I don’t know about you, but for me, one of the best things about finally owning my own home a couple of years ago was that I finally had the freedom to decorate it any way I want. After years of rented accommodation (no complaints, we had some fab landlords and comfortable places to live) it was wonderful to be able to choose how we want things to look. 2 years in, our home is, and I think always will be, a work in progress, but now there are some parts I love even more because we’ve made them our own; the dining room with the curtains I sewed myself, my calming green study that was the first room I ever painted unsupervised, and our seaside themed bathroom.
We are very lucky to have more than one bathroom at home, so this one is my little oasis, used almost exclusively for actually having a bath. Total luxury. I decided on a seaside theme because the sea is my favourite place to be, I just love to listen to the waves, explore little rocky beaches and smell the salty air. Luckily for me, it is actually a pretty trendy look at the moment too, so picking up decorative items is easy and fairly inexpensive.
I’ve got them all displayed on the bit I’m most proud of, my home-made shelves. When we moved in, I found some forgotten strips of decking in the garden (mysterious, as there is a slabbed patio and no decking where we live) that had been left out and become weathered. They reminded me of driftwood and were the right sort of size for shelves, so I rescued them and brought them indoors to dry out. (I wish I’d taken pictures of them before so you could see.) Once dry, I sanded them down to remove all the dirt and debris and smooth the edges off. I wanted them to still look weathered, so I painted them in a matt emulsion, but just one coat and allowed the wood to show through where the paint didn’t take. I sanded off some edges where I thought it looked too neat.
I bought the brackets and B&Q- I thought they had a nice Victorian seaside feel to them, but their white colour meant they fit in with the light room.
Making a pair of shelves is no great feat of DIY I know, but the feeling of satisfaction of making something for myself, out of what was essentially waste material, makes me all warm inside. I’ve since made a small table out of a larger broken one, and rescued a 1940s bureau for just a tenner!
What’s your favourite upcycling project?