Jul 23, 2011

The sound of one hand clapping...

Hello hello... It's been a long time between posts- try an entire school term. The reason for the lack of creative juices is the nature of my work. Whilst I love teaching, it is very creatively draining. So by the time I get home all I want to do is sit on other people's blogs and live vicariously through their creativity.

Today I am going to post some lovely pics I have been collecting. I recently got an IPad 2 and am loving it. It is fantastic for internet browsing and means I can sit on the lounge with it on my lap for hours on end. So here are some inspirational photos of bedrooms, kitchens etc... This is the sort of stuff that gets my creative juices flowing these days- it's like interior design porn.

Enjoy x

How fab is that sign? I reckon a DIY version of that would be in the realm of possibility.

I love love love red doors and intend to have my own one day. However as our house is currently an undesirable version of peach- it might take a while...

Red... Ahhh

I do love monochromatic schemes, but my heart lies with colour.

I need to inject some green into our ever increasing primary colored house!

This is ammmmmazing! Unfortunately this is unattainable in our house, but I love the idea of this- perfect for reading Sunday papers.

Staircase envy?

Kitchen envy? One day...

Very girly...

I like the fact this kitchen has only bottom cabinets- I really think it keeps the room open and airy. Will definitely be considering doing this in our kitchen.

Ahh Kelly green... Be still my beating heart!

Until next time x


Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Apr 18, 2011

I Heart Gardening

Okay- confession time. I have just discovered I have a love of gardening. When we first bought the house the gardens were seriously ghetto. The front of the house was covered with some seriosuly gross plant life and we have some horrible plants in the backyard. One of the first thing Mr A's stepdad did was rip into the trees with a chainsaw. So they got rid of that problem (only for the trees to rear their ugly roots later... which took a whole lotta manpower/tool power and determination to get them out).

Before: The front of the house- ghetto style.
We had a family gardening day to remove the ghetto-ness out the front, and in its place I chose the extremely difficult to kill Agapanthus- which require little to no attention and little to no watering. Plus they are green all year round. I like green all year round plants. However, we are currently in a battle against world war weeds out the front and a combination of onion weed and god-knows-what has been testing my paitence ever since. I guess it's my fault for not properly sifting the soil before planting. So I am building up the energy and courage to tackle that one soon.

In our backyard I have been a little more determined. My gardenias I planted in September-ish of last year are flowering (albeit the ones that Ringo hasn't ripped all the leaves off- I've had to replant two whole plants already as they were ripped down to the stump). I love gardenias and I love the fragrance SO much. Here are some which are currently sitting on the buffet in the kitchen in an old pasta sauce bottle.

Before: The Horror!

So over the past few days I have been on a gardening frenzy. To begin with I randomly bought a Ficus (Weeping Fig) tree from Bunnings because it was $31 and I knew that was pretty good for a standard type tree of that size, plus I also love Weeping Figs. We chose to plant it here because they can sometimes have an invasive root system and we didn't want it anywhere near pipes. Plus it will hopefully block out our neighbours. We also planted some more beloved Agapanthus next to it. Mr A had been trying to grow grass there after Ringo took it upon himself to do a little gardening in the form of digging. The Aggies will look awesome after they thicken up.

Now that I was on a gardening roll- I couldn't stop there. Seeing as I am on school holidays I thought it was the perfect time to go all out. Next came the Chinese Star Jasmine climber up the colorbond fence, alonside our side neighbours. All I did was screw in some of those self-tapping steel screws and wound round some wire. Talk about SKILZ.

This is the before:
And this is the after... Give it a few months and the whole fence will be covered. Jasmine is really fast growing.

After that I was pretty exhausted. Ripping up grass is insanely difficult, especially when its good quality buffalo grass. Over the next two days I proceded to plant 9 Murraya Paniculata next to the Ficus on the back fence. This should grow to 3m in height and again help to screen out our neighbours garage (remember our house is the front of a battle axe) and help 'soften' the backyard. Here is the before:

BEFORE: Gotta love the old hills hoist. Its awesome because its huge and you can hang so many loads of washing on it. But its in the wrong place- so it looks like we'll be searching for some alertnate washing line options.
And the after... I can tell you this was hard work. My body was hurting for days after!

And so that finishes todays guided tour of our backyard. There is definitly more to do... !

Apr 15, 2011

Wardrobes Ahoy!

It's official... we have wardrobes and they are AMAZING! Two guys rocked up on a Monday morning 8am and were finished at 12:45pm that day. I thought it was going to take at least 2 days. I am so pleased with the company we chose to go with as the build quality is fantastic. We did choose to "up" a few things- we got 6 draws instead of 5 and added a pelmet/cornice at the top to finish the look off. I managed to paint the wall behind our bed the day before they got installed (albeit hungover) and this helped tie the room together. We've just recently inherited (stolen) some old bedside tables from Mr A's mum (this is where the majority of the things in our house come from!) and I am aiming to paint them the same grey as the buffet in the kitchen.  So here are some pics...

I chose the section closest to my side of the bed... and didn't realise it was smaller then Mr A's section until I'd moved my stuff in. Just means I've taken over the long hanging space in the middle...

Ringo enjoying the new linen

The wardrobe in the spare room... otherwise commonly known as the junk yard. Missing the top cornice (it got damaged in transit)

Token cute dog photo
So that's the wardrobes. No they haven't solved my inability to hang clothes up after I've worn them, but I do appreciate them! Particularly after being without them for a year!

Mar 19, 2011

Bedroom developments...

Long time no blog...again. It's funny how I wanted to start this to boost my creativity and keep me sane over the school term, when in fact I have just been to exhausted to do or think anything. We are now about to go into week eight of term one and I couldn't be more grateful.

However, lets move onto more interesting things- our wardrobes are finally (!) being installed on Monday morning. I cannot tell you how excited I am for this momentous moment in our houses history! In our master bedroom I have moved our extremely tall, large and dark Malm chest of drawers and we just have to do some spack filling on the wall where the robe will be installed. The reason for the spack filling is a result from the insane bathroom renovation on the other side of the wall- and the amount of wall bending/shifting that went on. (More about that another day). In the spare room I have moved a whole heap of my old paintings from uni days and a heap of other junk, into the back lounge room/dining room. We will still need to move the two racks of clothes into the same room, but we'll hold off until Sunday. They have said they will take only a day, but now having dealt with tradies a few times, I am definitely NOT getting my hopes up!

 We have decided to paint the bedroom wall behind our bed in a grey- to match our new bedding. We were going to go with Simone Weil Grey, but after a while of having the paint chip taped up on the wall, we felt it was too blue.That's the problem with many greys- their either too blue or too red. Anyway, I just found this other Dulux grey- Malay Grey. I think it is more neutral in terms of being blue/red and I think it is dark enough to make a statement with the white picture rail and the white walls/white robe. So I'm thinking I might paint it tomorrow, before the robes are installed, and it should only take 2-3 coats which wont take long at all.

Malay Grey, Dulux

Our bedding- just so you get an idea of what it will look like in front of the feature wall.

In terms of bed head- I am definitely going to DIY a bedhead, and I think I am going to do for a yellow colour, as I just love grey and yellow together. This is a great tutorial by Grace at Design Sponge.
I don't think we will make ours this sort of shape, perhaps just a rectangle. I know that upholstering a shape like this is a little difficult. So I will need to head off to the fabric shop to find a nice yellow fabric- maybe a linen or something durable and thick. Then it will be off to Bunnings for some MDF and Clark Rubber for some thick foam. Maybe next weekend!

Till next time!

Mar 5, 2011

Bedroom Update, update

Quick post- just working on our bedroom update. Today I bought the new bedding which includes a grey/silver sheet set, Sheridan Vener Quilt cover (see below) and a white valance for our new bed base (which is really just my mums old one).

 Loving the styling of this shot! The chair and white details.

I have put together this moodboard- and its really helped in collating all my ideas/images into one place. I just created a blank A4 page in Photoshop CS5 and started copying/pasting. You'll also note my really bad bedroom mockup- which I did by copying and painting. But at least it allows you to visualise where you're headed.

The wardrobes are being installed on the 21st March and I am slightly excited. And by that I mean I am pumped! I just hope to hell that they look decent... and they should with the amount of coin we're spending on them. I'm hoping they will revolutionise my life and will make me a neat and tidy person, rather then the grub that I am.

Still need to pick up old bed base from the parentals and test it out, have to make the headboard (or buy this one from Ikea) and paint the feature wall. This also means deciding on the perfect grey- not an easy task. I am pleased however that finally our bedroom will look like a grown ups room- as opposed to a 16 yr old boys room with clothes strewn around.

Keep posted!

Feb 27, 2011

The joys of carpet removing and spack filling... Pt 1

Apologies for another significant break in posts, I think I am being creatively drained at the moment, so by the time I even think about blogging- I'm usually about to go to sleep or waking up to face another day at school. Anyway- I thought I probably should just get stuck into our house reno's- seeing as I have been shying away from posting anything constructive. This has probably something to do with the fact I have been feeling extremely lazy and exhausted, and the prospect of writing a long post on a part of the renovation process we've been through, isn't that enticing. However, as like all things in life- it has to be done at some point or other, so here goes.

When we first got the keys to our first and only house- we were kinda pumped. We'd had an extremely short settlement period of 28 days and I'd had a million ideas bubbling up inside my head. The timing of our 'exchange' however was unfortunate- as I had just been on holidays for 3 weeks and Mr. A had been on two. The day we got the keys was the first day back to school for the term. Talk about bad timing. However, as we were living with my parentals and had been doing so for six months- we were a 'little' bit excited to get out of their house.  We were realistic about the hard work that was coming- and every day after school I would drive straight to the house (after my daily trip to Bunnings) and work frenetically from 4-8:30pm. Mr. A would get to the house around 6pm, and when we were too exhausted to go on- we'd stumble back to the parentals, shove some food into our faces and pass out in bed. This went on for 4 weeks, and probably would have been quicker had we not had a wedding in Byron Bay over a long weekend which wiped out 4 solid days of hard slog.

So this is how it went down- first of all we ripped up the carpets. These were throughout the house and pretty skanky. And by skanky I mean they smelt distinctly of piss. So they got ripped up and piled high in a few of the rooms. This pic is from the spare room, and the ripping up of the carpets actually signalled a problem with a section of the floor- mainly wood rot. But more on that later.

After we had ripped up the carpets, it was time to start spack fillings. Having painted walls and spack filled before I thought I was pretty knowledgeable- however I made two rookie mistakes. 1. I used an interior/exterior grade spack filler which dries HARD... and I mean REAL hard. 2. I was optimistic and thought I could hand sand the walls back. Big mistake. I did one and a half walls using a sanding block and some sand paper and realised that I had neither the energy nor the strength to do a 3 bedroom house this way. So off I went to Bunnings and bought myself an electric sander. What a revelation...! This was a dirty job. I would come home with so much dust in my hair it would stand up by itself. But with the help of Mr. A we go through it. We decided early on to leave the windows because 1. they had YEARS of enamel paint built up on them and 2. we just had too much other stuff to do.

Around this time we started to discover some interesting facts about our place- the smallest room in the house, which is now the study- had a painted floor of dark brown. This was actually the colour we were going to stain the hallway/kitchen/lounge.

Another strange thing- this is our bedroom and underneath the carpet was this fantastic example of lino. Needless to say it went pretty quickly.

Next the painting began. Here I am, up a ladder painting. We quickly realised we weren't going to have enough time to paint all our ceilings (remember each one is COMPLETELY different!). So after painting the study ceiling- we only touched the hall ceiling (and even then it was Mr. A's mum who did it. She actually sustained a ladder accident in the name of that ceiling)

Maybe we were stupid- but we painted BEFORE our floors were sanded and stained WALNUT brown. This meant we actually ended up doing 4-5 coats in the lounge. We used Dulux Whisper White throughout the house. Luckily- both our families pitched in to help with the mammoth task of painting. I originally looked into using a spray gun to paint because the thought of painting SO many walls within such a small amount of time was frightening. However- in the end it worked out well and we got the painting done.

Here is Mr. A getting into some roller action. I should premise this by saying he hates painting. Me- well I love the idea of it (remember I am an art teacher), but half-way through its like a part of me dies and I just want to give up. But I am always pleased at the end.

So I guess I will leave it there for now. Next time I will fill you in on the flooring (I still have a laugh to myself when I think back to all our friends and family who said we should just move in first and do the floors after... yeah right.)

Till next time.

Feb 21, 2011

Bedroom Inspiration

Long time, no post. It's been slightly crazy at work, but I really need to get into the habit of posting something every second day or so. Anyway- on the home front, we've been deciding what to do with our lacklustre bedroom which is one of the rooms which is seriously lacking in anything. We are finally getting built-ins in the next few weeks, and they really can't come quick enough. Our current Ikea Malm draw system sucks and clothes and shoes end up strewn everywhere. We are going for a heritage look, with sliding doors in a white finish.

In terms of other decorative features, we are thinking of painting a deep navy blue feature wall behind our bed (the same as the kitchen) or even looking into wallpapering the wall. I think we'll pop up to Porters Paints over the weekend to check out their stock. It'll have to be something we're 100% happy with, because wallpaper is slightly more permanent and labour intensive than paint.

The other issue is our bed. We have a walnut Malm bed (like the one below) and I hate it. We have mismatched bedside tables and this kills me. When Mr A bought the bed his sharehouse room was so small he could only fit one bedside table, and Ikea stopped making the damn thing- so thats the end of that one. So we now need to decide if we get down with some Ikea Hacking or invest in an official adult bed like some of the ones featured below. So enjoy browsing through some inspiring bedrooms...