Sunday, 27 October 2013

The calm before the storm...

I'm afraid I've had little time to work on my doors. We spent much of yesterday clearing the garden of accumulated DIY crapola and taking it to the tip. I was very good and didn't bring anything home. There might have been a long lingering glance at a beaten up chest of drawers but I was very restrained. The reason for this clear up? A big storm is due this evening and we don't want to be responsible for one of our stray doors flying through someones window in the middle of the night. We are battening down the hatches, moving flower pots and garden furniture out of harms way.

This morning we set off at 6.20 to sell at the local boot sale. It was tipping it down when we left but dried up fast and we did very well. So well that Jason wants to do another next weekend. I'm happy to wait til spring!

I'll show you what I found a few weeks ago for £2 at the boot sale...

 This galvanised metal basket was £2. The top was nice metal. The bottom was coated in green plastic rather like the handles of an old shopping basket. I spotted potential but I must have spent two hours scraping off all the plastic with a knife! 

This little enamel number I bought separately from eBay to make it look like an old swimming pool locker. Erm, from a really big pool with one and a half thousand lockers. Hmm, I didn't think that through. Anyway, it adds a bit of industrial chic to the towel pile.

And without mentioning the 'C' word, (it's improper until after Hallowe'en) look at this years bauble harvest so far!

This is my favourite, it dangles on a spring...

It was very hard to photograph as it wouldn't stop bouncing!

This one is massive...

These two are unusual

I've never seen one like this before...'s indented on both sides...

...and this one is just beautiful...

We're going to be gearing up for our Hallowe'en party this week so I'll be back soon to show you the decorations.

Stay safe in the storm! 

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Cupboard update...

First of all, let me tell you what my husband thought of the lamp makeover when he came home on Sunday. He said the stripes and the emblem reminded him of a SPORTS LOGO!

Yes. He thinks the stripes are a bit NIKE. He wouldn't know a grain sack if I threw one over his head and throttled him with it.

My daughter is hurt that her initials are not included.

Everyone's a critic. Luckily I'm still happy with it despite the whingeing.

Okay, so onto the cupboard doors...

I took off all the posters. It looked better already.

The door was a nightmare to get off. The hinge screws had been painted over many times. It was one of those doors that once all the screws are taken out, will stand there quite nicely held in place by paint alone. All our doors seem to be like this.

I had a slight change of plan. The problem with sticking cladding all over what is essentially a hollow door,
 is that the hinges, which are face mounted, are screwed into nothing. So it's not going to be very strong.

I decided to pull off the face of the door to uncover the skeleton inside. This means I can add beefier horizontal pieces of timber inside the door where my long hinges will be placed and the whole thing won't fall apart.

This was very therapeutic!

So now the whole front panel was off but that panel actually sat in a slight recess. All around the edges of the door was a little lip...

It looks big here, it was actually only 2mm deep. It's the white part in the photo.

I needed to remove this so that the cladding laid flat on the inner framework of the door. As I don't have a plane I used my belt sander and it only took a matter of minutes to level it all up.

I left the back panel in place for now. If I took that off the door would probably lose its rigidity and bend out of shape. Those central bits of timber seem to be just glued to the hardboard panel and nothing else so if I took the back panel off, I think they'd all fall out.

Time to clad!

I'd already figured out that I needed to start in the middle and end up with two thinner boards at the sides of the doors... you don't want to start at one side without planning where your boards will end up. You might have a full board at one side and a piddling little strip at the other side which won't look right.

 In order to get the first board in the right place I had to mark the middle of the top and bottom of the door, and the middle of the back of the  board (not including the tongue) and having glued the door front and turned it all upside down, just made sure the lines met up.

Then I placed lots of heavy things on the door and left it overnight for the glue to dry. I couldn't flip it over to panel pin it as the board would have moved.

So, day two...

I panel pinned the first board and carried on with the cladding...

I glued where I could and panel pinned into the inside frame.

As you can see, I've left all the edges overhanging rather than pre cutting the boards to size. I'll cut them all level afterwards. This makes the job easier as I'm not having to line up the boards as I go and it should make the end result straighter.

One side done!
I don't know if I'm doing this right but it seems to be working so far. My dad has been consulted over the phone several times! Not that he's done this before either...

I'm really enjoying it and I've decided I want to be a carpenter when I grow up.

I have added incentive not to stuff this up. If this cupboard makeover works out, I might be allowed to build an entire walk in wardrobe in the master bedroom. Ha! I have no skills in carpentry whatsoever, but I do know what I want it to look like so I reckon I can wing the rest. And I do NOT want to get a man in to do it! I don't want some laminated chipboard jobby.

I'm off to invest in a jig saw later so I can continue...

In the meantime, there's a huge pile of ironing and a box set of Breaking Bad to keep me occupied. Back soon!

Monday, 21 October 2013

Alpenhimmel Shop discount for all readers...

The lady who runs the Etsy shop I mentioned in my last post has kindly offered my readers 20% off all orders placed between now and 31st October.

The code you'll need is PAINTEDSTYLE.

Here's a link to the Alpenhimmel shop.

So if you were tempted before by gorgeous copper dowry stencils...

or vintage laundry labels...

even vintage wallpapers by the yard...

Oh my!

...or any of the other lovely things in her shop, now is the time to buy!

I've just bought some vintage wallpaper as I get 20% off too! Surely I must now have enough for the patchwork vintage wallpaper wall!

Happy shopping!

 [ Is this a sponsored post? I had already published my previous post before Charity from the Alpenhimmel Etsy shop wrote to offer me and you readers 20% off. I will always tell you about the products I find, use and love. I loved the little stencil so much that I recieved it, used it and blogged about it all in one day! ]

Saturday, 19 October 2013

The completed lamp makeover...

I only had about an hour and a half to myself today whilst my daughter was at a party. As luck would have it, the lamp embellishing item I ordered from America arrived this morning so I thought rather than start on the cupboard doors I'd sort out the lamp.

This is a tiny copper stencil that would have originated in Europe. I bought it from this Etsy shop and it came so fast with a little card with a tiny woven laundry label in the same initials. Sweet touch. (I went for an intertwined J and E for my husband and I.) These are sometimes called Dowry Stencils.

Here's what the Alpenhimmel shop says about them...

''These lovely monogrammed copper stencils come from Germany and were used from around the mid 19th century to mid 20th century to mark a young girl’s dowry linens. Brides marked their kitchen towels, table linens, bed linens, and sometimes even their under garments with their initials. After stencilling, the initials were then embroidered with either white or red thread. A classic tradition that can be reinvented by you! Use these vintage stencils to mark your own linens or use them to add a unique finishing touch to your artwork, quilts, or other handcrafts.
Each stencil is 60 - 160 years old.''

(This is NOT a sponsored post. I just like this shop. You can also find these on eBay.)

Here's the before again...


If you remember I had a little trouble painting the basket part. You can read about that here.

Well, I cracked it. I just attacked the final coat of paint with a wire brush and it all looked fine.


So the shade got covered with linen and looked rather bland. I fancied a bit of a faux grain sack look.

I masked off some stripes with Frog tape.

Frog tape is well worth the extra cost if you ask me. If you've ever been desperately frustrated by pound shop masking tape that rips...not all masking tapes are created equal.

(This post is NOT sponsored by Frog tape either. But I like it.)

With a stencil brush and a tester pot of Wilkinsons paint I stippled between the tape with a dryish brush. Grain sacks have a worn look about them so you don't want to just paint between the lines...

I let the stripes dry, it didn't take long, and taped the little monogram stencil over the central stripe.

I stippled over this with a dark red, then joined up all the stencil lines with a tiny brush and a steady hand. Because I hate the look of stencils.

Wehey.The great thing about these copper stencils is that they are so thin, they bend. This made it super easy to fit the curve of the shade.

Yes, the monogram is pretty dinky. If I did this again I might source a larger stencil but most of them seem to be small and I wanted our initials which narrowed the search.

Most importantly I'm happy with the outcome! I thought I might have to give up on this makeover several times so I'm thrilled it turned out okay.

Happy weekend!

p.s. If you want to follow me on Pinterest you can do that here

If you'd like a 20% off code for the Alpenhimmel Etsy shop, head over to my newer post.


Thursday, 17 October 2013

The next project...

I've made a decision about the next project to tackle in the house. In my daughters bedroom is a very ugly but incredibly spacious cupboard.

Seeing as it's so ugly I have allowed the sticking of posters all over it.

Totally grim...
Mmm, nice catches. Not.

I think they used bits of skirting board to trim it. Nice touch.

Here I removed some ugly trim so I could put coving up.

This cupboard used to house a massive water tank but we ripped that out when we installed a combination boiler and when my dad came we built some shelves...

Do excuse the mess. The emptyish shelf is normally piled high with bedding but I pulled it all out as I was looking for some hinges.

What? You don't store hinges with your bedding?

Ooh look, some nice pipes stick out above the bottom of the cupboard.

I thought we might get some nice country cottage doors made for this cupboard. Like this...

Not orange though!!!

We didn't actually get a man in to quote for them though. (I'm sure that tailor made doors don't come cheap!) I decided to build them myself. Then, having thought it all through, I decided it would be even easier to clad the original doors with toungue and groove, get the right hinges and get the look of country cottage doors without them having to be structurally strong, entirely flat etc,etc. We can always replace them at a later date when we win the lottery.

If I stuff it up, all I have lost is about £30 on timber, panel pins, glue, and the hinges. Then we go and get some made.

Later today I'm adventuring out to Wickes, which is the furthest I've ever driven, to get some timber so I can start tinkering. Watch this space!

Also, did anyone catch Sarah Beenys ''Double your house for half the money'' this week? I love Sarah Beeny. She's a little scary as she tells people off but you know what? She is always right. So we have that in common.

The lovely Sarah Beeny

Anyhow, one of the families featured was a family of EIGHT living in a bog standard 3 bed semi and the transormation was quite incredible. The lady had the most interesting and fabulous taste, and little budget and sourced everything secondhand. So if you missed it, it's really worth catching it on 4 oD.

Well done to Curtise for (accidentally) spotting my husbands 'Blue Steel' phase in my last post. She wins something extraordinarily cool. When I get round to it.

The other one is ''The Smoulder''
 These were taken a very long time ago and he doesn't look like this now. I'm not allowed to give you an update. No fun...

And just time for a gratuitous Fat Freddy pic. Or two.

It's time for the boys annual trip to the vets for injections and weighing so that means it's our annual bollocking about their weight. Oh dear.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Success at last...

No, not the lamp...yet. It is looking better though. I've ordered something from America which hopefully will mean I can embellish it. Watch this space. I have spent a great many hours online looking for direction!

But what I have finished is this marble topped table.

I removed the odd wooden phallus from the cross brace. What's all that about?!

I sugar soaped all the wood and filled the hole left by dismembering the cross brace.

I didn't prime as I wanted to see if the paint would all peel off. Well, it did a little.

This was just emulsion tester pots from my beloved Wilkinsons paint range and Antique pine wax by Liberon.

Bad Bobby strikes again...

Sorry if the photos are a little fuzzy. I really need to learn how to use the camera.

It's been a girls only weekend as my husband is in Manchester.
My daughter and I had some great plans including baking...

My effort...

And my daughters...

Hers were far nicer than mine which failed to rise for some reason.
This morning she's unwell so that and the rain put paid to the boot sale.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend! Back soon with that lamp makeover come hell or high water.

Don't forget the competition! Bahaha!