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.


Home Sweet Bumble Home

This is the journey of my Butterfly houses.

I always like to see how piles of materials can be turned into little creations. Every designer can put a little bit of themselves into each product, giving each one their own signature style.

As usual I visited my product development manager and my personal joiner (Mum and Dad!) and discussed a new idea. I left Dad with a rough design to see if it would be possible and cost-effective to make. Of course, Dad being Dad completely succeeded my expectations and on my next visit, a small town of Butterfly houses were waiting for me.

Made of quality wood and each one hand crafted by a joiner, Butterflies will be making a bee-line (or should that be a butterfly-line) to make one of these their home.

Once they land on the Bumbleblue desk, I can get my paint pots out and each house is given a few coats, sanded slightly in between to get a nice smooth and even finish. This also helps when I paint on any wording, which isn’t as easy on thick, lumpy paint.

The final coat is left to dry completely, and with my latest batch the sun made an appearance, perfect for helping the paint to dry.

When the whole house is finished, it’s then given a coat of external varnish to protect it from the elements, which have been a touch random lately!

Every house will reach its new owner with a little guide to help you to make the most of it and what to do to encourage butterflies to stay. I think one of these will definitely be making its way into our garden, they’re just too nice to sell them all!



Cosy in the Summerhouse

Why are men so difficult to buy for?

I think everyone asks themselves this. Just when you think you’ve got everything covered – Birthdays, Christmas, Anniversaries… along comes Fathers Day.

I always place more importance on Birthdays, but I do like to have little treats ready for other occasions, Fathers Day being one of them, and my dad is always touched by any effort made (even if it’s another pair of socks or bottle of whiskey)

Even though we are now grown up, a present from me or my sister that is hand made, is marvelled and praised as though it was an undiscovered Picasso.

Support and encouragement on tap. This has always been the case, and still now with my craft fair adventures, they’re not far away;

‘We’ll come and help you set up…..I’ve bought you a cup of tea…..Don’t worry about lunch, I’ll treat us to a cob…..This scone just fell into my bag…’

While mum is making sure I have enough food for the duration (usually only 6 hours of what is prodominantly smiling and chatting with people) My dad will be carefully studying everything on my table. He’s a joiner and is a mine of knowledge when it comes to types of wood. Luckily my products which start as little chunks of wood, have been approved and he’s happy with my choice of birch.

Dad will always let you know if he’s not happy with something, especially when it comes to wooden furniture for our house – but that’s another story including a chest of drawers that dad completely dismantled and re-built with new runners because he didn’t like how the top drawer shut.

Since the first set I made, dad has admired the hanging letter blocks, usually wanting every set he sees. They already have a set of ‘Welcome’ blocks in their dining room, but he now liked the ‘Cosy’ set too.

‘That would look nice in the Summer House’ turned into ‘I want one for the Summer House’ but with a sideways glance and some excellent lip reading on my part, a fathers day gift was discovered.

Along with some gorgeous varieties of tea from Whittards, and of course some socks from M&S, my Dad was well and truly spoilt this Fathers Day…and so it should be.