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An artist who spent more than 30 years turning her rundown cottage into a life-size doll house says her colourful decoration has made the house - which should be worth upwards of quarter of a million pounds - un-sellable.
Mary Rose Young, 61, has been painting the beautiful country cottage in Lydney, Gloucs, by hand since 1987, when she bought the dilapidated house for just £30,000.
After 27 years in the house, she put it on the market in 2014, where estate agents said the property should have been expected to fetch at least £250,000.
But despite hoping to sell the property to open a boutique hotel nearby, estate agents could only persuade one person to view the house - leaving the family stuck there.
Despite this, Mary Rose refuses to paint over her life's work in a more neutral colour and says she still loves her house-cum-pottery workspace and gallery, which she lives in with husband, Phil Butcher, 62, a musician.
She said: "I made this house around my own life and I wasn't thinking about it being sellable.
"We're living like two children in a doll's house and in retrospect why would anybody else want to buy it? It's like a playhouse for adults.
"I just thought it might go to a mad collector of my work who might want to buy it, but no one was interested."
When only one person came to view it, Mary said the 'estate agents despaired'. But she refused to paint over her work.
She said: "I love my house and the house really works for me. I'm a colourful person and I even have pink hair. I like it more and more as I get older."
Seeing as she couldn't open the hotel of her dreams, she decided to double down and go even further, turning her courtyard into a painting area.
Back when she bought it, she painted the house white in the hope of lightening it up, but soon realised it made the house look more dull, so began drawing patterns inspired by her colourful pottery designs on the walls.
Mary Rose said: "I did one wall orange with red dots and it really stood out and took people's minds off the fact there's hardly any natural light.
"It became a really fun project for me on the side of my pottery business and I was so galvanised by it I ended up neglecting my pottery at times."
She said: "I have my workshop and gallery in the same house where I live so this house has been perfect during lockdown."
She added: "Lots of people are self-conscious and don't say much when they see the decoration, but the right reaction is to laugh and go 'oh wow'."
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