Before and After: A Victorian House Becomes a Warm and Cosy Home

Autumn always makes me feel really nostalgic. I think it's the crispness in the air which reminds me of going back to school after the summer holidays, collecting conkers in the wood behind our house and kicking leaves on the way home. It also reminds me of running onto a frosty hockey pitch in my PE kit (shorts and and a very airy t-shirt - i.e. not designed for the weather). 

It was this mostly romantic train of thought which led me to today's home - Harnham House in Salisbury, Wiltshire UK. Dating back to 1880, Hannah and her partner Ollie moved into the Victorian property in spring 2018. Previously a rental, the house was in fairly good condition but still required a lot of work. Hannah and Ollie set about renovating the space, taking four years to transform it into a warm and cosy home. Ready to see the before and after pictures? 

Kitchen before 

The kitchen needed to be completely gutted.

Kitchen after

Hannah and Ollie installed a kitchen from DIY kitchens. Open shelving on the back wall helps to create a relaxed feel, while a rail from DeVOL makes space for utensils. 

The walls have been painted in Pure Brilliant White from Dulux. 

Dining area before

The Victorian features such as a brick fireplace had been covered up under layers of plaster. Hannah and Ollie peeled back the layers before painting the chimney breast white. 

Dining area after

The original wood floor was given a new lease of life, and an efficient woodburning stove was added to the fireplace.  The recessed walls on either side of the fire have made a great place for storing firewood and table linen as well as other pieces. 

The walls in the recess have been painted a subtle 'blanc de blanc' by Valspar paint.

Stairs and hall before

The hall floor and staircase were peeled back to the bare bones. 

Stairs and hall after

Beautiful wood panelling with a built-in shelf (painted in Lick green 01) was added to the hallway. Beneath, a bench and shelving make space for shoes, accessories and other items. 

The stairs were given a white lick of paint, leaving a central strip of exposed wood for the tread. Meanwhile, a snoozing dog guards the foot of the stairs, while Hannah and Ollie sleep. 

Meanwhile, the family cat has bagged the guest room (in true feline style!). I don't blame her, it does look like a lovely, calm place for some shut eye! The walls have been painted in Dulux 2510G90Y, which makes a great backdrop for vintage and antique furniture. 

What a beautiful transformation! 

Everything looks so warm and cosy. I can imagine it really comes into its own in Autumn time! 

Did you spot the cat? 

I'd love to hear your thoughts - do share below. And also, do you feel extra nostalgic in autumn? If so, what kind of memories does this season conjure up for you? 

See more Hannah's home over at @hanhamhouse (they still have some rooms left to renovate). 

Would you like to see a fee more British homes today? 

This cabin isn't in England, but it popped up in my feed earlier and it's so worth re-visiting: 

On an entirely different note, and in view of 'candle season' being upon us, Per was at a seminar held by the Swedish fire brigade yesterday.  based on all they have witnessed and various studies, they advised having a smoke detector in every room in the house including all the bedrooms. In addition, they said a fire extinguisher in the kitchen is essential - do you have this in your home? Apparently, IKEA have inexpensive, yet good smoke detectors). I also have my eye on a nexa or solskiden fire extinguisher (hey, who said an extinguisher can't be beautiful?). Stay safe friends. 

I'll be back on Friday to share an autumn update in my sitting room - I hope you're going to like it!  


Photography: @hanhamhouse shared with kind permission. 


  1. What a wonderful home. The before and after pictures are amazing.

  2. What are conquers? Mushrooms? Acorns? Flowers?

    1. I've just realised I spelt it wrong - it should have been 'conkers' (now updated) - even so, you're probably no clearer on what that is!

      Conkers is a traditional children's game in the UK which we play using the seeds from a horse chestnut tree. You thread a piece of string through your conker and take turns striking someone else's conker. You win if the other person's conker breaks!

      Do you have a similar game?


  3. from the french woman : hello Niki ! i still watch and read all your posts, photos, comments. i'm a very diligent student and never have missed one ! i continue to like your work a lot. today, as i do not well understood conquers, i 've supposed "boyfriends" .... and most seriously about smoke detector i have one in each room of my old country house because of the wood heating and my insurance. and it's also an obligation of the insurer, i have very ugly red fire extinguishers !

    1. I'm sure as a teenager, I'd have preferred to pick up a boyfriend on the way home rather than a 'conker' LOL!

      That is so good that your insurance demands this as it makes a house so much safer. We need to organise this ASAP!

      Finally, merci beaucoup for following my blog, it really means so much!

  4. Another home that I'd love to live in! I also want the cat and dog. So cute. This is a cozy home--no wonder you are feeling nostalgic. The decorating style is up my alley, including the mouse in the house hanging on the pot rack. :) And yes, I get nostalgic in the autumn.

    1. You have a great knack of spotting details I miss, thank you for pointing out the mouse in the house! Happy you enjoyed this home too! /Niki

  5. Head over heels in love. What is the stuff above the mirror in the leading photo, is it hops?

    1. I'm not entirely sure, could well be! It's a beautiful display, and such nice idea to create something like this with dried flowers so it can last all autumn and winter :)

  6. In the picture with that gorgeous plate rack on the that a cat's tail and paw? I love your composition on the shelf...lots to look at, not too cluttered, useful stuff. Well done!


Post a Comment

Privacy Notice: We do not share personal information with third-parties nor do we store information we collect about your visit to this blog for use other than to analyze content performance through the use of cookies, which you can turn off at anytime by modifying your Internet browser's settings. We are not responsible for the republishing of the content found on this blog on other Web sites or media without our permission. This privacy policy is subject to change without notice.

Subscribe To My Scandinavian Home

Subscribe to My Scandinavian Home

skovby ad


site by ANAAR

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.