Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Super spring bathroom updates

As part of the spring cleaning routine, the bathroom offers many opportunities for sprucing up on a budget and you can make plenty of easy updates to create a fresh new space. After a winter of darkness I look forward to bringing light and colours into the whole house and this is easy done in a bathroom with these ideas:

Clean and declutter:
Firstly, a thorough cleaning session will enhance the bathroom. Get your rubber gloves and scrub away all the mildew and limescale that builds up through combination of lack of ventilation and constant dampness. Shower curtains can get so mouldy and discoloured, so perhaps think about investing in one of the  sleek glass shower screens from My Bathrooms that will sparkle and help give the illusion of more space in your bathroom.

If you are like me and have plenty of children's bath toys around the bathroom, have a sort through and tidy them up. I clean my son's squeaky ducks and squirty dolphins in sterilising solution and regularly replace them when the rubber starts to wear. There are plenty of cool storage options for toys to tidy them away so you can have an adult space too.

Clever storage is crucial, wicker baskets for all your toiletries or a smart cabinet keeps all your items together rather than lined up along the bath/shower. Floating wall shelves can be both functional and decorative, making use of all available space so floor space is freed up.

Fresh New Colours:
I love fluffy towels and in the spring why not buy some pretty new ones in bright contemporary colours or even floral ones for a vintage feel. Towel bales look great on open shelves and can change the colour scheme in a bathroom quickly and easily. Accessories from toothbrush holders, containers and colourful shower curtains provide instant impact and there are plenty of choices out there to suit all tastes.

For a fresh new look consider painting the walls a new hue or simply white for a wonderful minimalistic look or as a clear base to accent with colourful elements like a floral roller blind or geometric floor tiles.

Bathroom Art:
A gallery display of artwork makes a striking addition to a bathroom and I love this idea of using vintage mirrors to create a feature wall. Mirrors of course scatter the light and in your average bathroom which are usually fairly small, this can help make the space feel brighter and larger.

Stylish additions such as glamorous lighting add to the character, why not consider a chandelier and a row of glass storage jars or candles on a shelf catching the light looks very sophisticated.

Now just add those bubbles and relax!

images  1/2/3

Monday, 26 January 2015

How to update your bedroom for spring

The snowdrops are in flower and soon the daffodils will be nodding their yellow heads, spring is starting to show and for me it is time to look ahead and spruce up the home ready for the new season.

As soon as there are blue skies and I can hear the birds tweeting, the windows are flung open and I want to bring the spring sunshine into the house. Each room needs freshness bringing in and I love to start with the bedrooms - goodbye to the heavy quilts and hot water bottles and hello to light and airiness.

Fresh bedding:
Pastel colours and florals inject a feeling of spring straight away. New bedding makes a big impact to a bedroom and is a quick and inexpensive way to change a colour scheme. I still like to layer the bed with a bedspread for the sometimes chilly nights until summer but want a lighter feel than my thick quilt in winter. For a guest room, pretty patterned bed linen combined with a single metal bed will give a vintage feel that I adore and make your visitors feel welcomed and comfortable. Mix and match cushions add personality and I like to choose quirky ones in different textures and patterns.
Cath Kidston floral bedding

Upcycling Furniture:
Hand me a paint brush and I'm as happy as a songbird in spring -splish, splash, out with the white paint and the pastels. Rather than buying new furniture, consider giving existing pieces a new look. Chalky paints are a favourite of mine and will instantly brighten up a room. I find using white make a room feel peaceful and less cluttered. It's fun scouring our local junk shop too for interesting pieces that I can transform and create a unique item from.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Burns Night

A Burns Night Supper is held to honour Robert Burns, the Scottish Poet, on  today January 25th. This is the anniversary of his birthday. He died in 1796 at the young age of 37 but has been celebrated as a great poet ever since.

When reading up about Burns Night I was wondering when the first ever Burns Club Supper took place in 1802. To my surprise it was in a place in Scotland called Greenock, that is not too far away from Glasgow. Now I know this place, it is in my heart. I have never been there or indeed know anybody there, well sort of, I know an ancestral memory. This is where my 4th Great Grandfather lived, Alexander Scott - a sugar refiner who did very well for himself. He wouldn't be born until 1810 but I bet as an adult he celebrated Burns Night and ate Haggis with neeps and tatties followed by a wee whisk.  He'd be most disappointed I'm sure that I'd be eating a vegetarian haggis.

Happy Burns Night, raise a glass and toast to the haggis!

Burns Night toast by the fire

Money saving January

January is a money saving month, the start of good intentions to save the pennies, make some cutbacks and de-clutter the house. So far I have been keeping track of our monthly expenditure of groceries, petrol and other household items so that I will have a baseline to challenge myself each month from here on in, hopefully to reduce the amount every time.
Image source: savings Shutterstock

We have been staying home and not going on trips so that we can work on the house, finishing jobs and tidying up. The allotment also needs a good overhaul and that costs nothing but hard graft. Hopefully that will reduce the petrol costs and we will stay local enjoying what is on our doorstep.