Hellooo, so this week I thought I’d write a more personal blog post about me and what got me started upcycling furniture and writing a blog about it.
Firstly my name is Claire, I am a stay at home mum to my little boy Oscar. This is me:
I have loved houses and interiors since I was little. I was forever reareanging my tiny bedroom and accesorising it. I have also always been a person who has been affected by how interiors look and feel. If it is messy, dirty or disconcordant I feel really stressed and tense to the point I want to get out. I’ve lived in some pretty yuck places in my student days and spent the time trying to make them look nicer to ease the tension, but it is really hard to make a room nice when your renting it and have no money.
I didn’t ever pursue this love of interiors though, I instead went off to university to study psychology and then on to studying my first (then) passion acting, but it never felt like they fitted my personality quite right.
I spent my 20’s exploring my acting career and doing a day job that was so worthwhile and rewarding but felt completely wrong for me. Then I got sick (those of you who know me through Instagram are probably now thinking wow this girl gets sick a lot) this was a mental health issue (which I’m not going to go into now) and it meant I lost everything and wound back home living with my parents.
Part of my recovery was eventually to move into my own place. I found a newly renovated Victorian house that had been converted into studio flats. I rented the one on the top floor, it was so tiny but perfect for me, I loved it and loved putting my mark on it. There wasn’t much I could do with it though as it was newly done and wasn’t mine and I would have been absolutely clueless about what to do with it anyway. I’d never picked up a paintbrush and I think I would have been nervous about trying.
I then had to start thinking about what I wanted to do with my life, my acting career had gone and I never wanted to do that again anyway, I didn’t want to do the day job I had been doing but I had no plan or idea about what I did want to do. I can remember the interior thing kept coming back up so I started doing an online interior design course and to start with I loved it but there was something really missing that I couldn’t put my finger on so I stopped. Now I know that it just wasn’t hands on practical enough for me, I like to do things practically and get more stuck in.
Then fast forward a few years of complete inactivity to being married and moving for the third time to a little rented one bedroom flat. The landlord told us he would paint it for us but when we got the keys and I saw it the walls seemed to only be half painted, I felt really upset and didn’t want to live there (I know I’m a bit of a perfectionistic drama queen), my husband though reassured me we could paint it, but from my experience of landlords they don’t like you to touch their properties. I phoned him and asked if we could repaint it and he said it was okay. This was my first decorating job. I had no idea what I was doing and was completely led by my husband but I had a go and I loved it. Then I started to play around with it and add touches. I had no idea what I was doing and no idea of the style I liked. This all really kicked in when I found out I was pregnant and I went into nesting mode like a mad women and loved it, upcycling old things, making new, wanting everything to be nice for when our baby came along. I had lots of ideas but didn’t really know how to do things properly so a lot of things I attempted turned out to be a rushed mess.
Four months after my little boy was born we moved again to a 2 bed house and this is where we live now. It was a bit of a rushed rash decision because we were quickly outgrowing our tiny one bed flat.
Well our new house was my worst nightmare, pine doors, skirting and banister, purple and pink walls, red, black and white tiles in the kitchen a garden that looked like a concrete and stone jungle completely unsuitable for a baby. The landlord said we could do what we liked with the house, this was music to my ears, this house then became my education on how to make a house into a home.
Very quickly we got rid of the garish walls and painted the pine white, to remove how oppressive the house felt. We did this in a rush (rushing seems to be a common theme for us), it looked much better but the finish was terrible and as I was a stay at home mum I had to look at the walls every day and it bugged me and also none of our furniture seemed to look right.
I decided then that we obviously didn’t have a clue what we were doing so I started to ask goggle really basic questions like “how do you paint a wall properly?” “What paint do you use on a door?” “How do you paint a celling?” Once I had the facts I went and bought the right equipment and started to repaint properly over our bad job.
Once I realised I could learn how to do it properly and make it look really nice I had the bug and I wanted to learn how to paint different pieces of furniture, then how to do all those niggling odd jobs around the house that I didn’t know how to do, I researched Google and you tube and taught myself how to them. Then I got into gardening and learnt how to transform the garden, then it was transforming home accessories like mirrors and plant pots. I learnt about different types of paint and how to use them. I loved seeing how my home was changing and I began to find colours and a style I really liked, Pinterest was my tool here.
I felt like I had found my thing, every time I started to paint something I’d get that zingy excited feeling. I decided that I wanted to find like minded people which is why I set up my Instagram account.
I had also always wanted to write a blog but I didn’t seem to ever have a topic to write about, I made a promise to myself that I would begin a blog if I hit 500 followers on Instagram. When I hit that number this blog was born. With the intention to share with others my creations and tell people how I had done it, share any tips and ideas that I had learnt to inspire people that they could learn how to do it too.
This is where I am now. I have found my passion, upcycling furniture and blogging about it.
Thank you for reading this rather long post, sorry it’s so long I wanted to give you all a truthful insight into me.
Please follow if you’d like to see more.
Love Claire x