Decorating with unexpected objects

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Decorating with unexpected objects can be a brilliant talking piece as well as show BIG personality in a small space.  I found this little ledge in a cafe close to me over the weekend with my family.  The singer sewing machine brought up fantastic memories of a similar one my Nan used to sew with.  Over the course of a very yummy brunch, we talked about birds, native flowers (my Nan was also a florist), sewing, and of course new decorating ideas for the home – all while surrounded by beautiful objects that provided a quirky and quite familiar environment.

Up-cycling can as simple as an old family object (here a sewing machine and old jars) or using something from nature (branches hung on a plain wall with a bird as a feature).  The story of where the object was found or how it was used can be just as special as the piece itself.

Note the textured walls which provide a brilliantly simple and effective backdrop for the hero of the story, which is the display.

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Fixing it up – medicine cupboard

Gen Y does DIY!!!  This is a really simple fix it job that I did in a few hours over my weekend…

I found this old pine cupboard, which was actually a really good size for a very little bathroom. Then I found a cool vintage tin poster which I inserted into the middle like this:

ImageIt still wasn’t quite right for my place, so I embarked on my very first (mini) DIY project:

  • Get a Screwdriver – Unfortunately not the cocktail variety, these little things come in very handy for taking doors off cupboards.  Pick one up from your Dad, brother, mate, partner, or a local hardware shop!
  • Parts and pieces – Now that everything is in parts and pieces, sand them back (pretty roughly).  It doesn’t need to be perfect, just a bit roughed up so the paint will stick (and look smooth).
  • Undercoating – I love painting, especially things this small as you see a result so quickly.  The undercoat needs to be painted with the grain which means the way the wood would stand if it were still a tree.  Don’t make it too thick as it can get uneven, but don’t worry, you can always sand them back once the paint is dry.
  • Topcoats  – I let my undercoat dry overnight, however with topcoats you don’t need to get bored watching paint dry!  I did three, and with only an hour needed between coats of paint (check with your local handyman how long to leave yours), I knocked this over in a day.  Antique white was the right colour for me, but these days there are more paints than imaginable that have all sorts of textures and effects.  So it’s very easy to give BIG personality to reflect your style.
  • Putting the pieces together – it’s a bit like a puzzle but much easier!  Use that screwdriver again to put back in the screws, find a new handle that you like (I went with a simple black one), and there you have it, a new storage cupboard for your little space!

I’ll be completing my weekend DIY in tomorrow’s post on putting it up!

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