DIY Decorate: Pieces of Art You Never Knew You Had

Klimt 1Klimt 2I have been trying to bring our little home together, finding a place for everything so everything can be put in it’s place but when money is tight the decorative parts you would love to add to your home fall by the way side as you focus on essentials and necessities. That said it doesn’t mean you can’t decorate at all you just have to be a little bit creative about it. I have recently brightened up a few spots on some bare walls with pieces of art I already had, no purchase necessary and they are beautiful!

Free art in the home

I had a big white wall in my living room above my bookcase/sideboard and knew I wanted some beautiful art to fill the space. My dream would be two quite large posters that had a similar frenchy feel as the huge Parisian theatre poster we have resting on our mantel piece. At the moment I have settle for four square Klimt paintings (frenchy feel, but Austrain really) which are actually from last years calendar. I have always kept my calendar to use for other arts and craft pieces so it naturally fell into why don’t I use them whole as pieces of art, I mean that’s what they were originally intended as.

Craft room art- a page out of a book

Incidentally I used the same calendar to cover the front of cardboard boxes that I use for storage in my craft room, which makes my shelves pretty and organised. (I’m sure you will see them in a craft room tour once I get it organised) The walls were a bit lacking before I added a wall hanging which I use sort of like a pin board but I managed to add extra colour with this beautiful photo of spools. This was a page in a Martha Stewart craft book and since I know I will never give it away (it’s great for inspiration) I didn’t mind cutting a page out of it. The back of the page has some acknowledgements on it, which truthfully I haven’t read so it doesn’t matter to me. Many of us have beautiful ‘coffee table’ books as I call them so why not use them to decorate your rooms, when you can enjoy them all the time out in the open.

newspaper art

Another great place to look for free pieces of art are magazines and newspapers. Sometimes they have big page spreads which you can definitely  use as big pieces but even little photo can be used in small frame. I found this nice little picture of a City of Sheffield sign and I have the perfect frame for it. Nice little edition to our new Sheffield home me thinks

Any more ideas for free pieces of art? please leave in the comments


x xxx

Bringing in a little Green

Christmas basket close upJanuary is always a time to re think and reorganise your life and for me this year its no exception. I have signed up for Apartment therapy’s January Cure which helps you with little prompts throughout January to complete projects you want to get done and organise your house after the craziness of December holidays. As part of the cure each weekend they say you should buy flowers to enjoy. I love flowers but I do find I feel bad for wasting money on what isn’t an essential item. Instead of buying flowers I’ve decided to buy living plants as an alternative. Each plant or collection of plants cost the same price as a simple bouquet (for smaller plants) but it will last as long as you take care of it for. I am also quite interested in the health benefits of having houseplants, as an asthma sufferer (though not totally convinced of the diagnosis nowadays) and general sniffler I want to see if having air purifying plants and therefore more oxygen will improve my respiratory health. herbs


I got both these for Christmas, I got the herb planters from my mum so hopefully they will start sprouting soon and I got this gorgeous basket from my sister in law Verity and her boyfriend Johnny! These definitely inspired my green start

Dracena Little Cacti

This palmy dracaena is suppose to be a brilliant air purifier, taking up all the nasty chemicals that can be present in our house and the set of three cacti are just the cutest little things ever! I had to get them. They will be moving home to the bedroom once I have made some planters for them. more to be revealed soon.


x xxx

We Did It! Hull is the UK City of Culture 2017!

I just wanted to congratulate my happy hometown the City of Hull as we have just won the UK City of Culture 2017! It means a lot to me and everyone in the city as it is great to finally be recognised as a brilliant place to go. I often have to convince people what a great city it is because we always receive the worst press. Low unemployment (tell me a city that doesn’t at the moment), high car theft and shoplifting; ( another undistinguishable city trait) and grubby looking ( plenty of regeneration in the past 10 years and prettier then you think). Some people will always pick out the worst in a place and will never focus on the good. Most critics fail to mention its one of the safest cities in the UK with gun crime practically unheard of and ‘gangs’ consisting of a few teenage chavs that grow fruit mould on their upper lip. As we have won City of Culture people not from this beautiful town may start to visit now that the media will be giving us a fair voice. I hope the rest of Britain will come to learn that we are a city full to the brim with cultural events and experiences. The music and theatre scene is huge, our museums & galleries outstanding and free, our parks bountiful, the history instrumental to the story of Britain, we have a brilliant array of independent pubs, restaurants, shops, cafes and bars and it’s one of the friendliest places to be. Any one who still says Hull is crap obviously hasn’t been and if they have they didn’t get a true Hullion to show them around! Congratulations again and thanks to all involved who have put us back on the map, I can’t wait to take part in the events the city  has got planned!

x xxx

Everyday Etsy: Going Green

I recently haven’t done any shopping posts and I want to refresh them a little before I got back to posting them. I feel I got too obsessed with the look of them and create a cohesive board with simply colour was a sure fire way to include items I may not of whole heartedly loved. For my next shopping lists I am going to focus more on products that are great and fit for use as well as gorgeous and this starts with a list of products to help you move towards a greener life.


Its not always easy being green and sometimes you might feel you don’t know where to start when it comes to helping the environment out. You can’t simply change everything you do in your day to day or chuck out all  your household goods and replace them with eco alternatives. I think I much better way to tackle environmental problems in your home is to take one step at a time. This green shopping list shows you normal everyday items but the eco alternative. Swap your usual product for one of these every week or month and eventually you will have transformed your home into a green haven. My favourite idea from this selection are the reusable paper towels by MamaMade which are wound up in a roll and have snap on poppers so you can rip off each section as you would traditional Kitchen roll. Just whack them in the wash after use and you’ll save money and the planet. Click on the photo to see the full list.


X xxx


15 uses: cork

My 15 uses projects often require plenty of small objects to create impressive pieces which means saving up your waste for a long time, which is cool, but its very satisfying to have the items you need here and now. luckily now I work in a pub I have abundant access to lots of bits and bobs, namely bottle caps and wine bottle corks. So today I am showing you some clever ideas for cork in the garden, for practical home uses and for a lovely bit of decoration or art. A good glue gun is all that’s required for most of these projects

cork gardening

5 cork ideas for gardening

1. Simple and easy, write the name of your plant on the side of a cork, stab the cork on to a wooden skewer and you will always know what you planted and where

2. A little bit  of imagination and you can build a little house for all your feathered friends. You could create a simple box but the cottage is much more interesting

3. Hollow out the centres and create little planters for small succulents and air plants

4. Carve corks into little toad stools to plant round the garden to invited fairies in, you can even paint the tops red with white spots

5. You can use cork like you would pebbles to decorate flower beds and keep weeds down but if you whizz them up in the food processor they make great mulch to mix into your soil and help plants thrive.cork decorate  5 decorative uses with cork

1. Hanging hearts are simple to make with a glue gun instantly adding decoration to a room

2. This shop has used corks with coloured ends to create an interesting display, could adapt well to a small business especially one with a green ethos

3. Far a way I know but never to0 early to think about Christmas, plus this will give you a chance to collect corks to make this cute little tree

4. Who ever did this has got some skills, all you need is a gizzilion corks and an eye for colour and shading. good luck if you attempt a portrait of this scale.

5. A simple letter monogram can be used in a bedroom or at a party, you could even do a whole word and spell out the birthday persons name

cork practical

5 practical ideas for the home.

1. A basic rectangle bath math made from corks, brilliant but I imagine you want to make sure it gets a good airing every couple of weeks

2. a perfect little gift for those who work around water, screw and glue in place a loop screw into the top of the cork and attach the keys. I like them decorated as this little muscle man but plain can suffice or painted in a block colour.

3. Group lots of corks into a circle and secure with cable grips and you have an effective and eco friendly trivet for hot pans. You could glue the corks together as well to secure them further.

4. The classic cork craft, a notice board to stick all those receipts, business cards and post cards on.

5. A cork board tray for serving wine. perfect match especially if you collected the corks single handed or is that single glassed

cork board

I actually went for the boring practical option of a notice board simply because the pub needed one for the smoking area, but I think it comes up rather well especially with the chalk board beneath for more messages. Happy Crafting!


x xxx

A Little Bit of Green

a little bit of ivy greenMy favourite thing i have been doing for my home has been bringing in more plants. A little bit of green in our lives soaks up nasty chemicals from  cookers, fridges and general air pollution anbd the chuck out lots of lovely oxygen in return. They also make me happy just looking at them. It’s a sense of wholesomeness and a healthy home.leafy greens

There are also the benefits of having edible plants in the kitchen for fresh flavour hits. When i got to aldi (our fav supermarket) i buy a herb pot everytime we shop there. If i buy one every couple of weeks its a little price rather then buying lots of plants in one go which can end up pricey. So far we have a basil and mint, soon to be added, chives, parsley and coriander which will fill my window sill up nicely and i’ll have lots of tasty herbs to add to our meals. I have also started growing little bits of veg from kitchen scraps, the stumps/roots of spring onions and lettuce hearts have been working great and now i have no need to keep buying then, just pick off what i need.brightens up my daybeautiful blooms

I also like having freshly cut flowers to brighten up corners and add colour throughout the house. It is luxury which i can’t always afford but they are worth it when ou do buy them. Failing buying a big bouquet i will cut a few flowers and greenery from the garden to make little arrangements for around the home. A little bit of green goes a long way.



X xxx

Old Things, New Things

kitsch french style

Since we have finally moved evething to our new home i am rediscovering some old things and finsding new things to fill our happy home.It’s nice to remember memories and sometimes use things you haven’t had a change to play with because you’ve been living out of a suitcase and make souffle out of your never used ramkins isn’t top of the agenda.part of me

It’s starting to feel like home, espcially with items that are so important to me which i haven’t been able to see in over 9 months, it can be a real pleasure and now i can get back to doing the things that make me most happy, like sewing, cooking and DIY.


x xxx

Blank Canvas

Finally can get things moving on putting our little home together. Paul has amazingly put together the room and created a blank canvas for me and Harry to inject our own personality into the place and make it comfortable. Still super busy and it’s still taking time to settle into a routine, hopefully once we get our stuff in to the flat every thing will fall properly in to place. Spending a few days away visiting friends and family and having fun. IMG_4859



X xxx

15 uses: Upcycled Furniture

After a brief spell away 15 uses is back this week and i hope you all enjoy this upcycling bananza. Since we will be moving in to our new home soon we have been thinking about furniture and what we need to make our little flat comfortable. The previous owner left lots of mismatched furniture and it would be really nice to turn some of them into useful pieces for ourselves. Not only is it good for the environment its easy on the pocket especially when it comes to moving which is such an expensive time. Although we don’t have children and i can’t get away with ‘playing’ imaginary games any more, the first lot of upcycled furniture pieces are play areas for kids. I had to include them because they are so dam cute!
diy play furniture5 ideas for imaginary play.

1. Kitchens seem to be a popular pieces on pinterest and in toy shops. I remember having a plastic kingfisher kitchen as a child with two sides to it and a little roof supported on both sides so you can see from one side to the next. Fun to remember my sister and i use to crawl through the gap as part of our made up obstacle course, until the day she got stuck in it :D

2. An old book case can make a easy shop front, you can let kids play with actual groceries or there are many plastic /textile play items that you can buy,

3. Another Kitchen one because it’s so cute. Any old piece of furniture can be transformed into a kitchen unit. Use a little imagination and you can really help your child imagine all sorts of things.

4. Not as exciting as a kitchen but a laundry set might encourage children to clean up after themselves and start learning important life skills.

5. Get crafty and encourage your child’s own artistic skills by making a work bench, whether their interested in woodwork, sewing or painting you could make an area with their favourite job in mind.

suitcase upcycle

5 ideas with suitcases

1. Add legs off an old table and pad the insides and you have got the coolest seat ever. You would have to reinforce the back some how so you can lay back in the chair and not rip the case off its hinges.

2. Same idea as number one but have it close to the floor to make a pet bed. I’m sure the pooch would appreciate it  and it would look so much nicer then a standard plastic one

3. Once again, simply add some legs and you’ve got a cool table

4. Stand a case on its end, cut out a rectangle from the side and add in some shelving to make a unqiue book case or as in the example above a cocktail bar! Scweet!

5. Use a collection of suitcases to make cool storage . You could cut the lids off and slid each case into a deep book case to make an instant set of drawers wit a vintage feelcrazy upcycled

5 random but fun ideas

1. You could use a whole collection of furniture, book shelves and spare wood to make a display unit for a whole wall. Paint in the same colour for a cohesive look or go wild and paint it  a rainbow.

2. Make an old TV into a cat bed. Wearing gloves and goggles you can take the inside components and screen out, pad with a cushion and spray paint it a wacky colour.

3. An old chair with no legs can make a lovely garden swing with firm ropes and a strong branch

4. Got chickens? a dresser with a hole cut out the side with added ramp makes a safe chicken roost, off the ground and secure

5. Updating your bathroom, use your old bath suite to make a funky sofa. Cut a piece out of the side, sand down and add a comfortable custom cut foam piece. Paint to suite your style.

Check out the pinterest board for all links


X xxx

Settling In

It’s been quite on the blogging front for a while now but it’s certainly not been a quiet ride or the past couple of weeks. I’ve had more then enough work to keep me occupied but have had to neglect my shop and the blog to keep things going here. Currently having rooms in the flat fixed and blank canvased by Paul and looking forward to properly moving in by the end of next week once i get some carpets. The pub is going good and we are slowly attracting more people to it with lots of real ales to try and now a local cider on the bar. Will be able to post a few articles this week including a ethical shopping guide to shampoos and the favourite series 15 uses will be here again soon. I’ve missed writing and showing you all what i am up to so hoping to get back on track once we have settled in to our home properly and the routine of running the pub fits in to place. Here’s a few snaps of our progress upstairs, ripping out the carpets and in some places stripping 5 layers of wallpaper!

empty living room empty bed room busy paul Appliances have arrived



X xxx