One becomes two

You never know what you might find in a property that you buy… our shop being a case in point. As well as loads of old suitcases in the loft (each one containing at least one smaller suitcase), some very dated pillowcases, a pair of “jeggings” (Mr Snail is still shuddering at the word), six dining chairs, a microwave oven, a desk, an engraved knife and some picture frames with broken glass, there was a big, free-standing broom cupboard with orange doors. Originally this was attached to the wall with a bracket, but it was freed from its shackles during the work day our friends helped with and has been looming over the upstairs room ever since.

On Tuesday this week, Sue (Going Batty in Wales) arrived with her friend Lindy to help out. Over coffee I mentioned how much I dislike this cupboard and asked for suggestions about how to dispose of it. Lindy, however, had much more vision than me and came up with the idea of splitting it into two… which she duly did. Of course, the horrid orange doors are still there, but those can be covered over (paint, decoupage, fabric) and actually, I may now have the beginnings of storage for the sewing machines… at least if we add stronger shelf supports. We could put a work surface between the two, using them as pedestals, so that we have a counter separating the two areas upstairs, which would be useful. I have to confess, that they are currently still unappealing to me, but I can see potential now and all this does fit with the make do and mend ethos of the shop.

Sue very generously offered to do some work at home for me, so she went off with one of the old dining chairs to have a go at making some sort of cover to hide the rather dirty and worn seat pads. Again, we are trying to minimise buying new and hoping that, by demonstrating what is possible, we will inspire others to have a go at improving what they already have. It would, of course, be much quicker just to go out and purchase all the things we need for the shop from Ikea, but this is so much more satisfying and environmentally friendly.

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14 Comments

  1. Excellent! You have awesome friends. Wonderful to have an eye that sees possibilities for reusing and refurbishing.

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  2. Make and mend…which often includes using something else to achieve the better product. I suggest if you haven’t sorted the new cupboard fronts, temporially taping some white paper on them…until you can get to recoloring them.

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  3. You need to go totally Blue Peter on those things (ie, sticky back plastic). Otherwise, I have half a metric ton of scraps you could glue on and then cover with a liberal coating of Mod Podge. Or maybe Mr Snail has some nice wire you could make delightful spirally Snail patterns with, after a coat of paint? Either way, a new pair of handles will help a lot, and a storage basket to slide under that left hand one would help visually too. Let me at them! I have a million ideas!

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    • I wish you could pop over and help out. Funnily enough we had talked about a storage basket in that space. There was a split opinion about the handles – I can’t quite decide myself but there were votes for and against! Once the rest of the woodwork is done, I will seriously think about what to do with the doors. In fact, I may just hand it over to someone else – so many of my creative friends are offering to help, and that would be a fun project.

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  4. Can I suggest a decoupaged set of before and after pictures somewhere to inspire people when they visit, and what a great haul of goodies were left for you.

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  5. This sounds fun and clever at the same time. Wish I could be there for the grand opening 🙂
    PS. Did you ever find out why Sue is “going batty”, as she puts it?

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