Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Bedroom Renovation and Statement Lighting

I'm doing a merry little jig around the house because I've just taken delivery of two large boxes containing some beautiful table lamps that I ordered for Angelgirl’s bedroom.  As you might have read from previous posts, we’re doing a little makeover in her bedroom. 

If you've been reading my blog for a while, you’ll know we started with a house renovation project last year.  I remember when I first set eyes on this renovation project, I looked at the mess, thinking, urgh.... I'm having doubts, I just can’t see past the rubble and muck left by the last tenants…that’s how I felt when I first saw this property.  There was so much filth, grime, rubbish, old furniture, cat poo, mould growing everywhere….almost looked like a condemned building (okay I'm exaggerating but you get the idea) It took us a few weeks to clean it up, drive away the rubbish and then start on prettying it up.

Here are a few photos of the bedroom before the renovation, which gives you a good idea how awful it was. Actually this room was one of the cleanest in terms of rubble and dirt.  We painted the whole house using just two colours throughout, except the dining room reveal and then we laid down the carpet.  Medium grey, soft and squishy under your feet kind of carpet with a deep pile.

It started to feel like home for Angelgirl.  But she still wasn't finished.  Mademoiselle wanted wallpaper of the glamorous kind. We  had just enough wallpaper over to hang against the wardrobe wall side, the light bounces in from the opposite window and gives the wallpaper a lovely shimmery effect. Once the wallpaper was hung, we realised the iron bedstead, although nice enough, was a bit too vintage/boho looking for the wallpaper, so we bought a new fabric covered bed with a headboard.  We chose grey because it’s a great neutral colour and most colours go well with grey, you can mix it with pastels, pinks, blues and more greys…so perfect.

The bedroom looked really ‘nice’ before, but hanging this wallpaper and swapping out the bed changed the entire look to a more sophisticated one, but something was still missing – great lighting.  The Ikea lamps she had were basic, small and uninteresting but at the time that’s all she could afford.  They didn't say wow and they didn't complement the newly hung wallpaper – or the bed.  Enter the great statement table lamp and this is when I was doing the merry little jig – which makes me sound like some little Irish Leprechaun doing a jig around a toadstool…which I'm not...I promise...anyway

Sometimes all you need to do is change out the table lamps.  I'm not advocating that all table lamps should be enormous, some little nooks call for a tiny lamp propped on a pile of books, but this bedroom needed BIG and these are around 60cm high.  Large table lamps make a room look more opulent and expensive.  The bedroom has gone from pretty nice to boutique hotel bedroom.  It looks so inviting that I feel like moving in myself…

A few before photos. The door you see in the photo no 2 is actually a little closet with shelving.  We took the door off and remodelled the entire area adding two deep clothing rails and a billy bookcase, and then closed it all off with mirrored sliding doors.

 In between with the iron bedstead and Ikea lamps.

And as it looks now, completely finished (I should have ironed the bedding before I took pics!) 
With the new lamps from Joss and Main.

If your bedroom is aching for a makeover, and you would like me to redesign it for you

Have a great week!

Friday, 3 July 2015

Summer table decor

It's hot down south... I had quite forgotten how warm summer can get here in little old England.  Now I have no excuse for not cycling along the beach front and getting a little exercise...at least there is a breeze when I cycle.  Talking of heat, my seeds I planted a few months ago have all flowered and my little courtyard garden is full of cottage flowers in pots and my roses are flourishing.  I am trying hard not to pick them!  My wild flower meadow mix was a bit of a disaster, with more weeds than anything else, so I pulled them out and scattered a few delphinium seeds and already one week later I have green shoots smiling at me!  I'm still obsessed with flowers, and I love using them to brighten up the table decor.

A few days ago it was my eldest daughter’s 26th birthday. It’s a tradition in our home that we celebrate birthdays with a family meal. This lady likes her flowers too, so I went for a mix of peonies and roses on a white tablecloth with pops of gold, because she does like a little sparkle! I bought my peonies from a local flower seller in Southsea, I haven’t seen any local supermarket selling these lovely blooms so when I saw them at the stall, I snapped up two bunches!

For me, decorating the table is one of the most enjoyable parts of giving a dinner party. Even with the few flowers I grow myself I would have enough to fill pretty vases or jars and place them all over the table. If you don’t have vases, try using tea light votives as long as they’re waterproof.  The more vases you have the better it looks.  For my centrepiece I used a crystal candelabra I bought from Bellamy’s Antiques many years ago, they always stock unusual and beautiful items.  I added gold chargers and gold and white cotton napkins from Zara Home, which I used at my Christmas Table. The silver heart name holders I bought several years ago for a valentine’s dinner, they add a touch of formality to the occasion but it was all meant to be a little bit tongue in cheek because Angelgirl loves hearts. I mixed metals but it lightened and brightened the table and kept it informal and casual looking.

This was the last of our family birthdays for the year.  Are you planning any summer dinner parties?