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Our home renovation

Last summer we've bought a house and moved from the city of Antwerp to a small village with a lot of trees and greens. So, every shop and bistro has been replaced by pure nature.

It was a lot to adapt and I want to share how we're renovating our new home, with all errors and frustrations included. Because those things are also goods lessons.

Our house is builded in 1955, with in the back small cutters, a large garage and garden.

My first impression was:

Oh, what a lovely neighborhood. The house has a lot of space and a very nice garden. Okay, we have to renovate that ugly floor and knock down those small cutters in the back. But that's doable,.. No?

We will take the challenge! So on 15th of July 2018, I've bought a cork floor - it was discount.

(FYI my husband and I are very bad decision makers and not at aaaaall handy men.)

It was so excited, I was dreaming about our interior, and how it could become so cool like Pinterest. We couldn't find a daycare in Antwerp (more than a year on a waiting list!). But we've found one directly in our new village, so we moved also directly to our new house! Our apartment wasn't even sold yet. But floep, suddenly we were living in that whole different neighborhood.

The first idea was to get the upper floor ready. In the meanwhile we've slept in our living room. We were busy pulling the wallpaper off and noticed the walls weren't smooth. We also have to change all our electricity, so the walls have to be ground out. Therefore the upper floor was on hold and we were still sleeping in our living room.

Autumn was coming with very big black spiders inside the house. Our nights became very adventurous!

I was telling my husband:

I want to sleep on the upper floor before Christmas!

So we did. We're still sleeping now in our rooms with no wallpaper and baby Kato is sleeping in the little room, because her future room has to be the first to take care.

... and the new cork floor is still laying in the garage...

In the mean while I was drawing ideas how we could renovate the back of our house. I've searched also a lot at interior inspirations, to make everything more a 'home'.

Here are a few interior inspiration ideas for our new home. We would like to have natural elements with an industrial edge. Wood, thatch, plants, wool,.. combined with black steel and natural stone. Large windows in the back to have more connection with our garden.

The color palette is very natural, fresh and warm, but with color pops in accessories / fabrics or flowers.

Then, winter was coming and we've noticed the house isn't isolated at aaaaall. (We knew it at the beginning, but now we were feeling it and saw it on our energy bill.)

Maybe we should change first all the single glass windows?

So we've contacted a few window suppliers to request a quote. It was all fine, but we also have to isolate our rooftop,.. and the ground floor and the whole facade.

At Batibouw (a big booth about living and renovating) we took a lot of brochures at home and stumbled on With this information, first thing first is isolating the whole house, starting from the rooftop. Renovating the back with the small cutters AND have more connection with our garden AND more sunlight AND a new floor AND a new bathroom AND a new kitchen can wait... No, those last two can't wait!

I was cooking for months on a crappy stove with only one gas fire. Ants crawl out of the floor and there were dirty moldy edges at the sink.

And how do you wash your baby in an old shower? It would be so nice for her to play in a nice clean bath. So we've put our priorities and bought a new provisional kitchen (Ikea) and bathroom (from X2O). I have the luck, my dad is a real handy man and he already installed our new kitchen. My parents are a lot of help. It still has to be tiled and so on, but at least we can cook properly again! The new bathroom will be installed also very soon.

Before and future after (hopefully very soon and maybe a bit different...)

At this moment it's spring and we are negotiating with a roofer. We also hired a gardener, he cleaned up all the concrete and mess to sew the grass. So, we have a clean lawn within two months were Kato can play and we could have a lot of BBQ's, yay!

In the meanwhile, our new cork floor is still laying in the garage...


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Hi there!

My name is Tinneke De Block,
aka Tinika. This blog* is a means of sharing my artwork, collaborations, studies & processes, mood boards, personal life posts, interior design, fashion (history), and lots of creative inspiration!

*pardon my Dutch

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1920s fashion history - Tinika illustrations

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