So Close But Yet So Far…

Slowly but surely I am making progress on my ongoing upholstery project. I am so close to the end that I can taste it, but at the same time I also realise that I still have a way to go. In fact it has taken so long to get to this point that I am considering roping of the chair to ensure people view it from a distance only. I mean, if its ok for the National Trust… in just the same way as the National Trust does in all of it’s historical buildings. My biggest problem is that I am only at college once a week and this just isn’t enough time to get it completed at any great speed. I have brought it home a couple of times to get extra done but unfortunately I get so far and then have to wait, take it back to college and get advice on where I should go next.

My chair so far

My chair so far

Looking at the front view it looks pretty much completed and I cannot wait to see it completely finished. I know it is going to look amazing once it is finished…I mean it has to because I can’t believe that you can spend this much time on a project and it not turn out great (I am a glass half full type of person). Unfortunately, when you look at the back it doesn’t look anywhere near complete.

My Not So Finished Chair Back And Outer Arm

My Not So Finished Chair Back And Outer Arm

As you can see both the back and the outer arm need to have top fabric putting on it and also the bottom (although I don’t have a photograph of that) needs platform cloth putting on to tidy it all up and hide all of the chairs insides.

Having only 9 weeks of college left, which incidentally is a total of 27 hours, it is safe to say that I am rather worried about whether I am going to get it finished. The only solution is to make sure I do much of the work needed outside college time. This worries me slightly as I cant help but think that I am going to get something key and very important wrong. Although, this worry has aided me in certain situations as it has driven me to check all measurements prior to cutting my top fabric over and over and over again…and sometimes just one or two more time to make even more certain.

Irritatingly, college is closed for the next two weeks as it’s the Easter holidays so in order to continue working on it I have brought it home in a hope that I will be able to get the arms covered in my plain blue top fabric (the same as the seat). Just bringing it home is an effort in itself. Especially if you consider the fact that I am no longer able to carry it by myself and the fact that it is wider than most door ways. This means that not only am I required to find some poor unsuspecting soul to help me move it every time I want to work on it  but every time it needs to be taken through a doorway it has to be flipped and turned in order to squeeze it though the frame. Bringing my chair home turns into an epic game of Tetris as we negotiate around various bends in the corridors, doorways and finally face the challenge of trying to fit said chair into the boot of my Vauxhall Corsa. Thankfully transport to and from the car is made much easier thanks to the fact that a very innovative and brave college tutor of the past stole an Asda shopping trolley purposely for moving such items of furniture. So I have a big THANK YOU to this person as they have saved me on many an occasion.

 

 

Top Ten Project List

This is a blog post I have been meaning to write for a while. I figured that I needed to be a little bit more organised so I have decided to write up a Top Ten Project List detailing the furniture projects currently on my to do list. It is something I should be able to strategically work my way through. Instead of what I am doing right now which is more bumbling my way through. So here they are:

One

My Dresser

This is the project I am currently doing. The aim is to turn this into a beautiful cream and varnished pine dresser to go into my hallway (near the kitchen) to store all of my baking ingredients. This will then give me more storage in the kitchen.

Two

The Cupboard Under The Stairs

When this house was built in the 1930’s I think this would have been a walk in pantry. At the minute it has hooks that hold coats and wonky shelves (installed by the previous owner) that can hold nothing plus I have a habit of chucking anything I dont want seen into it (e.g. the hoover, mop and bucket etc). I would love for it to be returned to being a pantry. It would allow me to buy certain kitchen items that I always use in bulk.

Three

One of the mirrors next to one of the fireplaces

I just need to get these hung up on the wall and then the fireplaces can be ‘dressed’ properly to make them into a feature rather than a ‘place to put things’. The picture only shows one of the mirrors but I also have a starburst mirror that needs putting up.

Four

My Lloyd Loom Ottoman

This is a Lloyd Loom Ottoman and it was also the first thing I ever tried to upholster (pre college course). I can’t believe I ever did anything as bad as this but alas it is true. Now I know a little bit more about upholstery I know I can upholster this to a much higher standard and turn it into something beautiful and unique. It is really handy for storing fabric in as well as becoming a seat as when the need arises.

Five

Upstairs Hallway Window

Unfortunately at the moment we can’t re-decorate that hallway due to time and money. Having spent an absolute fortune buying and moving into the house at the same time as planning and paying for a wedding we are having to take step by step and one room at a time and currently the home office/craft room is the priority. So instead I am wanting to make small changes to smarten it up a little bit. One of them being dressing the window. I want to make a nice curtain to frame it a little plus adding a vase of some sort.

Front Door

I also want to put a matching curtain downstairs in the hallway to block some of the draft from the front door. It will also add a little bit of ‘softness’ to the front door.

Six

I love the idea of having a picture display going up the stairs. I just need to get more family photos to put into frames.

Seven

Front of Side-table

Top of the Side-table

I want to clean up this oak side table and get rid of all the marks and water rings that are on the top. I am torn between painting it or stripping it down to revarnish it…decisions decisions.

Eight

Undecorated Craft Room

My home office/craft room is in need to serious re-decorating. As of yet it has not yet even been starting but if plans come together that should soon change. The aim is to make this room into a creative space that is a joy to spend time in. It will have a good sized work space with amazing storage to ensure nothing is in the way ever. I want to install shelving into the alcove and then (hopefully) fit doors to the bottam of it to ensure we have a space to hide things away in.

Nine

I think I would like to install something like this on the wall at the bottom of the stairs so that as you come into the house you can hang your coats up.

Ten

The Problem

And finally a shoe rack that makes shoes look tidier and again this is for the bottom of the stairs. Unfortunately I don’t have a picture of a future shoe rack because I don’t yet know which one I want.

Lego Creations For The Home You Wish You Had Created!

I recently stumbled across an article in the Daily Mail from 2009 where James May created an entire house from Lego! Completely crazy but completely genius at the same time. It made me wonder whether people do actually have functional items in their home made out of Lego. So off I went to scour the internet and here is what I found…

Source: http://www.dwell.com/articles/lego-island.html

Who would have thought to make a kitchen island out of Lego? Not me, that’s for sure but I would not mind one like this. That is if I had a bigger kitchen.

Source: http://walyou.com/lego-house/

For those of you that have a small kitchen, how about putting a Lego table in your dining room?

Source: http://www.hgtv.com/designers-portfolio/room/eclectic/kids-rooms/7974/index.html

You could then light up your dining room with your matching Lego lamp.

Source: http://randommization.com/2012/06/25/artist-makes-stair-rail-for-home-out-of-20k-lego-bricks/

Want a unique conversation starter in your hallway? This Lego stair-case bannister could be just what you are looking for.

Source: http://www.homedsgn.com/tag/wall-divider/

If you are looking for something spectacular in the office to wow you clients then you could do what this office did and use Lego as a room divider. Pretty amazing! In fact you can see the images from the big build here.

Source: http://www.geekologie.com/2012/07/functional-wheelchair-built-entirely-out.php

How about a fully functioning electronic wheelchair?

Source: http://www.homeanddecor.net/lego-bookshelf

This Lego shelving might be something that I could use in my home office/craft room. I could even colour co-ordinate the Lego brick to match the colour scheme.

Believe it or not this is a fully working radiator made to look like Lego.

I think it is official…Lego is cool!

 

I’m Back!

Well, I have been running around like a headless chicken recently trying to keep up with college, work, wedding and general housey jobs and that has left very little time for blogging. But as of today I have decided that enough it enough and that I AM going to make more time for blogging and house related crafting/d-i-y-ing because I have missed it immensely!  So here I am!

First up I have a little recap. Can you remember me writing about my bargain lamp find in Debenhams? Well, if you need a little reminder hereis my blog post about it. Today I took a little detour to Dunelm Mill to look at their fabrics, ribbons and other craft related items and I came across a red lampshade on sale for the bargain price of £2.50! Well, my little bargain alarm in my head is beeping at me ten to the dozen and before I know what is happening it has jumped into my basket and I am speeding towards the checkout before I have a change of mind.

My Bargain Lampshade

Well, I don’t think it looks all that bad and when you consider that the base was just £4, making the total cost of the lamp only £6.50 I think it marvellous. Just ignore the side table that it is sitting on. It is a Freecycle find and is one of the many things on my never decreasing to do list. One day it will be a cute little varnished and unmarked table. Hmmmm, maybe that is something I can do at the weekend…

At the weekend I have decided to give myself a little project…well…rather large project really. Having had a really good think about what to do with dresser I have decided to not only move it into the hallway downstairs, but to also do it up somehow.

My dresser

I got it about a year and a half ago from a British Heart Foundation charity shop and it cost me £65 (and that includes the £15 to deliver it to me), which I do not think is half bad. At the time of buying I did like the dark colour but since then I have gone off it. It is just too dark and rather beaten up.

A Rather Deep Scratch

Random cup marks and more scratches

Wood stain has been worn away but the latches

Structurally it is in perfect condition and it completely stable. It just doesn’t look as nice as it could. So I am considering sanding and painting it, however, I am considering leaving the top of it so that it is natural wood. Just like the one below.

Once painted up like this it will not only match the hallway much better but will match pretty much any room in the house should we wish to move it. It will also be perfect for storing my baking equipment, giving me much more space in the kitchen.

 

 

 

Chair Update

Here are some updated photos of the progress of my chair. I am yet to start the second one of the pair but at least the first one is well on its way. I have managed to completely strip down the chair.

My stripped down chair

It took absolutely ages and the amount of little annoying cuts I got from the millions of staples in it as well as the tools themselves, but just as I was thinking it would never end I managed to get it finished. I then set to work filling in the holes I had created by digging and gouging out the staples using a mixture of sawdust and PVA glue mixed to a tuna mayo consistency.

Sawdust filled holes

Next week I will be starting to work out where my buttons are going to go and use this information to work out where I need to put the webbing. So stay tuned for the next instalment. Hopefully I won’t find it too difficult to do but I love a challenge.

College Projects – Week 2

College has started and so the true housey crafting really begins. On a Tuesday I go to a soft furnishing class. At the moment I am making a sample curtain, which is a mini curtain that teaches you all the skills needed to make a curtain but on a much smaller scale. I am really liking this project because as I learn each new skill in curtain making I am imagining lovely bright red curtains with white spots for the craft room/home office. I am determined to make my own curtains for each of the rooms in the house…fingers crossed.

On a Wednesday it’s my upholstery class and so I have begun to strip down my bargain eBay chairs.

My Chair

Unfortunately this is not the most updated photo but it does give you an idea of how it is going. I now only have the top of the arm take off and a few staples to dig out of the wood. Then I will be able to begin making a template of the back to decide where to put my buttons. This may seem a little early but I need to know this before I can even consider putting my webbing on because the buttons will go in the gaps between the webbing. It makes me excited for next week though because I am sure that once I have taken the last of the arm foam off I will be able to start the fun part…rebuilding it. I will keep you updated.

Stop, Look, Listen: Things to do with used magazines

I regularly look at my coffee table and feel guilty about the sheer number of magazines I buy, although I do assure you that they are not all trashy women’s gossip mags. Every time I take my latest stack over to the recycling bin I can’t help thinking that there MUST be some way of reusing them. So this week I decided to be pro-active and did a search on the internet for magazine uses.

This is such a clever idea from DIYLife and something I would never have thought of. This is definitely on my future project to do list. I can just see it in my craft room/home office now…

The Buff and Blue has a tutorial showing how to make this mirror frame made from old magazines. The different colour papers makes for a really effective, colourful and unique mirror.

Along similar lines Craft bits has a tutorial to help us turn ordinary and boring wall clocks into works of art using old magazines.

These are a very clever idea. Saved By Love Creations has a tutorial about how to make these coasters.

If you are wanting some Christmas craft inspiration you can pop over to Earth911 to learn how to make Christmas tree from magazines.

Light It Up With Paper

I cannot believe how crazy expensive some of the more unique and statement light shades are. So I have been scouring the internet for  tutorials for alternative ideas. The thing most shocking of all is that most of them are made from paper! Here are just a selection of what I have found.

You can find the very simple but effective tutorial for this light shade on Scrap Hacker .

Be the envy of everyone you know with this cute lamp. You can find the tutorial for it on Make: Craft.

I cannot believe how simple this light shade is to create, especially because all you need to create it is some chicken wire and paper. You too can create this beauty by looking at Craftster.

Another great light shade idea from The Craft Dept on the Martha Stewart site.

Over on Cut Out And Keep they have made this stunning light shade using paper cups!

Although this one does not use paper I just had to include it because I LOVE IT! It uses doilies and the pattern they create on the wall is lovely. You can find this light shade on Emmmy Lizzzy.

Home Sweet Home

I have finally managed to finish my Home Sweet Home tapestry and am really pleased with the results.

My Tapestry

Unfortunately now I have a bit of a dilema! Do I turn it into a cushion (as has been done of the packaging)…

Packaging photo

…or do I get it framed and hang it on the wall?

I just don’t know what to do. What do you think would be the best option?

Craft Club

I have decided to start a craft club from my home and having had the first very successful meeting last week  (although we did do more chatting that crafting) I have started organising the next one for next Monday. I think I have found the perfect craft activity and I cannot wait to attempt to make one ready for craft club. This is what we will be attempting to make.

Isn’t it so cute? I cannot wait to have a go at making one! I think these could look lovely in any part of the house.