Couple transform home for £30,000 – including a secret door through a bookshelf
It’s every book lover’s dream.
A couple has shared how they have used their DIY skills to transform their home.
The highlight? A £200 secret door in a bookcase.
Property investors Felicity, 31, and Daniel Beasley, 38, from Leeds, UK, moved into their home in 2019 and have since been making their own renovations.
With Daniel having worked in rental property for several years and Felicity being the daughter of a former architect, the two had plenty of ideas.
‘My dad is now retired from architecture but he is also a keen photographer,’ said Felicity.
‘I definitely have inherited his interest, particularly in the form and function of a space and how natural lighting impacts a space visually.’
‘Daniel and I moved home three years ago and completed the second part of a two-phase extension.
‘Since we’ve moved in, our projects have included extending downstairs, allowing for a utility room, playroom, coat store and WC.
‘In the utility room we have used a concrete effect paint as well which required trowelling on, sanding and polishing but we think it was worth the extra effort.
‘My husband has tiled floors and walls, applied brick slips, fit crittall double doors, painted, wallpapered, hand made a bespoke secret door bookcase and also a box frame window seat.’
Overall, the couple has spent around £30,000 on renovations – and they plan to keep going, next focusing on their garden and drive.
Felicity says that she and Daniel have learned plenty of new skills since turning their hands to DIY.
‘I’ve learnt skills in painting and sourcing interior products whereas my husband fine tuned skills he already had’ she said.
‘He could tile before but now he can tile chevron and herringbone styles, he has used power tools before but never structures like the window seat which required applying wood veneer.
‘We had builders in to create the shell of the extension, also electrician and plasterer but everything else we have done ourselves with some help from family or colleagues.
‘My eldest daughter has also been known to lend a helping hand when wallpaper-stripping.’
Felicity’s favourite aspect of the house is the secret bookcase that leads into a hidden storage space.
‘My favourite has to be the secret door bookcase,’ she said.
‘The handle is disguised by a book so our daughters love having something “magic” but it’s also practical as it hides all the playroom clutter and toys.
‘It only cost £200 to create the door.
‘As well as that, I hand-painted the scallop walls in the playroom and the house chalkboard which we have added a wooden trim to.
‘Daniel also hand built the window box frame which was a lot harder than it looks.
‘We also have a swing chair in the playroom.’
Felicity said the best thing about DIY is seeing how it all turns out.
‘It’s definitely all in trusting the process and when a whole room comes together it’s a great feeling,’ she said.
‘We love seeing our daughter’s reactions to the end result too.’
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