Friday, 28 August 2015

I've been longlisted for the Irish blog awards!


       Whoever nominated me, thanks a million! You guys are brilliant! :) 

                                               Linda xx

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Max's room reveal! Finally!

I did it! I finally finished a frickin' room! In it's entirety!!!

*pauses to wait for applause*

Thank you, thank you, yes, I'm very proud of myself ;P

Monday, 24 August 2015

adding some colour to the garden (when you can't grow flowers!)

painting birdhouses to brighten up the garden

This summer has been a total bust. 

To give you a visual of how much of a bust it has I write this there is rain pounding down so hard outside that it is actually crushing the couple of flowers I did manage to grow, grrr!!! Bloody Irish weather! 

I had visions of spending our first summer in this house sitting out in the garden, surrounded by flowers, having barbecues, you know, generally enjoying finally having some outside space after living in a seventh floor apartment for six years! But alas, it wasn't to be.

So I wasn't going to get my colourful, sunny garden (this year at least), but I still wanted to jazz up the area and add a bit of colour any way I could. I spend a lot of time looking out at that garden so I want it to be cheerful! 

This is what we had to work with....

painting birdhouses to brighten up the garden

So, when I saw some little bird houses in Dealz for €1.49 each I bought a bunch of them (I used two in Max's room) and painted them seriously bright colours that I got testers of from Valspar (in B&Q) when they were having a promotion and selling the testers for €1.60 each, bargain!

                   painting birdhouses to brighten up the garden

painting birdhouses to brighten up the garden

                 painting birdhouses to brighten up the garden

These little pops of colour, along with painting the wall and the shed, really brightened up the place.

painting birdhouses to brighten up the garden

                     painting birdhouses to brighten up the garden

So until next year, when I have another chance at getting my fantasy garden up and going, these little beauties will brighten up the place and give us something pretty to look at when we're standing at the kitchen sink ;)

                          painting birdhouses to brighten up the garden

So that's my little solution to the "Irish summer blues". Things have been a bit crazy here for the last week, big things are afoot in the kitchen! I hope to have a post on that asap, but in the meantime come and follow me on Facebook or Instagram, where I put up "in-progress" photos :)

P.S: Anyone else sick to the back teeth of this weather? 

 Linda xx

Thursday, 13 August 2015

creating (or curating) a great* gallery wall

*if I do say so myself

planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos

So it would seem that this week is gallery wall week here at make do and diy! I don't plan my posts, things just happen when they happen and then when I can muster the energy I blog about them, so it looks like I've been in picture hanging mode here recently seeing as I finished two last week!

There was a big blank space on the wall over our ikea hack dresser in the bedroom that was crying out for something to dress it up (I didn't take a picture, this was a late-night, impulse project). I had considered a large piece of art, and had bought one that I loved (this one) but when I hung it there it just didn't do it for me. So, back to the drawing board, and I decided on a gallery wall (based mostly on the fact that I have a LOT of frames hanging around this house).

I had collected a lot of pictures and items that related to our wedding and the kids that I had planned to build up until I had enough to fill a really tall blank wall at the top of the stairs, but what I had was perfect to fill the space in the bedroom so I decided to put it there for now instead. 

           planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos

In all honesty we will probably have to give in and put wardrobes in this area eventually anyway (I had been holding off because I thought it would make the room look much smaller) so the stairs gallery wall will probably still happen some day! 
I'm just learning that I need to work with what I have right now, not with some potential future layout in mind, because who knows when that will happen? And I'd rather have a house that's decorated to make me happy as it is for the time being. Holes in walls are easy to patch!!

So I gathered up what I wanted to use on the wall and played around with the layout on the bed until I had something I was happy with, and then Gavin and I spent half an hour holding things up (him) and standing back to make sure it looked right (me) before using a combination of nails, command strips and blu-tac to put everything up. I started with the large gilt frame with our initials in it and then worked out from there, balancing the larger and smaller pieces, as well as the gold and black, making sure they were all quite evenly distributed.

Does that make sense? It's hard to describe something like this as it's really subjective. What looks good to me might look terrible to you!

*sidenote ~ I'm an eyeballer. Lifes too short to measure distances between frames!

And here's the finished product in all it's naked-baby celebrating glory! 

planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos

I love it, it's nice to see all those reminders of when I was skinny and the reasons I am currently...less skinny ;)

The gilt frames are from charity shops. You can nearly always pick some of these up really cheaply if you look at the frame, not what's contained in it - bad art can be removed! The large one was €5, the smaller one was €1. 

The canvas of naked Emilia was a beautiful gift from friends of ours (who also took the photos), and the pics from our wedding were taken by them as well-I recommend having a talented photographer for a friend ;)

planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos

That little painting is Emilia's first ever commissioned artwork-I gave her the colors I wanted and let her go to town!

planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos

This is the topper from our wedding cake....

planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos

Naked Max-not to be outdone by Emilia.

planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos

I didn't have a suitable mat for this one so I just stuck the photo directly onto the glass with double sided tap and I love it, makes the old-fashioned gilt frame look modern. 

Also, mustaches on babies - always hilarious.

       planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos

I picked these frames up for €4 each on sale in Heatons. I buy frames cos I like them and they're cheap, I rarely buy them with a specific place or photo in mind. When I need one I just go to my "collection"! I generally stick to gold/white/black/wood so they fit in anywhere in the house.

planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos
I'm afraid she may have inherited a chronic case of RBF from me.

I kept the colour scheme to black and white images and black and gold frames, which ties the whole thing together. I think it's important to pick some sort of a theme and carry it through to tie your display together and make it look like a cohesive piece rather than a random collection of theme for this was obviously "look at my awesome family!", which is why I kept it in our room so as not to be too obnoxious about it ;)

planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos
I picked up the mirror on sale in Heatons for €4. It was originally silver, but that never puts me off, spray paint is cheap!

I left a gap at either side cos I have a bit of a crazy idea for a diy for two lights to go go there, something like this gold one....

76 Industrial Decor Ideas - From Industrial Hanging Pendants to Wooden Concrete Lighting (TOPLIST)

But if that doesn't pan out I'll extend the gallery right up to the wall on either side I think. Thoughts?

planning out a gallery wall of photos and mementos
Yes, that's a mirror ball and a reindeer plant pot, I don't discriminate when it comes to decorative items!

I genuinely, 100% love hearing from you all in the to me!! :D

Linda xx

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Wednesday, 5 August 2015

washi tape frames

washi tape frame woodland nursery gallery wall

This is hardly a wildly innovative idea or anything, but I had a problem and I solved it with this neat little idea that cost very little and took about five minutes, so I thought it was worth sharing!

washi tape frame woodland nursery gallery wall
Winnie the pooh quote free printable

The problem was the gallery wall I had put up in Max's room. 

I always planned on having some sort of gallery in there and had gathered a couple of things, like the cards from Tiger (2 for €1) and the feathers, but when I had my mad burst of energy and got the feature wall done and the other decor up I was on a roll and decided I wanted the whole thing finished! (there are no "finished rooms in this house, I got impatient!)

So I took myself on over to pinterest to find some free printable's to bulk it out and found this lovely set of baby woodland animals  from "We lived happily ever after" (amazing blog, loads of great ideas and free printable's). 

I printed them off on white card and set about arranging my wall, just sticking the paper up with blu-tac and then adding a couple of frames I'd gathered with the intention of using them in here at some point. This setup was fine for a while, and I was going to leave it like that, but the edges of the pictures were wonky cos I just cut them willy-nilly with a scissors, and they didn't stand out as much as I'd like, especially next to the framed pictures.

So I looked around for some cheap frames, but couldn't find anything I liked in the right size, and to be honest I didn't really want to buy six small frames just because something that was really fine wasn't exactly how I wanted it. I already have a large frame collection, and whereas bigger, chunkier frames would always be re-used, smaller ones aren't so versatile.

And then, when I was browsing in Tiger I came across their packs of washi tape and realised that was the answer! Washi tape is cheap, comes in loads of colours and patterns, and wouldn't damage the walls. I'd just outline the art in patterned tape! 

washi tape frame woodland nursery gallery wall

So here's the finished product....

washi tape frame woodland nursery gallery wall
Oh, to be able to afford a proper camera!

washi tape frame woodland nursery gallery wall

It makes the pictures stand out and improves the whole display. Also, these pictures didn't need nails in the wall or expensive command strips cos they're just pieces of paper, win!

washi tape frame woodland nursery gallery wall

Washi tape comes in all colours and patterns, and it has about a million uses. I love it, I'm amassing quite a collection! I've bought some online when I wanted something specific, but stationary/craft shops usually have a decent selection, and it generally costs around €1/€2 per 10 meter roll. I can definitely see myself using it for more gallery-style displays, these inspiration pics are so simple and pretty.....

washi tape frames
Fox and Star

30+ Fun Washi Tape Ideas + Downtown Tape WASHI GIVEAWAY!
Design Sponge

What do you think? Washi tape ever come to the rescue for you?! I've seen some amazing ideas for using it, feature walls, furniture name it, washi tape can be used to jazz it up! In fact there's a wall in my living room I may need to introduce it to....