Industrial School Locker

I’ve mentioned previously my slightly obsessive adoration for industrial home accents and now here’s a little industrial style project of my very own!

I know, probably not to everyone’s taste (and certainly much too cool to fit in at my little cottage) though I love the eclectic edge and character items like this can bring to a space.

Here it is before:

I left the patina in pretty much original condition – which, for pieces like this, really is the essence of their appeal, all that banged-up and rusted metal telling the proud story of a former life.
I stencilled the retro typographics for that little eye-catching point of distinction.
With no-where for this piece to live at my place it was recently sold by auction on eBay.
So, with my retro locker now in someone else’s house, I was still languishing for an industrial ‘something’ for my own home when yesterday I came across this little beauty:
Eeek! Squeel! An absolutely adorable vintage card file cabinet. And now it’s mine!
Currently sitting in quite a precarious and inappropriate position on an inadequate little side table in our study/junk room, it just needs a bit of a tidy up and then I have plans to modify it for use as a re-purposed table of sorts in my up-coming living room re-do (oh yeah, more on that to come soon!).
The timber’s actually quite a bit darker than depicted and just oozes time-worn charm. It’s complete with all of the original escutcheons and locks.
Yes, I think I’m in love – again!

The Painted Hive Entryway

At only 1.1 meters deep x 1.6 meters wide (3.5 x 5.2 feet) my tiny entryway doesn’t even rate a mention on the floor plan! An inch either side of the photo below and you’re straight into the living room or hallway.

Sorry, I don’t have a before pic though if you can imagine a little undressed space with worn beige berber carpet, timber toned trim and a dirty apple green wall that’s pretty much it!

I knew early on that I wanted wallpaper somewhere in my house and this space seemed the perfect candidate – its location is discreet enough not to dictate the tone for the entire house though perfectly positioned to create a nice first impression.

We painted the trim white and re-carpeted then waited for an appropriately priced and proportioned piece of furniture to come along. You see, when the front door is opened it leaves a clearance of only 30cm (12 inches) so whatever I chose needed to be accordingly narrow. Eventually, a lovely weathered cedar console showed up – perfect! I had envisioned all white against the wallpaper though the tone in this table seemed just right as is.

I must confess, I change the decor around in my home ALL THE TIME (much to hubby’s annoyance) though currently have the console adorned with clearance and thrift store finds, fresh lavendar and rosemary, some re-purposed knick-knacks and a few special pieces.

A Thrifty Guest Bedroom

Here’s my parent’s guest bedroom (my old ‘boudoir’) which I helped make-over and style for them a while back now.

The whole room was completed on a teeny-tiny budget.

My Mum has more traditional taste than me and wanted a serene calming space with a subtle french influence.
This particular room came in at under $150.
Here’s how I did it and how you can do it too:

Bed – FREE
Found at the tip, yes, the tip. It was black wrought iron which we painted enamel ivory.
End of Bed Stool – $20
Found on the side of the road. It was originally an old telephone table which we took the top off, painted and upholstered – you can read the post about it here.
Chair – FREE
My Great Grandma’s old kitchen chair.
Side Table – $20
It’s a butler’s tray purchased from a warehouse clearance centre. We painted it black and gave it a light distress. You can’t see it in the pic though we lined the top with script wrapping paper (which is also in the frame above the bed).
Window Furnishings – $30
Mum made them from fabric found at a haberdashery clearance store.
Artwork – $10
The large frame was found at a local second-hand store. We painted it white then lined it with script wrapping pape. Mum already had the two little prints.
Cushions and Throw – $20
Mum made them to co-ordinate with the stool out of left-over fabric and some inexpensive new fleece.
Bedding – $30
The quilt cover and pillow cases were all found at a manchester clearance centre.
Decor – $15
The charming little birdcage was purchased at a clearance store (you can’t get them anymore, I wish I’d bought 100!) and the topiary was found when I shopped the house.

TOTAL – $145


What have you thrifted the pants off? I’d love to hear.

An Industrial Edge

I love the depth, eclectic appeal and slightly masculine feel a piece of industrial furniture or decor can add to a space.
From antique timber filing cabinets to retro steel lockers, done right, an industrial hint can really make a room sing.

I could look at these images all day – except they give me such bad cravings I just have to get away from the computer and head straight down to all the local thriftstores and junkyards I can think of to hunt down some industrial goodness of my own!

Welcome to My Hive

Firstly, I have to say, my home is a major work in progress.

When we moved in around three years ago, we had virtually NOTHING! We lived that way for a while, content in just having our own little parcel on earth. During this time we also learned from the bare-bones of the house what was needed in terms of liveability and aesthetics before imprinting any misguided ideas of our own.

Here’s the floorplan.

The entire house is only 12 meters (39 feet) front to back and a mini 10 meters (32 feet) wide.
Sorry, I don’t have many before photos though I had no idea I’d be blogging about this in the future!

Above: The kitchen, living and dining rooms just prior to us moving in.

(Apologies for the poor photo quality though I took these from the original real estate brochure).

After living in our hollow little cave for a while, I decided I had to simplify and streamline as much as I could to create the most neutral as possible blank canvas. Every ceiling and wall got a fresh coat of paint and every single bit of brown timber trim was dressed in glossy white….it was a breath of fresh air (and I’m NEVER painting again!).
The badly soiled berber carpet was replaced with a simple deep grey plush pile to contrast with the light paint and make the ceilings appear taller. All of the door hardware and window furnishings were replaced along with the more obtrusive of the light fixtures. Our “neutral as possible” blank canvas was born – at last, we had a starting point.