Whenever I've gone quiet on social media and my blog it usually means I'm up to something in my own home. This time is no different! We've had to get works done in the house (damp coursing, fully rewired - the joy of an older house!) so while it was already a mess, I started uncovering this beauty of a floor in my kitchen! I had no idea it'd still be good under all the thick layers upon layers black paint. Lots of work to go, but I do love a challenge!
We used some fairly potent smelling paint stripper - caution and lots of ventilation and a mask is advised! Our house is an old Victorian redbrick oozing with old world charm and loveliness, however being 120 odd years old, in places the paint is 120 layers thick! This floor was no exception, and again because of it's age we needed to be careful with sanding as there was a risk of old paint containing lead, and being our kitchen floor, with an open shelving style galley kitchen - it would not be a good environment to have tiny lead particles floating around in. I am also fairly sure that the final coating of paint was an industrial style garage floor paint, quite the mess to remove. It was black, layered on until all definition between board was lots and scuffed to bits, never looking clean and very dark in an otherwise bright kitchen. It had to go.
I have always wanted a painted wooden floor, and although my head says to varnish or stain to a darker wooden finish (after all it will help to hide some of that dirt amiright?), alas the heart wants what the heart wants. Painted floorboards are notoriously not as hard-wearing as a good old fashioned varnished one, and although this will be quite a high traffic area I'm still going to give it a whirl. This will only be a temporary solution until we save to get something else, and is our first house after renting for many years so its great to be finally about to do what we want with our own home. Those trusty converse have seen quite a few upcycles in their time! Check back in to see the progress. Wish me luck!
No need for upcycling
There is nothing better than spending an afternoon in Dublin with no agenda, just having a wander and a look at all the amazing architecture and forgotten signs of the city.
This is one of my favourite buildings in Dublin, and not just because of its contents! To get a pic in the sunshine, and with a Guinness truck right outside, on Paddy's week - how much more patriotic can you get! I love my city 💖
Junk Kouture is an awesome recycled fashion competition held in Ireland for secondary level students to create their own recycled and wearable fashion items. What a fantastic way to get teenagers thinking about what they can do to help recycle and preserve the environment around them for their own and furture generations. Below is some amazing work by the kids in CBS Westland Row - all made from recycled materials! The materials they used were all sourced from Recreate Ireland. Recreate Ireland is a fantastic initiative that partners with businesses to recycle their waste for use as art & craft materials. Well done to the talented kids in CBS Westland Row, incredible work and all made from 'junk', some serious talent and creativity- best of luck in the competition!
At a recent market, I met a lovely lady who took my card and contacted me shortly after about making a custom pebble art picture as a gift for her brother. She asked if I could create a sheep themed picture....I wasn't entirely sure how I would actually do it, but a little trial and error and a bit of imagination and voila! This custom pebble art picture was made using shells and pebbles collected from Irish beaches,some artificial grass helps to gives it some real depth and casts some amazing shadows! Commissions are very welcome. Please get in touch for more details.
I know I am biased, but I do love these cute little sheep! :)
Upcycles often present themselves in the strangest of places and ways when you least expect it! I bought this fab second hand farmhouse style table for my own dining room. I had big plans to paint the legs and stain the top to a classy dark oak colour. I want to add different coloured painted chairs eventually (when I find the right ones!).
I collected the table from a lovely guy who helped load it into the van too. When I got it home and lay the table top against the wall with the underneath facing up I couldn't believe it, the underneath of the table was even nicer than the actual table top! The before pic below is the table top as it's meant to be - a varnished pine finish, and then assembled with the underneath now as the top.
I love the rustic look and this has it by the bucket load, and was completely unintentional! What a happy little accident. It took a LOT of sanding to get it to a level and useable finish but I have completely fallen in love with it.
After an intense sanding (that I'm still not the better for) and sealing with a matt varnish to protect it, it now has pride of place in my dining room. Now that is some looking at things differently!
I actually decided against painting the legs entirely - once the top was finished, the wood just looked so lovely all rustic and worn so I left it as is, for now at least! :)
Table top before (the lighting was terrible!!)
Table top after
I am completely obsessed with The Great Interior Design Challenge!! I love seeing how each designer interprets the clients ideas, but especially love the upcycle challenges set each week by the judges. The designers are given a random selection of items to create something unique for their room.Take a look at some of the amazing things people have come up with here.
I love Christmas, but really don't like all of the waste that comes a long with it.
Why not put that leftover paper to some create good use by trying some of the ideas on Buzzfeed here. Some of theses are very adorable, and anything that saves waste from going to landfill is a win in my book!
It's been another amazing year for The Makery and wouldn't have been possible without all you wonderful Makery fans, and for that I am truly grateful. It is because of you that I get to do what I love and that means the world to me.
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and all of the very best for the New Year ahead. Have a great day wherever you are, eat, drink and be merry. ✨🎄
Hats off to 7up for this clever marketing campaign. As I always say, anything can be made unique and fabulous if you just look at things differently.
By simply using some glue, tape and glitter, empty bottles have been upcycled to make them sparkle for the festive season. So simple to do, the kids will love it.
One of my cute handmade peg decorations in full glory on my tree...please excuse the sentiments in the background - crafters are full steam ahead at this time of year with markets & handmade gifts in the run up to Christmas and it takes its toll at times! :)