Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Terranium Make Over

I recently found this little 'plant greenhouse' in TK Maxx, it was cute as it was but a little young for me perhaps! The shape is lovely and I knew I would be able to find a use for it.

so I took out my trusty Annie Sloan chalk paint and got to work

I slathered every inch in the beautiful paint (after removing the Perspex windows)

The windows got a dose of leftover gold spray paint

and voila! My beautiful new make-up house was born!

Weekly Wants - The White Queen

I don't know about you but I have been hooked by The White Queen currently showing on Sunday nights on BBC One.
It's far from the best drama, or even programme on TV on the moment, but it's pure escapism and a real visual feast. I can't get enough of the brocade fabrics, dark rich velvets, dark panelled rooms and giant pinky rings. So here's my White Queen inspired Weekly Wants.
M Missoni Brocade Dress - £599 available at Harrods
Montegrappa - Gran Teatro La Fenice Fountain Pen - £3,375 also at Harrods
Solid Gold Royal Crown Derby Candlestick - £1,575 available at Amazon
Faux Coyote Rug - £59.11, available at Fur Accents
Excuse me whilst I stalk Max Irons...

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Pink and Gold Chevron Sewing Box/Table Tutorial

Chevrons are all I can think about at the moment. I dream of Pink and Gold colour combinations and Annie Sloan is fast taking over Martha as my new life crush. There can only be one solution.

To give your unloved furniture a Chevron make-over, you will need;

- Base colour paint - I used Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and highly recommend you do too.
- Acrylic colour of your choice for the chevrons, nothing fancy just normal acrylic craft paint
- Paintbrush
- Bin liner (to cover your painting surface)
- Clear spray paint sealer - only required if your surface is going to be heavily used, as the acrylic may wear down.

This 1920's wooden sewing box belonged to my grandfathers mother, it has been passed down the generations and I've had it for a couple of years and I love it, but it looked totally out of place in my bedroom and to be honest, in a horrible way I started to resent it. I wanted to keep it because it's a beautiful piece of furniture and it's history with my family was so great but I really, really didn't like it!

After checking with my mum that she was okay with me tampering with it I decided to bring it into the modern age and make it loved again (I think my family members past and present would be okay with that)

If you haven't tried Annie Sloan paint, I honestly can't describe to you to how amazing it really is. It goes on ANYTHING (I mean anything) only needs one coat, dries super quick and I'm pretty sure 1 tin would cover the great wall of China. For this project I went with Antoinette which is a lovely dusky pink shade.

I didn't need to sand or do anything else to the wood, I literally just got stuck in!

I decided to leave the inside as it was originally, I love the contrast of the dark wood and the pale exterior.

I left this to dry overnight - although Annie Sloan paint is touch dry in less than an hour, this needs to be bone dry to decorate.

The next morning I taped a chevron pattern with normal parcel sellotape (masking tape, or even better frog tape would have worked better)

 (I had to make the colours in this photo much darker so you could see the tape!)

Once I had checked the tape was pressed flat with no air bubbles and creases I got to work with my gold paint

 I left this to dry for a minimum of two hours - otherwise the paint will lift off when you pull back the tape. Then...voila!

 It was a very nervous few seconds when the tape was coming off I can tell you!
I'm thrilled with how it turned out - and I'm sure it's past owners would be glad that it's being used and loved again.

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Washi Tape Holder - Tutorial

I don't know about you but storing my Washi tape for me has been something of a dilemma. Too beautiful to hide, too tricky to store and display nicely.

I recently spray painted a plain wooden kitchen roll holder with baby pink spray paint, it did the job nicely and looked okay

 I was quite happy with it until I received this awesome parcel of American Craft glitter Washi tape from the lovely Lynne at Paper Mash (check her out on Instagram as well for her amazing #WashiWednesday competitions) these bloody gorgeous new additions to my Washi collection presented me with a new problem - the bloody holes in the spools are too narrow for my Washi tree!

I searched high and low (on the internet for the 10 minutes my attention span would allow) and came to the conclusion I would have to make my own - it can't be that hard can it?
Surprisingly enough, it really wasn't!
To make your own Washi Tape holder you will need.
  • Wooden Dowel - I got mine from B&Q, they sell various diameters and various lengths. I chose one very narrow and one quite wide and they were less than £2 each with plenty to spare
  • 1 length of wood - again I picked up mine from B&Q, a plain pine half length plank which was less than £3
  • Tape measure
  • Small handsaw (or get the folks at the hardware shop to cut for you)
  • Pen/Pencil
  • Spray Paint of your choice (I went with Vaspar in Gold which was under £4)
  • Glue gun and glue sticks
  • Sandpaper
  • Patience!
I started by getting all my Washi tapes out and stacking them onto each dowel so I could work out what length I would need to hold all of them, plus spare room for new additions.
I marked this length on the dowel with a pen and then using a small hand saw, cut to the desired length. I marked out on the wood where I wanted the dowels to go, and drew around them ready for gluing
I should point out this stage went horribly wrong for me. I had drawn the dowels very close to each other, not actually allowing enough room for the tape to go around each one, I didn't measure the middle of the plank so they were all off kilter. Just generally very rubbish - learn from my mistakes!

Once I'd sorted in my head where I wanted them to got my trusty glue gun and secured each dowel in place with a blob of glue.

Next I marked out how long I wanted the plank to be, cut this to size as well and sanded all the edges so it would be nice and smooth when painted with no possible splinters!

Now for the fun painting bit, I took mine outside (NEVER spray paint inside, I have learnt this the hard way with a pastel pink laptop and a very angry dad)

I gave it (and some plants..oops) a good going over with my lovely gold spray paint.

Here's where I noticed another thing I had overlooked - the glue holding the dowel in place had left an ugly rim of blobiness that the paint only exaggerated. It was too late to do anything now without having to remove the dowel and start again, so I hoped and prayed that the Washi tape, once in place would cover these bits! If you're planning to make one - glue and sand, glue and sand, is my advice!

Thankfully! I was right and the tape totally covers any ugly glue blobs (thank the lord) and I can't tell you how thrilled I am with how it came out.

I think it looks AMAZING, the gold colour that you can still see the wood grain through, the Washi tapes all on show together, the fact I made it! Swoon. See for yourselves...

This took me about half an hour to get the pieces together and ready to be painted, an hour to paint and leave to dry and a few days to look at lustfully.. Enjoy!