Sunday, 20 May 2012

Think creatively .. and think on your feet...

Today I wanted to show you some examples of how to add some fun and lovely things to your house by just thinking creatively and keeping an open mind about stuff. I have always made things myself and there is something very satisfying in thinking outside the box and coming up with something different from next to nothing.

These are my lovely cats in Rosa and her daughter Miou-miou ,which I had in Holland, together with Rosa's brother, Peter,  and in the back ground you can see some colourful polkadot fabric.
 My boyfriend and I at the time were students and we had practically no money, and no sofa to sit on.
I remember the day he came back quite proudly with some seating elements in horrible dark brown corduroy, which he had picked up from the Salvation Army.
The dark brown was very oppressive and besides not too clean so I was looking frantically around for some inexpensive material, when I found the cotton polkadot fabric.It was really dress making material but what the heck- the quality was pretty good.It was my first excursion into do-it-yourself upholstery but it lasted for years and we were super pleased with it. Just to show you don't always have to go the proper route- and always use expensive upholstery material.Besides, at the inexpensive price you could afford to play around with loads of material.

Once I got going I really felt encouraged and the next thing I made was a big bedspread full of colours and a view of an exotic building with palmtrees,( of which I had seen a picture )  made of leftover fabric.I think some of the fabric was even material used for pyama's which had just the right golden satin look.This made the corner with the bed in the main room we lived  from a horrible eyesore into a nice colourful area with an exotic feel.
When I moved to London I happened to walk one day to the tube, and saw two builders carting out a whole load of furniture out of an appartment they were doing up- and chucking everything into a big skip / dumpster. Amongst them, they were rolling these fine armchairs covered in Colefax and Fowler fabric direction I asked them if I could roll them to my place..and they did not mind..

So you have to be quick and jump in sometimes, but these chairs were in perfect nick and just lovely to have- much too lovely to throw away.So don't feel too shy if you see people throwing things away!
 By the time I had moved to England I was tired of the exotic bedspread so it found a home with my mum who had always liked it.
I was going home via the high street in the small town outside I now still live, and saw two big fabric sample books standing next to some bin bags.I love free material, so I had a quick look and noticed that most of the fabrics in there were lovely coloured cottons and one sample book was all silk.
It's not easy to figure out what to make of 200+ bits of material, all from a different colour, but I hit on the idea of a patch work bedspread and cushions .As long as you keep things symmetrical you can sort of make it work.

It ook a bit of figuring out but in the end it looked really good together.
And the cushions I could also use outside. The bench you see here below, painted white, I also got from a skip/ dumpster outside someone's house.I had no garden bench at the time and it looked fine to me, so while I was almost putting the thing in my car, the owner of the house arrived home- so I asked him - just to be on the safe side, if it was OK I took the bench." Go ahead, it's horribly uncomfortable" he said.But with my cushions it was perfect- and I still have the bench now!

I hope I have inspired you a bit with my adventures- always think creatively and think on your feet!! Have a great week!! XOXO Bea

linking to Metamorphosis Monday


NanaDiana said...

I am so with you. I "trash pick" all the time much to the horror of my husband. He refuses to stop with If only he knew how much money I have saved him over the years!

I love all your sweet finds. That chair is just wonderful and it sounds like you got 2 of them?

AND..I LOVE that bench- perfect. Hope you had a great weekend- xo Diana

Mariette VandenMunckhof-Vedder said...

Dearest Bea,

As one of our Jewish friends in Delaware used to say: 'You are a heck of a girl!' - That certainly applies to you!
Smart and you have a healthy dose of imagination for seeing what those things can do for you. Enjoy your creativity and have a lovely spring.
Love to you,

Anonymous said...

Hi Bea,
We are very interested in talking to you about your home interiors blogging. My colleague has sent you a private email. Hopefully you'll get it (check your spam folder if you don't!) and would be so kind to get back to us.

Many regards,


Anonymous said...

Ps Glad Tilda was fine!