About Me

Lots of people are aware of the funny idiosyncrasies of the Australian language...... a common tip for visitors keen to sound like a local, add an “o” to the end of each word, a ‘servo’ is a service station, rego is the car registration, the bottle-o is the bottle shop and reno is renovation. We are renovating our home, in other words, “we’re doing some reno’s”! This is our attempt at a blog, a way to describe the journey of the reno’s, an extended tale that's taken us from our little flat near a beach in Sydney, to our little miners cottage in Melbourne, come to think of it... we might call it the “reno blogo”.

Monday, February 21, 2011

What's Up Skip?

So, you're probably wondering where all the old bricks, old Barry's, Old Joyce's went?
On the front Porch of course, (and it's the smallest front porch in the world).
It just kept piling up, I was beginning to wonder if there was any dirt left under the house (?)

So we got a Skip Bin, and filled that up to!
This is a 6 x cubic metre skip bin, it's 3 metres in length, maybe 2 metres wide, and over 1 metre tall.
Cost = AUD $380, (which was the best price we found, so call Ezy bins, they also deal with the council fees on your behalf) and things to remember - it takes up a few car spots!

Friday, February 11, 2011

When Barry Met Joyce

After the floorboards came up, we could see what was happening underneath.. it looked like we needed to clear out some dirt, buy some new timber and re-stump the house.

It was a sand pit.... for a while... and then Awesome Dan and Awesome Trent came in and introduced us to Barry & Joyce (that's bearers and joists for anyone wanting to get personal & technical) I've only just met them, so I'll call them Barry & Joyce.

Here's a pic of the sandpit plus the beginnings of Barry & Joyce:

The guys worked so fast, I think they had new Barry's & Joyce's down in less than 2 days (don't ask me which one is Barry and which one is Joyce) I have no clue!
Compared to the old ones, you can actually see that the old ones were in pretty bad condition:





Old Hallway:

New Hallway:

Meanwhile... this guy seems to know which one's Barry & which one's Joyce.. or he just misses his sand pit.

So the next stage in this exciting game is plumbing.. whilst the floors don't exist, Stu needs to lay all the pipes for the new bathroom, plus all the pipes for the new Hydronic Heating we're planning to install, plus lay some cables and any other stuff that needs to happen under the floors...

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Stuff you find under floorboards!

A mineral water bottle from Flemington Bridge (?)

A milk bottle from P.W. Tomkins dairy in Thornbury (St Georges Road)- I'm thinking circa 1934.

I'll give them a buff and polish...
other stuff we found...medicine bottles and little tea style server trays
oh... and heaps of dirt and some moudly mud!

Friday, January 28, 2011


What is it?
A floorboard puller uppera

Where do you get it from?
You can hire one from Kennards

How much does it cost?
$60 for a weekend

How does it work?
Well you kill a couple of floorboards first and then you just sort of get in there are "jimmy" the rest of them out.

Is it worth it?
Either way you'll sacrifice a few floorboards but man if the house is old, those floorboards have been nailed in for like forever... and it's not that easy 'easing' them out..
We split quite a few floorboards but would have split heaps more if we didn't have that crazy tool!

So here's the living room before and after:

B1 went from this:

to this:

And the progression of B2:

And the hallway...

It's just so much fun isn't it??

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A video!

Just to get your bearings....
Here is a video of the before

Thinking, planning, scheming, thinking mostly about the bathroom

There's been lots of thinking planning scheming thinking, specially about where to put the future bathroom..
So we sketched it out on the floor with masking tape... the door, the bath, the shower the everything... we walked around it a few times.

Yep, that looks and feels like a good place to have a toilet...!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Skip to 2 .5 years later....

I just read the last post.. yikes has it really been that long? It's probably been closer to 3 years ago... So what happened? Well we finished the little beach flat in Sydney and moved to Melbourne and bought a "miners cottage" a nice way of saying a "small long & skinny brick house" in Northcote, North of Melbourne.... and the "reno's" have started again.
Perhaps it takes 2.5 years to truly forget the pain of the last renovation?
Nevermind, it's too late now, the house is bought, the banks are happy and we are knee deep in a sandpit in our living room, so there's no turning back, we must press on...

So... this little house in Northcote is a miners cottage originally built for the foremen who worked at the local brickworks, we're not exactly sure of the timing but it would have been built really late 1800's or early 1900's, we do know that the brickworks business in Northcote was booming around the 1880's. Let's have a look at some pics of the house...