I’m not obsessed with many things in the world. Only, cats, unicorns, fantasy and my house. I am obsessed with my house. Most normal people would ask for make-up/clothes/books/jewellery/gift vouchers for their birthdays and Christmas. I ask for things like lamps, dinnerware, curtains and duvets.
I’m really into cute combined with quirky and when I excitedly announced to my partner last year that I wanted to redecorate the living room/dining room and make it duck egg blue with a purple sofa, cute animal scatter cushions and pink throws, he promptly told me “no chance”. In his defence, in my head it looked amazing, but I couldn’t quite verbally express what I meant without it sounding like I wanted our very boring, brown, grown up living room to suddenly turn into Barbie’s playhouse.
Now, I get it. Cutesy is not for everyone. Quirky is not for everyone. But I wanted my house to make me smile when I walked through the door. I wanted cosy but smiley. Cute but also quirky.
I was in two minds about the teal paint on the wall to start with but once I had sorted all the furniture I really liked it. It brings a bit of cosiness into the room. I was dubious because when it dried it was so dark and where my house is positioned it’s mostly in constant darkness anyway so I was conscious of not trying to make an already dark house, darker.
We decided to only paint the feature wall in teal/duck egg and paint the other remaining walls a sort of silvery purple colour, which sounds awful but actually is quite smart on.
Firstly, I’d like to point out that although I have OCD, I hate symmetry, so none of my furniture matches, everything is different and no two ornaments are the same. I think it makes everything look a bit more interesting.
I will say that I love my purple sofa. Not only does it bring a giant burst of colour into the room but it’s super comfy. I always feel like the lady from the old Cadbury’s hot chocolate advert, that sinks into her giant comfy chair whilst she’s almost orgasmic-ally sipping her hot chocolate.
I did originally have a pastel blue throw on the sofa and no scatter cushions but I felt like it clashed with the single chair and my mum saw the purple and mustard throw and matching cushion (in Sainsbury’s) and thought it was a quirky addition. I think she was right. The mustard also goes with the mustard tones in my oversized rug, which also took a bit of getting used to but does make the room feel and look warmer than my old rug which was half the size and varying shades of brown. I added a bit of cute to the equation with the cartoon owl cushion (from The Range).
We initially were going for a shabby chic style to match the laminate flooring which super-partner carefully laid himself, but I decided that shabby chic in our dark house would just look plain dirty, so we went for a bit of a combination.
I’m in love with retro style. I saw the single chair in The Range and instantly loved its 1960’s feel. When we got it back however, it looked really plain and sort of lost sitting in the corner by itself, so I complimented it with a pink throw and that fabulously cute fox pillow (both also from The Range).
I also thought that the chair would go great with our vintage (1950’s) coffee table which we reclaimed from an old flat we lived in. It was sadly sitting there with no one to love it so we brought it with us when we moved out. I finished off the vintage look with some duck-egg thick vintage curtains which are super cute.
I’ve previously blogged about that vintage hedgehog lamp sitting on the end table next to the chair which I really think sets that little area off great. It’s from the 1980’s and I bought it from eBay and haven’t seen one like it anywhere since. It really does seem to be one of a kind.
I really don’t like our fireplace. If it was my choice, I wouldn’t have a fireplace at all, but my partner likes it for when it’s cold in winter, so he can light it, turn it up to full blast, feel cosy warm and ignore the huge gas bill and my rant about wasting money on gas that follows. So I had to make the best of a bad thing. I decided I wanted to make it cosy so I added the heart fairy lights (which I picked up from Primark) and some little nik-naks in the form of this shabby chic jug and fake flowers in pastel colours.
I liked the country-esque feel it brought to the room and it settled my mixed feelings of wanting country style/shabby chic/cute/vintage/quirky and being told I can’t have all of those because they don’t go together. So I put them all together anyway.
Our window cill was looking very bare at this point because I went through a minimalist phase where I threw out all of our ornaments and binned off nik-naks and clutter. After two weeks, I decided my house looked more like a Travel Lodge and that nobody actually permanently lived there because of the lack of all personal items and I hated it so much that I went out this time and bought a bunch of new ornaments. The star light and the Edison lamp, I saw in Asda and completely fell in love with. The lamp is too bright to be sitting on an end table but is great on the cill out of the way and actually creates really cosy lighting when the curtains (which are in front of it) are closed. The unicorn, my partner surprised me with (also from Asda) and the little cat ornament (not for everyone I know, but we’re crazy cat people so we instantly took a liking to it) was bought new from The British Heart Foundation store.
With the lighting all on at night (only the lamps, no “big” lights allowed on in my house – I’ve got a Smart Meter, do you KNOW how much energy spotlights use??) it creates a really cosy and inviting space.
For my dining room, which is still to be finished really, this sheesham wooden table and chairs really took my partner’s eye. We bought it second hand from The British Heart Foundation and my sister finished it off with that amazing candelabra centrepiece. It’s hard to see in this picture but there is also a Banksy series piece on the wall behind (you can see this in the very first photo of both rooms).
I really love coming in from work on an evening and just crashing on the sofa with a glass of wine and my book, light some candles and cuddle up with my cat next to me (all of these things are apparent in this photo).