Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Style from Sainsbury's!

I don't know about anyone else, but in my own home I tend to have various jobs on the go at once. Each one will get finished but it may take a little more time. I have bursts of enthusiasm and unfortunately my favourite tasks are the ones where I can see immediate or quick results!

My daughter's bedroom is a case in point. I blogged a while back about her transition from pink to blue. I still haven't completely nailed this job. For her birthday (9) we treated her to some Cath Kidston bedding, as pictured. It's duck egg, which wasn't the original plan as it is quite a tricky colour to match, but she loves it and I got it in the sale so double bonus! It is 'grown up' whilst still 'girly pretty' and it goes perfectly with her One Direction poster! (her words, not mine...though I can see what she means.)

The pink curtains in the background will go eventually. We then decided that as she reads a lot and, in theory, will be doing increasing amounts of homework (!!) that she needed some task lighting.

We established that she quite liked the whole anglepoise concept (slightly cajoled by myself!). I like the mix of a little bit of a modern edge against the pretty, country style. We very quickly established that, no, she could not have the original Anglepoise!  Design classics, yes....but way off budget! There was a white John Lewis version but it was quite small and a bit 'wimpy' looking! I also liked an in between version in chrome, but it was quite large and at £60, though not horrendously expensive, it was too expensive for our requirments.

Unable to make a decision we decided to search on and think about it for a while.

I popped into Sainsbury's today to buy some beetroot (I can't live without beetroot!) and stumbled upon this little beauty in the home section just as I was leaving with a basket full of stuff I didn't go in for! It is exactly what we were looking for. The right size....not too large but not skimpy looking. It cost £26 which compared very favourably to others I had considered. The wimpy version in JL was £25 and this one is much much nicer.

This purchase softened the blow of not being able to get my hands on a black faux fur gilet from Primark that I saw a stylist friend wearing! When it comes to clothing I always seem to get there too late! Completely sold out!

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

The finished article and the next project.

Finally finished the wardrobe. It's always the little faffy jobs at the end that take the time! We (the Royal 'we') lost the screws for the door hinges and so I had to raid the toolbox for some alternatives. 'We' sellotaped them together and put them somewhere safe! It's our age, you know. Happens all the time. Not one screw matches but the doors feel fairly secure! Don't think anyone will notice. I suspect they are hidden somewhere as my son is going through that phase of hiding things....money....car keys....wardrobe door keys....screws....

Next on my list of jobs is the shameful excuse for a shoe cupboard below. This is going to get a complete re-vamp. Not hard to see why! I've made a start by removing some of the boxes. They actually all fell on me when I opened the door to take this photo along with a section of the back wall!

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Can I make a silk purse out of a sow's ear?

There are one or two (actually, many more!) little jobs that I've been wanting to tackle for ages. More pressing jobs have meant me putting them to one side. This weekend, fate was on my side!

Wardrobe space has become a bit of an issue in our house. I have to confess this is largely down to the fact that having recently taken up a part time job I have had to go out and buy a whole new work wardrobe having been a stay at home Mum with a very flexible work life for quite a while. I dumped most of my working wardrobe a few years back, only keeping the odd bit to drag out when needed. More regular work has meant more clothes. (Yay!) Oh. My husband, who happens to be reading over my shoulder, insists that I should also mention the "unnecessary" (his opinion...certainly not mine!) amount of shoes and boots spilling out of one of the cupboards! 

I set about looking online for a wardrobe which would have to go in one of the children's rooms. No room in ours. Blimey. Aren't wardrobes expensive? I checked out all the usuals...Ikea, Marks, BHS, JL, LA etc. etc. None of them had what I wanted really. Not for what I wanted to spend, at least. I confess I haven't got a clue when it comes to Ebay so that was not an option. Step forward my brother and sister in law.

As you know, they are moving house in the next couple of weeks and had in their current house, a wardrobe made by my Granddad in the 30's. Not what one would describe as a 'looker' but I can see the potential (the wardrobe, not my Granddad. I'm sure he was terribly handsome!), especially as it was free! On the positives, it is made of solid oak and rather more sturdy than the flimsy efforts I had been looking at. It also fits perfectly into the space.

On taking delivery of the wardrobe (pictured below in its raw state.) my husband got all excited and enthused about its potential......as firewood. How opportune, that with that cold snap out of the way and the promise of milder weather on the horizon, that we should start thinking about re-stocking the wood pile!!! 

Oh no no no.  It is so easy to transform an uninspiring piece of furniture into something more pleasing to the eye with little effort or expense. My husband is not convinced. He questioned why I would put time and effort into papering inside something? It was pointless responding, but I said it anyway... because I know it has been done and when I open the wardrobe I get a glimpse, if only a tiny one, of some pretty paper. Fell on deaf ears. This then reminded me of a quote by the designer potter Jonathan Adler in an article last week, when he said when it comes to decorating, 'the wife is always right, unless the husband is gay'!

Inspired by pictures of wardrobes with papered interiors I have set about transforming this ugly duckling into a beautiful swan! I will post the finished article in the next day or so before more wallpaper shopping for my shoe cupboard!

I spent £22 on a roll of John Lewis wallpaper ('Cowslip') and have made a start on papering the inside of the wardrobe. Over the next few days I'm going to give it a lick of white eggshell on the outside and paper the inside of the doors, change the door handles and 'hey presto!' New wardrobe. See below, my start and some lovely images of papered wardrobes to inspire you. You could also paper in a recess or alcove...or a study/work area to differentiate between the rest of the room.

Cowslip paper £22 John Lewis

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Nothing to do with interiors today.

I wouldn't normally divert so much away from the subject as I am today so please let me off for that, but I just wanted to take advantage of my blog this one time to share a story of the greatest hope and courage against the odds with you.

The following is an update from a lovely young lady, wife and mum with young children at the same school as my son. Hayley continues to face such a tough battle with secondary cancer with such positivity and courage. Reading her updates fills me with so many different emotions...but above all she amazes me with how well she keeps it together. I am in no doubt that she has the most dark dark moments, moments and thoughts some of which she shares in her updates,  but whenever I see her on the school run she is bright, bubbly and smiling!

The extract below is from a status update on Hayley's fb page started at the beginning of her journey.  http://www.facebook.com/HayleysCancerFight

See also www.hayleyscancerfight.co.uk

Today's post is dedicated to Hayley. xx

✭✭✭ Update ✭✭✭

Firstly i would like to say Thank you.
Thank you to everyone who has likes this page and is following my journey of Secondary Breast Cancer.

I have had lots of new like on the page within the last couple of months so i just wanted to give everyone a little update of what happened.

On the 3rd July 2010, i was happily married with a lovely wedding business, i had a new baby girl ag...ed 18 weeks, 2 boys aged 4 and 5 and my eldest daughter aged 10. Life was good. My husband had his dream job as 1st team fitness coach at Birmingham City FC.
Then on the 4th July 2010 i was the Diagnosed with Secondary Breast Cancer. I went onto learn that when the breast cancer cells had travelled to another part of the body (in my case my liver) the cancer could only be treated and not cured.
I now needed to put up a fight and learn to live with it.
2 ladies took over my business, Andrew had time off work to look after me and the children, and i started treatment.
A year later Andrew was made redundant, i had no business and cancer that couldn't be cured.
How my life had changed...

In November the scans showed that the breast cancer had spread to my Lungs.
I am now into my 19th Month since being diagnosed.
The scan last week showed slow progression of the cancer spreading.
I have undergone 2 full cycles of Chemotherapy and half a cycle of chemotherapy which i didn't respond too.
I now need a new treatment plan which i will get on Wednesday.

My husband Andrew and my brother Mat is going to run the 26 Miles London Marathon for ME in April.
We know that's not going to be easy.
They got a place through Macmillan and as most are aware they need to raise £2000 each.
If we are lucky enough to raise over this amount it can go into the 'Hayley's Cancer Fight Fund'

Everyone wants to help, but if i am honest there is not a lot people can do, that is why we are now fundraising so everyone can help!!

I have dreams to achieve now in my short life.

Creating amazing Happy memories for my 4 Beautiful Children who i adore.

Just one of which is to take them to Disney in Florida.

Yes, last week the news was again devastating, but this is now my life and it is rarely going to be good news.
I have to get used to it and enjoy life while i am here.

Everyone's support is amazing. You help me and my family get through the darkest of days.

Thank you to everyone who has donated so far. It is very overwhelming receiving donations from some people we have never even met.

Even through what is happening i am determined to get my smile back and have some happy times again.

If i have learnt anything, one is to 'Live Everyday'

All my love and thanks,

Hayley and Family x x x

(If you can Share this page to all you know and spread the word, every little helps!)

Sunday, 10 February 2013

I'm a Crafty Blogger!

I was lucky enough recently to have been approached by Francesca Cookney of the Sunday Mirror and asked if I would be interested in featuring in an article she was doing on women that blog, specifically on interiors/home/craft that sort of thing. Thanks to my wonderful friend Beth at www.styleguile.com for encouraging me!

I decided it would be a fun thing to do....though it meant a good few hours tidying the house ready for the photographer as well as dragging a brush through my mane of hair!

Please note, there is a certain atmosphere in our household this morning....firstly, my daughter was upset that she is actually now 9 yet the article refers to her as being 8! In my defense, she was 8  when I did the interview.

A far more heinous crime, according to my husband at least, is that I got his age wrong! I'm not sure why he is complaining. I did him a favour!

Click below and follow the link to read.


I've got a few projects on the go at the moment, not least of all the sister in law and her house move! I'm off out this afternoon armed with magazines to talk blinds and/or curtains!

Over the next week or so I have also got to transform a built in cupboard in our bedroom.