Bedroom Makeover on a Budget

I moved into my tiny flat in May 2011.  Built in 1972 it was in ‘original condition’ and in a state decor wise which is best described as ‘tired’.

In the intervening four and a half years I have done what I can to make my home a place that works for me. It is all looking pretty good – except for one room.  The small back bedroom, which at the end of moving in day 2011 looked like this

craft Room 2 May 11

and a week or so later looked like this

craft room

This room was intended as my art space, but after a few weeks of trying to squeeze my supplies and tables and me in, I decided to turn my big bedroom over to my art and squeeze my bed into this room instead.

This is a montage of my art room – just in case you have never seen where I create….. It’s not as tidy as this usually………..


There is, as you may have noticed, the most wonderful 70’s yellow floral wallpaper firmly adhered to the wall of the aforementioned tiny bedroom.  It wasn’t going to budge and investigations into removing or painting over required either more than my miniscule budget could afford or the use of chemical sealers that would likely kill us all in our sleep.

The yellow flowers had to stay for the time being.  I did my best:

Bedroom 28 8 14

But it really wasn’t good enough!  Time passed by, I went into the room only to dress or sleep, often never turning the light on.  It was a necessary room, but not an inviting one.

Recently I became very aware of the need to change and improve my evening ritual – I wasn’t sleeping that well and my reading time was also curtailed.  My room needed to be a place I wanted to spend time in.  I wanted to spend time winding down in a pleasant manner – taking a shower, putting on my pj’s making a cup of herbal tea and tucking into bed with that soothing drink and a good book and spending a bit of quiet time before sleep.

I needed my room to become a welcoming haven.

But how do you turn a tiny room into a welcoming haven spending as little money as possible?  You inveigle invite Youngest Daughter/Official Photographer to help and set to work and do a makeover in three days.

The plan: to remove the layers of curtains from the windows and streamline the area as much as possible while retaining privacy – the window looks straight onto an ugly old brick house next door and is also on the shared pathway between my flat and the back flat.  Take off the wardrobe door and replace with curtains.  Paint out the ugly wallpaper and rearrange the furniture.

Day one, clear everything out.  In a tiny house the issue becomes where to put everything.  Rain doesn’t help!  So, haul the bed into the lounge, shut the front door and don’t let anyone else inside.   Stop breathing and paint the walls with sealer.  Purchase a dozen onions, cut them up and put them in the room.  Close the door and don’t go back until Day Two.


Finding ourselves still alive on the morning of Day Two, the Official Photographer and I painted, in the palest hue of green you will ever see, three coats onto the walls. [It looks white in the photos but is in reality a soft green that glows beside the cyan blues that are used in the furnishings.]  Endless rain doesn’t help with the quality of my photos either …………..

In between coats the windows were covered with a faux stain glass effect privacy film


And also in between coats, a headboard was constructed from two large [100 x 80 cm] canvases that hold paintings I don’t currently want up, but don’t want to throw away.  An old blanket was used for the wadding and an unused piece of stretch fabric from the stash was the perfect size to cover the canvases.  It was all stapled together.


It has to be duly explained here that all this is the brainchild of Youngest Daughter/Official Photographer who also doubles as our ‘Engineer Brains’ when I have a good idea but don’t know how to make it a reality.  Isn’t that a great headboard!


Did you notice above the lace curtains that were retrieved from storage and cover the wardrobe instead of a door?

On the wall opposite the bed my favourite ‘soul’ picture, painted almost a year ago


A new duvet cover was purchased in a sale and the 1500 thread count sheets [sigh, slurp!] were a Christmas gift.  And of course, there is no show without Punch Siddy



Total cost of makeover

Sealer and paint  [on sale, saving 30%]     $97.00

Bedding [on sale, saving 60%]   $35.00

Headboard $0.00

Two girls, three days medium labour.

I can’t tell you how very happy I am with my room!  It may be tiny but it has everything I require and I find myself wanting to head off to bed at 8 pm now!

What do you think?

Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did!

The Books Piled Beside the Bed – Pt 2

Has it really been two months since my last book review post?  Doesn’t time fly when life is interrupted by Christmas and New Year and fiddling about with beads and hot summer days, days of gale force winds, days of rain and days filled with everything at once …….

The pile of books is growing ever taller – as it appears my reading time is not generously allocated at the moment!

Here is a lovely shot courtesy our Official Photographer – you can see there is no room for anything else on that bedside cabinet!


Many of these books were received as Christmas gifts from the lovely Eldest Daughter who providentially works for a world renown publishing house.  How lucky am I?

Some of the titles, the eagle eyed among you may notice, were books recommended by your good selves in the comments section of previous post of the same title.  These were searched out by the aforementioned ED on her many forays around Book Shops and judiciously added into my pile of Christmas Books.

We do not slack around here when it comes to reading!

If you follow the blog [and if not, why not?] of the superbly well written author Geoff Le Pard over at  TanGental, you might also notice two of his titles in the pile as well. ‘Dead Flies and Sherry Trifle’  and ‘My Father and Other Liars’. Geoff sent me these books to read and review.  I’ve just launched myself into the first so look for something in the next ‘Books’ post  ……….

But let’s stay on track – life is more than just creating light catchers and lying about in the sunshine or battling the gale force winds, or avoiding the icy rain storm [whichever event is occurring in any given hour] you know.  I am trying to introduce myself to a new ‘healthy habit’.  [Please, do stop cringing!]   Preparing for a good nights sleep by undertaking a leisurely evening ritual that includes showering, pj-ing, hot tea-ing and read-ing.  I’m even about to redecorate my tiny bedroom to make this final hour of the day totally and utterly enjoyable, but that’s another post!

Since the last post this is what I’ve read, or started to read or just dallied with

the reader

The Reader on the 6.27 by Jean-Paul Didierlaurent; Translation by Ros Schwartz

It’s a smallish book, immensely readable and quite, quite fascinating.  The back cover bears the inscription ‘Love is a journey’.  The story is original and quirky and the characters are oddly original and quirky too.  It’s about how a man copes with a life that it is less than ideal and how his method of coping affects, and is affected by, what he reads, out loud, on the train every day.  I loved it!

rush oh!

When Mary Davidson, the eldest daughter of a whaling family in Eden, New South Wales, sets out to chronicle the particularly difficult season of 1908, the story she tells is poignant and hilarious, filled with drama and misadventure.

I’m dallying with Rush Oh! written by Australian author, Shirley Barrett.  Based on real events that took place in 1908 and told in the first person by the daughter of the whaler.  It is the story of a unique relationship between the whalers and a pod of Orcas – known simply as the Killer’s who steer the whales into the vicinity of the harpoons.  The story is wryly amusing, laden with the romantic notions and shyness of the young motherless heroine and her day to day life, responsibilities and day dreams.  One of the things that has caught my attention is the no-nonsense, non-sentimental, factual approach to the job of killing whales.  Set in a time when life was harsher and simpler, in this small community whaling is their life and livelihood, nothing is wasted, everything is worth something.  Reading, I am aware that I have given no thought to my modern bias of abhorring the killing of whales – the author is that good!

I was reading this book up until Christmas Day, then it was put aside because I had opened and could not put down this next one.

the forgetting time

The Forgetting Time by Sharon Guskin

Noah is four and wants to go home.  The only trouble is, he’s already home.

Now, one of the really splendid things about having a daughter in the business is I sometimes receive copies of books prior to publication.  This one comes out in March and is a first novel and a superb read!  It deals with that tricky concept, reincarnation.  It deals with a mother’s love for her child through loss, through despair, through on-going behaviour that is so unusual that it sends her searching from specialist to specialist seeking an explanation.  It deals with concepts of reality and scientific mores.  It answers no questions, it raises many more.  It reads like a mystery story, a little bit of who-dunnit hidden in there, and the vagaries of getting to know, or missing out on understanding, the people in your life.

I really enjoyed this book, and had that slightly sad feeling as I arrived at the end and there was no more story.  Here is a new author who has made it to my ‘must read’ list.  I am already looking forward to her next book.

I’ve returned to ‘Rush Oh’ and am really enjoying it – but I also started ‘Dead Flies and Sherry Trifle’ and now I have a nightly conundrum of what to read………..

So, what have you been reading lately?  Do share – we need to keep those books piled up……

Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did!



A Whovian Lightcatcher

Hi, Happy New Year every onel!

I’m starting off with a look back at a highly secret project that took a chunk of my creative time last November – December.

So, for that lovely Holiday Season just past, I designed and made a Christmas gift for a Whovian.  It was kind of a mad idea, seeing as how I had never really seen the show and had no idea how I was going to make the vision I had in my head a real three dimensional experience.  It sure was a chance to get really creative!

I wanted to somehow indicate the whole spinning through the galaxy thing that apparently goes on in the show and give a feeling of the whoosh of time travel……

Who pizap

What these photos don’t readily reveal is the three dimensional thing that is actually going on……….

There’s a wee glimpse in this shot


And a touch of it’s fabulousness in this shot


Man these things are hard to photograph!  I had already called in the Official Photographer who managed to get the full length eventually ……



It is designed to be viewed in the round and hung away from the window for maximum rainbows.  When it was being photographed it spun out a kaleidoscope of colour through my living room.

The Whovian Light Catcher is made with two straight strands and two curved strands that circle around the outside.  Four AAA faceted crystal balls hang from the end of each strand.  Faceted glass baubles, acrylic octohedrons, silver beads, tiny oil beads and six lapis-lazuli gemstones make up the strands.  Lapis Lazuli is known as a sacred stone, said to be older than time itself – just like the Doctor!  🙂

Of course the charms include a weeping angel and a dalek, the Tardis, two red hearts and a sonic screwdriver – all things pertaining to to the story lines and the Doctor himself.

I had such fun making this light catcher and it really does give the feeling of spirals and vortexes and galaxies and such like which the Whovians of the family assure me is what it is all about!

What do you think?

I hope your year has gotten off to a good start and that it will unfold with fun, learning, new opportunities and much love given and received.

Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did!