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To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.


Growing up I never really looked at my Nan’s sideboard and thought it was ugly. It just WAS. It was the place that held all the cutlery, the crockery and (if we were really lucky) the envelope that held the £5 note on the elastic band. OK. That is stretching it a bit (sorry). The £5 on the elastic band was usually in the glass cabinet right?  How many of you had a Nan that would have that £5 that she would lend to you on a Tuesday to be repaid on a Thursday, only to lend it to you again the following Tuesday? Hence the elastic band. Well, that is how my Nan described it.

Now that I am older I completely “get” the envelope system (that is a whole post in itself though) and more so I have rediscovered my love of “ugly” sideboards.

In the 80’s we all found brown furniture ugly, clunky and dated. We were all excited about chrome, black ash and glass.

In the 90’s I bought my first house and couldn’t afford new furniture. My house was furnished with hand me downs, ugly sideboards, wooden beds, big coffin like wardrobes and overstuffed couches. All painted to coordinate with each other, some reupholstery done on old parker knoll chairs and curtain making from patches of old fabric. Looking back I realise how much I loved my first home. Why? because it was unique to me, it was creative and quirky and full of love and memories. As the years passed I replaced the old furiture with “new” and modern things. I lost my way, I joined the consumerist era.

Now, many years later I have come full circle. Back in a small, two up, two down, urban cottage, mews house, whatever you wish to call it kind of house and with a small budget I have re discovered my love of painting furniture, refurbishing chairs and general make do and mending.  I admit I am hooked and I have never been happier. Funny how growing up often means you lose your passion for things as you strive for “success” in career and life.

When a friend asked me to help her to refurbish a sideboard I was more than happy. And so, on the  eve of the longest day we set to on that sideboard up there. No need to strip and sand because we were using Annie Sloan Chalk paint. I loved Annie Sloan back in  the 90s. I couldn’t get enough of her books and advice.



Starting with Emperors Silk we painted the first coat

IMG_0555leaving it to dry overnight as  it was quite late by the time we had finished. We returned the following morning and set to painting the inside the same colour. Then a  coat of graphite over the red

IMG_0596I love my pinny too.
IMG_0595Followed by a bit of waxing and then sanding and  hey presto

IMG_0593 IMG_0606 IMG_0603

How fabulous does it look?

It looks even better in it’s new home. IMG_7137I am feeling rather proud of myself and my friend. We did a good job.

Have you recycled, reloved or reused anything lately that you are proud of?