Awesome August thrifty finds

Don’t you just love it when you find something great when you weren’t even looking for it? I’ve been scanning the (many) charity shops in my town for mismatched teacups to make into beautiful candle gifts (as seen here) to no avail. I usually see them all the time but, sod’s law, when I want to buy a couple, I can’t find one anywhere! I’m not too upset though as, in the last shop I visited, I bagged a load of different things.

These vintage red kitchen scales were the first to catch my eye. Very industrial and they’ve seen a fair bit of use but they’re so solid and sturdy and I love the idea that they have been (and will continue to be) passed down generations. They cost me £20 which is loads cheaper than the reproduction models you can buy.

I also nabbed an authentic retro tin sign (only £4) to go with the scales. Together with my beloved amaretto tin from Milan, they’ll make for a lovely red-themed kitchen when I get my own place. For the time being they’re occupying a corner of my bedroom and the scales have even become storage for my hair nik naks, clips and bands.


Other bits that i picked up include a lovely mercury glass tealight holder (£2!) , some adorable floral boxes (also £2) and a circa 1900 map of China (£5).

I love the feeling of getting something that is good-quality for a fraction of the cost that you’d buy it new or even from a vintage shop. You can get some really great stuff from charity shops, you just have to be prepared to trawl through some not-so-great stuff to find it. My biggest tip is to be patient. Sometimes you won’t find anything at all but other times you’ll leave with bulging bags.

What’s your greatest charity shop find?

10 ways to display your photos

I’m a bit of a happy snapper and nowadays with digital photography, we can take thousands of pictures without having to worry about storage space or developing costs. If like me you actually end up paying to have many of these photos printed, you’ll find yourself at a loss for what to do with all those precious keepsakes.

There’s only ever so many surfaces that can take my large number of photo frames so I’ve been scanning the web for ideas of what to do with my vast collection.

Here are 10 of the best solutions I found:

1. This gigantic frame found on Shelterness would certainly take a lot of my loose photos!

2. Absolutely gorgeous photo wall also found on Shelterness. No idea how they do it but I want it!

3. Very cute and practical organised display via pinterest

4. Another beautiful large frame seen on pinterest

5. Lovely use of an old wooden pallet seen on Shelterness

6. My favourite: Photo table runner spotted on the Ruffled blog

7. Sweet washing-line photo display from Shelterness

8. Grown-up photo display from Shelterness

9. Super cute washing-board photo frames from amylucy

10. Brilliant idea! Snowglobe-esque mason jar display from A Beautiful Mess

Now, that should be enough to get your creative juices flowing and your fingers itching to do something with all those boxes and albums of precious memories that have until now been gathering dust.

I’d love to see your favourite photo displays too!

Pottery Barn crosses the pond

Pottery Barn has been a long standing favourite with the yanks and I have looked on jealously whilst other US bloggers showcase their pottery barn spoils.
But, no more! Pottery Barn is now delivering to the UK and other countries. It’s taking all of my self restraint to not buy everything on the website. Delivery costs aren’t bad either although you’ll still have to contend with customs. Here are my favourite pieces. Love, love, LOVE the cubby storage unit.

Rule Britannia

The Olympics has kicked off and Olympic fever is in full swing here in Great Britain. I live just a stone’s throw from the action and can hardly contain my excitement. Last weekend I went to watch both the cycling road race and the Equestrian eventing and spent every other minute of time watching the other events on TV. It’s Monday and now work is preventing me from getting my Olympic fix (boo!), I’m already having withdrawal symptoms and looking forward to a night in on the sofa catching up on the day’s developments.

What with the Queen’s Golden Jubilee, Euro 2012 AND hosting the Olympic Games, 2012 is making me very proud to be British. Patriotism is running high and interior design seems to be following suit. Union Jacks, red buses, black cabs and London landmarks are everywhere at the moment so I thought I’d share some of my favourites with you. All the items are from collection by John Lewis or Harrods.

So, shop around and then  bring out the strawberries, tea and Victoria sandwich cake and cheer your hearts out for Team GB!

On an aside, you may notice I’m loving the collages at the moment. This one was made using photovisi in about 10 seconds flat. Can’t decide if i prefer this or Polyvore. What are your favourite collage tools?

Home Moodboard

I’m planning to fly the nest in six months or so (health of bank balance permitting) and although it’s quite a while away I’ve been collecting images everytime I see something I HAVE to have. This is the latest collection of ideas, put together on Polyvore (thanks for the tip Dana from House Tweaking).

blue

All of these things, apart from the UK artwork , were spotted in the ever-pleasing Dunelm Mill on a recent inspiration browse. I typically ended up buying some small bits too which I’ll show next post.

Chevrons: pretty in pink

Chevron patterns are everywhere at the moment and I’m loving them. They make for really striking accents in a room and can pop with colour. I love the pattern in pink as it’s pretty but bold at the same time. I’m really tempted by the cushion below but have a policy of making not buying when it comes to cushions. Armed with a sewing machine they’re so easy it seems silly to buy the things. I’m yet to find any good pink chevron fabric though so I may have to make an exception…

  

 

DIY magnetic fabric noticeboard the lazy way

As you will remember, my new monsoon magnets pressured me into re-covering my whiteboard to complement their loveliness.

You’ll notice that this is a ‘lazy way’ tutorial. Once I decide to do a project, it’s happening, regardless of whether I have the right tools or enough time to do it. Inevitably, things can sometimes be a little botched (by the end of this post you’ll see..) but they usually end  up alright!!

 

This project was a true case in point. I had cute floral fabric, check. And nice magnets, check. A way of attaching the fabric to the board….now that wasn’t as easy. First I tried superglue, that sticks anything right? Wrong. Apparently it doesn’t stick fabric to plastic. Well, what can I say? You learn something every day. Not to be defeated by mere superglue I got to thinking of an alternative.  After a while I found myself thinking, hmmm….uhh…sellotape?

Yes, that’s right, I used sellotape and literally wrapped the board like a big flat present. It wasn’t big and it wasn’t clever but it WORKED, so there. I now have a nice magnetic fabric noticeboard. As long as no one takes it off the wall and looks at the back, they’ll be none the wiser.

Monsoon Magnets

Apologies for my very lengthy absence from the blogosphere. I have just returned from a month in India full of colour, tastes and cultures. I had an amazing time and when I’ve finally sorted through my huge mound of photos (800!) , I’ll be sure to share some of them. But for now, back to the present…

Monsoon home are doing some really beautiful pieces at the moment. Recently, whilst ‘having a little browse’ –clearly in denial about my ability to resist buying EVERYTHING I like- I spotted these cuties. I thought they’d be just the ticket to spruce up my very plain and rather institutional looking IKEA  magnetic whiteboard.

However, after arranging them nicely on said whiteboard , i decided their colourful loveliness made it look even more dull than before.  I ended up redesigning the whole thing- so much for using the magnets as a quick fix! I am now the proud owner of a lovely girly fabric covered magnetic notice board. More on this to follow…

Well I guess that’s why they call it the blues…

No I’m not depressed, I’m just loving the blue today. Maybe the truly awful British weather is making me yearn for blue skies and sunny days at the beach…wishful thinking at this time of year!

I spotted this GORGEOUS blue living room whilst browsing online. I really like how it’s beachy and relaxed whilst being sort of retro and practical too.

And I WANT that phone…badly.

So, to complement my dream living room I though I’d compile a baby blue house. All of the rooms here seem like they’d be so calming and relaxing.

How great are these tiles?!?

This bedroom look like it would be the perfect sanctuary…

And I can’t begin to explain how much I would like to take a soak in here right now…bliss

I’m now officially in love with baby blue tiles, both feminine and practical and a really refreshing change from the neutral palette usually employed in kitchens and bathrooms.