After the flurry of activity last year, I’ve just sat back and enjoyed the Convent with it’s freshly painted interior, polished floors, carpeted bedrooms, curtains and some furniture. It’s been nice having the place to myself and not having to make decisions and co-ordinate the tradies for a while.
However, there is still much to be done at the Convent and I’m moving into the next phase, which is a bit scary. The main things are:
the two separate toilets, one of which needs a handbasin added
fixing the tiling in the original bathroom, which is still in condition with its tiles
opening two fireplaces and making them functional
building a large eat-in kitchen in a new room
lighting throughout the building – there are few light fittings worth keeping and a good share of fluorescent tubing
Some of the preparation has started and I’m keen to get done what I can this year. The aim is to retain original features where they still remain.
I’m also starting to add to the furniture, given this is a pretty big place to furnish. One of the challenges is that although there are lots of rooms, none of them are particularly large. Quite a bit of the period furniture I like has been made for much larger houses so I need to choose smaller pieces when they come up. I’m finding the auction houses particularly useful and good value however given my distance I’m limited to absentee bids with all viewing done over the internet, so it can be a little hit and miss at times. I’m just very careful to bid conservatively in case it’s not quite up to expectations. So far there have been few disappointments with purchases (although many disappointments with pieces I’ve missed out on for want of another $10 or $20 but wasn’t there for the live bidding).
All in all, the Convent is coming along nicely and is looking very much like a comfortable home with its own character.
I was thrilled tonight to get photos from Michael from Mudgee Carpet Court who is looking after the floors. The boards are Cypress pine and every tells me they’re good quality and should come up well – but it’s hard to imagine what they’ll look like when I’ve only seen them covered in multiple layers of old carpet, masonite and lino.
Anyway, I’m relieved and thrilled with the results shown in the photos and can’t wait to get up there and finally put some permanent furniture in place and set up rooms. Looks like this can start next week. I also have removalists booked in a few weeks from now to take some things up to make the Convent look a bit more homely and tidy up my place in Sydney.
More auctions may be on the cards this weekend as it will be best for me to buy what I can prior to finally moving from Sydney. Removalist costs to Kandos do not come cheaply! Items I have my eye out for include smaller old wardrobes (often a good buy as most people have built-ins these days and you can pick up quality old pieces very reasonably), chests of drawers, study/library type chairs, perhaps a sideboard or credenza. Auctions are very opportunistic – you need to be well prepared, disciplined and bid fast – most items are only up for auction for less than a minute! I also think some floor rugs will be in order – and lots!