Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Our beach hut

In my teens I was lucky enough to live within walking distance of a few beaches.
Gower has some really beautiful beaches and Langland was the closest to my house.
This was where everyone would hang out after school and on weekends.  
We have pretty good surf in this area and most boys would come here to surf and as girls we would come here to flirt with the surfies.
I met the lifeguard who was my first ever kiss here.

my kids playing on the beach with me sitting down on a camping chair enjoying the view

This year my sister and I are sharing a beach hut on this beach.  
We only have it for the months of April, June and August (someone else gets to rent it for the alternative months).

Every Sunday my husband cooks a roast dinner.
We love our Sunday dinners.
This Sunday we decided to spend the evening at our hut and took a small barbecue and a camping stove.
Instead of roast chicken and all the trimmings we had baked potatoes and sausages in bread rolls with fried onions.
It was lovely!
Sitting, wrapped up warm - the only people taking advantage of the huts and our kids playing ball on the sand.

Our hut is the one with the open doors behind the trees.
Just behind the huts are tennis courts and there used to be a restaurant behind those where I worked as a teenager.
It's funny, but as a teenager I never appreciated what a great place this was to grow up.
As an adult I now feel privileged to have grown up somewhere so beautiful.

And once again here is the view from the hut.

Just imagine how beautiful it would be if we ever had any sunshine!


All photos taken from my phone using Instagram

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Numbered drawers

I've had this little set of grey drawers for a few years.  I got them at TKMaxx for about £30 and thought they were really cute but have never really found a place for them.  Until recently they were on top of the cubby hole unit in my craft room, right in the corner with all my fabric and craft paints piled on top.  I've kept hold of it as my plan was to attach it to the top of a small desk or table and paint the whole thing white for Lily to use in her room but as I haven't found a desk yet a few days ago I decided, spur of the moment, to paint some numbers on it.  

I pulled it out from it's hiding place to take a quick photo of the before.

No big change but suddenly, with the addition of the numbers I quite like it so have put it to good use on my sewing table.  It'll be handy having numbered drawers as I can put them to good use especially as they are to hand on my table.

I treated myself to a £2 bunch of tulips to make my little room pretty.

That burlap lamp shade is a craft project gone wrong!  It's something I'll be addressing soon when I can think of an alternative.  The lamp was really cheap but came with a satiny shade which wasn't my cup of tea at all.  I liked the fact that the lamp was tall and thin so perfect for a work table and bought the map above with the intention of using it to recover the shade but it was slightly too small so I hot glued burlap to the shade but it looks awful so back to the drawing board!

A little close up!

Hope you're all having a lovely weekend.


Tuesday, 10 April 2012

My craft room has a little makeover

 I am so pleased that I have a clutter free craft room at last!
I really struggle with keeping a clear head in a messy room and it's been a real mess since we turned this room into a craft room a year ago.

This is now my painting and packing table and is where my French metal hanging rail and hamper were originally.  The hamper is now in Seth's room and the hanging rail is at my sister's house.

I know I've already shared this memo board but I really like it :)
I used to have letters spelling 'the nest' in my shop on the wall behind the counter but they were all the same font (like the s) but I decided I wanted mismatching letters here.  I did originally paint them various shades of white, grey, sludgey green and zinc but painted over them as they looked too messy with different fonts and different colours.  I'm happy with how they look now.

My sewing table directly opposite the painting table.  There is plenty of space on the carpet in between  the two tables for me to lay out my rolls of fabric to mark and cut.

This is with my back to the window.  We still need to put some trim around the cupboard door frame and get some doors made but there's no hurry for that.

I made this blackboard on the weekend from a broken frame I had from TKMaxx about 2 years ago.  It's been hanging around since then waiting for me to find a place for it.  I made the letter S a while back and the lovely flower picture was a gift from Kat at High Tide Low Style.

I love maps and got this one by Cavallini and Co in Spain last December.

My craft and fabric paints are now organised by colour in this caddy.

I love this metal box I've had for a while.  It's handy for large fabric off cuts which I don't want piling up with my main fabric stock. 

I pinned a gorgeous little tin like this one on Pinterest a while back and ended up buying the same tin.

My packing supplies are all in this basket with my thank you tags and string for the parcels close by.

I love having my fabric all organised on my new shelves.

This gorgeous wire oyster basket I picked up in France is holding some vintage French sheets I have left over from the pile I bought in France last year.  These are still waiting for me to launder them!!  I'm really not as lazy as I sound.  I have a few already cleaned waiting for me to make things out of.

I have two more of these baskets as well.  I bought them with the intention of selling them but the postage is going to be too high so they are just waiting for me to put them to good use unless I can find a cheaper shipping carrier.

There you have it!
My clean and organised little corner of the world.
I'm doing the Snoopy happy dance right now.
I doubt it will stay this tidy for long but it has been a few days now and so far so good!!

Any tips for better organising let me have them!


Monday, 9 April 2012

A new memo board for my craft room

About a month ago when my sister and I went looking for a desk for Lily's room (sadly with no luck but I'm still on the hunt) I found a hideous mirror but it had a great shape and I knew it would look good as a memo board for my craft room.  The craft room has had a makeover now and I just need to take a few photos and can share my new, tidy and organised space.  It's amazing how clearing away clutter focuses my mind too.  I really struggle working in chaos.

Here is the finished memo board above my new painting and packing table.  It's directly opposite my sewing table, which until now was my 'everything' table.  The tables are identical and used to be in my shop.  My sister had been looking after this one for me in case I needed it so I just got it back off her this week.  I love not having to move my sewing machine out of the way to paint fabric and most of my packing is usually done on the ironing board!

Back to the mirror frame.  It had a really weird, ugly paint finish - like a light paint wash over black.

I removed the mirror and sanded the frame back then applied a coat of Annie Sloane Chalk Paint in white.  Sanded and applied another coat and then rubbed the paint off in some areas before rubbing in some soft wax.  I cut a cork notice board to size and hot glued it in place.

It's great for showing off some of my favourite cards (the pine cone one is really old and is what my business used to be called when I just made Christmas decorations - I keep it for sentimental reasons).

Both my kids have always loved art and Lily left this little picture of me sewing on my desk for me one day.  It's been blue tacked to my wall for ages and now has pride of place on my memo board.

I love this zinc bird and have held it in place with an old pin tack, both of which came from Etsy.

I'll be back this week with some photos of my craft room.


Sunday, 8 April 2012

Treasure hunting (or geocaching as it's now called)

Today I heard about Geocaching for the first time.  

I'm probably the last person on the planet to hear of this but if I'm not, to quote their website "geocaching is a real world outdoor treasure hunting game.  Players try to find hidden containers called geocaches, using GPS enabled devices".  

My sister told me about it and then said there would probably be some hidden close to us - I've mentioned before that we live right next to a big forest.  I checked out their webiste, put in our postcode and found loads of buried treasure sites within walking distance.  My sister and her kids came up so we and a couple of my kids' friends went in search of our first geocache.  Your phone will show you a map of where you are and an arrow for where the treasure is and then you have a square metre or so to rummage through leaves and bushes etc.  Most boxes have a notepad and pen in them for you to leave a little note.  They also have small items (trinkets, small toys etc) in and the rule is you take something out, you put something in the box in it's place.  Mine each took a novelty poker chip, Kitty took some animal stickers, Ned took a small toy car and Lily's friend took some earrings for her Mum (glad I didn't get those although they were bagged and looked brand new).  We put some foreign coins, a small slate heart, a pumpkin man ornament and a small pack of playing cards in to replace the items we took.

This is such a good idea and the site is global so it would be really handy if you're on holiday to look up a site near you and take part.  The kids loved it and we even found a great hiding place to start a new geocache game.

I took some photo's with my phone using instagram

Our new hiding place is going to be close to this tree.

I always think how lucky we are to live somewhere like this with these woods and river literally on our doorstep.  The kids all really enjoyed (even the 14 year olds) and since we've got home we have started putting together a little bag of items we can take with us next time to replace anything we take.  

Anyone else tried this.  If not, check out the website - this is such a good idea - mine have always loved treasure hunts and now even the grown ups can take part instead of racing ahead trying to hide something.

Hope you're all having a lovely Easter break.


Monday, 2 April 2012

New storage in my craft room

Just over a year ago we turned our spare bedroom into a craft room. 
We weren't sure at the time if this was going to work out so made no real changes to the room other than to take the bed out and bring some storage and a work table in.
Fast forward a year and this room is permanently in total chaos and needs a revamp.
Below is the built in wardrobe/closet which has always been a bug bear of mine.  
It's a double space with a single door which means it's always been difficult to use the space behind the wall to the left of the cupboard door.

A few months ago I persuaded my husband to pull the wall down to open up the space and I've been living with it like this since then.  I actually cleaned out some of the crap that's been piled in the space before I remembered to take a photo.

My plan was for solid pine shelving with a little space for hanging should we ever turn it back into a bedroom or have guests stay.

Today I cleared out the whole space and my husband added the built in shelving for me.

Here are the shelves all finished ready for me to paint.

And this is how they look tonight after a coat of primer.
I can't wait to get them finished and to get all the crap out of the room so I can have a much calmer and more organised and clutter free room to work in.
It's going to be slow going this week though as my brother and his family fly in tomorrow for a 6 day visit so we will be busy with them this week.  I can see a lot of late nights in my future this week as no doubt I'll be doing a little painting just before bed every night.

Also, Lily's room is all finished but we haven't quite got round to hanging things back on her walls yet - as soon as we've prettied her room up I'll post some photos.

Hope you've all had a lovely weekend.  Here's to the Easter holidays!