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Pocketmags Digital Magazines
Pocketmags Digital Magazines

A run-down auction buy is now our perfect home

Katherine Shah transformed a dated period house into an eye-catching family home


When Katherine Shah and her husband, Keval, first bought their Gloucestershire home it was in a sorry state. ‘It had been tenanted for decades and needed a huge amount of work,’ she recalls. ‘There were mismatched kitchen cabinets, the floors weren’t level and the walls were painted in garish shades of orange, purple and red.’ Despite the condition of the property there was intense competition, but after best and final offers the couple managed to seal the deal. ‘Although the house was barely habitable, I fell in love with its Cotswold stone charm and could see its potential as a wonderful family home,’ says Katherine. ‘Plus I liked its location in the heart of a pretty country village just a short hop from Cirencester.’

After stripping out filthy carpets and the dated kitchen and bathroom, the couple started the painstaking process of breathing new life into the house. Walls were painted white, travertine tiles were installed in the kitchen, dining room and bathroom and oak flooring was laid in the living room, with a cream wool carpet laid upstairs. They also fitted an additional downstairs cloakroom in the space beneath the stairs. ‘My brother, Chris, is a property developer and he did the lion’s share of the building work,’ says Katherine. ‘With new plumbing, electrics, a boiler and replastering all needed, it was a joy to be able to make a start on the aesthetics.’

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Spring is in the air, so it’s the perfect time to drag your home out of the winter doldrums and freshen it up with a coat of paint and a few bright new accessories. And, in this issue, we’ve got lots of affordable ideas for giving your home a quick facelift. On page 37 we take a look at this season’s hot new trends on the high street – from cool coastal vibes to edgy ethnic touches, fresh florals to touchy-feely textures, I know you’ll find a look you love. When it comes to the smallest room in the house (yes that’s right, the downstairs loo), it’s often a bit forgotten and unloved in the décor stakes, but that doesn’t have to be the case. Just turn to page 48 to see how small really can be beautiful! If your kitchen is in need of a revamp but you don’t want to change the units, then consider replacing the flooring. Take a look at our purse-friendly ideas on page 54 to see what a big difference it can make – without the hassle of ripping out your cabinets! Now the weather is getting a bit better, it’s time to start knocking your garden into shape so you can sit out and enjoy it over the months ahead. This month in our gardening section we take a look at some of the most popular garden styles – cottage, Japanese, formal and prairie – and show how easy it is to achieve them in your own garden (p.114). Last but not least, in our food pages this issue we’ve got some utterly scrummy pie recipes that I know you’re going to love (p.100). Trust me, the cheesy fish pie is to die for!