Well, I thought I would just write a blog on the decision we made on #CasperlynCastle. A mini FAQ session for it’s 1st year Anniversary. Also a small recap on the things that happened from 18-Sep-2016 to 18-Sep-2017!
Happy 1st Birthday my dearest Casperlyn Castle, you have been great to us and I know you will be even better!
I know my previous blogpost is super duper long so I will try to make this blog post a more “concise” / “summarised” one. Just to let you know, the previous one is call “JOURNEY” so it’s to document down all the bits and pieces of my Renovation Journey. Whereas this will be a FAQ style.
I will be answering questions I received from my Family, Friends who came to my housewarming and also questions from my beloved Fans of Ger’z World Facebook page and also burning questions my ‘frenemy’ gave me when we were still ‘Frenemy’, now we are just strangers I am still friends with 2 but yeah, not as close as before but I have moved on and I hope they do too. If you don’t get what I am saying, don’t bother but if you are really curious go read the lengthy blog post! HAHAHAHAHA!
URL for the super lengthy blogpost! http://gerzworld.com/casperlyncastle-renovation-journey-our-first-hdb-bto-home-feat-senz-of-white-singapore-interior-designer-paul-lawrence-tan/
Some questions might be funny but it really have been asked. I swear this is 100% true and asked and not made-up by me. I also swear I will be 100% truthful to answer all of them with Casper to the best of our abilities.
Question 1: Why choose 3-room flat?
Answer: When we applied this flat in late 2012, early 2013, we discussed about this. Usually most people will opt for a 4-room (3 Bedrooms) flat and instead we opted for a 3-room (2 Bedrooms) reason being is that, chance is higher to get a flat if we picked 3-room. We have many friends who has chose 4-room and most of them fail to get a flat because ‘4-room flats’ got over-subscribed. Hence we really wanna get a flat so we opt for 3-room because even we are having a child in the future, it will just be One kid only. We are going for One-Child Policy or maybe No-Child Policy. But we have been pushing this topic further and further and I guess we will bring this up again when I am 28 years old. Right now I am just turning 25 years old, I guess I am not ready although my friends say “I am sure you will be a good mom.”
But you know, “No Mom will ever think they are good enough.” I guess you will never be ready for everything but I still think 28 years old will be a better age for me to handle a kid. So right now, I will continue to be the ‘kid’ in the family.
Most importantly, 3-room (2 Bedrooms) implies cleaning will be easier! Lesser area of cleaning to do!!!
Question 2: Why choose this location?
Answer: It’s nearer to my mum, I am always in this area, my Primary School, my Secondary School. I have always been in this area long enough to go anywhere. Ok fine. Real reason, this area is relatively cheaper than any other area! But of course, our resale value will not be as high as compared to others but selling it after 5years have never came across as an option to us.
I definitely wanna live in my Casperlyn Castle till Old age that’s why we are more willing to spend on Renovation, furniture and also spend more time to clean and maintain the house. It’s really different on how you treat the house if you wanna stay in it ‘forever’ Vesus ‘I am staying for 5years only’.
When I was younger, we shifted house every few years and we have no sense of belonging. We dare not decorate or nail any family photo on the wall just because we are afraid we are moving again and there will be too many things to tear down and too many holes to cover in the future. But Casper gave me the assurance that we are not moving so I really took care of the house, the tiles, the walls, every corner I spent so much effort to clean it. I feel quite blissful doing this knowing that I have a roof over my head till the day I die. Or at least when I am alive, I have a home which I called my own.
In Singapore context, the government flat is being leased to you for only 99years. So I can live in this flat till I am 124years old! In average female dies at 80 years old? So yes, I still have a house!
Question 3: Why you choose to engage an Interior Designer (ID) instead of a contractor?
Answer: This is a really tricky question. As we know Casper is really a good planner, he have super tight budget. So technically we can just engage a contractor and get Casper and myself to do our own designing since I took up Interior Designing (short-course) before.
Difference between ID & Contractor: Interior Designer Cost More because they Design your space and Maximise your space. Contractor Cost Lesser but they will just do what you wanna do.
But what if my Interior Designer cost a little bit more than a Contractor but provides all the services of Designing and I don’t have to go through all the hassle of renovation? I need not oversee / supervise or follow up daily because he (ID）will do the job for me. For example, I don’t have to make sure my Gas pipe have been installed correctly, and then someone is there to make sure the Wallpapers are installed nicely, and lastly someone to advice me the best for my home.
So we started looking for 4-5 Interior Designers and we spend time talking to them and eventually we chose Senz of White because of their Designer, Paul Lawrence Tan.
Question 4: Why you engage Senz of White when you know they are not the “cheapest”?
Answer: They are definitely not the cheapest among all that we met. The 2nd Cheapest I guess the rest were crazily expensive based on the stuff we wanna do but eventually we picked Senz of White instead of the Cheapest is because we have confident in Paul. We clicked with him and he totally understand what we needed and the style we are going for. He is responsible, trustworthy and always there for us whenever we are in Kuala Lumpur buying our lighting stuffs and all. So really thankful to him going the extra mile.
Not all ID goes all the way like Paul because he is really experienced so we need to open our eyes big big to pick the right ID! Because we must make sure we are spending every cent wisely so yeah, RESEARCH RESEARCH and RESEARCH! When you do your research, you will realise you can save not only hundreds but thousands of DOLLARS! 钱要花在刀口上 Make good use of the money spend and make sure you know where they go and not just pay BLINDLY!!!
Question 5: Why did you do a settee along with the TV console and not along the window (bay window) or just do them as storage dining chairs?
Answer: Initially my plans are really to have the settee / bay window beside the window so I can enjoy the morning sun and sit at a corner to read my books. However it will eat into my living room space and I won’t have place to put even a 2-seater Sofa!!!
My next plan is to place the settee beside my dining table and use it as a dining chair with storage and Paul asked me why not make it LONGER and make it into a TV Console too!!! This really intrigued me a lot and he really saved me money and saved lots of space and created a big area for storage.
Question 6: Why do you do a suspended Shoe Cabinet and Kitchen Cabinet? Will they be able to take the weight?
Answer: Reason for doing that was really for Aesthetic. So you see, I am at the highest floor, I have high ceiling therefore I was given the option to do suspended carpentry. If I were to do a Full Height carpentry I would have to top up additional sum of money for the full height because the price quoted was for the normal 2.6m ceiling height and not for a 2.9m ceiling height like mine.
I was not keen to top up as it will definitely burst my budget so I opt for my 2 wardrobe to be full height (more practical) as we can have more storage space and kitchen & shoe cabinet to be suspended.
But to be honest, every drawer regardless is suspended or not will not be able to take the weight if you put too heavy stuff. So you need to spread the weight out evenly and not put every heavy pots together. That is how you make your kitchen cabinet last. As for the shoe cabinets, there should be no issue because how heavy can our shoes be? But pots in kitchen is very HEAVY!!! It’s true suspended will have to be more worried as to not “overload” the cabinet as it does not have the support compare to non-suspended ones.
For me I won’t regret because I have a Tall Unit which is not suspended hence all my heavy pots goes over there and my kitchen still looks super pretty!! Hahahahaha!
Question 7: Why did you choose pink and white for kitchen? Wont they be dirtied easily?
Answer: First and foremost, I did not even thought of having a pink kitchen. Initially I did not even wanna renovate the kitchen as my budget was so tight! But then Paul convinced me.
He showed us the price difference aint that much and if you do the kitchen 2-3years later it will be more troublesome and might even cost more.
Why pink? So basically he saw my ‘light pink’ My Melody handphone cover and he showed us that he have a Pink Quartz and he proposed a Pink and White Theme to us because I thought I will not be cooking or I will only do light cooking.
Actually I don’t regret having a light colour kitchen because during cleaning, I can see where exactly is the dirt to scrub and wipe. If my table top or cabinet is black, I can’t even see where the ants are crawling towards.
Question 8: Why do you choose curtains instead of blinds?
Answer: Simple! Where do you most often see blinds? OFFICE!!! Yes!! I want a home feel and not office feel so I picked curtain. I also have bad experience with blinds as I once cut my finger across it when I was younger and I saw the video that a kid played with the blind and he strangled himself!!!
This is the exact same video I saw. So no way I am having blinds no matter what even Curtains are heavy and need to wash and Blinds are easier to clean and maintain.
Question 9: Why did you have a large mirror cabinet, won’t you have a hard time cleaning the fingerprints?
Answer: For my room, I have a Full Length Mirror Cabinet. The main reason is for Dancing with my sister and for working out. Then also to make my little room looks bigger!
It’s true it gets a lot of fingerprint and we gotta spend quite some time cleaning it but I think the main issue of a Mirror Cabinet is that it’s very heavy so you gotta be gentle to it to make it last otherwise it’s dangerous if it shatters. Hopefully this won’t happen because I really close it gently.
Question 10: Why don’t you put your grandma gown inside a glass cabinet so it will not collect so much dust compare to open area?
Answer: My initial plan was to put it in a Glass Cabinet and spotlight shines on it directly. But factoring the cost of it and what if 1 day I decided no longer showcasing the gown, the glass cabinet will go to waste. So Paul suggested to carter a open area for it and shines spotlight on it. It cut cost, secondly, my gown train is really long so I can flaunt the train and if 1 day I decided to remove the gown, I can simply do that and convert the place into something else maybe another makeup area who knows?
Question 11: Why did you use an used TV from your mother-in-law?
Answer: I am not sure why people totally over-reacted on this issue. Who says a new house have to have a new and BIG TV? I am not a TV person, I would rather have a big monitor so I can do my work in comfort. Just happened that my Mother-in-law (Boon Hee’s Mother) have a Brand New TV lying in her room and not even in use now, she told us to bring it over. To me, I think is environmental friendly, recycling is good and it’s BRAND NEW!! Just that yes, I admit it’s a little small but it’s FREE! What do you expect?
My Mother-in-law is so kind to give me her spare TV and save me some cost to buy a TV that I hardly use more than 10times in a year. Yes, we moved in for a year already and I never turned on the TV for more than 10times, even my guest come, we all watched Videos in my room! Hahahaha! Then if this TV can last me for another 3years, it means I have 3years time to save up for a new TV. But I might get a TV that is a perfect fit for our home, not too big not too small either but I know it’s gonna be suitable. Maybe it’s gonna be smart TV so I can watch Youtube from it! Hahahaha!
Question 12: Why did you buy a white marble dining table? Isn’t it heavy? Won’t it get dirtied easily?
Answer: The reason we got the table because it’s within our budget, design were nice and we really love it at first sight. But when it arrived, we saw the 2 uncles (movers) having a hard time carrying it then we realise, “It’s really heavy!!!” Being this heavy was really a bad choice because you know my house is always hosting parties and sometime we just need to move or shift the table away so we have more space but who knew the marble is so heavy and it’s mounted there… FOREVER & EVER!!
But I guess I could live with it because it’s pretty and marble has that cooling feel and it’s really lasting and the blinks blinks sparkly flower even my guest thought I painted it myself! Hahaha! I also think Marble is very easy to clean off food stain so basically White won’t get stained easily.
Question 13: Why does Casper has his own wardrobe and you have your own wardrobe? Can’t you both share one wardrobe?
Answer: This is a good question.. Actually the fact is that Boon Hee does not have his own wardrobe! Both wardrobe are all filled with my clothes!! Just nice the 2 wardrobe fits all my clothing that I have, otherwise I think soon I may start to put my clothes in the Kitchen Cabinet!! HAHAHAHHA!
Question 14: Why do you keep so many toys?
Answer: They are gifts from my friends since I was in Secondary School till Polytechnic. Some are from my childhood and stuff like that. I can’t bear to throw them away as they are in such good condition because I took great care of them! But maybe I might donate them to the Orphanage whenever I need space in my house. But right now I think my soft toys (Citizen of Gerger’s Princess Room) has obtained their rightful Citizenship with their Princess IC and so they will be the Permanent Resident of my Princess Room!
Question 15: Why is your bed purple in colour?
Answer: I always wanted to find a bed with the crystal / bling bling headboard. We have been looking for so long and usually those with this sparkly stud will cost 2k at least. I was quite lucky while shopping at Novena, we saw this bed going at $400 or $500 only!!! It also happens to be in my favourite colour, Purple & Pink. I really like it a lot and so does Boon Hee so we decided to get it.
Paul mentioned that the colour of the bed might be a little strong but we designed the room to match the bed with Pink Chandelier and a Wardrobe with Purple streak and lastly a Lavender wallpaper so I guess the bed looks like a perfect fit.
I don’t regret getting something I love for my room and going to sleep with it just makes me so happy! I guess this bed is considered one of my BEST BUY!!
Question 16: Why your bed sheet so childish?
Answer: Well….. Define Childish? I don’t think it’s Childish. It just show my love for Disney and it’s bed sheet. It’s just a very pretty Disney bed sheet and you think I am childish? If being childish, I can pay lesser or get discount for this bed sheet… OK! I am Childish then! Hahahaha!
Trust me, I have more than 3 set of Disney’s Bed sheet! One more will be arriving next Chinese New Year!!! That new bed sheet is Disney too and Boon Hee picked it!
Question 17: Why did you not change your flooring to Vinyl?
Answer: Why should I change it to Vinyl? I don’t get it. I paid for my floor tiles from the HDB (govt) and they are new, pretty and usable. Why should I change them and pay additional monies for it?
Ok fine, I know they are in trend and you won’t want walk on cold floors which is bad for your health and stuff but I guess I can wear my Disney Hotel Bedroom Slippers or Rilakkuma Bedroom Slippers which is a gift from my friend Jacky! Definitely cheaper than overlaying with Vinyl.
I will do Vinyl on a few condition, if you paid for it or there is a Vinyl supplier who wants to sponsor me. Hahahaha! Yes, money is the issue, I don’t wanna spend unnecessarily. If my tiles could still be used, why replace them? Right???
Question 18: Why don’t you install window grilles?
Answer: Erm…. Why should I install window grilles? I have no kids, the grilles don’t look aesthetic and I feel like I am in a cage with it! My friend’s kids have visited my “grilles-less” house and they have not attempt to jump out of the window because my friend’s kids are well-taught and know not to climb around and do dangerous stuff.
So if I have a kid in future, I am gonna send them to training with my friends so they will know not to jump out of the window!
If you say grilles is a must (compulsory), then maybe I will choose those Invisible ones but they are so expensive. I do not need them now but if they are sponsored or YOU (the person whom ask me this question) pay for it then “OK LOR!!!” Let’s do this!!!
Question 19: Why do you have a bathtub? It’s a waste of space and money!
Answer: I love soaking in water, I usually bath for 30mins or more. I just enjoy soaking in tubs since I was little. It’s just for me to relax, chill and rest. It’s cheaper than having water running down my face for 30mins. Bathtub doesn’t use a lot of water compare it with 30mins of water running down the drain.
If you wanna compare to a person who takes 5mins bath, of course you think I am wasting water. But actually I think I am saving water because you compare Apple with Apple and not Apple with Orange!
Before I applied for this flat, I already told Boon Hee I wanna have a bathtub in my dream home and he say he definitely will do it if the Bathroom layout was suitable. When we saw the floorplan, my Mum shouted “Ger, your dream can come true!” Because a bathtub can totally fit in it perfectly!
Question 20: Why did you not do up your common toilet?
Answer: Actually the common toilet is already done up by the government. We can do additional stuff to it like adding “kerb” to prevent water from splashing out or adding shower screen etc. But I find it uncessary because I will be using bathtub most of the time.
The common toilet is mainly for my guest and my guest won’t sleepover hence they most probably won’t be having a bath here. So ya, I don’t see a need now and having a kerb installed or even shower screen installed as it is not wheelchair friendly! Which defeats the purpose of why HDB used gentle slope. And who knows if one day I am wheelchair-bound and Boon Hee will again have to spend money to change the toilet layout for me.
So ya, I will leave it as it is because that’s the good intention for accessibility!
I hope these 20 questions are comprehensive and able to satisfy all your curiousity about us, “The Weird Couple”.
Feel free to email me or Facebook Message me more questions if you have.
Photos in the blog post taken by Mr David Loh from Cromly.
Check out Cromly article here.
Our house have been featured by AsiaOne News too. Read on here.
Thank you Cromly & AsiaOne for the featured. We are truly honoured to have our humble home appearing on your site. Lastly to my Readers and Friends, Thanks for reading!
Special thanks to Jerni & David from Cromly, my Interior Designer Paul from Senz of White and my husband, Boon Hee for this amazing home sweet home.
Most important I wanna thank our Heavenly Father for giving us a roof over our head, a very pretty and delightful house for me to work and play and we will continue to serve the Lord with all our heart and for the betterment of the community. Amen.