When winter is fading and spring is awaking we are going to be on site and pushing the interior work.
Meanwhile my duty is to compile a filing that shows what we want to do room by room - colour, flooring, equipment.
This is fun. I have done this before in a digital folder - long time ago - it has survived different laptops and computer - yes, that long ago. I 'just' need to update it and print the relevant pictures and make notes.
I started with a room, the green room, my readers might be familiar with it. It seems to be my favorite room. No it isn't. It is just the room with most of previous live in it. It is the only room where the pre-owner has kept the original wall and ceiling colour. That's why it feels most lively. All other walls were tainted white when we bought the house.
Here the start of my brainstorm for the room by room folder :
The good thing about renovating a house or part of a house is that you can make it to your taste and at your options.
The bad thing is that you need to make compromises. Sometimes it just can't be done as you like and unexpected situations come up and you need to rethink your ideas.
Here are some of my latest observations:
Even if you are visiting your construction site on a daily basis you will find surprises (like my sister who is renovating a house here in Stuttgart).
And even when you have agreed on something and approved it, it might not look good when it is finalized (like some parts of our terrace in Italy):
A small construction site (like one room) or a large construction (like one entire house) only means you might have more time for details when having a small project. But this can drive you crazy nevertheless (like my bathroom renovation in Germany):
You need a long breath and iron nerves for renovation projects. From what I see, men tend to rush and make quick decisions and then can live with their decision while women tend to weigh all options in sleepless nights to finally come to the 'perfect' decision. The result - of course - is not the same because the quick decision maker has overseen at least one important detail (e.g. the space for the towel rail needed some more inches...). However, as said before, men can live with this.
My advise: If you spent a lot of money on renovating be sure not to rush. Better to find a lot of inspirations first, draw layouts and different perspectives to find the best solution and maybe even get some advise from an interior designer. Even the craftsmen might have good ideas as they have seen many solutions.
The iron nerves are also important when dealing with craftsmen (at least here in Germany). Instead of thanking you for the assignment you have to thank them for having time for you. The crisis seems not have touched them so far.
But this morning I was lucky. My German plumber has offered me a cup of coffee and a Brezel when I came to sign the contract.
Do YOU have any advise or experience to share about renovation ?
photo sources: the pics from our Italian palazzo were taken by our architect - the first one was sent yesterday. Grazie!
Yesterday I got his email saying that 9.82% of the work has been done! ("Attualmente il valore dell'avanzamento lavori calcolato è pari al 9,82%.")
Can you guess what Angelo's profession is? Ideal for our project!
So far almost every day there is a small decisions to make. A change at the roof, another wall here and no wall there, no door here and a door there... My husband and I get the emails from Angelo with photos and drawings attached together with his suggestions and we send back our opinion. I have my mother in law together with her sister in law visiting us in China. They are involved in the discussions as well as they know the house. Although I wish I could see the progress myself - it couldn't be better handled as it is now by Angelo.
Of course Angelo is not the only one we are depending on. Thanks to the young architect and his team we are having a great project. I heard that il giovane architetto does not mind to have his name published on my blog. It is signore Pino Pitt - not related to the American actor who is interested in architecture, but not less charming. It is also him who provided me with new drawings of the house that I posted some weeks ago.
Also I want to thank another talented family member, the cousin of my mother in law, who made a very detailed plan, better to say planS, for all electricity related issues by each floor. It is an amazing work and we still have to study it carefully. Grazie Giorgio! Hope to see you, your wife (one of my loyal readers, I posted her thoughts about Calabrian holidays) and son soon again for summer holiday in bella Calabria.
Remark: thank you Suzy from Studio Anetta in Hong Kong who helped me to post a comment to let you know I have difficulties to access my blogs in Beijing (the Great Firewall of China is blocking blogger, blogspot and others). I just found a way around thanks to pkblogs.com.
Well, to be honest, I hope we could use part of the house next summer. We just need a big bed and one bathroom.
Here is a screen shot from the beginning of Angelo's 'execution program':
And that's how it looks in total:
But we have not started yet. As you might see, the work should start in November. A whole year after we have signed the contract... That's how it goes when you do not live on site. Anyway, so far we cannot start because we still wait for the approval of the application for renovation. Angelo said, it does not matter to wait as he wants to be on site to supervise the work. And at the moment he is a buys 'retired' consultant working in England. He plans to be in Pizzo from January on.