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Dublin: 11°C Wednesday 20 October 2021

'The kitchen is always warm': Inside this vintage-tinged 1930s home in Kildare

Joanne McWey takes us through a day behind her front door.

Source: @happeyside

About the home

Where? Kildare Town, Co Kildare
What type of house? 1930s detached 
How many bedrooms and bathrooms? 3 bedrooms, bathroom, shower room and WC on the return
When did you move in? 6 years ago

About you

Name: Joanne McWey
Age: 42
Occupation: Full time mother, part time visual merchandiser, colour consultant, basically anything creative. If I’m not working I’m doing something with the house in between school runs. Studied art education, interior design and art history.
Who else lives there? My husband and two children

1. What made you choose this home over others?

We were living in a one bed apartment in Dublin city, so when we became pregnant we knew we’d need to move. My husband is from Kildare town so our preference was to move here. This house was in need of a lot of work but its location and potential won us over, plus it had a big garden (that has turned out to be more work but initially it was a bonus).

2. Which place in your home do you love the most, and why?

Oh, that’s the kitchen. We knocked the previous ‘add-on’ and the new extension is our main living space. It’s so bright and warm. It’s got lovely features with a really high ceiling and gorgeous sash windows, everybody loves the windows!

It’s a great gathering space and we love having family and friends in so it’s lovely having the room to do that.

3. Which place in your home do you love the least (and why)?

I’d say in general the upstairs. While I love our bedrooms, there’s still so much we have to finish and having grown up in a bungalow I have a tendency to forget about upstairs. Each night I’m making promises to myself about getting up to tidy, clean, organise, decorate — it’s very much a case of “out of sight, out of mind”.

I’m not sure getting all the rooms finished will make it an easier space for me to manage, but here’s hoping!

View this post on Instagram

I love “pops” of colour and these daffodils with their yellow centers sit so well with this complimentary scheme. This room is just delightful in natural sunlight-no filters for this shot, the @colourtrendpaints Holly Blue is so vibrant but still warm and the lamp shades just bounce off it 💙💛🧡 I added a little photo of my mum and me circa ‘77, just for the weekend that’s in it xxx #happeyside #irishhomes #colourmyhome #nesttoimpress #mygorgeousgaff #walltowallstyle #myhouseandhome #complimentarycolours #myhomevibe #irishinteriors #floralinteriors #colorfulhome #colorhappyhome #creativehappylife #currenthomeview #designattractor #homesweethome #myeclecticshack #ilovecolour #interiorboom #myinteriorsquares #greathomestaketime #interiorswithpersonality #newinteriorsontheblock #pocketofmyhome #sahstylists #styleithappy #myhousethismonth #myinteriordetails #floralspells

A post shared by Joanne McWey (@happeyside) on

4. Take us through a day in your house, room by room

7am: Alarms are snoozed once (maybe twice). Monday to Friday we will be in to wake up the boys but on Saturday and Sunday we are guaranteed to have them bouncing on our bed before 8am!

7.20am: We’re all downstairs for breakfast, the kitchen/living space is always warm so it’s lovely getting down here to start the day. One brilliant feature in our hall is a ‘walk in’ hot press — it’s super narrow and very unglamorous, but we have it shelved and it makes life so easy to grab clothes from there for the boys. We also have our family bathroom downstairs so these are all the things that help with getting the boys ready in the morning. We are fortunate to live walking distance from the kids’ school so weather permitting we’ll walk.

9am: If I’m not working, it’s back home for the usual tidy up, an Instagram snap, or work on whatever project I’m currently tackling. At the moment, I’m trying to clear out our front room which has functioned as a garage and is out of control, so I’m working my way through clearing it to make a studio/sitting room space.

The remainder of the day is spent on school runs, lunch, dinner prep, homework, and this all happens in the kitchen/living room. We have an island which works really well for joint jobs — meal prep at homework time is really manageable here.

5pm: Dinnertime. We try to have all four of us sit down for dinner most evenings. When the weather is good we usually sit outside, it’s great to have space to let the boys run around while I try and finish off as many jobs as I can before I crash!

7pm: Our evenings vary between different activities but mostly we aim to start “wind down” at 7. We’re blessed with a bathroom downstairs and a shower room upstairs so if I forget to get them to brush their teeth we can always do it upstairs!

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Day 18 “Plant Life” @myhousethismonth and “Once upon a time” @storyofmyhome combined-I went with our “bathroom plant life”, love making new use of a tea set wherever possible. I couldn’t actually find a book that began with “once upon a time” but here’s a few childhood favourites along with ‘Beedle and the Bard’ for any witches and wizards among us 😉 Happey Thursday everybody #happeyside #colorhappyhome #colourmyhome #creativehappylife #currenthomeview #dailydecordetail #greathomestaketime #homesweethome #howihome #ilovecolour #interior4all #interiorboom #interiordesign #interiorinspo #interiorswithpersonality #irishinteriors #moreismoredecor #myeclecticshack #myhouseandhome #myhousethismonth #myinteriordetails #myinteriorsquares #nestandthrive #nesttoimpress #newinteriorsontheblock #pocketofmyhome #sahstylists #storyofmyhome #styleithappy #walltowallstyle

A post shared by Joanne McWey (@happeyside) on

Storytime is still a big feature, the boys share a room so it’s a lovely bit of ‘family time’ before saying goodnight. My husband is great for storytime, especially if he didn’t make it back for dinner. The boys get way more time when Daddy is on story duty!

I’m trying to work on being more disciplined with my bedtime. I love to read and I decorated our bedroom last year. It’s a gorgeous relaxing space, but I’m very bad at turning off the TV. I think the combination of the cold weather and the stove makes our living space way too comfortable!

5. Is there anything you’d do differently if you were doing it again?

Other than insulation and new windows, we did very few alterations to the original house. The extension at the back works so well for us I can’t imagine changing anything. We still have lots to do but I love working away room by room. 

My husband said he’d like a bigger utility room, now it’s all I can think about. A bigger utility room would be amazing!

More: Inside this redbrick near the Wicklow seaside: ‘We recently got a wood burning stove and it’s amazing’>

About the author:

Emily Westbrooks

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