Sunday, 29 April 2012

My House

Wickes - My project 2012


Wickes - My project 2012


Wickes - My project 2012


Wickes - My project 2012


As some of you may know, we bought our house a few years back and it was in a right state: from the ugly exterior to the old, decrepit kitchen and nondescript garden! So when the lovely peeps at Wickes asked me to join their new Wickes 'My Project' campaign I leapt at the chance! They gave me £200 in vouchers to spend at Wickes and asked me to share before, during and after photos of my project.

We chose to replace the floor in our lounge/dining room, the very last thing we needed to do to complete the re-decoration in that room. So I have finally joined Facebook and uploaded all the ugly pics of my lounge/dining room in the 'before' state. Over the next few weeks I will be sharing the during and after photos. Until then I have included at the back of the 'my project' book some of the makeovers we have done on our exterior to whet your appetites.

To see 'my project' go here and click the blue links under the photos above to see the original posts on my front yard, exterior and garden.

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Thursday, 26 April 2012

Pretty box frames


My living room walls are pretty bare so I have been looking around for inspiration and deciding what to hang on them. I will be sharing with you my choices very soon as we are finally finishing re-decorating our lounge / dining room with some new flooring as part of the "Wickes, my project".

What I love about the pretty box frames is the ease with which you can slide the glass up so you can change the contents as often as you like. I can't wait to hang them on the wall and play with the contents. I just need to remember to space the pretty box frames far enough apart so that I can slide the glass up!

Pretty box frames
Tools and materials

Pretty box frames, How-to step by step
Decorating my display box

Start by carefully sliding the glass panel out and put to one side. Then paint the entire box frame with a couple of coats of white paint and leave to dry. After measuring the inside back of the box frame, cut a piece of pretty paper to size. Carefully coat the inside of the back of the shelves with a thin coat of PVA glue. Immediately stick the cut piece of paper to the PVA glue and smooth down with your fingers to remove any air bubbles and leave to dry. Finish by coating the stuck piece of paper with a thin coat of PVA glue to give it a protective finish. Once completely dry, fill with your chosen objects and slide glass back into frame.


Display box
Filling display box


Perching bird


Deer in display box

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Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Pretty thumb tacks

I have moved to Torie Jayne.com

You can find me in tutorials...Pretty thumbtacks


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Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Mini Shelving

Mini Shelving by Torie Jayne
This past weekend I finally got around to decorating my miniature shelf unit. I bought my miniature wooden shelf unit, with 19 compartments, back in January from Panduro Hobby but couldn't make up my mind how to decorate them!?! I eventually decided to paint them white with a pretty print in the background. I plan to hang them in my craft room as a great little place to store some of my favourite trims and sewing bits and bobs.

Mini Shelving
Tools and materials

Mini Shelving, How-to step by step
Decorating mini shelves - Part 1
Decorating mini shelves - Part 2
Start by painting the entire shelving unit with a couple of coats of white paint and leave to dry. Then, using a variety of printed papers, cut out two pieces of printed paper @ 90mm x 110mm, five pieces of printed paper @ 44mm x 110mm and twelve pieces of paper @ 54mm x 44mm. Then carefully coat the inside of the back of the shelves with a thin coat of PVA glue. Immediately stick the cut pieces of paper to the PVA glue and smooth down with your fingers or glue spatula to remove any air bubbles and leave to dry. Finish by coating the stuck pieces of paper with a thin coat of PVA glue to give them a protective finish.


Mini shelves
Mini shelves filled


Mini shelves filled


Mini shelves filled


Filled mini shelves

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Monday, 23 April 2012

Calm work space

Calming work space

Source 1, 2, & 3 - VT Wonen magazine, 4 - Lonny Mag

I spent the past weekend painting and decorating my mini shelves and box frames and my craft room looks a mess! So I am loving these tidy, calm work spaces in powder pastels. I am so in love with the stack of suitcases painted white with beautiful labels hung from them; what a great way to clear all the clutter, huh? I could so do with these...

For more inspirational work space pins check out my Pinterest board, Craft room ideas.

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Sunday, 22 April 2012

Dottie Angels walls

Dottie Angels walls


This week on Flickr Faves Sunday, I bring you Dottie Angel, whose beautiful house always catches my eye. I love the multi-textured walls in her house, from quirky framed pictures to washi tape adhered art and clogs filled with threads. To see more of Dottie Angel's work check out her blog. She also has a new book on Granny Chic coming out in Autumn, I can't wait!

Some beautiful shots from my Flickr favourites:

Have a sweet day!

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Saturday, 21 April 2012

The Balcony Gardener by Isabelle Palmer

The Balcony Gardener by Isabelle Palmer

This week I'm reviewing The Balcony Gardener by Isabelle Palmer, from illustrated lifestyle publishers Ryland Peters & Small and CICO Books. Isabelle Palmer has created a successful business from her ability to enliven any balcony, roof terrace or window sill with her inventive gardening ideas and is the founder of The Balcony Gardener, an innovative online boutique that I featured here on 'shops i love'. I chose to review this book as I love her gardening boutique.

The Balcony Gardener is a book about being creative with the outdoor space you have, be that a window sill, balcony or roof terrace. However confined, Isabelle shows you how to make the most of what you have in the open air of the country or the hub of a city.

The book is split into five main chapters, starting with "The Basics". In this chapter Isabelle outlines the basic techniques you need to start balcony gardening, starting with the essential kit you need, and moving on to choosing and preparing pots and planting containers for your outdoor space. There are also guides and tips on choosing colours, plus seasonal and aftercare of your plants.

The second chapter "Urban Spaces" is a well presented selection of Isabelle's interesting themes and decorative ideas you can draw on to create your own outdoor escape to sit back and relax in. One of the included ideas is the Country Garden, inspired by lush meadows and wild flowers, a pretty butterfly, bee window box and a rippling splashing water garden.

The third chapter "Creative Recycling" is, as the title suggests, about getting creative with a variety of different recycled containers from old cans to metal crates. Isabelle shows you how to plant and create a salad box in a vintage wooden crate, how to turn a birdcage into a planter, and an old pallet into a wall planter.

The fourth chapter "All Things Edible" is about growing your own vegetables, fruits and herbs in a well thought out way. So for those that like delicious fruity drinks in the summer there is the stylish cocktail window box full of mint and strawberries. For the foodie there is the herb window box for fish, planted with curly-leaf parsley, lemon thyme and dill. Each window box idea also includes a helpful recipe.

The last chapter "Enjoying Your Balcony" is about doing exactly that! After mastering your outdoor planting it's time to add fun finishing touches like mood lighting and accessories, choose your garden furniture and make hanging votive candles. All of which Isabelle explains how to do.

The Balcony Gardener by Isabelle Palmer is a great hardback book full of great tips, ideas and inspiration to get you gardening. At a recommended price of £14.99, I think this hardback book is a good buy as it is has so many great tips for the first-time gardener and lots of inspiration for those who already have green fingers.

Some of my favourite shots:

Country garden


Salad box


Herbs


Party garden

Please note that my opinions are my own and I am not paid for these reviews (apart from receiving a free book, of course!).

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Friday, 20 April 2012

Cox & Cox

Cox & Cox Spring 2012

Today on Friday Finds I wanted to share with you some of my favourite finds in the new Cox and Cox Spring 2012 catalogue. Keeping with this week's theme of wall art, I am loving the beautifully unique, hand-carved wooden shadow box, lined in a floral fabric. Because of the hinged front, you can attach memorabilia to the lining as often as you like.

To add character to your book storage there is the delightfully sweet embroidered bird shelf that can nest amongst your books or be wall mounted. To display your favourite necklaces there is the beautifully distressed jewellery frame and to keep clutter at bay I am loving the retro-looking zinc and wire basket. For a fresh injection of some new pretty patterns I am fawning over the enchanting glass pretty print tea lights. Then, last but not least, the delightful hand-painted decorative bird clip made with real feathers because you know how much I love birds!

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Thursday, 19 April 2012

Etsy Art in mint, jade, peach & coral

Etsy art

This week on "Wonderful World of Etsy" I bring you some of the gorgeous artwork I found on Etsy, all in my favourite colour palette of the moment: mint, jade, peach and coral.


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Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Paper Mash

I have moved to Torie Jayne.com

You can find me in A-Z of shops I love...Papermash


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Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Washi Tape bunting

Washi tape bunting by Torie Jayne

I have put away my all Easter crafts and now I am looking forward to working on my inspiration wall in my newly organized craft room. First up I have started to make some washi tape bunting!

Washi Tape bunting
Tools and materials

Glitter eggs, How-to step by step
Making washi tape bunting

Start by tearing off a strip of masking tape, carefully fold the masking tape in half over the length of embroidery thread, and trim a triangle out of the opposite end.


Flag bunting

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Monday, 16 April 2012

Inspirational wall

Inspirational wall

Source 1,3,2,4

Today I am sharing with you some of my inspirational pins from my Pinterest boards. I just love all these inspirational walls from the cluster of bright picture frames to the pin and clip boards. All of which inspired me to get on with finishing my inspirational wall in my craft room. Coming soon...

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Sunday, 15 April 2012

Bunny Art

My bunny print

A while back the lovely peeps at Hello Canvas offered to print a 24x32 inch canvas for free for me to review; all I needed to do was send them my favourite picture. It took me ages to decide what picture to send, but I eventually decided to design a print for my canvas that I could hang on the wall at Easter and give to my younger sister afterwards to hang in her new nursery as we both share a love of aqua! The nursery is not quite finished but as soon as it is I will be sure to share a photo of it with you.

Hello Canvas are specialist canvas printers and they offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee, lowest price guarantee and delver for free within one week! What's not to love?

I can't tell you how impressed and excited I got when it arrived. It was so perfect that I had to ring my sister right away and tell her. She immediately popped round and got really excited too. It was printed on high quality canvas using UV-protected inks and then hand stretched onto a 1.2" thick wooden frame, wrapped in environmentally friendly plastic and sent via UPS in a custom-made box. They were such a pleasant company to deal with and helpfully advised me that the light aqua color I had in the background of my print would look nicer if they carried this color to the edge of the canvas. They were right. Oh, and once I had sent my artwork the turn around was super fast! Both my sister and I are delighted! Thank you Hello Canvas.


Bunny art close up

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Saturday, 14 April 2012

3D easter egg and bunny

Hand-made 3D easter egg and bunny

Just before Easter the lovely peeps at Lékué sent me the 3D easter egg and bunny mould and a decopen. I filled my bunny and egg mould with white chocolate and then, using the decopen filled with white chocolate coloured blue, I drew a graffiti squiggle over the top; a great gift for my cute nephew Samuel who loves bunnies and puzzles!

3D easter egg and bunny
What you will need:

Lékué 3D easter egg and bunny mould


Instructions
  1. Temper (melt) white chocolate
  2. Spoon chocolate into icing bottle or bag fitted with a small nozzle
  3. Squeeze chocolate into moulds
  4. Lightly tap moulds so chocolate lays flat and air bubbles are removed
  5. Stir blue chocolate food colouring a little at a time into the remaining white chocolate until you have desired colour. Stir well so colour is even
  6. Fill decopen with blue melted chocolate and carefully draw design onto filled moulds
  7. Lightly tap moulds so chocolate lays flat and air bubbles are removed
  8. Leave to set. Refrigerating speeds up this process and can make it easier to turn out
  9. Carefully release the eggs and bunny from the moulds
  10. Assemble egg and bunny

Lékué decopen

The decopen comes with two, four or six nozzles and can be used to decorate cakes and biscuits with messages, create ball, flower, rope and shell shapes; make toppings for your cupcakes and exquisite macaroons or profiteroles. I can't wait to use it again on my sweet treats!

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Friday, 13 April 2012

Hand-made chocolate flowers

I have moved to Torie Jayne.com

You can find me at...HANDMADE CHOCOLATE FLOWERS



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Thursday, 12 April 2012

Hand-made chocolate bunny heads

I have moved to Torie Jayne.com

You can find me in recipes...TRIPLE CHOCOLATE BUNNY HEADS


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Gluten free mini decadent chocolate nests

I have moved to Torie Jayne.com

You can find me in recipes...Gluten free mini decadent chocolate nests


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Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Mini gluten free berry chocolate cupcakes

I have moved to Torie Jayne.com

You can find me in recipes...Gluten free mini berry chocolate cupcakes

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Gluten free strawberry & almond cupcakes

I have moved to Torie Jayne.com

You can find me in cupcake recipes...Gluten free strawberry & almond cupcakes

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Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Gluten free banana chocolate chip cupcakes

I have moved to Torie Jayne.com

You can find me in recipes...GLUTEN FREE BANANA CHOC CHIP CUPCAKES

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Sunday, 8 April 2012

Happy Easter

Easter table


Bunny jar


Easter cupcakes


My Easter Table


Easter cupcakes

Wishing you all a Happy Easter!


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Saturday, 7 April 2012

Hand-made chocolate egg

I have moved to Torie Jayne.com

You can find me in recipes...Turquoise chocolate egg

Have a sweet day!


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Friday, 6 April 2012

Hand-made chocolate carrots

Hand-made chocolate carrots by Torie Jayne

Last year I made pink chocolate carrots with green chocolate tops, but I found that a lot of the tops fell off! So this year I made peach carrots and painted the tops with edible green dusting powder. No breakages so far!

Chocolate carrots
What you will need:

Making chocolate carrots

Instructions
  1. Temper (melt) white chocolate
  2. Stir in peach powdered food colouring a little at a time until you have desired colour. Stir well so colour is even
  3. Spoon chocolate into icing bottle or bag fitted with a small nozzle
  4. Squeeze chocolate into moulds
  5. Lightly tap moulds so chocolate lays flat and air bubbles are removed, and leave to set
  6. Turn out chocolate carrots
  7. With a damp brush, lightly paint the carrot tops with the green dusting powder

After posting about my bunny jars for Easter the other day, Bonnie Leigh from the blog Three o'clock on Tuesday suggested making mini ones using baby food jars. What a great idea! So I made some more bunny jars, this time using baby food jars and some very small bunnies I've had knocking about since last year which I bought from Acorn & Will.

Mini bunny jars
Mini bunny jars filled
Hand made chocolate carrots in mini bunny jar

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Thursday, 5 April 2012

Glitter eggs

Glitter eggs by Torie Jayne

For this year's Easter tree, that I am in the process of making, I need some new eggs to hang on it. I have recycled my previously painted eggs from my Easter 2010 table by covering them in glitter to match this year's Easter colour scheme of mint, peach and gold.

Glitter eggs
Tools and Materials

Glitter eggs, How-to step by step
Glittering eggs

Start by carefully removing the plastic stopper from the plastic eggs. Then brush PVA glue on to top of eggs. Sprinkle coloured glitter onto glued area of eggs. Tap gently to remove any excess glitter, and leave to dry. Push egg hangers into hole at top of eggs and thread gold embroidery thread through loop in egg hanger, and knot to secure. Brush PVA glue onto rest of eggs and spoon glitter onto eggs, covering entire surface. Tap gently to remove any excess glitter, hang and leave to dry.


Glittered hanging eggs
Glittered Easter eggs
Glittered Easter eggs

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