Transformation under the eaves

I’ve been remiss in telling the story of the renovation going on inside the house. It turns out that this kind of blogging is time consuming and I’ve not been as disciplined (or is it motivated?) as I fondly imagined I would be when we started out!

And now, Chris and Ria are both safely installed upstairs in the attic rooms, and it is time to unveil them – even though there is still some finishing to be done.

A new roof, and windows bringing light

The first big change was having light in the space beneath the roof. And a floor you could actually walk on! (two layers of OSB boards with soundproofing mat in between)

Next came the insulation in the roof – using cellulose blown in behind a heavy paper covering (isofloc process), and wooden frames for the partition walls – transforming a single space split by a brick separating wall, into two bedrooms, a bathroom and a light and airy stairwell right down through the house.

Isofloc insulation using recycled paper

At this stage, Martin went to work. The walls are made of simple oriented strand board (OSB), that will be covered with a variety of different finishes.

This will be the bathroom

Next came an intensive bout of preparation as we painted the wooden slats we would be using for finishing the ceilings. The first floor rooms became storage space and paintshop for a few weeks, as length after length of wood came under the roller and the brush.

Chris at work

Finishing the ceiling was back-breaking and exacting work, but well worth the effort (says she who observed it all from a safe distance)!

Ceiling in the small attic bedroom finished

The brick outer walls first had to be insulated with isoflas hemp fibre and then covered with fermacel.

Outer wall, showing wood frame, isoflas insulation and fermacel covering

Next we tackled the inner brick wall in the big bedroom, which we covered with lime plaster, helped by Bram de Beul of Stuccotec, a true master of the craft, who patiently guided us as we learned how to work with this material ourselves.

Getting heavy buckets of lime plaster mixed with hemp up the ladder to the attic was a challenge

Lastly, a beautiful natural lime finish on the outside wall, and all was ready for Ria to move in.

Ria finally moved upstairs in October, just in time before the fireplace was demolished in her old sleeping space


About iyeshe

Woman returning to the wild. Cunning linguist, mother of twins, witch, host, harvester, spaceholder for the dawning Aquarian age, evolutionary wooden-spoon wielder, self-mitigating carbon footprint, wannabe holon in the forthcoming collective buddha...
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