Tag Archives: DIY

House-warming Inspiration: Succulents

Now all I need to do is keep my eyes peeled for some quirky containers to pot them up in, add a bit of ribbon, write a card and bob’s your uncle!…

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90’s DIY Must-Dos.

I stumbled across this list of 90’s inspired DIY projects and these three really took my eye – doable on the cheap and perfect coming into the summer! I’m inspired…

Image1. Retro worn dungarees.

Image2. Braided crop top.

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3. Full-length jersey skirt.

The Chair With Nine Lives.

Okay, you got me…I’m guilty of seeing potential in things that, quite frankly, don’t have a lot of potential; luckily I’m willing to put in the hours. My latest project was a sad and lonely rattan woven chair, spotted in a little shop called ‘Allsorts’ – the name fits, I also picked up an unusual gold chain from there.

I bartered the price down to a tenner plus the change in my purse (£11.50 in total), it took a while for enough free hours to come clear but when the day came I managed to give it a new lease of life with the help of some good old elbow grease, a couple of cans of spray paint, some spare fabric and a staple gun…

1. Separate the chair into as many pieces as possible (while still being able to reassemble), this will help to achieve the neatest finish. Unfortunately, I could only get down to two in this instance.

2. Again, to get the neatest finish, I try to strip the chair down to the bare minimum and give it a good scrub down with some soapy water before allowing it to dry thoroughly. In this instance it simply meant stripping off the fabric and cushion stuffing (usually I would try to re-use this but it was particularly dusty and deflated so it got scrapped).

3. As with most things, the ‘stripping’ was not as straight forward as it first seemed. I failed to notice just how sorry the feet on this chair were, which incidentally meant I had to think on my own feet…I made the brave decision to strip them down with the help of a hammer, some pliers and a lot of brute force –  if in doubt, strip it down!

4. Once striped and cleaned the world is most definitely your oyster, as my head-turning colour choice confirms. Unfortunately, due to several bad paint jobs prior to falling into my hands I opted to simply spray paint the bulk of the chair – which not only covers a multitude of sins but also gets into the tricky areas created by the design of the chair. I covered the wooden cushion base in foam, which I cut to size and rounded the edges of with a pair of kitchen scissors, before using some bargain fabric (99p a meter – I knew it would come in use one day!) and a staple gun to cover. The orange dimples/covered buttons were added last to (in theory) bring the design together. Using some adjustable contact adhesive and cotton twine I bound the feet (twice to give the best finish) and added some felt pads to protect my flooring.

5. I had the bolster cushion lying around which I knocked up a new cover for…et viola!

As I mentioned several times above, when re-upholstering I always try to strip the furniture down to a bare minimum to give the best finish. However, the previous owner(s) clearly didn’t have the same work ethic. I found seven layers of fabric when stripping the cushion down – naturally I washed the best unworn pieces and added them to my collection!

I love the idea of altering furniture to make it fit for purpose as opposed to chucking it in land-fill and shelling out for an other. My re-fit gives this chair its eighth life, I wonder what its ninth life will look like?…

Peacocking.

Acting on a brainwave, with the help of a few moments of plier-work, VIOLA…a dishevelled feather is replaced by an altogether more alive one!

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One Of My Five A Day.

A week or so ago, I got a little ambitious and attempted to flavour some cheap vodka – bring it to life, if you will. They both contain a fruit as their key ingredient, a million years of bragging rights goes to anyone who can guess the flavours correctly…

They look more appetising when shook-up, wouldn’t you agree?! Yum. Now all I need to do is create cocktails good enough to give the vodka concoctions a thumbs up.

A Lick of Paint Does Wonders.

Three mirrors from car boots and charity shops, totalling £4.79, plus a can of red spray paint and a make shift spray booth, equates to a bit of glam on my living room wall.

Ice Cream: Bananas on Toast.

Ice-cream is most definitely my first love (frequently taking priority in my life) and with this recipe I can make any flavour imaginable without having to invest in an ice-cream maker. Sometimes life does throw up the odd gem…

 1a. Ingredients (listed below). Don’t forget to clear a space in the freezer!
1b. Toast the bread and roast the banana (unless it’s already pretty mushy).

 2a. Melt the butter with the brown sugar and keep on the heat for a while to create a caramel.
2b. Crumble in the toasted brown bread and give it a bit of a stir.

 3a. Spread out your caramelised bread and allow to cool.
3b. Mush up your banana.


4. Lightly whip the double cream before adding the above bread and banana, not to mention a little vanilla extract.

NB. Adding grated chocolate to the cream also works a treat as it melts when the hot sugar-egg mixture is added later.

 5a. Place the granulated sugar in a pan with 6tbs of cold water, stirring on a low heat until dissolved (while continuing with 5b). Once dissolved bring to the boil for two mins.
5b. Separate your eggs leaving the whites and beat them until peaky.
5c. Once the sugar solution has done it’s two mins, take off the heat and whisk together with the egg whites. (Careful: HOT!)

6. Fold the egg mixture into the cream mixture.
7. Decant into a suitable tub and place in freezer overnight. I used an old 1ltr ice-cream tub – which proved to be the perfect capacity.
8. AND it pretty much looks/tastes like the real deal, best served with crushed maltesers (as most things are).
Ice-cream Ingredients:
300ml Double Cream
170g Granulated sugar
6 tbs Cold water
2 Egg whites
1ts Vanilla extract

The best bits:
60g Unsalted butter
60g Brown sugar
2 Slices of brown bread
1 Banana