Beautiful Bureau

I love family furniture hand-me-downs. We grew up in a house filled with furniture passed on from grandparents, family friends and more, and for me this is what makes a home cosy and familiar. As well as being unique pieces of furniture, they’re also little links to the past, filled with memories of where they came from.

My parents have a beautiful grandfather clock in their dining room which came from our grandma’s house. He seems to have his own personality and is incredibly fussy about where he stands. When my grandma moved from her house into a bungalow, he refused to tell the right time. Eventually (after many months of confusing my gran) my Dad took him apart, moved him to our house and carefully put him back together again. Obviously he likes it there as since then, as long as you keep him wound up, he tells the right time.

Now we have our own house a few pieces of furniture have been passed onto us to start a new chapter. A little set of shelves my Uncle made sit in our living room, a chest of drawers from my grans house looks perfect in our bedroom and now a bureau from my auntie and uncles house has found a home in our hallway.

It was looking a little bit tired and sorry for itself covered in thick black varnish. Out came the paint stripper to try and cheer it up a bit. Our initial plan was to paint it, but as soon as I started to scrape off the tar-like varnish I knew I couldn’t cover it up with paint. The wood was a warm colour and the grain running through it was amazing.

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I’m so happy with the end result and I’m sure it will be a long standing member of our family of hand-me-down funiture.


Car Boot Treasures

It really felt like Spring was on it’s way the other weekend. The clouds and chill in the air moved to one side and the sun tiptoed into their place.

I joined the early bird on Sunday and went along to a car boot sale. I was a bit bleary-eyed but wandering around in the sun peering at people’s offerings, I soon started to wake up. I love trips to antique markets and shops, but the humble car boot will always be a special treat. Traders in antique shops have usually selected the items they hold and are looking to make a profit on whatever piece you buy from them – after all it’s their business. Car booters offerings are a random mix of old and used or new and un-touched bits and bobs. You never really know what, if anything you’re going to find.

I did a quick lap but was distracted by the tea van. On the second lap I found some fabulous little treasures. One actually isn’t that small – It’s a gorgeous wooden frame perfect to be turned into a chalkboard for our kitchen. I didn’t realise just how big it was until I got it back to the car. My little KA did very well to accommodate it!

A pair of wooden candle sticks and this gorgeous bedside table and I came away quite pleased with myself.



I’m waiting for a nice day to get on with the table, but I couldn’t wait to get the candle sticks sanded down!


More Tea Vicar?

I found a fantastic book last week. It’s filled to the brim with home made gift ideas with inspiration from vintage items and forgotten treasures.

I love things with a story behind them. The Bumbleblue desk was originally my Grans dining table, and the chair I sit on is one that my Dad would have swung his legs from at meal times. My Mum and Dads house has plenty of antiques from the family  too – one being a chunky stone bench that used to sit outside my Grans house on a hill in Winster (A very pretty village in Derbyshire) I can imagine anyone walking up the hill would have appreciated a sit on it! Dad nearly broke his back moving it and I think sheer determination means it’s now sat on their patio.

Reading through my new book, I found a method for turning teacups into candles. As luck would have it, I was sat next to a lovely lady at my craft fair at the weekend who had a table full of vintage items – including this gorgeous teacup and saucer!

She tutted at me for spending my money when I was there to earn, but said she was happy it was going to a nice home.

So, with a little help from my new book, my little teacup has had a change of use…

Oh so proud!

Pull up a Chair

I love grubbing through antique shops and car boots for little treasures to give a new lease of life to, but my search for a simple wooden chair seemed to be getting very tricky.

I started on Ebay. Perfect chair found. Collection only from Sussex. Moving on…

Cattle Market car boot and a lovely old man that appears at the Derby car boot every weekend caught my eye. He had some gorgeous chairs. Only problem this time was that he wanted a gorgeous price for said gorgeous chairs.

Antique shops seemed to be a similar problem, and alot had already been restored. It would be daft to pay double for a restored chair so I could take it home … to restore.

I decided to look a little newer to see if this would help with the budget, and I found a simple but very lovely unfinished wooden chair. It spent a week untouched while I excitedly picked over my collection of tester pots.

No. 25 Pigeon is a greeny shade of grey from Farrow and Ball and looks subtle and chic on the chair.

After letting two coats completely dry – which was lovely and quick thanks to Mr Sunshine making an appearance – I painted on a thin layer of No.59 New White.

As is always the way, I then went on to finish last weeks ironing pile and deciding what wonderful invention I could muster up for tea.

So as I left my chair drying in the sun, our cat Buddy came to inspect my handywork…

Obviously it had been a hard day at the office.

Hopefully it wont be too long before I can get back into the garden to finish my chair – I’ll keep you posted!