Home truly is where the Hatfield is for our @from_Hatfield_to_home influencers
19 February 2021
Teachers Brian and James Oliver-Elliott have made their Hatfield their home and have no intentions of moving on any time soon.
The couple, who live in the North East with their three-year-old son, have revamped and restyled just about every room in their home of six years and have clearly put their own stamp on the design.
Brian, who admits he is the driving force behind the interior design projects, explained: “We were thinking about moving and looking for something older that might need some work, but then we thought why would we? We had a brilliant house on a spacious corner plot and we realised it would have meant our time being drawn away from our little one.”
“We were moving back home from London when we first bought our Hatfield. As soon as we walked in we realised it was the one for us and the hallway just reminded me so much of my childhood home with the way the stairs turned and the light flooding in from the two windows.”
“We were lucky enough to secure a corner plot which means we have got a bigger garden, we are not overlooked and we have walls all the way around. The garden was the first of our projects as we wanted a lovely space to host parties.”
From there the couple turned their attentions to the interior, taking inspiration from Instagram, websites and their own wish lists.
“We love staying in fancy hotels and enjoying their luxury and I have always wanted a stand-alone, roll top bath. We had intended to put it in the main bathroom, but I had a shower moment,” said Brian.
“I took a hammer to the tiles there and then and when the shower was down we realised we could easily fit it into our en-suite.”
“All the rooms in the Hatfield are quite spacious and we just make the best of them. We have extended our kitchen/ dining area by knocking through where the door to the garage was and installing folding doors.”
“I had done a cooking class online and when I said we were changing the kitchen everyone who had seen it was saying it’s lush why would you change it, but now we are getting people who are surprised how much more space we have gained and how good it looks. It’s also great because we can sit in the lounge and close the door on all the toys at the end of the day.”
Brian has also transformed the understairs cupboard into a snug art room for their son.
“We have white porcelain tiles on the floor through the downstairs and one day he had been painting. Unsurprisingly, there was paint everywhere and I found myself thinking the cupboard under the stairs would make a cosy little space for him to set up the painting table.”
“Now he loves it in there, there are hooks for him to hang up his paintings, shelves and toy storage and when he has friends to play they love it too.”
As to the colour schemes Brian said: “The hallway walls are the only ones the same as when we moved in. I have an obsession for the Farrow and Ball paint charts. You choose your colour and it suggests a palette that goes with it, so all the rooms have the same tone and the colour isn’t overdone and likely to go out of fashion quickly.”
Most of the work on the Hatfield has been done by Brian and his dad.
“I am lucky that my dad and I both have the attitude that we will give it a go and if it doesn’t work out we can pay someone to come in,” he said.
“I did have a couple of accidents at the beginning, like when I hammered a nail through the pipes above the radiator while trying to hang a picture. But the site manager was brilliant and sorted us out!”
“I’ll admit I am very impatient, if I see a design I like I want to do it instantly. I have ripped a skirting board off in anticipation of my next project and I haven’t finished painting the ones in the kitchen yet! Assoon as I see the transformation I am ready for the next without waiting to complete it.”
“On the plus side my skills have improved and from not being able to hang a picture or even paint a wall I have ripped out the utility and capped off the plumbing.”
“James has been great and lets me get on with it, he knows if I like it he will too and we always reach the right design decisions. We are definitely staying put and have no intention of moving now we have turned our Hatfield into our lovely home.”