Updated curio cabinet

This past weekend we were gifted with some truly horrific weather here in Ireland. However, sometimes it’s nice to have such a solid excuse to stay indoors in your pj’s all day and contemplate striking one item off your never ending list of things to do. I was in such a mood this weekend so I finally rolled up my sleeves and repainted my little curio cabinet the blackest of black. As a reminder, here’s what it looked like up until this weekend … 

Not bad, but not great either. The finish was chipped all over, not to mention most of the panelling had no finish at all [as seen two photos down]. I began by disassembling the entire cabinet. As my dad showed me when it was gifted it to me for my 30th [and suggested in the first place that it be painted], you simply unscrew all the knobs along the top and bottom and that allows the entire piece to be taken apart, and fairly easily.

I laid the cabinet flat on a drop cloth on our dining table and began disassembling it. As I was taking the cabinet apart, I made a quick note of the order in which I took it apart [accompanied by a couple of rough sketches for the fancier pieces whose name I didn’t know. ie – the very top piece I called the tiara bit]. This note came in immensely handy when it came to reassembling the cabinet at the very end as it turned out to be trickier than I thought, even with the list. 

I took the cabinet apart, lightly sanded [in the direction of the grain] each piece, cleaned it with a damp rag and lightly painted two coats of black paint [again, in the direction of the grain]. Since removing it, I have yet to put the glass door back on as I’m in the process of replacing the hinges [I steeped them in coke to remove the rust, but alas, they were beyond repair]. Now that there’s no door, I’m actually kind of liking it. It doesn’t look too out of place sans door either …
Now that it’s painted, my exciting [for me] decision is that I’m hoping to fill it with succulents! Yes! Living things! I was originally going to fill it with my Sylvanian Families cat collection, but I’ve managed to keep a certain succulent alive since I brought it home from Dublin Design Night, so one day I thought how lovely it would look filled with little succulents in glass jars? It would look lovely, past self! And it would make the cabinet seem a bit less … daunting, too. 

I’m not however sold on where the cabinet is now hanging. If I’m to fill it with succulents, hanging it over a storage heater probably isn’t the best start. The cabinet’s also kind of fighting with the white shelf over our TV. It looks not too bad in the above photo, but in real life they look like two grumpy old men having to sit next to one another for the duration of a long bus ride. For now, I’m thinking maybe over my desk would look nice? We’ll see. Chances are, it’ll take another two months for me to make my mind up. 

and Juniper looking rather confused

Feature this – (a second) burgundy wall

I’m forever amazed when a coat of paint changes a space so much. Within 2 hours you can change the feel of a room for under €25. Or in my case, for free as I already had the paint. Yesterday, to the dismay of Robert who wanted nothing more than to MGSV to his hearts content, I painted the wall behind our TV in the same berry colour as the wall behind our shelves. Yes, another feature wall. I quite resent that that term is used with such hate by some people, but feature wall it is. To them I ask, what did a feature wall ever do to you?

There. I said it.

I am so, so, so, so, so in love with this end of the living room again. I don’t care how lame that makes me sound. The wall behind our TV was just too much boring and too much bland for my liking and for too long. White on white on white. I do like simple and bright design, but not in my own space as I’ve come to realise over the years. 

As I realised with the test patch I painted last week, I think this paint colour looks all kinds of amazing in candle light. Tiger are going to make an absolute fortune in candles from me this year. I know it’s a bit early to be mentioning the C word, but I cannot WAIT to decorate our mantle / shelf for Christmas [this time it’s Christmas Pat :P].

Another reason I wanted to paint this wall dark, aside from the fact that I love this colour, is because I really like the contrast of stark white pieces on dark backgrounds. I don’t know why I took so long to paint this wall because [I think] it looks amazing and really ties the room together. My abstract painting is back up [yay! o/] and I added some simple white candles to offset all the dark. It’s a quick change that made a big impact on our piddly little rental living room, which can easily be undone in an afternoon. 

p.s. Anyone else notice there’s a cat in every. Single. Photo I took? Juniper and Toshi were very needy this weekend. Sorry / not sorry 😛

I’m just a worrier. That’s why my friends call me Whiskers*

Today’s a good day. Apologies in advance as today’s blog post is a bit of a therapy session …

In the beginning, before we signed the lease for our apartment, we told our letting agent that we had two cats. She said that was no problem. All was fine and dandy until our landlord came to visit two years later. Our letting agent frantically emailed us saying we had to hide our cats because our landlord didn’t know we had them. 
Queue infinite levels of stress, cleaning and arranging for the cats to be out of the apartment for hours leading up to our landlord visiting. Not to mention my epiphany that mentally destroyed me and pushed me into hyper-drive – what if our landlord’s allergic to cats? Well, you better scrub your fingers to the bone and make sure there’s no trace of the cats! Not even a hair. 

This fear mongering and general being thrown-under-a-bus-for-no-reason from our letting agent went on for years. I won’t get into the details, but she caused an insurmountable amount of stress for years. On one particular occasion involving the Irish Revenue and I was so anxious I became physically ill. I know to you, this probably doesn’t sound like a big deal, but if our landlord found out about our cats, we were told he would take action. 1) Ask us to leave [our rent is currently way below average for Dublin, praise science, so we want to stay as long as we can] and 2) keep our deposit. Or he could 3) ask us to simply get rid of our cats if we wanted to stay. It caused many sleepless nights. It sounds dramatic, but when you’re living it, it’s a very real worry. 

But today, today is a good day. The perfect conditions arose for me to tell our landlord about our cats [he’s no longer using said Letting Agent From Hell, and instead dealing with us directly], and guess what? He was totally cool with the cats. He actually laughed. He’s a decent person. Years. YEARS of unnecessary stress and for nothing. 

I’m having a giant drink with my lunch today. Maybe three.

Normal non-fear fueled blogging will resume next week as scheduled. Oh, and if you’re curious, you can creep all my crazy cat lady pictures of June and Tosh under the hashtag #JuniperAndToshi. Happiest of Fridays, homies xx  

*Thank you Mr. Ferrell for creating the most epic-ly appropriate blog title reference.