Rococo-styled Victorian villa renovated with vintage finds — with a black bathroom!

The front of the Victorian house which has been renovated shows the home has stone structured walls
This Victorian villa has been renovated in French Rococo style by a couple who did all the work by themselves (Image credit: BBC)

A Victorian villa in Greenock, Scotland, has been renovated using traditional designs by a couple who did the work all themselves.

Lynn and Robert Rideout's love for a Victorian conversion led them to embark on a three-year journey to infuse their distinctive taste into the period property. 

The home's interior is inspired by French Rococo, an architectural style dating back to the 1730s , which goes to show there is no limit which you can go when renovating a house.

Renovation inspired by early 1730s architecture

Lynn, who has a grown-up daughter and three grandchildren, was keen to restore the house to its original grandeur as much as possible.

Among the standout features is the bathroom, which includes a roll-top bath (bath with a curved edge), a black toilet, a fresco-styled wall mural, and a marble floor giving many brilliant home renovation ideas to take inspiration from.

Despite the challenges, Lynn and Robert managed to infuse a touch of French Rococo style into their granddaughter's bedroom, including a ceiling rose (a decorative element in a ceiling from which a chandelier hangs from).

Lynn's personal favourite is the front lounge, which she worked hard with her bay window ideas and inbuilt fireplace.

During their downtime, the couple enjoys relaxing in the bar room adjacent to the kitchen, savouring the space they have created.

Lynn believes the house reflects their over-the-top personalities and doesn’t shy away from bold interior designs, many of which are inspired by the French Rococo style, which dates back to the 1730s.

'Extravagant' style not to everyone's taste

Lynn, a hairdresser, said: "My husband restored many original features while adding our personal touch. Although the house already had several original elements, we aimed to make it truly our own. Our style may not appeal to everyone as it's quite extravagant."

Robert, a skilled joiner, undertook all the work himself, sourcing authentic items from reclaim yards and vintage shops. 

Lynn stated: "This has become our hobby. We previously renovated a place on Eldon Street and Madeira Lane. Although we hadn't planned on buying anything else, we instantly fell in love with (the property) when it became available."

The couple sitting at the bar in the house with their pug dog in the man's arms

Couple Robert and Lynn, and their pug, Queenie, did all the work themselves to renovate their new home, although the dog didn't do much (Image credit: BBC)

Famous ship named after the home

The detached villa was originally built in 1885 by its shipping line owner who named his vessel after it.

This vessel was then bought by famous explorer Captain James Sproat, who sailed all over the world using liners based in south-west Scotland.

This property is steeped in history, and its renovation caught the eye of BBC's Scotland's Home of the Year where this property was entered into in the West category in the hope they would make the Grand Final.

Joseph Mullane
News Editor

News Editor Joseph has previously written for Today’s Media and Chambers & Partners, focusing on news for conveyancers and industry professionals.  Joseph has just started his own self build project, building his own home on his family’s farm with planning permission for a timber frame, three-bedroom house in a one-acre field. The foundation work has already begun and he hopes to have the home built in the next year. Prior to this he renovated his family's home as well as doing several DIY projects, including installing a shower, building sheds, and livestock fences and shelters for the farm’s animals. Outside of homebuilding, Joseph loves rugby and has written for Rugby World, the world’s largest rugby magazine.