Wednesday, 30 January 2013


We have been blasting through the main bedroom this month as our target finish date of mid February approaches rapidly (sssh, don't tell that I'm blogging instead of filling/sanding/priming etc). Here's a little update...

We've started off like this:

(Yes we were sleeping in there!)

And then stripped it out until it looked like this:

And then we added some insulation and plasterboard to keep us toasty:

And after putting our plastering skills (acquired at a B&Q 'You Can Do It' course) and some not-so-well-honed coving skills to the test, we ended up here:

So then it was time for the exciting bit- choosing the colour! We spent aaaages deliberating over the relative merits of whether we wanted our walls to resemble to breath of an elephant or a mysterious lady named 'Joanna', before finally settling on Egyptian Cotton. So, once we'd done a couple of undercoats, I painted some on the wall:

And it was exactly what I wanted- classy, neutral and understated. So out I went to buy myself a tin of  Dulux Endurance and as it doesn't come in a 5 litre tin and I knew I'd need more than a weedy 2.5 litre tin, I got the nice man at B&Q to mix me some up at the Dulux machine, which he did. And since you ask, it is far cheaper to get it mixed that to buy 2 x 2.5 litre tins. So I walked home, all smug and happy.

Then I started cutting in and it looked all lovely and cottony and beigey:

And then I got my roller out and huffed and puffed until all of the walls were covered:

And then it dried. And IT TURNED MAUVE. Aaaarrrrrgggghhhhhhh.

Maybe I'm being a bit dramatic. And I can't really provide you with any evidence to judge for yourself, being as it is dark and all, but trust me, it's mauve. So I painted another coat and IT'S STILL MAUVE.

As we can't really afford to go out and splurge on some Farrow & Ball or Little Greene to make it all OK, I'm embracing it. You heard it here first, this season's new hottest colour- mauve.

Friday, 18 January 2013

Quick Update: Chalkboard Jar Labels

I am not going to profess that this is particularly 'home made', but this is a nice, quick update to make your food storage a bit more organised (and a little bit prettier!)

This was my jar storage before:

I purchased my chalkboard labels from eBay and my chalkboard pens from Amazon. I got a pack of 8 labels and 4 pens, as a 4 pack wasn't much more than a single pen and these ones had good reviews:

I was going to copy a font from somewhere and then I decided that would just be frustrating and difficult and would defeat the point of the 'quick' update, so I just free-styled in my normal handwriting:

I then carried on, carefree and stuck them on by eye, careful to avoid air bubbles, but not careful enough to worry about using a ruler, or any of that jazz:

And do you know what? I'm pretty pleased with the result. They help bring a little bit of cheer and order to our otherwise quite depressing kitchen (note the mastic on the bare walls behind the shelf!)

This wasn't the thriftiest update ever, with the labels and pens costing just under £13, but I now have 4 chalkboard pens for all sorts of projects and I'm glad I got long-lasting chalkboard labels (they're even dishwashable!) and didn't opt for something cheaper, as I think they look great!

PS In case you're wondering... our jars are mostly from the 99p Store, except the large ones, which are Ikea Korken jars.

Monday, 14 January 2013

The Magical World of Quidco

I have finally joined Quidco- the cashback site- and I'm already beginning to wonder why I didn't do it long ago! If you haven't yet taken the plunge, or still believe (like I did for so long) that it was too good to be true, then I urge you to sign up, it only takes a few minutes and it's totally freeeee (and no, this is not a sponsored post!)

To give you an idea of how much you can save, here's what I've 'earned' so far:

2 x return train tickets for work, so I'll even be able to claim the cost of the tickets: £0.80 + £0.42 (purchase price: £53.33 + £27.80)

Theatre tickets for Mum's Birthday: £1.95 (purchase price: £65 of which £50 was a voucher)

Energy switch: £14 (purchase: none, in fact I'm saving money as I was paying too much for my electricity)

Hotel for black tie do in London: £11.57 (spend: £89 for a 4 star hotel on a Saturday night- Late Rooms are having an amazing sale)

House supplies from eBay (spend: £6.99)

So I've managed to make £28.91 without lifting a finger!

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Twelfth Night

January 6th is Twelfth Night, or if you're superstitious, the last day to take down your Christmas decorations. But don't bin everything just yet! Here are a few things to save for a thrifty Christmas next year.

Cracker decorations- can be used to seal packets for some homemade treats next year:

Christmas cards- cut out to make gift tags:

You can recycle any leftover cards at Tesco supermarkets:

Long pieces of ribbon can be saved to wrap around smaller presents next year:

PS There are also some great Christmas bargains in the shops at the moment, to get you prepared early for Christmas 2013. Stick it all in a clearly marked box and you'll be laughing next year. Here are a few I found:

Waitrose 2 tier cake stand, £0.69:

Lindt Irish Cream Truffles, again in Waitrose, £1.14 (these are also available in special edition stracciatella flavour, yum!):

M&S Christmas dinner party invitations, £50p:

Happy crafting and sales shopping!

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

New Year's Resolutions

1. Blog some more and maybe even rescue Captain Sew from the depths of the attic, where he is hiding from the dust:

2. Exercise some more whilst enjoying the beautiful countryside in Gloucestershire:

3. Do enough of the house to host NYE at our house next year and hope it's as good as this year:

4. Stop nagging Dave. Or he might actually run away and live on a remote island:

5. Don't sweat the small stuff. Life's too short. Instead spend it appreciating the little things, like the sky this morning:

Here's to a happy and healthy 2013.

Lucy x