one to two months, we would be ready to move in. August quickly turned into November with lawyers on both sides taking, what appeared to us, to be their sweet time. And there was no end in sight…
So, we set a deadline of Christmas, prepared to walk away if needed. For us, it was really important to move into our own space and have the time between holidays to unpack and get settled. Plus, a few key sticking points just didn’t seem to be getting any nearer to a solution and we had waited long enough. After four months living with Rory’s parents, it was clear that all parties involved were ready for us to transition into the next phase of our life.
I’m skipping a few non-essential details and conversational back and forths BUT, with just under two weeks to spare, the issues we had were sorted by the lawyers and we officially completed on Friday, December 13th, when I picked up the keys to our new home!
Moving In: A Prolonged Experience
To say we weren’t really prepared is an understatement.
Between Rory’s international travel for work and my quick trip home to the states to surprise my sister, we were not as well positioned to pack up and move out the 14th as we had hoped we would be. Even after two trips with a moving van, it was evident would need an additional weekend to move all of the remaining boxes out, which meant, ultimately, we didn’t actually move into our new place until the following weekend (December 22nd, 2019).
That Saturday night was our very first, glorious night in our new place. To celebrate, we did what any good twenty something Londoners would do… We ordered an Indian takeaway and drank a fancy bottle of champagne. Even as I woke up on the ground on top of our completely flattened and horribly over-priced air mattress the next morning, I felt elated. I was waking up in OUR very own 2 bed, 2 bath, converted warehouse flat.
Turns out, the place has some real quirks.
The Staircase Cannot Hold Two Men and a 107 KG Dresser: An Anecdote.
Once we navigated all of our boxes and furniture into a lift, up stairwells, through doors, around corners and into our flat, we realised things were about to get more complicated.
The staircase in our flat is a lovely, antique piece installed by the previous owner who was a collector. *Side note: when we first looked at the place, I actually really hated the stairs. Now however, I’m so in love with them and the character that they add to the whole flat that I wouldn’t have it any other way. THAT SAID, they definitely aren’t the most, shall we say, practical.
For the first week, the only piece of furniture Rory and I owned apart from an Ikea bookshelf (which, another side note: was too tall for anywhere apart from the VOID) and cabinet, was a beautiful West Elm dresser bought specifically with our new home in mind. The day it was delivered, I was the only one home to receive it and coordinate its placement in the bedroom with the delivery guys. I anticipated it would be straightforward enough because it’s a dresser. I mean, how hard could it be?
I suppose it’s not *too* surprising that there were complications…
The first of three delivery guys (2 men, 1 woman) came in to determine the state of play ahead of bringing the piece up. He looked at the staircase with skepticism and concern and then investigated, rather annoyingly I might add, by bouncing up and down on the edge of a few particularly delicate steps. While I was worrying about whether or not he was going to physically break our rickety staircase, he was confirming for himself the inviability of getting the dresser upstairs via the staircase.
I was not amused when he suggested it wasn’t going to work. ‘Frankly’, he said, ‘There is just no way that staircase is going to hold two men my size and a dresser that weighs 107KG.’
He brought he rest of the team up and into the flat to discuss the possibility of foisting the dresser up onto the internal balcony and then dragging it into the bedroom from there. Despite the fact that it was against protocol (plus, I later found out that the main delivery guy had a broken rib at the time), they agreed to lift the piece up and over their heads and onto a protective mat covering the balcony. They took down the wire barriers at the far end of the balcony, unboxed the dresser, removed the drawers and cautiously lifted it up over their heads to the delivery woman perched on our balcony.
Needless to say, watching all of this unfold in front of me was so unnecessarily stressful that I almost couldn’t take it… But it’s in our bedroom now and I can officially confirm: it was worth it. Don’t ask me what were going to do about the day we move though. I haven’t a clue.
Getting Settled: Unpacking, Buying Plants and Styling Bookshelves
Between a carpet delivery, putting together two lamps, unpacking all of our kitchenware, getting a couch delivered and putting in full days at the office, we still felt buried up to ears in boxes going into the Christmas holiday. We gave ourselves a few days off to enjoy family time with Rory’s parents and siblings and then spent every bit of our remaining holiday time pulling everything out of boxes and getting them into some semblance of order.
It took an Ikea trip, four visits to John Lewis (not even kidding you), and several passes through H&M Home and Zara Home before we could officially say we had enough storage space and decor elements to make our air mattress, couch and 15 cushions feel like home.
On New Years Eve we chucked out the final bits of cardboard, folded the last remaining piles of clothes, lit holiday scented candles and paused to admire our surprisingly organised, sparsely furnished, yet undoubtedly stylish Little Bow Home.
The Days Since…
This blog post has taken longer to write than I initially thought it would, which means a lot has happened between when this post was started and when I thought I would finish it.
So… How can I catch you up?
I mean, ultimately, this is the first of many many blog posts about our home. If you haven’t gathered as much already, I’m pretty house proud and I have a not so secret passion for interior design and home decor. Needless to say, you’ll be seeing a lot more Little Bow Home content. A quick run down of some big purchases should do it for now:
- We bought a handmade king size mattress from Yorkshire. After waiting 5 weeks for it, it was delivered yesterday and our first night on it was nothing short of incredible.
- We bought a dining room table and the loveliest olive green velvet chairs from West Elm – both of which were delivered in the last two days and look amazing in our dining room.
- We are planning to invest in a living room rug REALLY soon. We’re just deciding between a few options – it’s a tough decision and I don’t want to rush it!
- We are also getting our bed frame delivered in February, which is really exciting and will be a huge piece to have in our bedroom. Once we have a better idea of what that’s all going to look like, we’re planning to invest in some curtains, bedside tables and other smaller decor elements.
- Our ‘walk in wardrobe’ now has a dresser and mirror, which makes it feel much more like a dressing room. It’s where I blow dry my hair and do my makeup every morning too, so eventually I’d like to turn it into more of a proper vanity situation. For now, it works!
- Finally, it’s about time we invest in some bedding. I’m still working out the colour scheme, but I think we’re close! I’ll keep you guys posted.
Okay, so there was a little less to catch you up on than I thought. I realise I have LOADS of pintrest boards to show you so that you can see how I researched the pieces we have bought and planned the different rooms in our house. I’ll start working on more interiors-based blog content ASAP.
In the meantime, follow us on socials @littlebowhome to keep up with all of the changes around here. And if you have any questions about any part of the process, do ask!