Weekend Makeover – Student Digs

before and after, Decorating, Makeover, styling

Greetings…I have written before about a doing a quick makeover on my daughter’s student flat last autumn, and have just spent the last 2 days finishing off a new makeover.  What became really apparent since the last time was that good storage was needed, and some room shifting was a necessity as a result.

So the sitting room has become the bedroom as it a really good sized room, and it could take a lot of storage and still be spacious.

Here’s the room as it was when it was the sitting room…

There was a daybed, (incredibly uncomfortable either when in use as a sofa or a bed!), and lots of wasted space in the middle.  The bedroom that was in use before looked like this:

It was sweet, but a smaller room and not brilliant for storage.  So we decided to move the bedroom into the sitting room.  The general style she likes is a bit of boho, a bit of Hygge and some bohemian all thrown into the mix.

THE PLAN

As I said before, the room is really big, so we decided to break the space by using a large room divider.  A serious trip to IKEA resulted in a crazy amounts of boxes being delivered, and we spent an afternoon building a huge Kallax storage unit to break the space.  It has 25 compartments and is 1.8m x 1.8m in size, but as you can see through the compartments it is not a solid block and let’s light through.  We painted the wall where the bed would go in a blush pink, not sick sugary pink but dusky pale rose.

We also got a new bed from Ikea called Kopardal which is a very simple grey metal bedstead with an industrial come Hygge style.  We did not really pay attention to the instructions, so 3 tries later it was finally built and my daughter was quite red in the face.. But she is now a master at flat packs, a valuable life lesson has been learnt….

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We also filled up the IKEA order with lots of storage boxes and accessories for the Kallax, including some drawers and cupboards  that slot into it to stash away things she did not want on view.  Plus some new chairs, a kitchen table and other bits needed for the flat were added to the list.  As per normal we went OTT on picture frames, (you can never have enough pictures!).  We also discovered IKEA have a great new range of candles called NJUTNING, which are only £5.95 and smell amazing… roll over Diptyque – these are far more suited to student budgets!  The only problem I have with IKEA is that you invariably leave with far more than you went in for, but I think everyone can relate to that.

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These are amazing and so well priced

Next stop was H&M Home, where I thought I had died and gone to heaven…  They have some excellent items this season, and we got new bedding and some brass accessories to use.  This bed linen set is called Conscious and it is so pretty, so that was popped into the basket:

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THE RESULTS

Here is the room as it is now.  It has designated areas for sleeping, sitting, dressing, piano playing and putting on make up.

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This is the bed area, with the pale blush wall setting off the bed nicely.

 

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To the right of the bed is the huge room divider.  This takes all clothes, books, records, and ‘stuff’ which is concealed in boxes, drawers and cupboards.

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IKEA do these great brass hanging files for Kallax, perfect for the student room.

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As space was tight either side of the bed for run of the mill side tables, we used an H&M Home brass basket as a wall hung bedside table.

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Storage, storage and more storage.  On the other side is a space with a piano in it.

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Here you can see how the room divider sits in the space.

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In once corner of the room is a dressing area

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Looking into the room from the hallway

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In the window area is a little chest of drawers I upcycled with chalk paints and wrapping paper, thrift is my name!

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There is room for a little seating area as well.

My daughter is over the moon with the room.  What do you think?!

Teenager’s Room & Spare Room Makeovers

before and after, chalk paint, Decorating, grown up, Interior Design, interiors, lighting, Makeover, recycling, Upcycling

THE CHALLENGES:

My youngest has always had one of the smallest bedrooms in our house. I think that is generally what younger children get actually in the pecking order of families!  Poor them… they are definitely overlooked a lot…. she also always got hand me down clothes for years, but I did always get her new undies and socks!

Our eldest has now moved out to go to Uni, and will only be back home for holidays, so we thought it time to do some switching around of bedrooms.  We have 5, so are a bit spoilt for choice, but the youngest had always had what could be called a very small double.  She is also VERY messy, so it was a question of bribery… ‘if you tidy your your room and keep it up for a while, you can move into a larger room…” It worked, and she made an effort, so I had to honour my word.

This then escalated and became a massive upheaval over Christmas, it actually always sort of escalates when I start fiddling around… I also had a pretty weeny budget and needed to be able to re-use and re-purpose existing items if possible.  An existing spare room, (which had been decorated for my mum mainly when she stays over in a very granny-friendly style), was to become my youngest daughter’s room as it was much larger.    And as such, it was not teenage friendly in terms of style.  Here it is as it was… see what I mean…?!

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And my daughter’s existing room was then meant to switch back over into being a spare room again.. this is the other room when my daughter was in it:

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Crammed, no decent storage and hideous fake brick wallpaper which I reluctantly agreed to a couple of years ago as I was in no mood to chip off all the plaster for real.  So definitely time for a change.

DAUGHTERS NEW BEDROOM:

I was shown pinterest boards with the most white, zen and minimalist interiors of dream bedrooms.  ‘Wow’, I said, ‘NICE!’…   But was I was really thinking was…’Yes, of course  – it’s not like you don’t have loads of STUFF… and that STUFF does not stay in the allocated places usually.. and the STUFF is added too with lots of my china filled with various stages of decaying MOULD”…

But I agreed as she had tried to be clean, and then spent 2 days bent at odd angles totally whitening out the room.  I forgot how much I hate rolling paint onto ceilings.  3 coats later, we had pure white.  The floor is already lovely old pine stripped boats, and there is a pretty original fireplace and victorian sink.

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We got her a new bed and mattress, and then I hunted through the house and found an oak desk, a beautiful needlepoint rug that I forgot I had and has been in the attic for years, cut work white curtains and a freestanding clothes rail (she wanted that sort of look, forget the dust!).  The mirror was originally taupe, and it got a quick coat of Annie Sloane’s Graphite for an update.

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Student flat 24 hour makeover

before and after, Decorating, DIY, gallery wall, grown up, Interior Design, interiors, Makeover, styling, Upcycling

You know when time slips away from you…I am feeling full of guilt as I have not posted for ages, and I apologise to those of you who nudge for an update.

24 HOUR MAKEOVER

I have been really busy of late, my daughter has moved to London to study music at a Conservatoire and we did a 24 hour makeover on her new abode.  It is an unfurnished flat where she will live with her partner, and I really wanted her to have a clean, safe space that felt like home.

So we hired a van, stripped my house of a lot of furniture and accessories and then headed up to the big smoke.

Apart from getting a few bits at Dunelm and IKEA, the latter which I delighted in handing over for flat-pack building lessons, we had pretty much all we needed.  Plus we had zero budget!  It went from a dark, bland place to a rather smart des-res in 24 hours with a bit of creativity and styling.

My daughter is definitely a chip off the old block, she had Pinterest boards ready to show me in the style she liked!  It is very Scandi, with lots of palms, copper accents and retro touches.

Here is the flat when we viewed it originally.

For the bedroom I made some great bedside lights from old IKEA wooden shelf brackets I had lying around.

Using Annie Sloans Graphite chalk paint to jazz them up, I upcycled them into light holders.  A long retro style pendant light with a filament bulb is wrapped around each one and hangs over the bedside tables.  These were reduced to just £5 each at Dunelm so the total project cost just £10!  The bedside drawers await a makeover with paint and new handles, I am trying to train up my daughter to embrace chalk paint!



The sitting room has to be a multi functional space- living, working, a music studio and also a spare bedroom for when mum comes to stay (that’s me!).  It is a good sized room which really helped.  We used a day bed that coverts into a full double bed as a sofa, and covered it with lots of emerald green velvet and shaggy cushions.  A leather chair from home and a cute retro table which my daughter’s boyfriend owned finish off the seating area.

Above the daybed we hung large rattan plates as the start of a collection of natural objects.  My daughter also started to map out a gallery wall with frames ready to fill.  For the moment they have wrapping paper in them!


We got two lampshades from Dunlem which are made from twisted wire and they cast great patterns across the room.


One corner is used as a recording studio, so IKEA came to the rescue with their work tables and some wall hooks for all the leads.  I have had the shelves for years in storage and never got rid of them as I knew they would come in useful again.  They got a lick of paint and have lots of baskets on them to stash things away.



The bathroom got a fresh coat of paint and some accessories to jazz it up.  It’s very small so not many options to get creative, and I fitted a nice new loo seat, (it’s my least favourite job crawling around lavatories).



Finally we dressed the sitting room with layered rugs and lots of plants, and for a student pad it is pretty nice.  In fact, my own student flat was grotty beyond belief so I think she has landed on her feet.  I drive home feeling exhausted in a large empty can, but I know she loves her new little home and it is somewhere to go and relax after very busy days at Conservatoire.



Hang on!  My daughter has nicer mugs than me 😳. There’s still lots to do such as hang pictures and sort out the kitchen, (which has a garden table and chairs in it for the moment until we find a bargain on eBay or gumtree).  But they have a lovely home now and can grow into it themselves with their own styling and treasures, plus I can visit and pretend it is my pied a terre!

Wardrobe Crisis… and Storage Solution

before and after, Decorating, interiors, Makeover

Fact:  I have too many clothes.  These are dotted all over the house as storage is tricky for the amount I have.

Fact:  I have too many shoes.  I could well give Imelda Marcos a run for her money.

Fact:  It felt so crowded in the bedroom with clothes, shoes etc that it was a pain to keep it organised.

Fact: A lot of my clothes are quite old, but very well made so I am loathe to chuck them as they do come in useful randomly from time to time.  Need a fab fitted Armani suit for a meeting; got one.  Feeling like chanelling Chanel at the races in a pink tweed suit; done.  Wedding on the horizon;  Dozens of outfits to chose from….  Dinner dance; loads to choose from.  But these were stored all over the place so I had to hunt for them.

Fact: I otherwise wear pretty much the same uniform of clothes most days.  I have trusty Uniglo trousers in one cut (but with lots of pairs in black or grey), a lot of Cos black dresses and huge swaddling roll-necked jumpers.  Add my Converse hi-tops or biker boots, and I am ready to go.

Fiction:  I really need all of these clothes.

So this week I decided to finally gather all items together from all over the house to see how much I actually could lose/keep/use more.  Pretty much most rooms had a cupboard or two groaning with clothes/shoes/out of season stored items.  When all together, and reader I am a bit ashamed when I admit this, they filled a whole room.  30 years worth of clothes and shoes stared back at me.

Master Bedroom gets a makeover

before and after, Decorating, Interior Design, Makeover

Farrow and Ball paint and things lurking under the stairs.

This week I was browsing a paint department, and happened upon a discounted 5L tin of Farrow & Ball’s ‘Brinjal’ matt emulsion.  This leaves me with 2 thoughts:

a) I need to get out more and stop loitering in paint departments when I have free time.

b) Loitering in paint departments can be seen as serendipity when bargains are to be had.

Anyhow, onto the paint… This is the most intense dark aubergine with red rather than blue tones, and I have always dreamt of doing a room in it.  Like an Olympian athlete I launched myself toward the paint pot it at high speed, and clutching my bargain I sped home.  I also managed to secure some bargains on some anthracite emulsion paint on sale, which have been stashed until I decide what to use them for, no doubt they will appear soon in a post….  (and if you don’t want to read through the procrastination and details, scroll down to the bottom of the post for the before and after photos.)

This is what the colour look likes… wow, it’s dark…

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Photo: Brinjal by F&B photo from Farrow and Ball Decorating with Colour by Ros Byam Shaw

The Existing Room

The Master bedroom is already shades of Khaki, (this paint is called Drab), with aubergine accents, but it has been like that for quite a while, so I thought I would use the paint to overhaul the room.  The ceilings are really tall, and the expanse of white from the picture rail upwards to the ceiling sort of annoys me, as the rest of the colours get lost in the room as the eye automatically goes up to the brightness and it is so WHITE.  I love aubergine, so decided to paint out the khaki walls with the new paint, but to leave the wardrobes as they are.  So I am sort of reversing the colour scheme.  I am happy with where the furniture is and accessories, so it is just a case of the walls and woodwork being changed.

Guest room overhaul part 1

Decorating, Makeover

I have a small second spare guest room that is languishing at the top of the house, and one that tended to get used as a dumping ground for all the things I mean to sort out one day, but never get around to doing.  I needed to make it dual purpose as both a room with a piano for my daughter to practice in, (thanks to my godaughter who has lent us one…) and also as a workable spare room.

The room is in the eaves of the house, so it has an angled ceiling and walls, and a dormer window.  It has always been a cream and pale blue scheme, with patterned sisal carpet.  There is a cunning daybed which opens out either into 2 x singles or into a double, (and this is only used at Christmas and Easter when relatives overflow, as we have another larger guest room for visitors to use throughout the year).

The shelves made it really cluttered to add a piano into the mix, so I had a serious purge and cleared them all out and removed the shelves.  I then worked around the existing carpet, bed, artwork and chest of drawers to come up with a new scheme that was fresher and more spacious.  I wanted to keep the paintings which are by family members, they already have a blue theme in their colours, plus beautiful maple and gilded frames.

The mission:

To spend as little as possible on raw materials, and to refresh the room using whatever I had lying around the house.  I did a rough moodboard to keep my mind focused.

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Decorating:

I found a great wallpaper called ‘Charlotte‘ to use on the back wall where the shelves once stood.  It is a light blue paisley on white and cost only £18 a roll from B&Q, plus it is paste the wall paper which is amazing, (first time I have used paste the wall paper and it is SO easy). It took less than an hour to whack it up and I only needed one roll.  I then repainted the remaining walls in First Dawn by Dulux, which is pretty much an exact match for the pale blue used in the wallpaper.  The woodwork was all repainted in Farrow and Ball’s Wimborne White, which is quite a bright white for them.  The room instantly looked fresher, brighter and bigger.

Total cost: £56.41

It’s Official. I don’t get a kick out of neutrals anymore….c

Colour, Decorating, Inspiration, Interior Design

Something has changed – it could be hormonal, or maybe I have had a small stroke and a part of my brain has switched to a new dimension, but I just cannot get enthused at the moment with natural shades and calm interiors. Neutrals are great for making things look spacious, calm and restful, but I just don’t seem to want them anymore.  I want drama, colour and eclecticism.