Sunday, December 19, 2010

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

This little kitchen is done!

Remember this? The original kitchen when we moved in.
This was when the hutch still lived in there (yes this is that nice looking white hutch I blogged about recently)
The second half of the makeover is now finished. After changing the bench top on the sink side and getting rid of a cupboard at the end and replacing it with a set of drawers the first half was completed. (forgot to mention the new sink with 1 1/2 basins, loooove the extra 1/2 basin)
And now the cupboards for the other side are in and the bench top is on! It was fairly easy to put together once we'd done the first set of drawers. We didn't get the flatpax ones from Bunnings for these drawers (the new drawers under the other bench were from Bunnings and were very easy to put together). These new ones were chosen mainly for the under bench microwave configuration as the flatpax ones didn't have that.
If that wasn't a factor I would have preferred to go with the Bunnings ones, they had far better instructions and were very easy compared with the others. But we figured it out in the end and it's all done! Now there is heaps of space to fit everything and it's great to have the microwave not taking up bench space yet being so handy (as opposed to being in the laundry)
Here's a nifty idea for all you beachy people out there, I've found a way to bring the beach into the kitchen! Get yourselves some glass coffee jars with the lids that have a bit of space in them (I think they might be moccona ones, mine were pinched from mum's house)
After cleaning the jar and soaking the label off, remove the plastic seal from the lid. They should pop right off, and fill the lid up with some little shells, putting the plastic seal thing back on of course to hold them in there.
And then fill the jars up with your choice of product! I imagine you could do this with all different size jars and have other things besides tea and coffee products in them. I've seen them at the op shops so non coffee drinkers could get one from there instead.
And this is a little idea for keeping things easily accessible yet looking okay as well.
I found this woven tray at spotlight (I think) and thought it would be good to keep all the bits and pieces contained in one area.
We have the phone there as the wall plug is just below the bench and other stuff just ended up next to it as well. So the tray now is home to the phone, some notebooks, my sunnies, a bowl of pens and pencils and a key bowl. I have managed to get everyone (mostly) to put the keys in their home so we never have to look for them.
And it's handy to never have to scramble around for a pen when you need one.
So there you go, a nice bit of extra bench space that has heaps of storage underneath and it somehow manages to make the room look bigger!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Neptune table topper is done!

At the end of the kitchen where the dining table used to be (it now has its own room) is a spot I've made into a little relaxing area. I found the cane chairs at target and got some nice bright coral coloured cushions to add a pop of colour to that area. The little round table was mum and dad's and it's been around for a long, long time, except I recently painted it white.
Anyway I thought a little table topper would be nice for a bit more colour and the Neptune jelly roll that has been sitting in the sewing room being admired for a while had just the right colours in it!
I used some strips with coral, blue and green to match the cushions and kitchen that it's going with and sewed them together lengthwise.
Then using my trusty 10' wedge ruler I cut 36 wedges (10 times 36 is 360 degrees) going up and down the fabric so as not to waste any.
Then the sewing begins and 36 wedges were quickly sewn together to form, you guessed it, a circle!
I cut out a circle of pellon and backing and pinned them together (right sides together) while slipping in some ric rac so when it was turned right side out (through the circle in the centre) the ric rac would be around the edge in a wavy pattern.
Then after a good pressing I started quilting a spiral pattern all the way round and then went up and down all the wedges so it was very quilted and flat.
After this I cut out a circle using a saucer (it was just a little bit bigger than the hole it had to cover) and turned the edges under and quilter another spiral pattern to secure it.
So there you have it, a Neptune table topper and now that I have opened the jelly roll I am keen to make something else. It's a bit addictive!

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Highs and Lows

This week has been a rather eventful one. One of the highs has been this lovely torch ginger finally deciding to flower after about 4 years of living here. There are 3 torches on it at the moment and hopefully we'll get a few more. It has moved spots a couple of times before we found the best place for it and more seems to be happy and thriving.
One of the more lowish sort of things to happen was that we got this new teddy. Well the teddy itself isn't bad (thank you Red Cross) it's the reason we needed one in the first place.
Littlest fish had a bit of an accident on Wednesday and ended up in the hospital emergency dept. for half the day. It seems that diving on your sister who is perched on the side of the lounge and knocking yourself and her over the edge is not a good idea.
Especially when you both fall over the side and one of you lands on the corner of a step - with your face. After a trip to the local doctor who told us to go to the hospital as they could fix the gaping hole in the side of her temple in a kinder and less painful way than the GP could do, we set out for the emergency dept.
Some numbing drops and 2 local anesthetic needles later and the stitches were in.
Littlest fish was very good and managed to keep still mostly and I managed to not faint as I held her head steady and had to watch everything the doctor was doing. She had to have a couple of stitches to put her back together and some steristrips and a big band aid type patch to cover it all up but is now on the mend. In fact the next day she was up and playing and I had to explain to 21 mums at Kindy why she had a huge patch on her head when we dropped her sister off.
The stitches come out on Tuesday and she should only have a tiny scar that should fade to nothing so that is good.
Her face is a bit bruised down that side which looks a bit yucky but it's getting better each day.
The steps have now got plastic corner things on them and the furniture has been moved a bit so there is a side table between the step and the lounge. All lounge diving has also been banned, lounges are for sitting on only.
Her sister was not hurt at all and was very helpful when I was shouting at her to get me a washer and the phone.
To leave you on a more pleasant topic, here is a little sneak peek at something in the works at the moment - I finally undid my Neptune jelly roll! (I was a bit nervous as it looked so pretty)
(In case you aren't familiar with them the teddy is called a trauma teddy. The hospital gives them to kids that are in need of something to cuddle while they are being fixed up. The nice volunteers at the Red Cross make them and donate them to the hospital, yet another wonderful service they provide).

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


Remember this dark coloured hutch thingy that was going to get a makeover? Well it has!
After taking the glass doors off to paint and then deciding they could stay off and they could take their vertical supports with them (after checking with Mr Fish who said they were allowed to go too), it looks a lot more open and different.
The vertical pieces were surprisingly easy to remove with a bit of tapping using a rubber mallet (thanks Mr Fish) and the shelves had hardly any damage to them where they were nailed in.
After coating the top half in a generous slather of zinser and filling in a few nail holes we were ready for painting. ( I did the painting in top half and bottom half to break it up a bit)
A couple of coats of Antique White USA in a semi gloss and the transformation was almost complete. Add in a few new door knobs and a nice bit of duck eggy looking blue to the back of the shelves and we have ourselves a new looking display piece which is now conveniently located under a down light to give it a bit of a fancy look (pure chance that the down light thing happened, it was already there). I only put the pretty things on display as there was too much stuff and it was getting pretty crowded in there before, only the best op shopping finds made the cut!
(Don't tell Mr Fish that all his beery type stuff will not be going back on this lovely new looking hutch, he probably won't notice unless it's pointed out to him)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

The helpers and the next room getting prettied up.

Don't you just love helpers? They were very keen and didn't cost much. We paid them in strawberries.
The other half of the kitchen is getting the star treatment at the moment. The buffet/hutch thing is going into our new dining room (new for us, the rooms always been there we just like to move around a lot).
It is getting painted at the moment and will look a bit different when it is all finished, and yes you can have a look when it is done.
This is oldest fish "helping " to drill the screws into the new cabinets that are going in the kitchen.
This is what her sister did the whole time I was trying to take a picture, she just stands in front of me and does that. As if to say 'I'm ready for my close up'. So I had to take one of her as well.
This is the kitchen minus the buffet/hutch thing (I never know what to call it so apologies if it's got a real name).
It is getting a new benchtop to match the other one and the drawers will be painted the same once the wood putty sets properly. It would more than likely help if someone stopped poking the holes and ruining my putty applying skills. The poker has little fingers so I've narrowed down the suspects.
Very observant people might have realised that the wall has been painted and is now natural white instead of pacifica. This has brightened up the room a huge amount and there is now no need to put a skylight in ;)
And I even painted the cupboard doors as well. I'm thinking I'll leave the alcove where the fridge is the Pacifica colour as it looks okay.
So there you go, more work is being done and now oldest fish comes up to me (usually standing on a chair) and says "are you painting again?" in a sighing sort of voice. I promise I'll be finished soon....

Tuesday, October 05, 2010


I was going to do one of those sneak peek type of posts but couldn't be bothered with revealing bits at a time so here it is!

The new room is finally all complete and moved in.

Most of the stuff in there is what we already had so as things wear out they will be replaced.

Pretend the lounge is a nice neutral colour instead of green and you'll get the picture. The bookcase was a bit of a pain to make (thanks Mr Fish!) but it worked in the end and holds heaps more books than our old one.

The tv stand was one we picked up at the tip shop that was in pretty good condition and just needed a bit of a sand and paint and some new handles. Our other tv stand has been cut in half (shock!) and is going in the new rumpus/sewing/computer room. It had been cut in half neatly so it still looks good, I promise!

The curtains are made of poplin so they are a bit floatly without being sheer and are nice and light. Concealed tab tops are my favourite as they are so easy to make and look nice.

There are still a few things to finish off and make like a couple of footstools (think beanbag for feet) and some cushion covers and I've got a wall hanging in mind for above the tv (dancing jellyfish, in a non tacky way) so they will get done gradually but for now we are DONE!

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Neptune is hard to find!

I know I am a bit slow and the Neptune range by Tula Pink has been around for a while and is now oldish but I only really discovered it and desperately wanted some recently.
It is rather hard to find nowdays and it was quite a few google searches before I managed to track some down. So now I am the proud owner of a jelly roll and charm pack with 3 half yard pieces on the way. The tricky bit is thinking about what to make and deciding on a pattern. Decisions, decisions.
I love the prints and colours and am thinking a throw for the lounge would be nice and maybe a runner also. It's the perfect range if you like all things ocean related.
And a little parcel arrived recently from equilter with some bits and pieces for some sewing fun. There's nothing like getting a parcel in the mail, even when you have to let the little fishes open it!
sneak peeks at the finished room coming very soon!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Well that didn't take as long as I thought!

Thanks to a week of very wet weather our reno is finished!
Mr Fish had last week off and we got stuck in and the last few things to do were actually done.
The bookcase was made with some assistance from the little fishes (they have quite good hammering skills) and when that was in place and secured we thought "why not put the floor down while we're on a roll". So we did.
Once we figured out the correct way to click them together the floorboards went down pretty easily. And watching a 'how to lay a floating floor' dvd that came free with a handyman magazine recently certainly helped.
The floors took a day to do and we were a bit buggered by the end of it (since it was raining we had to move the bench saw out the front to the verandah that was dry and go through the house each time a cut was made).
The next day we put the skirting on and I managed to get most of them painted before they were nailed down, and then had to go round and touch up the paint around the nail holes and where some grotty hands had left dirty marks on them.
So we are now moved in and loving it! There's just a little bit of tweaking and decorating to go and then all will be revealed!!
(I never thought I would say it but I'm a bit over painting)
Only one room left in the house to paint and then sewing!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

I've been featured!!

Some of you may remember this little sea fan I framed a while ago..... Well it got featured on the lovely Maya's blog - completely coastal and I was a bit excited when I found out!
I've been a fan of her blog for a while and love all the beachy ideas she gathers for us to look at so when I was checking out the latest posts I hadn't read yet and saw a picture that looked a bit familiar it took me a minute to catch on, then I did a little excited dance.
So there you go, a lovely suprise and it made my day!
A quick update on the mess that is our reno, we have had a bucketful of rain and the last bit is taking a bit longer than we thought. All that's left is to finish building the bookshelves and put the floor down and then all will be revealed! (might take a while so don't hold your breath)
Then I am itching to get stuck in and do some sewing as I have some gorgeous fabric that's waiting to be made into a throw and a table runner and there's also some curtains to be made.
The list just keeps getting longer!

Monday, September 13, 2010

It's getting there!

Most of my days lately have been filled with painting, Kindy stuff, painting, sanding, painting and working. We are on the home stretch now and only have a few things left to do before the great build a room of 2010 is complete!
The ceiling went up a few weekends ago with much huffing and puffing and made it look more like a room. Before that we had been putting the walls on and trying to remember to mark the bits where the power points were so they didn't get lost. There were a few tricky bits as the roof is sloping but it came up pretty well.
The ceiling took a lot of paint but once it was well covered it looked great. And I've learnt that beading is really good as it covers the bits where nails went in funny and where the hammer missed the nail and got the sheeting instead! (it wasn't me)
Once the trims went on it started to look like everything was coming together and was actually working out so that was a relief. This weekend we boxed up the steps and clad them in the floor covering (had to do that before we put the floor down) and finished boxing up some pipes that are to be hidden in a built in seat near what's going to be the library wall.
I am discovering I am quite handy at putting dress timber around windows and hanging concertina doors by myself. If only I was not a little bit terrified of the bench saw or nail gun or I could have built the whole room myself and had it all finished!
My new rule is only do things to the house I can do myself as waiting on Mr Fish to get tasks done takes too long and he can only do things on weekends so it feels like an eternity before I can move on to the next job and I am too impatient to do that!