Top Five Blog Posts for 2018

While I didn’t blog nearly as much as I would have liked to this year, I did work on some projects that I really enjoyed. To cap off 2018 I thought I’d share my five most popular blog posts as chosen by you! 

Dining room hutch makeover in Coal Black – One of my favourite painted updates this year by far. Finding and updating such a perfect piece for our dining room makes me want to buy big pieces of furniture for every room and repaint them.

How to repair cat scratched leather using just two household items!

How to repair cat scratched leather – An old blog post of mine from three years ago that’s becoming more and more popular thanks to Pinterest! Turns out a lot of people have cats that also enjoy destroying things. You are very welcome here.

One Room Challenge Spring 2018 – Much like some time after having a baby, you forget the physical pain it caused you and you consider doing it again. My One Room Challenge this spring was pretty intense mentally and physically, but I’m already thinking about the next room I want to tackle.

Painting a leather chair using Fusion Mineral Paint – My next most favourite paint update this year was my secondhand leather armchair I painted black. I’m sitting in it right now and I will honestly say it is still in perfect condition.

Click through to four top tips for sourcing secondhand pieces online! #Secondhand #Thrifted

My top tips for buying secondhand items online – I’m glad this made it into my top five blogposts for 2018 as this is one of my favourite pastimes; searching for my next secondhand piece online.

And thank you if you checked out my blog some time in 2018. It means a lot that in the fleeting age of Instagram, people are still vising blogs. Even if it was just to have a snoop.

Secondhand Victorian-style dollhouse

I’m going to come clean straight away and say this is a project I’m working on as a gift for Cora this Christmas, but it’s also 9,000% entirely for me. I am living vicariously through Cora this Christmas. And beyond. 

I had been looking on Kijiji for a dollhouse for Cora for a few months. Probably casually looking for around six months, but more seriously searching for the last two to three months. I found amazing dollhouses every few weeks but they were either too expensive, located too far away or were the bad kind of homemade that were misshapen and home to jagged edges that no amount of sandpaper or filler could fix. This would after all be a present for our curious toddler so I wanted it to be a practical, special and more importantly a safe dollhouse. 

Kijiji did not disappoint. Kijiji is a gentle creature that rewards those with an abundance of patience. You have to look and look and look and inquire and have a deal fall through and keep looking and change your search words 20 times and then right when you’re about to give up, the most perfect thing will present itself. 

I suspect many peopled passed on this dollhouse because of its lack of a front door, a window and stairs. Ha, I say. HA! You’re going to have to do a lot worse than that to deter me. Before I heard back from the owner if it was still available or not, I was already researching how to make dollhouse doors and stairs and I am up for the challenge. 

As Robert pointed out, the attic is very like the wallpaper in Adam and Barbara’s house in Beetlejuice. It’s really sweet and I might keep it for the time being. 

As for the rest, I will be changing. I’m already overwhelmed with redecorating ideas. It will mostly be for Cora’s current / my old Sylvanian Families [aka Calico Creatures in North America] collection, so it will be decorated to be sweet and adorable. I might try my hand at making some tiny wallpaper, and there will be bits of burgundy here and there, but I’ll try my best to not to impose a gothic look. I’m way too excited to start redecorating Cora’s dollhouse and I’ve even come up with a few moodboard ideas for it! I really can’t wait to start. I love a good project, especially on a scale I can handle for a few hours a night. 

But more importantly, want to know how much I paid for it?

Guess.

Go on.  

No. 

Lower.

Lower … 

$45.

p.s. Serious question – can I say I own a Victorian house now? Because I kind of do … 

Should you be interested, check out my post where I share my

Top Tips for Buying Secondhand Items Online

DIY Friday – faux marble fireplace

The other day my sister-in-law Jenny sent me a photo of an update she made to the fireplace* in her new house. She updated the tiles surrounding the fireplace with some [of my personal favourite] faux marble contact paper, and what a change it made. She had seen my post on Instagram about updating our dining room table with contact paper and got the idea to pick up a roll of faux marble paper to make a quick and very effective update to her fireplace.

It’s a fantastic transformation and it’s one of my favourite kinds of updates; such a simple idea and a small change, but it makes a huge impact in a space.

So many fireplaces across Ireland come with this very style of tile. I can understand they’re not to everyone’s taste, and this is a perfect example of how to make the most of what you’ve got! It’s such a perfect example of what can be done with contact paper. Thanks again Jenny for sharing your before and after photos! And we can’t wait to see more of your new house!

Should you be interested in seeing more, here is a list of all the projects I’ve worked on involving contact paper to date …

Contact paper table top
Contact paper covered diary
Coffee station update – mini faux marble plinth
Mini interior sample stash for designing on the go
Updating [and childproofing] our secondhand dining room table with contact paper
Contact paper kitchen counters [test run!]

*PLEASE NOTE: Jenny and her family do not use this fireplace. It is strictly for show! Please use your own judgement when using contact paper anywhere near open flames. But I know you’re going to be careful. I just want to state the obvious for obvious reasons.