At Home With Charlie @champagne_and_wellies
This week we are at home with Charlie. Meet the lovely lady behind the inspirational instagram @champagne_and_wellies where she shares images of her beautiful country cottage. Read on to discover more about Charlie, her home and family
Tell us a bit about you
I’m Charlie, I live with my husband, our 3 boys age 16, 14, 11 and our 3 dogs. We live in a detached cottage, surrounded by ancient woodland, just outside of Petworth in the heart of the beautiful South Downs National Park in West Sussex.
We bought our home just under 3 years ago. It lies down a small farm track that leads into woodland and miles of amazing countryside.
Tell us about your home
Our home is a real mix of old and new. A blend of country character with original features but with a modern edge.
The original three bedroom cottage dates back to the 17th and 18th century, when it was part of a large estate and rented out to a pig farmer. In 1919 the estate was broken up into lots and sold off at auction. The house was later extended in the 1970’s and early 2000’s, including converting the old stables and piggery into a functional barn that we now use as a games room and gym.
How would you describe your home?
Mainly modern country cottage style. We have a lot of beams, wonky walls, fireplaces and smaller windows, so I like to reflect that with our furniture, choosing mainly traditional wooden cottage style. Though there is also a little splash of coastal in our sitting room.
I grew up on along the coast in West Sussex, so it’s a part of who I am. I generally love neutral tones though and try to keep things quite simple.
What is your favorite room in the house?
Definitely the snug! It has the most amazing original fireplace. The ceilings are quite low, but not so much that you bang your head on the beams!
And it has a lovely view of the garden. I always think that a home literally has a heart. A room that everyone is drawn to. The snug is that place in this house. All 8 of us (including the dogs) cosy up in here next to the fire. Its super cosy!
How does your home reflect any passions or interests?
We love the outdoors and have 3 sporty boys and 3 dogs, so being located in the middle of the countryside is perfect for dog walking, mountain biking, picnics etc. We have just renovated the utility to cope with all the mud this involves!
Upcycling furniture and decorating is a huge passion for me too. I love creating the most cosy, welcoming home that I can for my family and friends to enjoy.
What are your favorite items in your home?
My number one item would be our dining table. Its hugely sentimental as my Dad build it for us. He even inscribed a personal message underneath.
Also, our woodburners…..I am always cold, so I stick to them like glue in the winter!
When you moved into your house was it the finished article or was it a project?
The house itself wasn’t so bad. Mainly decorating, which apart from the kitchen we have done all ourselves.
We have put our own stamp on it and have just finished updating the utility. I think the biggest project has been the garden. Its still hugely work in progress.
Have you done any renovation?
No major works just a huge amount of painting and replacing rotten wood window frames.
You definitely have to have patience when doing up a house. I think I have probably learnt not to rush things, to take my time and do it properly!
Have you had any DIY or styling disasters?
When decorating some built in shelving I hadn’t realized that they were made from MDF. I tried so many different types of paint and so many, many layers of paint. None of which would take. It just kept soaking it all up! It still doesn’t look finished even now!
What is your top styling tip?
I love using Instagram and Pinterest for inspiration. There are so many amazing accounts to look at. But I try to design a room around its main features and keep the style in line with those.
I would love to decorate a New England style beach house one day, something totally different but equally as beautiful.
Is there anything in your home that you couldn’t live without?
I would have to say my tumble dryer! It’s a bit of a luxury item and we only bought one about 6 years ago. But I honestly don’t know how I got all the laundry done before! The boys get through a lot of sports kit! And I never come home from a dog walk without paw prints all over me!
They say that every home tells visitors a story about who lives there. What do you think your home says about you?
I hope that it shows we are very much a busy family home, a place to relax and spend time together with our friends. With the rows of muddy boots, walking boots, football boots and trainers at the front door, I think its easy to see that we embrace the countryside and love our sport. But the kitchen and patio area are great spaces for entertaining and turning up the music.
Lived in or show home?
It would be impossible to be anything here other than lived in.
If you could only paint your walls one colour, which one would it be?
Little Greene’s Portland Stone
What is your pet hate when it comes to your own or other’s homes?
Too much clutter
Favourite front door colour
Carpet or floorboards?
Floorboards downstairs and carpet upstairs
Kitchen table or formal dining?
High gloss or rustic?
Wallpaper or Brick walls?
If you enjoyed being at home with Charlie, you might like to take a look inside other popular home styling accounts on instagram and find out more about the people behind them. You can see more of these "at home with" articles here
You can view Charlie's beautiful instagram account at https://www.instagram.com/champagne_and_wellies/