OMG! We have just been handed over the shop following the redecoration and restyling by Steph and Stu Briggs from La Di Da Interiors and oh what a surprise it was. Originally, due to budget constraints, we had intended to just give the place a lick of paint and tart it up, but we started to think this if we did that then people visiting who had been in the old shop would have seen it as just that and that was not what we wanted. So we discussed some ideas with Steph and dug out a few pictures of what we were broadly after / liked and let Steph pull them together in to a design for the shop.

After a week or so Steph had knocked up a design which we were taken expertly through. Trying to envisage exactly how something would look in reality from a sketch pad was not easy but having seen what Steph could do, we were confident in going with most of the ideas she proposed. After knocking a few more ideas around, changing some elements to try to get closer to budget and then adding a few more elements to once more blow the budget, we had a plan agreed.

The next day Stu and Steph were in the shop in bulldozer mode ripping out the old shelves and units to make way for the custom built ones. This is what it looked like before:

Once the units were all out the painting began and to be honest when I first saw it, before anything else had been added I had a moment of doubt; what had we done? Should we have just gone with the lick of paint? But then the units started to be built and the more a saw it, the more I knew we were doing the right thing.

Over the next two weeks the place slowly transformed before my eyes as the shop took shape. One area we had tried to leave as it was to cut costs, was the kitchen as this was not a customer facing element so could be hidden for the main part, but as the areas around it shone, the kitchen quickly stuck out like an ugly duckling desperate for the Briggs magic to be applied. Digging deep in to our pockets yet again we bit the bullet and agreed to let Steph and the team loose.  Once more it was absolutely the right decision as the carbuncle that was, was obliterated and expunged from memory and the swan emerged from the carnage.

Poor old Jenni, whom had been banned from peeking, was by now clawing at the walls to see what had been done and keeping her away grew harder and harder. I nipped in the night before we were due to get the shop handed over and whilst it looked fab it clearly was not complete, so when we turned up to get the keys back the next day we were either both in for a wonderful surprise or just a pleasant one.

The first element that changed and the element that started to get anticipation rising was the outside. The windows were painted and the sign was erected:

Already there was an air of quality and style to brighten up the high Street and it was soon attracting people who were popping in to find out what was going and to admire the colour and transformation. So with our expectations high and excitement tightly contained Jenni, our son William and I headed over to the shop to see the final transformation……..

Walking through the doors we were simply blown away. For me the transformation from the night before to the fully dressed presentation was amazing, but for Jenni, who had not seen any of the changes, the transformation was earth shattering and well exceeded our expectations. It delivered the style, panache and elegance that we had hoped for in the spade load. The details that Jenni and I had not really thought about just leapt out at us at every turn. Steph’s eye for detail and her delicate touches just brought the place alive. Both Jenni and I are over the moon with the transformation that the shop has undergone.

 

So as the headline stated, let the stocking begin.

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