A challenge of mine at the moment when thinking of my own home décor, is to re-focus and make it as simple as it can be, and kind of get it right back to basics. With the amount of 'clutter' I collect, and my love of hoarding I'm finding the simple look is actually becoming more appealing. Too much clutter around me is beginning to unnerve me a bit and I'm definitely going to strive for a calmer look. One book I am reading that I borrowed from the library and am getting much inspiration from, is 'Pure Style Home & Garden', it offers stylish and practical ideas for furnishing, and living in your space. The book is ultimately about pairing down, trying to live with less clutter, recycling and with the idea being, the less 'things' we have to fuss about, the more we can get on with living.
There is still so much to do here, at Home Sweet home, the '6 month project' never happened and I still have many a bare plaster wall! At least the 'bare plaster' vintage-y, unfinished look is becoming quite fashionable. Well, that's my excuse ;) In a way I am lucky that my ever evolving home isn't show homey looking, and definitely has a 'lived in' look - so I guess I'm practically half way there to bringing it back to its natural state which is a good thing. The book is certainly lighting up my desire to get back in touch with nature and introduce an uncluttered feel to my home. The photography also, is delightful.
Oh, how I would love this beautiful forties cooker taking pride of place in my kitchen!
I adore the look of this kitchen and the blue and white striped cotton roller towel used for the chair covers and runner, is, in my opinion so effective.
I am definitely going to have a go at painting old food tins to hold kitchen utensils and love this idea. Many a time I have searched in shops for pretty little storage pots, yet now realise I can get wonderful results from recycling the likes of my old baked bean, and tomato cans. You could even paint them to coordinate with the kitchen colours.
The instructions for this little project, taken from the book are:
1. Remove the lids with the type of tin/can opener that takes off the entire lid, leaving a clean edge on the can and no lip.
2. Wash the empty cans in hot soapy water to remove the labels. If any glue remains, gently sand with a fine grade sandpaper. Sand the top rim to take off the sharp edge.
3. Apply 2 coats of eggshell paint, inside and out.
Such a simple idea, and what better way to use up those old cans. You could also keep them unfinished and pop pretty little plants and flowers in them too!
When it comes to old furniture, I love to get my paintbrush out. Why buy brand new when you can give a quick lick of paint to a piece of vintage furniture for a unique, re loved look. I have often picked up chairs like these shown in the book for only a couple of pounds from various junk/charity shops.
Making a simple slip cover too can give a wonderful new look! Having this particular Cath Kidston fabric I can now see how super it would look and has certainly given me an idea or two.
It can just be a small item requiring a makeover, for example I was really pleased with how these wooden magazine racks came out after I gave them a quick lick of paint a while ago, and lined their bases with pretty wallpaper. They looked rather uninspiring before hand and may well have ended up in a tip. I paid around £1.50 each for them and now in my opinion look really pretty.
So, never underestimate the power of a paintbrush ;)
When it comes to the dinning area, I can definitely be accused of making things a little too, errr, well frilly. This simple, uncluttered calm dinning space looks beautifully inviting. I can imagine loved ones, chattering away, eating simple home made food. (I'll try to shut out the reality of the food mess my 7 year old would make of the white linen table cloth)
As for my 'work in progress' bedroom - anything would be a calmer space than what I have already! I'm not going to go there -suffice to say my bedroom is currently working as a junk room - with no bed to talk of in it! Like I say I'm not going there ;) New doors are on order and to create light we've gone for panels of glass set in the door and I'm deffo going to use this idea - I have a pack or two of those lace-y curtains which are quite popular from Ikea. I bought them yonks ago - though have never been used. Now I know perfectly where they shall go. So pretty behind the door!
This bedroom also looks very inviting. Makes me want to just dive on in!
The book also touches on the garden and offers ideas for a simple, stylish outdoor space and how to make the very best of what outdoor area you have.
It also offers project instructions, eg how to make simple roman blinds, or to make a loose cover for a sofa, and many other project ideas. Its been my best friend book for many cosy nights curled up on the sofa.
All there is to do now, is sort out this clutter of mine and get the bin bags out, see what hasn't been used or hasn't made me smile for a while and it can go! Perhaps it's because I'm getting older, but I'm just finding it more time consuming looking after clutter, I don't want to spend my time polishing the trinkets or moving around the ornaments. I don't think I could go all minimal living and it is all about getting a balance - but feel I'll have a sense of invigoration challenging myself to bring things back to basics. Hopefully I'll fall in love with my home all over again :)
I think I'll need lots of luck for the de cluttering that lays ahead - I feel I may be some time ;)
(Photographs courtesy of the book Pure Style Home & Garden)