Naff. That was the first thought in my mind when I came across tile stickers.
But then we moved to this house with a lime green kitchen and my opinion began to change. I knew we needed to come up with a quick and cheap solution so we could transform it (or at the very least, make it ‘liveable’) before all the major building works began.
You can find tile stickers on eBay and Amazon, but after heaps of searching, we personally struck gold with moonwallstickers.com. It’s an unassuming website, with limited and rather uninspiring social media activity but, my oh my, some of the tile stickers on there are gorgeous! (This is NOT an ad by the way!) There are also multiple size options available for every design making it compatible with the tiles you already have.
DISCLAIMER: These bunk beds were purchased by myself, with 50% off, in exchange for an honest blog post and pictures of the product. This is the first time I have collaborated on something like this so do let me know what you think and please ask me any questions you have about the bunk beds – all thoughts and words are, and always will be, my own!
As our youngest daughter began to outgrow her cot, it felt natural to look towards bunk beds as a solution for our girls’ shared bedroom. Not to mention our eldest daughter has been asking for them for a while now, and kept telling people, ‘when we move to the big house, we’re going to have bunk beds and I’m going to sleep on the top and Betty will sleep on the bottom…’ I’m not entirely sure where she got that idea from as we never promised anything specifically, but our hope was to have bunk beds set up in the new house as a surprise when they arrived.
Anyway, as regular readers of this blog will know, the house sale fell through at the last minute so we’re still in our old house for the moment (you can read what happened here), but babies carry on growing, and cots don’t grow with them, so we decided to find a new solution even if it meant building new bunk beds that we’d have to dismantle a few months later.
Due to our youngest being only 20 months old, we were keen to get a bed with the bottom bunk bed close to the ground, which this house bunk bed from House About Kids does perfectly. The ladder is also on a slant, has handles and wide steps, which is perfect for our girls who aren’t as physically confident as other kids their age. In fact, we visited a friends house at the weekend who have the Ikea Kura Bunk (another serious contender for us) but Darcey struggled to go up and down the ladder so I’m glad we didn’t go for that one just yet. As the years pass, I also think this bed has plenty of room to reinvent itself . I’m looking forward to making sweeping canopy’s, hanging plants, adding greenery and more fairy lights, maybe curtains of some sort for the bottom bunk, I could go on…! (**insert husband rolling eyeballs here**)
Following on from my blog post last week about what to expect when buying furniture at auctions, here are some very important tips you should know before embarking on your bargain shopping spree at your local auction house…
Measure up! I have a little notebook I take around with me everywhere with all the important dimensions of our home in. You never know what you’re gonna find on that day, so although you might go in thinking, I need a desk that is ‘xyz’, you may get there and find a gorgeous mirror and end up wondering what the heck is the distance between ‘abc’ instead. I asked, Catherine Hockley, director of our local auction house, Andrew Smith & Son, to share some tips on finding something that is the right fit for you: “Our salerooms are very large and so some items look small in them – always bring a tape measure, or borrow one from us, and make sure that the item you are bidding on will fit through your door or up your stairs.”
She also goes on to say, “Check the condition well before you buy, for wobbly legs or sticking drawers etc. Most things can be easily mended, but make sure it is within your capabilities or you will end up paying for restoration.”
After my popular post last week about how we’ve furnished our home on a budget, I’ve had so many questions about all the auction bargains we’ve collected over the years that I thought it necessary to write up a little guide so that you can start buying amazingly priced, but beautiful, good-quality furniture for your homes too. In a poll created on my Instagram stories, 87% of you shared you have never bought anything at auction which shows it is a massively underused tool amongst our generation. Despite the gracious words of my husband… “as long as they don’t all start coming to our one and bidding against us for the good stuff”, I’ve decided to utilise that old cliché of ‘sharing is caring’… so here are the basic steps for how it works logistically which I hope will give you the confidence to explore this option further…
Does anyone else love those kinda interior articles where they pick an expensive ‘investment piece’ and then source a budget option that is often very similar? I love it when magazines and bloggers try to make their content accessible to people like us who have a realistic budget and can’t blow the families’ winter shoes and coat budget on a new lamp.
Sometimes I find myself getting frustrated though, because even the ‘budget option’ makes my debit card quiver with anxiety, which, all things considered, is a bit unfair on the author really. Everything is relative and they can’t please everyone. I’m sure spending £179 on a coffee table IS a budget option for someone, and, in a similar vein, when I suggest spending £40 on a coffee table as a bargain, others may disagree with me too.
With that in mind though, I’d love to let you know about some of our own resources for spending less money as well as sharing a few of our mistakes so you can learn from them…
Before we bought ‘The Otto House’ we rented a large, detached three-bedroom house with an enormous studio in the garden. Like many here in the South of England we had to downsize to get on the property ladder so storage has always been a bit of an ongoing challenge. I am a curtain-maker by trade and not only used the old garden studio for making curtains but also for hoarding HEAPS of fabric, wallpaper, paint, magazines, books and anything else remotely crafty. It was like a creative paradise to me and something which I am sure I will never have again, but I am so very grateful for the two glorious years I spent stitching away in there whilst the sun streamed through the double doors. (And the winters spent in a coat, hat and gloves bent shivering over my sewing machine, but, you know, that sounded less poetic!)
When we picked up the keys for our first home ‘The Otto House’, we had three weeks to get it ready for our little family. At the time Darcey had just turned one, and although a walk in shower with large white plastic handrails and a fold down seat may be welcoming for a weary mama after a long sleepness night, it certainly didn’t please me aesthetically or suit our needs as a family bathroom. Thankfully a builder friend of ours was on hand to help us with the tiling and plumbing so we could crack on and get it finished in the couple of weeks before move in day.
We started by ripping out the shower and the awful faux marble plastic surround that had been literally glued onto the tiles beneath it. Having spent ages trying to take the tiles off the wall around the fireplace downstairs, the thought of more tiles that needed removing (especially ones not factored into our tight time frame) was as unwelcome as a James Blunt song on the radio. I needn’t have worried however as the tiles only required a few forceful taps, a bit of leverage with the chisel and they all fell down, bringing the wall with it!