Clever lighting and creative ideas combine in revamped home
Dee and Dave Hollingsbee put personal stamp on family-friendly Ormiston house
YOU might expect an interior architect and a lighting manufacturer to house-hunt with major renovation in mind. But Dee and Dave Hollingsbee prioritised their family’s interests when they bought this house in East Lothian eight years ago.
The arrival of their son Rohan (now almost nine) made life in their Edinburgh flat impractical. The couple also craved outdoor space and more room for guests.
“More bedrooms were on our tick list,” says Dee. So too was a decent-sized kitchen. This all had to be found within striking distance of Edinburgh (where Dee works for cre8architecture) and Loanhead, home to Mike Stoane Lighting, Dave’s employer.
Dave’s mum Jackie spotted a newspaper advert for this house and the couple knew when they walked through the door that this house ticked all their boxes.
As well as the garden, good-sized kitchen, five bedrooms and the perfect location in the ‘ridiculously friendly’ village of Ormiston, the house was old. “I have always loved the individuality of old properties,” Dee says.
Although well loved, the interior wasn’t to the couple’s taste. After painting everything white, the couple turned attention to the kitchen. They created a contemporary space with the help of friend and joiner, Richie Hughes.
Black gloss Ikea units are teamed with white solid-surface worktops, but it is the orange Marmoleum splashbacks that add wow factor. “It’s normally used as flooring, but works well as a splash back,” Dee says.
The couple’s next project was creating a den for Rohan and his brother Fionn, now five. Attic space was floored, lined and insulated to create a fun room the boys can call their own. Rather than fit a skylight, Dave used lamps that create the feeling of daylight.
Access to this attic den is by way of a custom-made ladder leading from the boys’ bedroom. Like most spaces in the house, the boys’ room showcases interior products that Dee and Dave have picked up through work. Curved shelving was originally a light shade prototype designed for a large hotel group.
“This one wasn’t needed so we cut it down the middle and painted it,” says Dee. One half has been fixed horizontally to the wall, while the other is attached vertically, with atmospheric back lighting, to the side of bookshelves that make effective use of space under the new stair.
Downstairs in the living/dining area, the end wall accommodates cast iron shelving from an old Edinburgh bank safe. Dee spotted them on site and managed to transport them in her own car.
Dee also rescued the dining table, this time from the old offices of her design practice. “We needed a narrow table for the space,” she explains. Red metal legs were powder coated and the old pine top was re-veneered in walnut.
The couple enjoy art, especially pieces by Dave’s mum, an artist based in Cornwall. They also love the landscape above the L-shape sofa, by artist Alun Thomas. The painting of the old Leith railbridge in the dining area is by artist and friend, Spencer Whiting.
There is a lot Dee and Dave will miss about this house, but at the top of the list is the wood-fired pizza oven they built in the garden.
The family’s next move is uncertain, but if anyone can shed light on another dream home this pair can. k
Offers over £329,000. Contact Simpson & Marwick (01620 892 000, www.eastlothianprimeproperty.com)
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