Monday, October 12, 2015

Crafty projects around the house

With baby J getting older and more independent, I've had a bit more time and energy to tackle crafty projects around the house.

I love perusing home design blogs like Centsational Girl, Swoonworthy and Style by Emily Henderson, so this year I decided to get my arty butt back into action and do some stuff.

I was never happy with this one particular wall in our lounge. The sconce and wall switch in the centre of it meant any big artwork had to sit off to the side. We had a big painting on the left for a while, but it always nagged at me how unbalanced it looked.

This year I decided to change it up to a gallery wall.

First I checked out Emily Henderson's Guide to a well hung gallery wall and then got busy with existing artwork we already had around the house.

The four large canvases are paintings by my hubby, the centre flower is a tapa cloth artwork we picked up in Fiji, and the other two small paintings were done by Miss S. I framed the three small pieces in white frames to bring some cohesiveness to the wall. As you can see, the colour scheme I was going for was coastal blues and white.

For the lounge I also wanted to freshen things up with some new cushions, so I made this one out of vintage curtain fabric from our bach. It usually sits on our couch with a couple of large, plain turquoise cushions.

I also made two of these floral cushions which are patterned on the front, and blue satin on the back. They usually sit on the two armchairs in our lounge and I love them. In this photo the colours don't look quite right. Those red flowers are more of a peach colour and the pink flowers normally really POP.

Our front entrance area was a bit of a mess, with shoes everywhere and only a little bookshelf tipped on its side to store them in. It never looked tidy, so when I saw Miss L's school giving away the silver bench below, I nabbed it and then kept my eyes open for some baskets that would fit under it for shoes.

I found these blue/green plastic, basket-weave tubs with lids at Kmart and thought they would be perfect. They so are!!! L and S have one basket each, and I share a basket with baby J. Husby-heart doesn't need one since he wears the same shoes every day. 

The cushions sitting on the bench are ones we already had. I did have plans to make a foam squab covered in the same floral fabric as the two matching cushions in the lounge, but haven't got around to it and the cushions are working fine for now. They give us a soft place to sit while we put on our shoes. 

The walls on either side of the window were blank for a long time. I didn't notice too much because I love looking out the window at all the greenery. But then I decided I wanted a mirror so we could check our appearance before leaving the house, and I also wanted some artwork in there for a bit of colour and interest. 

I bought the bamboo mirror at our local op shop. It was a lot bigger in the space than I had anticipated, by the time I got it up. Should've measured first! But it does the trick. I haven't decided whether I'll leave it natural bamboo, or paint it. For now I'm leaving it. What do you think I should do?

I created the following oil painting over a couple of weeks in our garage (oil takes a long time to dry!). It was very much inspired by these Swoonworthy paintings I love, although hers are a lot bigger and done in acrylic paint. I'm keen to do another abstract painting to go with it, and balance out that wall against the big mirror on the other side. 

In the dining room, our glass dining table came to a sudden, crashing end when Miss S tried to shift it and the whole top fell onto our hard tile floor.

I wasn't interested in spending $1000+ on a new table, so kept my eyes peeled for one when the inorganic rubbish collection did its rounds in Auckland this year.

I spotted a wooden table that was missing its top but had lovely heart-wood legs. It seemed the right size for our dining room so I chucked it in our big car (with the help of a friendly passer-byer) and brought it home.

Next step was figuring out how to build a top for it. With some advice from my handyman friend, Lou, I bought the supplies I needed and set to work building a table top in our garage. It wasn't a difficult process, and I just did it in short bits of time over a few months as I could. This is the end result...

I'm really pleased with how it turned out. It was a little bit wobbly for a while, but another handyman friend, James, took a spanner to the bolts underneath and tightened them all. Now it's solid as a rock so I'm thrilled.

Outside the house we hired a builder from church to build a gate and little bit of fence for us by the letter box so that the whole yard would be enclosed and I could let baby J play outside without worrying about him escaping onto the road.

It has been amazing for my peace of mind.

The builder we hired hates painting, so he left that part to me. Painting pickets is a fiddly process, that's for sure, but it felt good to be doing something constructive for the house, and it looks so nice I can't help admiring it every time I pass through.

What crafty projects have been going on at your house?


  1. Oh wow Em very creative! I love it all! I reckon leave the bamboo natural bcoz it matches the vegetation outside.

    1. Oh cool. Thanks for the suggestion. I think I will.


Thank you for visiting Craving Fresh, and for taking the time to comment. Your feedback is so important to me.