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Dublin: 17°C Tuesday 19 October 2021

'You can see palm trees through the aquarium': Suzie shares her transformed ex-council house in Dublin

Suzie Kenny and family put in a painstaking renovation of their home to suit their tastes.

EACH WEEK, WE ask an Irish person with a passion for interiors to share one photo of their favourite spot in their home.

Suzie Kenny moved into a 1940s ex-council house in Dun Laoghaire with her husband and son in December 2017. They began renovating the property a few months earlier and finished in June last year, having transformed the house into their dream home.

“I think our architects would have preferred if we took a very long holiday and came back when the house was finished but me and Marc were very hands on and involved in all the decision making,” says Suzie.

This week, nature-lover Suzie (@thehousebeyondthepalms) chatted us through her favourite space: the kitchen. 

20181103_160925-02 Source: Suzie Kenny

What do you love most about this part of your home?

To be honest, we love absolutely everything about our home, so it’s hard to pick a favourite part. We were a long time planning the work so we spent a lot of time designing and collecting feature pieces and choosing the finishes. 

But I had a very clear vision for the kitchen. Between our architects and the builder’s very talented carpenter, they absolutely nailed the design. 

Talk us through some of the objects in the photo.

There are a lot of palm motifs dotted around the house. The palm over the hob in the kitchen is from Hobby Lobby in the US, and the indoor Areca palm is from IKEA. The cactus and star lights are from George at Asda.

The polished concrete counter top was designed by Concrete Fair – we love the tactility of the concrete with the timber. Our tan leather sofa in the background is from DFS. 

What was your inspiration when you were putting the space together?

I love cooking so I wanted to create a modern, industrial and functional kitchen with lots of storage. I knew exactly what I wanted; timber wide drawers, concrete counter tops, a large gas hob and a huge fridge. I found Pinterest a great source of inspiration and also a brilliant visionary tool that I shared with the builder and architect to ensure they totally got where I was coming from. 

How well does this photo reflect the rest of your home? 

I think this photo gives a pretty good insight to what the rest of our home is like. When we were renovating we wanted to create a fun, unique place to live. In the photo you can see a small glimpse of our back garden of tropical palm trees through the aquarium at the back of the extension.

The tank is home to our 15-year-old common snapping turtle Mr Swampy. The photo also features Mr Bully, our miniature English Bull Terrier, and Mia Mischief, our very naughty French Bulldog. So I guess you can tell we are animal and nature mad from this photo! 

Be honest: how much tidying did you do before taking this photo?

I take a photo for my Instagram page whenever we do a deep clean of the house. I always move pieces around to create the perfect shot. There’s a lot of fluffing and bribing the dogs with treats to capture the perfect picture.

Do you have a spot in your home that you’re particularly proud of? Do you enjoy styling the different rooms in your house? Are you always adding and changing little things to make your space stand out? If so, we want to hear from you! Email amy@thejournal.ie with a few lines about yourself and your home for a chance to feature in My Home in One Photo.

More: ‘The sofa is my prized possession’: Fashion buyer Laura shares her stylish living room

More: ‘Most of what we do is on a tight budget’: DIY fan Gráinne shares her lively dining room

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