Look on the bright side
A few rays of sunshine showed the real potential in this townhouse conversion, says
OMETIMES all you need is a little bit of sunshine to help you make up your mind. “When we bought this place the interior was quite dark and dingy,” says Ruth Reid of her three-bedroom first-floor conversion on Kirklee Road in the west end of Glasgow. “The day I came to see it, it was really cloudy, but then the minute I came in here the sun just started to split the sky and this house seemed to have a really good feel to it.”
In the two years that Ruth and her husband Andrew have owned the property they have completely changed the decor and most of the interior.
“I suppose I did have a bit of a vision for this place when I came to see it,” says Ruth. “I am an accountant, but doing up houses is my hobby – I just love going round to choose all the pieces as well as being able to project manage the house.
“I always knew we were going to do a lot to this place. The only things that we’ve kept are the woodwork and the cornice work because they were the things that impressed us in the beginning. Other than that, the whole place has been re-wired and the plaster work smoothed out. We’ve also changed the position of the kitchen and done up the shower room and the bathroom.”
Ruth’s passion for interior design has enabled her to create an attractive modern home. Although the family have done a lot of work to the property, they have also done their best to ensure that any alterations have been in keeping with the style of the house.
“Any doors I took off I tried to re-use in other parts of the house,” says Ruth. “The walls might all look like they are white, but there are actually lots of different shades of white throughout – I just used what I thought would make the most of the traditional features that were already here.”
The kitchen, which used to be a bedroom, has seen the most significant change. Ruth has transformed this room into an attractive but homely socialising space. The kitchen has black granite worktops, with a central breakfasting island, and integrated appliances, including a coffee machine and a wine fridge.
Ruth has also made the most of the storage space by ensuring that the central island has cupboards underneath.
The lounge, at the front, has the most impressive traditional features. With a vaulted ceiling which has ornate cornice and coving work all the way round, as well as a spacious bow window, this room really has the wow factor. “This was the room that really impressed me when we came to see the house,” says Ruth.
“Even although it was decorated in quite dark colours at the time, you could see how much potential was here. We added the large chandelier, which had to come through the window because of its size.”
Next door, Ruth has given the master bedroom a similar traditional look. This room has a feature wall of wallpaper and has been furnished with handsome dark wood furniture.
The bathroom and the shower room have been decorated with glossy black tiles and modern chandeliers to give them an opu- lent feel. There are two further bedrooms, one of which has a walk-in wardrobe.
However, after finishing her project on Kirklee Road, Ruth has decided that she wants to do it all again. “I just loving doing this and I’m getting that wanderlust feel again, so it’s time to move,” she explains. “I feel I’ve done all I can to this house so it’s time to get a new project.”