Summer Project

I’m super pleased with my summer project this year, it’s made a massive impact to the house. For a while I’ve wanted to update and clean up the exterior of our house. As it’s Victorian I’d always planned to remove the exterior tiles and re-instate the trading all tiles. So recently my mum and I went to a reclamation yard to see what they had. There were some gorgeous ones but they were expensive and not it the style I liked. Instead I brought some exterior paint for the door (Dulux, Weather Shield in Gallant Grey) and it made a huge difference and suited the tiles really well. I finally grouted the tiles and freshened up the masonry paint. I’m so pleased with it. 

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An Absolute Disaster Darling!

As Craig Revel Horwood often say…an absolute disaster darling! I don’t know why I bothered. Ever since we moved into our new house, lover of all things antique I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw hidden beneath some concrete were ORIGINAL VICTORIAN FIREPLACE TILES!!

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So what did I stupidly decide to do – I decided to start chipping away at them on none other than Christmas Eve!! Naive little me thought I would quickly chip away the concrete to be left with a beautiful tiles which I could polish up to perfection. Did that happen – of course it didn’t!!

I was left with a crumbling mess which after much chipping away at, heaving and general high levels of frustration I was left with this..

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So after a near melt down I did my best at patching it up, ready for the big day. It looked absolutely terrible. There were big white holes in the tiles, tiles that had broken up into so many pieces that it was the most difficult jigsaw puzzle I has ever tried to complete. But it was done, only to have my fabulous boyfriend the following day whilst laying the table put his foot through it.

Surprisingly, I was incredibly patent with him, I think by that point I had lost the will to life with the tiles. For months a lovely cushion covered the hole and during the winter months a cold breeze crept in through the hole, only to wait until February when the concrete was back, covering the hole once more. Damn my eagerness to uncover lost treasures. I’ll definitely think about my timing a little more wisely next time.

Other than the photos I took at the beginning there is no more evidence of the mess I made so apologies about that but it’s probably a good thing. I think I’d die of embarrassment.

A Job Well Done..

After more researching, saving and organising, the living room has finally been completed. It initially started with some damp rising up one wall – it looked terrible and we knew we would quickly have to get it sorted.

During a couple of days off I used rated people to find a local tradesman, the guy did a quick and decent job (with us receiving a 20 year guarantee) until one of their tradesmen left with a piece of sound original architrave. We tried to get it back but unfortunately it had been skipped – when one DIY job is done, ten more come about.

We quickly painted it after plenty of consultation with which share of grey/charcoal to use where. We finally made a decision and we’ve really happy. Our dining table arrived and looks the part, I just need to decide on an accent colour to brighten and lift the grey.

My initial idea was turquoise but now I’m thinking about yellow however I know grey and yellow has been a ‘thing’. I don’t want it to look dated and over the top/obvious. Decisions, decisions.

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A Touch Of Glamour

It is a year ago today we moved into our beautiful house and looking back I am really pleased with the amount we have done. It did take a slow start with us just completing the conservatory in time for Spring, but Summer welcomed updates to three rooms, including the downstairs toilet.

Before the decorating took place it was a dirty looking white room, with disgusting melamine cupboards and a seaside shell toilet seat! Absolutely vile.

So a quick lick of white paint turned into about 3 and transforming the horrible cupboards resulted in trying out cupboard paint for the first time. After watching a few youtube clips, I thought it would be a simple job but actually following their instruction was an error as they instructed me to use a primer. However, half way through, my dear Mum, read the tin instructions and found it already had primer included. Doh! Thankfully, the cupboards have turned out really well and add a touch of glamour to the room, including the door handles I picked up in a lovely boutique shop in Newark.

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I re-used some old black picture frames, adding a few to the collection from Homesense and printed off some lovely pictures from our recent travels. It’s amazing what a bit of paint can do to a room. Lovely. ūüôā

A Place Of Tranquility

When we moved into our house last November our bedroom was looking a bit dated, the previous owner had even painted around an old bookcase, leaving a horrible dirty outline in the middle of the room. This meant that decorating it was on the top of our agenda.

So during the summer I started collating ideas for the decor, I was however held back by the decision to re-use our curtain which had featured in our living room at our previous address. I was finding the idea of tying together the whole scheme together. Luckily, my mother and sister were on hand to help out. The solution was…cornflower white. This gave the perfect backdrop for a relaxed and cosy bedroom and brought in the colours from the curtains perfectly.

After that it was just the difficult task of finding reasonably priced bedside tables, table lamps and accessories. I trawled the internet for bedsides and thankfully, in the end I found a local company that could make some to my specific specifications. Homesense, which is part of TK Maxx, as always did not disappointment with the table lamps. As after meeting a friend for coffee I took a little detour home on the off chance and found the perfect table lamps.

Overall I’m really pleased with how the scheme has come together, and the boy agrees too. Phewf! We just need a couple of pieces of art to hang on the walls to finish it off. But I love reading a book in there, a great place to relax.

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Sewing Rebel

Conservatory = done. 

Thanks to my wonderful mother, on Friday I finished the final stage of the conservatory decor and made my first ever cushion! 

I found the experience thoroughly enjoyable; watching her work, learning tips and surprisingly, lots of shortcuts! I never thought my mum was much of a rebel, but if Patrick, from the Great British Sewing Bee, saw her work he would be utterly appalled! 

So we measured out the fabric, used pins as our guide and started cutting! Gradually, as I cut along this imaginary line the pins got further and further away! Next we set up her vintage Singer machine, which I loved. So retro! Watching her expertly set up the machine reminded me of riding a bike, you never forget! 

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After a few failed attempts at attaching the zip in a straight line the sides were a breeze! When we came to putting the pillow in the cover we soon realised¬†the lady on the market stall was right after all and¬†you don’t need an 18 inch zip for an 18 inch cover! Using a bit of hand stitching and it looks like a thoroughly professional job. The pillows look great and I think it was tied the whole scheme nicely together.

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And now time to relax! Or more like start saving and planning for the next room.

Finishing Touches

We maybe there! Finally! What started off as a simple update to our conservatory, has turned out to cause no end of annoyance!

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Unfortunately the wicker chairs took a bit longer than I would have like,d due to the fact the fabric dye didn’t take very well. I was hoping for a strong lavender colour but as you can see it’s not taken very well. This is the result after¬†4 times! We will see how we find them but it may mean making our own covers from scratch. The frame was meant to be light grey, I find it more duck egg blue therefore I may end up changing my mind again and going back to white! ¬†At least they look better than the original. Bit more shabby than chic!

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Later today my mum is coming over to make the throw pillow covers with the fabric I found. I’m excited to try out my sewing skills again!

 

Up Cycle Success

Our first project at the house is the conservatory and so far we have painted, glossed and I am in the process of re-painting the wicker chairs.

Unfortunately, the dying process of the cushion covers for the chairs is not as going well. Well actually, terribly! They were quite badly sun bleached with areas still a light blue, which was the original colour. After three attempts trying to get¬†a beige shade, I now have a lovely beige on the majority of the cover but where the original shade is, it’s bright turquoise! Change of plan; the cushion covers are going to go blue. Hopefully!

However, today we have made some progress. A couple of weeks ago, while my boyfriend was rummaging around in the cellar he found an old crate. After giving it a clean he suggested getting a piece of glass made to fit the top to make a coffee table. What I initially thought would be a difficult task,¬†wasn’t. All it took was a quick search on the Internet and I found a local company who makes and cuts glass. I put in the required measurements and a week later it was done.

I’m really pleased with the end result.

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Oh How I’ve Missed You

As a surprise birthday present, my boyfriend brought me a subscription for Ideal Home magazine a couple of years ago. I used to love the day when the latest copy would arrive on my doorstep restricting my access into the house. After a year, I decided to stop the subscription as our previous houses’ decor was complete.

Not long ago, however we moved house. Until now, I have enjoyed spending time in the house without thinking about decorating but my lovely family are now starting to question my laziness! With an indecisive and overwhelmed mind I have struggled to know where to start. So Ideal Home is back! I’ve started my subscription again, with the ¬†first installment arriving over the weekend.

The magazine is always filled to the max with a range of fresh ideas, and sitting down to read it, with a cuppa this evening really helped me relax after a busy day at work. Hopefully, all these beautiful interiors will impressive my friends and family when I implement them throughout the house over the course of the year. Here are a few of my favorite:

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It’s Arrived!

Finally I’ve made a decision! After trailing the internet and local fabric shops, which resulted in finding a lot of uninspiring fabrics, I’m absolutely chuffed with what arrived this evening!

Recently I acquired two weaker chairs which are destined for our conservatory. The fabric is very faded but still of high quality, so the plan is to dye these and use new material to make some cushions.

Fingers crossed the dying process works but at ¬£5.99 a packet it’s worth a try. This decision was made mainly due to the fact the only fabric I liked was ¬£37.99! Luckily after a quick check on the internet I found it for ¬£25. Understandably, this is ridiculous, but fingers crossed it will be the only expense for the whole room (except paint) and I think it will tie the whole room together.

I Just need to find some free time where I can borrow my mum’s sewing machine and have a go at putting into practise all that I learnt on a recent sewing day. Can’t wait to get started! Here is the beautiful fabric; it’s a Blendworth fabric.

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