Tag: home design

Creating a Picture Display

I’ve been collecting a few different pictures together. Most of my pictures live on my phone, so I got together some old ones, along with a few prints that I’ve bought recently because I want to create a photo wall in my study. Initially, I’d wanted quite modern black frames, but photo frames are expensive when you need to get a lot.Β So, inspired by Kirstie Allsopp’s ‘Fill your home for Free’ programme, I headed to a local charity shop and got a few mismatched frames. They were Β£1 each and because they don’t match, it means I can add to them in the future.

Picture frames

It turns out that lots of people who donate to charity shops don’t clean their donations! So the first thing I had to do was clean and polish the frames. I’d taken the pictures I wanted to frame with me to the charity shop so I knew that they would fit, though some needed mounts to make the most of the pictures. I wanted to have a go at making my own, instead of searching for ones that fit and are the right colour. I grabbed my cutting mat, my craft knife, my watercolour book and my trusty old ruler that I’ve had since secondary school!

make your own mountI drew around the pictures that I needed mounts for to create a template then measured the space that I needed to cover. Using my craft knife, I cut along the lines. Like most things, my cutting wasn’t perfectly straight, but straight enough to sit inside the frame. I used watercolour paper because it’s thicker than paper, but it has a nicer texture than card.

Mounted picture

I like how the picture looks with the mount, but I think I might change the colour or add some washi tape to make it stand out a bit. All that’s left now is to figure out how to display them on the wall, what pattern to go for. I’ve got some embroidery hoops that I want to add to the mix as well, so I’m going to be searching Pinterest for a few ideas! If you’ve got any tips, let me know!

How to brighten up a dark hallway

We’ve done an awful lot of work on our house in the three years that we’ve been here. However, one area that remained the same was the hall. It was an uninteresting light peach. Gross! Not only that, one of the door frames (which is now door free) was pretty badly damaged and needed repair. Also, the front of our house is incredibly dark, while the back of the house gets all the light. So whatever we needed to do, it had to maximise the tiny amount of light that it got.

poppy hall
Forgive my shoddy camera work in this picture! I was trying to make sure Poppy was in focus!

I started off adding layers of wood filler to the damaged wood frame. I’m so annoyed that I didn’t take a before & after picture, because the change is quite dramatic. You’d never be able to tell where it was damaged now! For the colour scheme, all we wanted was something light. We’ve used light reflecting paint in other parts of the house, but we aren’t convinced it makes any difference. Plus, it’s more expensive than normal paint. So we went with a plain old white paint for the walls. We didn’t want the woodwork to be white, so went with a light grey. After the first coat of the light grey, it was obvious that it was too light & it just didn’t work. So I headed back to Homebase and got some of their own brand Dove Grey and it’s just the ticket. We also painted the back of the front door in a bid to make the hall feel lighter. It wasn’t painted before, so was a dark brown and seemed to make the hall feel even darker. It’s made a massive difference to how the hall feels.

painted door

Ideally, we’d like to replace the door with one that has a bigger window, but we’ve run out of money! So we’re stuck with this one for a while longer. As you can see in the picture, the walls are artexed. A previous owner really, really, really loved that look and most of the walls were covered in it. When we moved in we needed a damp course so got some of the walls replastered. But as funds are tight, replastering the hall and other parts where it remains are not a priority so we’re stuck with it!

Lighten a dark hallway

I still haven’t found the perfect lampshade for the hall, but I’ll keep looking. The important thing is that we’ve given it a fresh look, made it lighter and got rid of the hideous peach that was there before. We’ve put our stamp on every room in the house now, as much as we can anyway. Now we’re looking around at the rooms we did when we first moved in and thinking about how much we’d like to change them. We’re saving hard to rebuild our DIY funds so until then there’s not much we can do. Unless we win the lottery of course!

Hallway Lamp Shade Dilemma

I am notoriously bad at buying lamp shades. When we moved in to our house three years ago, we needed new ones in every room. I’m ashamed to admit we bought cheap paper ones. The reason was simple – we didn’t decorate every room straight away so didn’t want to spend the money on something fancy that might not fit the room when we decorated. Fair enough. But that doesn’t explain the nasty black rose shade for the upstairs landing. Awful, hideous monstrosity! We didn’t bother replacing the one in the hallway, not quite sure why. Think it was because after buying the black rose one we felt we couldn’t be trusted so left well enough alone!

Well, we’ve finally got around to painting over the peach walls and woodwork of the hallway. The walls are white & the woodwork is a light grey. We’ve kept it light, plain and simple because the hall doesn’t get much light & is very dark most of the time, so we wanted to help it out as much as possible. Now comes the awkward bit – buying a lamp shade. The redecorating pot is running low so nothing too expensive, but we want something cool, stylish, suits the old house but nothing chintzy! A quick Google made me realise there is only one place to look for awesome lampshades – Not on the High Street. And that’s where I lost the best part of a day! (Not kidding!) These are my favourites – all a bit different, would suit the colours used & a bit quirky.

Chevron lamp shade

Geometric Chevron Lamp shade

Herringbone Lamp shadeHerringbone Lamp shade

Woodland Lamp ShadeWoodland Lamp Shade

Little Houses Lamp Shade

Little Houses Lamp Shade

Mr Fox Lamp ShadeMr Fox Lamp Shade

Flock Sunrise Lamp Shade

Flock Sunrise Lampshade

It’s so tough! I want them all, but sadly don’t have the rooms (or the funds!). They’re all reasonably priced so now it’s just about choosing one that will suit the space. I was all set on choosing one of these when I stumbled across this:

Bird Brolly Lamp ShadeBird Brolly Lamp Shade Kit

I didn’t want to make my own. I didn’t want the fuss. But I love this print & think the colour will work, plus the kit comes with everything I’ll need, including the all important instructions. How cool would it be for people to walk into the hallway that I’ve repaired & decorated and see something that I’ve made?! It’ll be fine as long as I don’t mess it up!

I really don’t know which one to choose! They’re all great in their own unique way. One thing is certain – we won’t be having a black rose situation again!

Tuesday Treat

Winters Moon

This week, my Tuesday Treat is focusing on home furnishings. I am in the process of giving parts of the house an overhaul – painting the hallway, two new windows, working in the garden, giving the lounge a rejig & declutter. We desperately need new lamps & lampshades, as well as a few new armchairs. Which is why I love Winter’s Moon. They offer a really ecletic range of home furnishings that suit anyone trying to fill their home with something a bit different. The chair below is one of my favourite pieces that they have. I love the brightness of the yellow against the grey of the background. And I know it would look great in our newly rearranged living room!

Winters MoonSadly, because of the cost of doing these ‘little’ jobs around the house, we can’t currently afford any new furniture, unless we get a lottery win! But I think it’s good to build up ideas of what style and colours work – at least that’s what I tell my OH when I spend hours looking at online shops & Pinterest!

What are your favourite shops for home furnishing? Any favourite designers that you can recommend?