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'We turned the old dining room into an office': Barbara's home that mixes work and play

Each room in Barbara’s Dublin home was designed with her family’s personal tastes in mind.

Image: Instagram/house22_dublin

About you

Name: Barbara Dixon (@house22_dublin)
Age: 38
Occupation: My sister Orla and are co-founders of new ladies fashion line, Born Sisters, which is launching very soon. Fashion is our greatest love so there’s no better person to do this with than my sister.

About your home

Location: Lucan, Co Dublin
What type of house is it? A detached home
How many bedrooms and bathrooms? Four bedrooms, two bathrooms
When did you move in? 2005
Who lives there? Myself, my partner Derek and our two children Henry (8) and Pippa (5)

What made you choose this home over others?

We instantly fell in love with the design of the house and the yellow brick. There are two curved windows to the front and one to the side of the house. Little features like this stood out and contributed in deciding this house was for us. Most importantly we got a lovely feeling from the house and could picture ourselves living there. 

Screenshot 2020-11-02 at 18.07.01 Source: Instagram/house22_dublin

What’s your favourite part of your home and why?

That would be our newly constructed kitchen/living/dining area. It’s the heart of the house. The kitchen island acts as a focal point and brings us all together as a family for meal times, homework and so on.

Screenshot 2020-11-02 at 18.08.39 Source: Instagram/house22_dublin

What’s one part of your home you don’t like so much, or that causes challenges?

The hallway… it’s no grand entrance. I believe a hallway is very important to someone’s first impression of a home – when the front door opens and you get that full view. Sadly ours is L-shaped and it doesn’t offer that ‘wow’ effect.

What’s the most unique part of your home?

The kitchen, it’s a mix of four different colours. It’s a bespoke design that’s totally personal to us. I took Derek to Woodale Design in Carlow to show him “ideas” of kitchens, knowing fully I had my heart set on this one. It took a lot of convincing and it was all picture and no sound for quite a while but I got him over in the end.

Screenshot 2020-11-02 at 18.08.17 Source: Instagram/house22_dublin

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How does an average day start in your home right now? 

Monday to Friday is pretty busy in our house, alarm goes off 6.30am and kiddies are awake from 7am. Pippa starts school 8.15 so it’s an early start. Once the kids are dressed we all go down to the kitchen island for breakfast. I work between an office in the city centre and home. On the days I am in town I would usually drop the kids to school and drive on into town. Other days I work from home. During the renovations we turned the old dining room into an office. It’s a lovely cosy room with rattan furniture and large freestanding mirror. You’ll find me here with a cup of coffee and a burning candle on most days. Once the kiddies are home from school we head straight to the kitchen for dinner, homework and a catch up on the day.

Screenshot 2020-11-02 at 18.07.37 Source: Instagram/house22_dublin

How does an average day end in your home right now?

We typically start to wind down at 7pm most evenings. We try to make an effort to sit at the dining table but it feels very formal at the table compared to the kitchen island. The kiddies are bathed and each pick a story to read. Once the kiddies are asleep the preparation for the next day starts – uniforms laid out and so on. Following this, it’s bed time and usually a scroll through Instagram…

What’s one thing you’d do differently if you were decorating your home again?

I’d choose the floors more wisely. Bright floors and grouting are very hard to keep clean with young kids. 

More: ‘I wanted the décor to be fun for the kids too’: Susan’s home with rabbit lamps and orangutan tables

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