Monday, 8 June 2015

For Family, Friends & Feasts....

Our new casual eating and entertaining area with french doors leading
to the patio and garden 
As modern day entertaining and eating habits become increasingly relaxed, formal dining rooms often lie unused week after week, in favour of gathering friends and family round the kitchen table.

During our house renovation, we dispensed with a separate dining room, opting instead to create a large Family/Kitchen/Breakfast Room which would be a place to relax, eat and entertain. We have been delighted with the informal feel as a result.

Knocking together the kitchen and dining room creates
one bigger kitchen, family room and eating area
We knocked the wall down between the dining room and the breakfast room to create a flowing Kitchen/Breakfast/Family Room .

The Kitchen now leads through to the Family/Breakfast Room

The kitchen now flows through to the seating and eating area meaning I can still feel connected to what's going on while cooking!

Original dining room layout in a
separate room to the kitchen
The original Dining Room had a fireplace and chimney which we removed to further open up the space. (See above).

Sourcing reclaimed beech tiles to patch in the parquet floor where the fireplace had been was our challenge and Ebay came up trumps via a reclamation yard in Herefordshire (although Jonathan had to spend hours scraping the bitumen off the backs - a potentially toxic job so face masks and protective clothing a must).

To our delight, once we peeled back the carpet, we found that the practical, original wood parquet floor stretched the whole length of the room.

The eating area of the kitchen with fireplace removed and
floor refurbished

Once our wonderful wood floor restoration man Andy Greenhaulgh had worked his magic you could not see the join where the fireplace had been and we had a large room to house a big table.

We created a Kitchen/Breakfast/Family Room
(the kitchen leading off to the left at the top of the pic)

With an ever-growing extended family we needed to be able to sit 16 at a squeeze and 12 comfortably.I looked into various table options and found a wonderful family company based in The Cotswolds called Jasper Marsh Interiors.

They make tables from reclaimed boards to your specifications and were able to paint the legs of the table to match my chosen kitchen colour scheme.  Visit their website to see the range of furniture they make at :

The corner sofa was copied from a friend who has had the same make in her children's playroom for years and it has passed the test of time!  It is from Ikea, The Ektorp Risane which for a reasonable £895 is a great price for this large piece of furniture.  See: for further details. The covers are removable and washable for added practicality!

Ektorp corner sofa and footstool from Ikea were a
practical price for a busy family room
I painted the sideboard shown below to compliment the table legs and kitchen, using paint left over from our kitchen Island.  This is a really quick and easy way of tying in the colour scheme further. I used a Matt oil-based Eggshell paint. Simply sit the piece of furniture on a good covering of newspaper to protect the floor. Remove the drawers. Lightly sand down the areas to be painted and hoover away all dust. With hardly any paint on the brush give a light first coat and allow to dry well. Follow with two more coats drying for a few hours at least between each. I used masking tape for the edges and removed the handles while painting.

Re-furbishing a piece of furniture helps to tie the scheme together

The breakfast room leads through to the kitchen where the wall was removed
for a larger flowing family space in which to cook, relax and entertain
 Now to get the invitations out!

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