Home makeover: ‘Our house is full of colour’

Take a look at Ellie Gooder's incredibly colourful home...

‘Previously the units were white shiny vinyl, but I really wanted to change them, so I did! I used paint from Lick and it went on really well. I love the end result and most importantly, I enjoy cooking in here now; it’s much more of an inspiring place to get creative with food’

Ellie Gooder used her love of painting to turn her home into a fabulously happy space, full of stylish ideas to steal. Here, she shares her home makeover story…

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Our home makeover story…

This is our second home as a couple – we only moved from across the road! We loved the area so much, and we knew we wanted to stay, so when this bigger house came up, we knew we had to have it.

‘This is one of my favourite rooms and I love the sofas in here. They’re from Loaf and our dog Jenson is banned from going on them! This room is really calming so I come in here with a cuppa to relax after work. The big mirror from Anthropologie is one of my favourite buys’
‘This is one of my favourite rooms and I love the sofas in here. They’re from Loaf and our dog Jenson is banned from going on them! This room is really calming so I come in here with a cuppa to relax after work. The big mirror from Anthropologie is one of my favourite buys’

This home provides much more living space than our previous one and offered us the chance to decorate to our taste and unleash our creativity. Knowing that this was our forever home, we felt brave to go against the grain and be a little bit bold and quirky.

Welcome to my home

A bit about me I’m Ellie, 26, and I work as an analyst at an insurance company. I live with my fiancé, Josh and our beagle, Jenson. 

Where I live We live in a four-bedroom detached house in south Manchester. It was built in the ‘70s and we bought it in January 2020. 

Eleanor Gooder

The living room is an extension on the side of the house that the previous owner built, and is an impressive space with huge ceilings, but it’s long and quite thin. The space didn’t really flow that well, so we had a log-burner built with an alcove for logs to create a focal point.

‘I’m inspired by Palm Springs and Moroccan design, and as our hallway is quite long and dark, I knew it could take a bold look. The terracotta on the walls makes me happy as soon as I walk downstairs for my morning coffee or get in from a rubbish day. The gold leaf up the stairs was a project I won’t be repeating again any time soon as it took me a while to do. However, I love the finished result – the way the terracotta reflects the gold makes me feel like I’m on a beach at sunset’
‘I’m inspired by Palm Springs and Moroccan design, and as our hallway is quite long and dark, I knew it could take a bold look. The terracotta on the walls makes me happy as soon as I walk downstairs for my morning coffee or get in from a rubbish day. The gold leaf up the stairs was a project I won’t be repeating again any time soon as it took me a while to do. However, I love the finished result – the way the terracotta reflects the gold makes me feel like I’m on a beach at sunset’

We also went dark with the walls here as the room is so bright and light it could definitely take it.

I’m now thinking of going dark all over, but I’ve not quite decided.

‘Believe it or not, this isn’t really tongue and groove – I just drew even lines on the wall! It’s so effective and much cheaper than the real thing. I carried on the plant theme in here with a trailing plant on the shelf, which is from Etsy’
‘Believe it or not, this isn’t really tongue and groove – I just drew even lines on the wall! It’s so effective and much cheaper than the real thing. I carried on the plant theme in here with a trailing plant on the shelf, which is from Etsy’

I want each room to feel totally different as I don’t just have one style! I like a mixture of everything, and I feel like each room is totally unique, but I like it that way.

A bit more about my home…

What I wanted to change I wanted to make the whole house more fun and vibrant. 

How I made it my own Through colour. I swear by the power of paint.  I’ve updated almost all the rooms with paint, accessories and a bit of imagination. I’m a maximalist – in my eyes the more, the merrier!            

My favourite part The dining room. It’s the heart of the house and with the jungle mural, it makes such a happy space to eat and entertain guests.

Eleanor Gooder

We have a very colourful home now, and Josh is amazing in trusting me. When I said I wanted to paint the whole room green, or the kitchen cabinets olive with pink tiles, I had many raised eyebrows, but he trusted me and absolutely loves it. It definitely makes it easier having a partner who doesn’t challenge you and lets you have free rein.

‘The bathroom is a good size, but I wanted to make it feel more spacious, so I added the mirror and orange paint to add interest. The units were already there, and I painted the tiles. I’m really happy with them – they look like the real thing!’
‘The bathroom is a good size, but I wanted to make it feel more spacious, so I added the mirror and orange paint to add interest. The units were already there, and I painted the tiles. I’m really happy with them – they look like the real thing!’

Eventually, I would love to extend the back of the house to have that open-plan kitchen/diner/lounge that everyone lusts after.

But for now, we are so happy with our cheap DIY update.

‘I love painting and felt that this space needed filling with something, so I created this circle with various shades of orange and then added in the narrow shelves. It only took me three hours to do’
‘I love painting and felt that this space needed filling with something, so I created this circle with various shades of orange and then added in the narrow shelves. It only took me three hours to do’

Kitchen

‘The kitchen was the cheapest makeover I have ever done, costing just under £350. Before, this space was totally uninspiring, so we stripped the cupboard doors, spray-painted the extractor fan, spotlights, door handles, door hinges and kitchen window frame black.

‘I painted the window frames black as they were typical uPVC white before. I wanted to create a Crittall- style window look and I’m so happy with the result! The shelf above the window was a floorboard I got from B&Q and I love being able to hang plants from it’
‘I painted the window frames black as they were typical uPVC white before. I wanted to create a Crittall-style window look and I’m so happy with the result! The shelf above the window was a floorboard I got from B&Q and I love being able to hang plants from it’

‘We painted the tiles pink and stencilled stars on them. I wanted to be a bit different and bold and I think we’ve definitely achieved it in here.’

Living room

‘It’s such a treat to have this room. Moving from our old house, which only had one very small living area, we feel totally spoilt for choice and space now.

‘This is a huge living room that runs the full width of the house. It’s lovely and light as it has two good-sized windows and skylights. This also made it hard for me to decide what to do in here. I knew it needed a focal point, so we had the log-burner built and added the log store to create interest’
‘This is a huge living room that runs the full width of the house. It’s lovely and light as it has two good-sized windows and skylights. This also made it hard for me to decide what to do in here. I knew it needed a focal point, so we had the log-burner built and added the log store to create interest’

‘With this room, I wanted it to be very different from the other rooms in the house and keep it bright and light. I went for a pair of statement sofas from Loaf, one pink and the other a gorgeous navy velvet. This space makes me feel calm and peaceful and is still so snuggly at night watching a film with the lamp on a soft glow.’

‘I wanted to create a feature area where I could hang my favourite prints, and as I love painting so much, I decided to do one big circle and one half circle, well kind of! They slightly overlap which I like and although they were hard to do, I love the fact they are bold and different’
‘I wanted to create a feature area where I could hang my favourite prints, and as I love painting so much, I decided to do one big circle and one half circle, well kind of! They slightly overlap which I like and although they were hard to do, I love the fact they are bold and different’

Dining room

‘I wanted a jungle mural somewhere and what better place than the area you sit, eat and entertain guests. For me, I wanted this room to be somewhere we enjoyed spending time – after all, the best conversations with loved ones is always over dinner.

‘I bought the table and chairs from Wayfair and they look fab against the tropical leaf mural, which is from Photowall. My aim was to create a focal point in here, which I think I have done’
‘I bought the table and chairs from Wayfair and they look fab against the tropical leaf mural, which is from Photowall. My aim was to create a focal point in here, which I think I have done’

‘The oversized mural is definitely a talking point when people come over and I just love that I’ve brought those tropical vibes into the house.’

Ellie and Josh love to entertain, so this trolley from Primark, finished with their favourite tipples and fancy cocktail glasses, was a key buy
Ellie and Josh love to entertain, so this trolley from Primark, finished with their favourite tipples and fancy cocktail glasses, was a key buy

Main bedroom

‘The first room I properly tackled when we moved in was our bedroom. I wanted this room to feel like a cosy sanctuary – warm and inviting, and somewhere we would want to spend time and enjoy going to bed in each night.

‘I fell in love with this green shade called Ho Ho Green by Little Greene and knew I wanted to try it in our bedroom. We put in the panelling before and left the wardrobe white to add balance. I didn’t want it to feel gloomy so chose brightly patterned bedding and cushions from La Redoute’
‘I fell in love with this green shade called Ho Ho Green by Little Greene and knew I wanted to try it in our bedroom. We put in the panelling before and left the wardrobe white to add balance. I didn’t want it to feel gloomy so chose brightly patterned bedding and cushions from La Redoute’

‘Green is my favourite colour and I finally settled on Ho Ho Green by Little Greene. This shade makes me feel serene and peaceful, and paired with the forest prints behind the bed, I think we’ve created that cosy vibe we were hoping for.’

Guest bedroom

‘This was my lockdown project and I’m so pleased with the outcome. I joke with my friends and family and ask if they can tell I did this room during a global pandemic, longing for a holiday – again, that tropical wallpaper is stunning.

Ellie chose this striking wallpaper mural from Photowall to create an eye-catching focal point in this room. Textured cushions and throws add a tactile element
Ellie chose this striking wallpaper mural from Photowall to create an eye-catching focal point in this room. Textured cushions and throws add a tactile element

‘I absolutely love being away on holiday at the beach, by the palm trees, and wanted to recreate that feeling somehow.

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‘I wanted this room to feel tranquil and calm for our guests who come to stay.’

‘I wanted to create a corner where guests could hang up their clothes to make it feel more homely. The peg rail is from Søstrene Grene. I painted the wall in this soft grey/green shade that’s colour matched to Mizzle by Farrow & Ball’
‘I wanted to create a corner where guests could hang up their clothes to make it feel more homely. The peg rail is from Søstrene Grene. I painted the wall in this soft grey/green shade that’s colour matched to Mizzle by Farrow & Ball’
This is a digital version of a feature that originally appeared in Home Style magazine. For more inspirational home ideas, why not subscribe today?