In Autumn, my pregnancy nesting instincts manifested rather suddenly.
Out of nowhere, I found myself doing things like making tea whilst also chucking dusty boxes of the stuff in the bin. I couldn't walk past a surface without selecting some sorry unloved object and popping it in the charity shop bag and unloading the dishwasher cutlery basket led to a deep excavation of my drawers. A simple request from Frankie-Rose for a drink would often inexplicably result in the inside of my cupboards being scrubbed. I started eyeing the marks on the walls menacingly and just like last time, I found myself longing to paint the whole house with fresh White paint. I find that White walls generally need a refresh every couple of years, especially in a small house like ours with quite a lot of foot fall and muddy wellies and bikes and such like. I had also grown rather bored of the dark grey paint we had used on the lower half of the downstairs walls.
And so, with a willing husband, a daughter at kindergarten, buckets of sweet tea and armed with my favourite podcasts, we got to it. It didn't take long as our house is small and we no longer have a lot of furniture or 'stuff' to move and store. (one of the best things about living in a decluttered space=quick makeovers!) In fact, moving the log pile was the most onerous task we encountered. The rest was simply quickly pushed to the middle of the room and covered in dust sheets.
The paint job, somewhat inevitably, led to a wider re think of our furniture and storage, so the lounge ended up with a makeover. Along with the freshly painted White walls, we got rid of both sofa's and got a new one, re styled the shelves, got a new foot stool and bench and a couple of other dressing bits, and we also made over our red brick fireplace.
You can read more about my lounge makeover inspiration here, but in summary I wanted White walls with splashes of blue, grey and mustard, and lots of pattern and texture. The Block Shop Textiles scarf on the wall (major brand crush), Jo Waterhouse cushions, and vintage kilim rug add the pattern and colour I was hoping for. The wooden bench, chunky knit footstool (so in love with this!), sheepskins and plants add texture and interest, as does the log pile, one of my favourite features in the room! When Sarah-Lou put the baskets as lights on her Instagram stories I had a major "Have to have one" moment! I love how dramatic it looks in my little lounge.
Like I have said many-a-time, this is a temporary home for us as we save to buy a house, and it has many features that whilst grateful to even have a home, I quite frankly really struggle with (plastic windows ahoy! No hall way! Downstairs bathroom woe!) So this is far from the lounge of my dreams. However, I really believe in making the best of what you have, where you are NOW, rather than waiting for some far off future, and we are much happier as a result. So we are happy to put love, thought, time and energy into making this house as lovely as it can be. I talk more about the importance of making the space we live in a place where you can truly relax and retreat, in this post.
Anyway, here are a few pics...
It isn't totally finished, naturally. I am forever moving things around and I haven't decided what to do about the window treatments. We need some better storage for Frankie-Rose's toys too, but I am really happy with how it has turned out so far.
Lots of people have asked how we did our fireplace so I wanted to share how we did it.
Renter friendly fireplace makeover with chalk!
One of my proudest lounge makeover DIY's is the fireplace. When we first moved in it had a dado rail glued to the front and 90's tastic tiles along the top. We prised off the dado rail and attached a piece of rough scaffold board to the top which greatly improved things, but the bright red brick had annoyed me since. Our landlords said we weren't allowed to paint the bricks White, so I had to come up with an alternative (never to be beaten, am I!). Frankie-Rose and I were drawing on her chalkboard when I had the idea of using chalk dust to lighten the colour. We tried it out together and it worked brilliantly. Frankie-Rose really enjoyed applying it so the best bit was I mostly sat and watched her do it!
How to use chalk to stain red brick:
You'll need white chalk, a chalk board duster and a pestle and mortar
- Crush chalk to dust using pestle and mortar.
- Empty the dust into a flat bottomed tub big enough for your chalk board duster.
- Use duster to pat and rub the chalk directly onto the brick.
- You can layer it up if you want a whiter finish.
I may share further Lounge updates when I figure out storage and window treatments, and there are other rooms in the house that have been spruced up or we plan to makeover which I'll share too.
- Scarf used as wall art by Block Shop Textiles
- Basket used as light fitting from Workshop Living
- Blue patterned cushions on sofa C/O the lovely Jo Waterhouse
- Chunky knit footstool c/o Cox & Cox
- Coast Sofa- c/o DFS
- Kilim rug- Barrows Antiques, Faversham
- Jade throw and mirror c/o Ines Cole
- Sheepskins- from MB Farms in Faversham
- Mirror and jade coloured throw C/O Ines Cole
- Recycled wooden Bench from Ines Cole
- Black lamps on shelves C/O B&Q