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Hi all! I've been a grateful reader of renotalk for quite a few months now and have learnt so many things from here! I am hoping that by starting a T-blog, the discussions in it could also somehow help other people as well. My husband and I are "newlyweds" (when does one disqualify from being newlyweds? 1 year? 2 years? before kids?) and were lucky enough to spend a year away in London straight after getting married, where he studied for his Masters and I worked and also kept our tiny student dorm room clean and full of food. Since coming back in July this year, we searched around for our own place whilst living with his parents in his room, and in October, managed to exercise our option to purchase on a nice 30-year-old first-gen executive maisonette in Jurong West, which is also near to his parents' house. We've nicknamed our new place "Emma" (because it's an EM?), but actually it's not really our place yet till our second HDB appointment in end Jan 2016, and even then the owners have asked to extend their stay for another two months, so in reality we will only get our keys sometime in March 2016. Even so, we've basically been looking at renovations and furniture and tiles and light fixtures and appliances since October, so you can say we are preparing quite early. The layout! I've actually modified this from the version we received from HDB, since the current owners had done some modifications to knock down the wall between the utility room and the kitchen. The layout is very similar to twinklecloud's EM otherwise, a typical first-gen EM with the long balcony at the living room and much of the unit still in original condition or at least 15-year-old decorations. We don't intend to do that much modification to the existing structure, though we wanted to reinstate the utility room (and make it slightly longer to accommodate storage shelves and a bed if possible) and as a result, make the kitchen slightly smaller. After seeing twinklecloud's desired layout, we've also become a bit more daring and are hoping to change the kitchen toilet to an L-shaped toilet so that it wouldn't feel so cramped and potentially be wheelchair-accessible(??). There's also the usual hacking of tiles on the first floor (the existing ones are pastel, matt, 30x30cm and super retro) and thinking of overlaying HERF on the second floor to save some money. We are keeping the balcony open and maybe just installing a retractable awning. We are also not intending to have too much built-ins as we intend to start a family soon and want to keep the house quite flexible in terms of layout. Despite that, we've been looking at relatively expensive quotes, guess that it comes with the EM territory...
We just collected our keys! Can't wait to start our reno journey! Had been quietly following all the t-Blogs that inspired us a lot and now it is finally our turn to document and share this adventure with the fellow Renotalk peeps. So exciting! YAY! Here is the floor plan... P.S. This will mostly be the wife blogging, I hijacked my husband's RT account to blog.
Finally starting my own t-Blog! Have learnt a lot from fellow renotalkers and enjoyed reading abt all the reno journeys! Hope to get some suggestions/opinions for my reno as well! Home is a 5I flat in Jurong West. Bought it 6 yrs ago and did minimal furnishing so now we're ready to do a major overhaul! So excited!! We do not have a specific theme.. Initially wanted a modern resort look but we felt like we have some decor items which may look out of place so we started leaning towards: industrial / rustic / mid-century ... Simply put: ROJAK! Lol Thankfully, my other half and I have similar tastes so it's not so bad.. Both of us love ethnic decor stuff hence the title of this blog.. Ethnic Chic. Will be having some balinese, indian, peranakan touches and we also have some antiques like the gramophone, steel trunk, some vintage posters.. So we just have to see what fits. Most importantly, we want the house to look spacious and bright, has to feel cozy, giving us the feeling like we're relaxing in a villa. Okay now on IDs/contractors. We have approached at least TEN of them. Will comment on some: 1) Chew Interior Too ex! I don't need my home to look like a showroom! The ID was also quite reluctant to give ideas and had the yaya papaya attitude.. Maybe we looked like we couldnt afford his services?! -.- 2) Add S p a c e (met at expo) A lady attended to us and kept pushing to sign up a package as there were only "3 slots left". BS! 3) Unimax Creative (met at expo) We spoke to a lady then halfway a guy joined her and started giving "creative" ideas. But they never got back to us on the quote. Waste time! 4) Rezt & Relax (met at expo) Spoke to a soft-spoken lady. Never got back to us too. Waste time again! 5) Ciseern (expo) Asked us our budget. Told him 35k. "Oh not possible". ?!@@@? We walked off. 6) Inspire by D'Trenzo (recommended by friend) Quote was not bad but we felt that they are more specialized in modern designs and would not be able to achieve the look we want for our place so.. Dropped. 7) D'zign Station Met up few times and even went to check out ID's other completed projects. Quote was not bad too. Almost wanted to sign up till we saw the 3D drawing. Felt that ID either did not understand what we want or he forgot. Dropped. We got tired of sourcing for IDs but thank God there's Renotalk! Quite interested to go for the famous Alan or K but was afraid they might be too busy and hiccups will arise. Then I came across June's and Stinz' blogs.. Love what the ID did and met up with him. My other half was not comfortable with the fact that this ID works from home and he's quite young.. But when we stepped into his house and started discussing, the other half was impressed! I just gave the "I told u so" look. LOL Alrightey then! Sorry for the long story. Let me figure out how to post pix then I can post my floor plan on the next post.