‘When we moved into our home in 2007, it had been rented out for 25 years and the central heating didn’t work properly, the bathroom was hideous, the kitchen was in a state of disrepair, and the décor was shabby,’ recalls Becky. ‘I was six months pregnant at the time, so as soon as we had the keys, Andrew and I replaced the heating system, kitchen and bathroom. In addition, the living room was recarpeted and blinds hung, while a lick of paint made it feel much brighter.’
With two young daughters, and Becky working as an interior designer and stylist, the couple were kept busy over the next few years, so little was done to the family home. ‘The living room is a great size and perfect for the girls to play in, but it was a bit bland and that bothered me – I spend my life creating beautiful rooms for other people, yet my own living space lacked character,’ she adds.
Despite finding it easy to see what to do with other people’s homes, Becky found it harder to finalise ideas for her own space. ‘I wasn’t in any rush and knew the living room scheme would one day be inspired by something,’ she says. Thankfully, that eureka moment happened when she used a navy paint while designing a photoshoot.
In all, it took around two weeks to complete the room, but spread out over a much longer period. ‘It was an organic process with each decision leading to the next rather than making all the choices at the start,’ explains Becky.
The owners: Becky Auden, an interior designer and stylist, lives here with her husband Andrew, a product manager, and their two children, Lucy, eight, and Polly, six, plus cats Hector and Sidney
The property: A five-bedroom, 1930s detached house in Chorleywood, Hertfordshire
Project cost: £2,419
Becky re-covered a pink Draylon chair, bought for £8 on Ebay, with Scion’s Mr Fox fabric. It’s the perfect size for her daughters.
The fireplace was transformed with white paint and an insert filled with logs. Bespoke alcove units, Jali. For a similar sofa, try the Richardson by Sofa Workshop. Rug made from Dakota brown carpet, Carpetright. Cushion covers made from fabrics by Harlequin and Prestigious.
Featured image: Becky has decorated the room with a vintage feel, using rich navy as a starting point. Walls painted in Breton Blue, Dulux. For a similar vintage leather sofa, try Rose & Grey. Footstool and cabinet, Ebay. Newgate world map, John Lewis. For a similar chandelier, try the Milnsbridge from Laura Ashley
- The full feature appears in the March 2016 issue of Real Homes. For back issues, call 01527 834435. Subscribe today to take advantage of our money-saving subscription offers.
Author: Becky Clare