Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Flowers and office update

Grateful for bank holidays this side.  Been digging and planting daughter’s garden, putting up fences and hanging bunting.  Hands have taken a beating and back is aching, but all in the name of love. The update on my beautiful King Fiddle Leaf Fig is that he is doing really well.  I haven’t used the self-watering system yet as I was told he needs his roots to settle for 8-10 weeks before I can use it.  I'm glad to report he is still very much alive as are my other little plants!

This weekend my elephant print arrived, bought on Etsy.com which you can find here so promptly put into Ikea frame and hung on wall using these new-fangled Command strips – anyone else used them? I bought one packet from B&Q and the other from Amazon.  They are amazing, can’t believe they hold the weight they do, and I even tried removing the strips from the wall, and they don’t leave a mark! So much better than banging nails into walls.  

I've also been prettying up my office space with vases of pretty flowers. I think the mauve pom pom flowers are Allums, but I am not sure what the  frilly lilac ones are.  Sadly my gardening knowledge does not extend to the names of these flowers in both the green and the pink vase! I will endeavour to get better I promise.  I am sure most of you know so if you do can you please enlighten this ignorant soul so that I can make a note and head off to the nursery to buy a few of these plants for the garden!

Here's to gardening, flowers and DIY!
Hope you have a fabulous week whatever you are doing!


Monday, 18 May 2015


I've just been watching the Chelsea Flower show and now my heart is set on growing peonies of all things.  Can one grow them in pots I wonder?  I've recently planted three iceberg roses and two David Austin roses, they are in bud so hopefully within 10 days or so I’ll have flowers! Any tips on growing roses would be appreciated!

My little office makeover has taken a back seat these last few weeks as weekends have been spent doing DIY for Angelgirl who is daughter no 1.  One of the things I really wanted was a brass lamp.  I fell in love with this here, but the aim was to spend as little as possible or at least spend under £500.  I had told myself if I didn't find an alternative to the brass lamp I wanted, I was going to blow the budget regardless, because I was so in love with that lamp.  However on a trip to our local IKEA, I found this lamp ready for a DIY makeover. 

I used Montana Gold Spray paint, a brand I've used a few times now because I can trust how the finish is going to turn out and I know the quality of the paint.  Giving the can a thorough shake up for about 5 minutes, I sprayed one coat and left to dry for about 20 minutes.   Now sometimes you might get blobs of spray paint which might indicate you haven’t shaken the can properly, however, take a cloth or a tissue and just wipe the nozzle.  If you do get unsightly blobs, wait for it to dry and take a very fine piece of sandpaper and gently rub it over the blob until it almost disappears.  Don’t worry that you might take off the gold paint, remember you are going to give it another coat anyway.  Wipe it off once you’ve sandpapered so that the surface is clean and then repeat spraying.  I found spraying in short bursts more effective than holding the nozzle down for long periods of time. It finishes matt which is fine, and I do like it, but I was wondering whether I should try varnishing it for a more glossy brass look.  I’ll keep you posted on how that turns out if I try it.

The art is a new piece, but it needs hanging on the wall in a different spot so just for the photo I propped it here.

Seems like rain most of week, but I'll be watching the Chelsea Flower Show from the comfort of my sofa!


Friday, 8 May 2015

Plants in the office

I am a huge lover of nature.  I really am.  Having grown up in South Africa I have travelled this beautiful country from top to bottom.  The fauna and flora is second to none.  It is LUSH.  We have no shortage of vegetation except in the Karoo…but that’s another story for another time.  This one is about plants.  I am hopeless at growing plants indoors.  I have no idea why they die on me, but they do.  Even when I water them.  So I've grown accustomed to no living plants at home.  But many faux plants and flowers - a post about this coming up shortly.  This time however is a little different.  I have LIGHT in this tiny space.  Lots of it.  Unhindered by curtains or blinds…light that plants need in order to grow….bouncy white light so bright I need sunglasses on…so I bought a few and I have to say, they are doing very well, thank you very much.  I water them, spray them with mist and so far, they have not died. 

BUT, it was not enough.  I wanted The KING of all King plants, the plant that graces the décor magazines, the Pinterest boards, the IG feed….the darling of the design world, the Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree!  

It’s a huge risk, knowing my history with living plants, but I think this tree will survive, teach me to love real plants again and not to over water him…it’s a him trust me on this one….he comes already potted in a self-watering container, so there is no chance I can be accused of killing him…because my friends, he was not cheap….but oh so worth it…don’t you just love him?  He sets off this little corner rather well, his handsome leaves all big and shiny….

He came from House of Plants.  They deliver countrywide and it comes all packaged up like you've taken delivery of a Christmas tree in a box.  Not a leaf out of joint. Wildly impressed with them and with him actually.

In the meantime, the office project is a little slow.  The black frame is not staying here, I've just placed it so there's not a bare wall staring back at you.

Wallpapering and doing a little decking is what I’ll be doing this weekend.  Daughter no. 1, also known as Angelgirl has a few handy jobs for mum and dad to do…the joys of parenting!

Happy weekend!