Instagram roundup – May

This week alone has been a bit of a bombardment of inspiration. I have a couple of very exciting projects about to kick off in the coming weeks, but I’m sworn to secrecy on them for the moment. I’m going to do that annoying thing Bloggers do where I tell you about something, but at the same time tell you absolutely nothing.
Enough about that. It’s Friday. Here in Ireland it’s a bank holiday weekend and I can’t even. I’m so looking forward to sleeping in tomorrow. I woke up this morning way too early, thought to myself ahh it’s Saturday! And then experienced the crippling realization it was only Friday. I hate brains sometimes. 

I have a few DIYs and home improvements lined up for the long weekend. I made a head start and primed the spare bedroom bedside table last night ahead of its mini makeover. I’m thinking black and white. Nothing too shocking, and maybe when I’m finished with it I’ll sell it. That’s if it doesn’t turn out like a heap of crap. 
And with that I bid you a happy Friday, homies! I hope you have something awesome planned this weekend. We’re due some cracking weather tomorrow and I will personally be spending it BBQing, with a beverage in hand. Expect and onslaught of Instagrams if you follow me. You have been warned. xx A

Paper and paint

Have you ever had one of those moments where you see something that completely stops you in your tracks? As I was passing by White Lady Art on the way to my bus stop after work one day, what should I see in the window but this amaze-balls piece of urban art. It was a perfect combination of some of my favourite things – skulls, drippy spray paint, graffiti and my new affection for pink. I kinda had to have it. 

I went straight into the shop. There were loads more pieces of spray can art in the shop, all handmade by the intrinsically talented Irish designer, Eric Davys. His creative process is so beautiful and detailed. It reminded me so much of before I was into interior design and was heavily interested in becoming involved in either comic book artistry or special effects makeup. I’ve contemplated blogging my work from my previous life, but as it doesn’t really fit into design, I kinda don’t think it would be appropriate. But that’s a story for another day! We’ll see. 

For the moment, cansy, that’s what I like to call him, sits on our desk and beautifully matches and juxtaposes against my My Fair Lady print which hangs over our desk. I should have taken a photo of the two together, but I’m a bad blogger and didn’t think of it at the time. Shame on me. 

I did miss my bus that day when I spotted cansy, but it was so worth it. 

Localise youth room at Sophia House – reveal!

Yesterday was the grand opening of the Localise youth room in Sophia House, and to say it was an incredibly exciting day would have been an absolute understatement. 
To give you a bit of background on the project, at the beginning of October Emily approached me about doing a project with Derek O’Cleary, the director of the local charity Localise, for a youth room in Sophia House. Sophia House provide accommodation and opportunities for families who would otherwise be homeless. Sophia House had some unused office space on their premises which they wanted transformed into a safe, positive and warm environment for the residential teens. They currently had facilities for younger kids, so it was important that the teens also had somewhere to call their own at this crucial age, in the hopes of stopping them from turning to the surrounding rough streets.

We met with the teens and took note of what they wanted from the space. They wanted a homework area, somewhere to watch TV and movies, and a space to play games. With a timeline of 6 weeks to get the space from drab to fab {sorry}, it was a bit of a sprint as Derek and I drove around Dublin to get everything done and crossed off the list. Most of the assembly and painting went down on the 9th of October thanks to the incredible student volunteers from Notre Dame University who were here as part of their study abroad program. I would literally still be standing on a ladder painting if it wasn’t for their help {again, HUGE thank you guys if you’re reading this!}.
The teens wanted sports figures and logos to be included in the design but since there were arguments between the likes of Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal etc, we chose prominent Irish athletes Robbie Keane, Katie Taylor and Brian O’Driscoll in stead to keep it a bit closer to home {and thanks dad for helping me choose the athletes! 🙂 I know zero about sports}. I sourced some high res images online, converted them to black and white and had them printed and mounted on canvases which I think it gives it a bit more of a polished feel than posters. 

I personally had the most fun when it came to the paint. There was the drip, the geometric and the street art walls. I bought sports drinks bottles {the ones where you can drink directly from the lid}, filled them with paint, got up on a ladder and dripped away. The geometric wall was simplified down a lot more from the original plan and became just triangles. I cut some templates from cereal boxes and Keri, Holly and I traced them onto the wall and ‘exploded’ them at the perimeter. Random colours were chosen and painted on by the Notre Dame students. 

And of course the graffiti wall. I’ve been a long time fan of Maser, one of Dublin’s Ireland’s top graffiti artists, so I sent him a little e-mail one day {as you do} asking if I could use one of his quotes as part of our project. He loved the project, gave me the go-ahead and 30 minutes later I was drawing it out and applying roughly 10lbs of masking tape to the wall and spraying away. I added some drippy bits to tie in with the drip wall and voila. My first piece of wall art and I’m pretty effing proud of it if I may be so bold. 

Yesterday after the big reveal I kicked everyone out of the room {in the nicest way possible} to take these pictures. While I was snapping away, the teens whose room it now is came in about 100 times asking if I was finished yet. I could hear them in the next room complaining I was taking too long, but I took it as the biggest seal of approval and compliment of the day – they wanted their room and they wanted it 10 minutes ago. A job well done I think. 

You can see the original mood and atmosphere boards I put together if you’d like. I think it turned out quite close to what was planned and we didn’t stray too far. It was very surreal to see those boards come to life. 

At running the risk of sounding incredibly emo and sappy, my heart swelled with pride today every time I looked at these pictures and watched this video by {the painfully talented} Darcie while writing this post. And thank you again Derek for the opportunity to work alongside yourself and Localise. It was an incredible project to work on, and I’m so happy to have been part of it all. xx A

Design details
Vinyl flooring – Des Kelly Interiors 
Main navy paint – Atlantic surf 1 – Dulux
Detail paint – milk white, rich honey, summer pudding, scooter red, pea pod and chance – Crown Paints
Canvases – Reads Design & Print
Chairs, table, cushions, shelves, shelving unit, faux plants, rug and throwIKEA
Couch, cube seating and grey triangle patterned pillow – Harvey Norman
Wooden bench – handmade by Paul