Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A new lease on life

I have been undecided about whether to paint the side tables in our bedroom for quite some time. My husband went on a business trip to Brussels for four days so I decided it would be a good time to make a decision, spur myself into action and give these side tables a new lease on life.

These were given to us by my parents-in-law. They were updating their bedroom and asked us if we wanted them. In Australia our bedroom had a 'jungle' theme (for want of a better description), it was tan, olive green, teak furniture and large potted plants. It was time for a change and to be honest my taste has moved in a very different direction.

Four coats of paint later; much improved don't you think?

My thrifted birdies are happy in their new home. The concrete bird in the pot plant is something my husband gave me fourteen years ago. He met me after work one day, not with a bunch of flowers, but a lovely basket with a pot of baby's tears (not the white flower used by florists but the low growing ground cover). The baby's tears were covered in tiny white flowers and nestled in amongst them was this little bird. The plant left this world many years ago but the bird has graced a pot plant in our home ever since.

When I decorated our bedroom my husband said that he didn't mind what I did; I knew he was just being considerate, so while there are roses they are red not pink. I think he sighed a silent sign of relief when he saw it. The rose pillowcases are from America. In the 1940s and 1950s ladies in America would purchase linen to embroider. It would have a stamped outline of a pattern and they would simply follow the outline. I own quite a few of this type of embroidery, some of the workmanship is beautiful and you can be guaranteed no-one else has one quite like yours as although the pattern may have been the same the colours chosen and the little extra embellishments made each item individual to its maker.

There are two lovely ladies who make cushions on Ebay (juliescushions and kimberley*dawn*cushions). I purchased all of the cushions, except the white crochet one, from them. I picked up the crochet cushion at a charity fair for £1.00. It was stained but a good soak in hot water with napisan can fix all manner of problems. (Remember you can click on any photo to enlarge it).

One of my favourite possessions is my rose quilt. It is for a single bed so I have it folded in half at the top of the bed to add a bit of colour to the room. I searched Ebay for nine months to find just the right pattern. I adore barkcloth and wilendur fabric and this quilt has a similar look. There are a few worn bits and some of the hand quilting is loose but I don't care it just adds to the homey appeal. I think having hand-made things in your home, be they second-hand or newly made, gives a home a sense of itself; choosing them certainly gave me a sense of myself and how I have changed.

(It is only now, after, I have finished this post, that I have noticed one of the paintings is crooked - how very annoying, if you can live with it I can!)

1 comment:

  1. Hi Gillian

    love the painted tables, have been doing a bit of furniture painting myself lately and have been happy with the results. I will send you a photo of the bedrunner that my friend Lynette made for me out of my wedding dress. It looks amazing.
    I noticed a camphor box in the picture, I have one and have been thinking about painting it, will give it a go now.