Ikea is a wonderful place. Meatballs, cakes made from Dime Bars, those clippy things for half opened bags of food that you buy Every Time You Visit. Oh and the odd piece of furniture. Eight years ago I bought a simple wooden cabinet to provide some much needed storage in my old house. I’d always planned to do something ‘jazzy’ with the doors but as it was hidden behind my sofa I never got round to it. Fast forward to the New House and the cabinet is being used as a TV stand and is much more on show.

cabinet before

I felt now was the time to get the paints and wallpapers out and give it a little make over.

cupboard1

It only took an afternoon of painting, I used a variety of paints, ones that I already had in the house. The yellow is a really high shine gloss and the others are all satin finish emulsions. If you are using matt paints – maybe left over from painting your walls – then using a clear varnish or wax will give a nice sheen.

cabinet2

HERE’S HOW TO DO IT
1. Remove the doors and give them a wash and a light sand.
2. Masking tape all round the sides of the doors to avoid drips.
3. Prime with an acrylic undercoat and primer in one.
4. When this is dry paint with your chosen colours, I used a small roller to avoid brush marks.
5. If required finish off with a wax.

If you don’t fancy doing-it-yourself then these pieces already have the paint job done for you.

oliver_bonas_chest_mavis__896863_1

Oliver BonasMavis Chest £515

leonard

John Lewis sideboard by Leonard Pfeifer £650

Though I love my cabinet and its jazzy doors I found just the sort of cupboard I was looking for the other day. Of course it wasn’t quite right as it was so it’s currently being ‘Dad Hacked’ in Dads Garage. I reckon it’ll deserve its own post pretty soon.

P.S. If you’ve not visited the Ikea Hackers website go now. It’s full of inspiring projects to turn your run of the mill Ikea goods into unique one of a kinds.

WILKO DECORATIONS

Way back in September I had a nice trip out to the Wilko Christmas press day and I’ve wanted to blog about it ever since. Finally I’ve got around to it. I didn’t really know about the marvellousness that is the Wilko Home and Garden superstores as I don’t have one near by. Having seen the glory of their Christmas decorations this year I managed to track one down and have stocked up on tree treats that I feel may stay up well in to the new year. I think my overall favourite are the creamic keys and the wooden mushrooms. They’re the kind of thing you find in bespoke gift shops with a much heftier price tag.

Above are some of my favourites and you can buy them all here

quilling 2

The lovely people over at cutoutandkeep (the online community to make and share step-by-step craft tutorials) have chosen Scissors, Paper, Craft to be their book of the week, which is super nice.

book of the week

click image to visit site

Not only do they have an interview with me (read it here) where I chat about the inspirations behind the book, how messy I am and my inability to do basic DIY, but there’s a chance to win one of 5 copies of the book AND there’s an extract fromt he book on how to make these beautiful quilled decorations.

quilling 1

click image to get instructions

Go visit their site NOW! to get the step by step instructions, they’re simple to make using thin strips of corrugated card, cookie cutters and glue. If you start now I reckon by Christmas you’ll have enough for your whole tree!

 

 

As I’m in a kitcheny mood (which I will be for a while) here are a couple of recent purchases I have made to make my life easier.

1. Joseph and Joseph Flip Drainer £15

I’m not entirely convinced that my sink has been installed correctly … in the showroom the sink was flush with the work top but in the brochure it was proud by about 1 cm. Mine sits above it by about 2 cm. You would have had to completely destroy the under-sink cabinet to make it sit flush so this is what I’ve ended up with.

kitchen sink

I do love it but I have a slight issue with draining crockery after hand washing (to be fair I don’t do that much hand washing so it’s not that much of a problem) placing the wet cups and bowls directly on the work top means there’s no where for the water to go. So hurrah for this nifty little drainer from Joseph and Joseph. It’s clever little  grooves means that if you have it the way shown here then the water runs down into the tray for you to dispose of later and if you flip it onto it’s other side then the water will drain off into a sink. Nice.

joseph and joseph flip

2. Matalan Trivets £2.50

The work top is made from bamboo. I haven’t managed to give it the requisite three coats of sealer/varnish/protector stuff yet and I’m constantly worried that its going to scratch/burn/get cup marks.

matalan trivets

So hurrah again for these rubber trivets from good old Matalan. I love the colours, their geometric shape and their general rubberiness; they couldn’t scratch a thing however hard they tried. There’s also a grey one but I think my mum may have ‘borrowed’ it as I can’t find it anywhere!