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Attic Bedroom Renovation: From dated to Fresh & Bright

The Before

When we first moved into our house, the attic bedroom looked like it hadn’t been slept in for years, maybe even decades. The old tattered carpets gave the room a unique and unpleasant odour, while the walls were stained and crumbling. It was crying out for an attic renovation!

As a result, this room was mostly used as a dumping ground. Save for the odd occasion where we friends stayed over and this was the only room we had to offer. It was the kind of room you would want to leave quickly as possible and not at all comfortable or welcoming.

The offending breeze block walls

That said, the bones of the room have always been lovely. I love the arch recessed window and once we added another skylight, it became a bright and airy room.

When we found out I was expecting our third child, we knew we needed to Start the attic renovation to give us an extra bedroom. We wanted to make the room a relaxing space and knew we needed to add cupboards under the eaves for wardrobes and extra storage.

The attic renovation process from start to finish was quite long. When we began removing the plaster, we quickly encountered a serious problem. A structural beam had been cut and breeze block wall was weighing the floor down under the eaves.

The cupboards were built into the eaves using tongue and groove mdf

We enlisted the help of builders and a structural engineer to fit a supporting steel beam, costing us a whopping £3,000 we hadn’t budgeted for. We then asked a carpenter to build cupboards around the new beam and under the eaves. Altogether, the cupboard space cost us £3,700. Which was far and above what we budgeted for, but in a house with little storage, it was a necessity.

We also replaced the windows, added new insulation (a must in an attic room!), knocked a wall down to open up the staircase, and fitted new windows. Altogether, this cost around a further £1,000, with us doing much of the work ourselves.

Farrow and Ball Wevet on the walls and Ammonite on the floorboards

In terms of decor, we decided to go for neutral and calming colours. We chose Farrow and Ball’s Wevet, an off white shade, for the walls and Ammonite on the floorboards. I love how fresh and clean the colours are together.

I’m a vintage and antique furniture fanatic, so most of the furniture is from ebay and Facebook Marketplace. I love our vintage tea chest bedside tables, I think they add character and look great with our DIY bedside lamps. The nursing chair is a recent Facebook Marketplace find and I love it! The only downside being that my husband thinks it’s the perfect place to stack his washing. Which isn’t at all what I bought it for!!

The bedside lamps are a DIY project

If I were to do it all again, I would give our carpenter clearer instructions. We wanted tongue and groove panels to disguise the cupboard openings, but this wasn’t achieved and the overall finish is less than we’d hoped for. In hindsight, I should have provided our tradesman with photos or drawings to work from, because the finished product is not what I envisaged. So, there’s a lesson learned there.

If I had any words of advice for someone considering an attic renovation project, it would be to include a contingency budget! You never know what extra costs might pop up along the way!


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