Uplifting the outside

Autumn is well on it’s way meaning the weather is what you’d expect from manchester, but back in september I had a day or two of sunshine- so it was time to do something about the rather sad looking stonework out the front of my house.

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As with all renovations this had been deemed ‘super ugly but not vital’ so had sat on the To Do list for over a year. With winter fast approaching I knew I wouldn’t get many opportunities to do this again so I marched my way outside, dust sheets and brush blazing, ready to spend my day being gawped at by passers by in cars.

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First step was to scrub everything down and go at it with a wallpaper stripper to get the worst of the flaking paint off. I know you can really clean things up with a heat gun or a jet washer but I was just looking for a fresh coat of paint, not a masterpiece.

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I decided on cream because that was the colour of the masonry paint I’d picked up in the B&Q bashed bin for £6.

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Check out that before and after!

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First coat!

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Then I chased a bunch of angry spiders out from the window ledge and used a paint scraper to clean it up.

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Compare the difference- unpainted on the left, painted on the right.

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This bit and the bay window gutter were so tall I had to borrow a ladder from my neighbour who saw me working and felt pity. I was cleaning in a yellow t-shirt with a bucket and as I scrubbed the trail of filthy water would slowly trickle down my arm into my armpit. Wet t-shirt competition anyone?

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Mid-painting! Even the glass shines brighter with a little polish.

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Now it was the upstairs windows- which I did by just leaning over the edge of the open window and painting from there. I considered using a ladder for them but….

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…windows are surprisingly high okay? This is why you pay roofers so much money- half of it is danger cash for them risking their lives, not you.

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Right side unpainted, left side painted! Sometimes houses are the kind of dirty that only a coat of paint can fix.

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The next day I did another coat of the cream and set about putting some outside wood filler into the rotten bits of the wooden guttering. Most of the street have theirs replaced with something sensible like plastic but mine is still in *relatively* good nick so I’ll be leaving it for as long as it works.

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External wood filler is great- mix 2 parts together and it’s cured in under an hour ready to be sanded down and a lick of paint. I already had a tin of green wood paint from the kitchen and front door so green it is!

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And here’s the final result, photos as of yesterday!

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As a final touch I added a dab of gold inside the house name, because why not.

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As a comparison, here’s the photo of the house as taken from the estate agents website back in 2015.

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And here it is when I nipped out to take some photos of it yesterday. Of course in true Manchester tradition that was exactly when it decided to rain.

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But with rain comes rainbows!

I keep getting asked if I’m done with the house yet, the answer being a resounding ‘nope’. Right now I’m getting quotes for some back wall repairs and the downstairs toilet conversion which will be time consuming and *expensive*, probably the most expensive on the house to date. I’m dreading doing it because it means cracking open this beautiful shell of a house I’ve made and letting the dust, rain and builders back in. But it has to be done eventually, so that’s a project for the next few months.

In the meantime I’ve got some finishing touches to update you on and some final photos of the hallway!

Until next time~ Tab

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