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Friday, 1 March 2013

Sometimes you just wish you'd never started!

I woke up the other day to sunshine and thoughts of spring cleaning - not my real life house you understand. No! My attention was drawn to the Tea Rooms. For those of you who don't know, the Tea Room was my first build. I made it into an Edwardian period property filled with walnut and mahogany furniture and as time has passed I feel it now looks a little dark. So ... time for a change.

I've removed most of the furniture from the living room, which is where I decided to begin my makeover.

It looks really rather sad now doesn't it? Like a real life removal day.
Some things will remain. The embroidery frame, of course, which is the latest addition to the property. The fireplace is timeless and the wallpaper, which is a neutral cream and brown pattern and which I still quite like.

I'm still happy with the curtains too.

And the little writing corner with its desk, chair and rose painting. 

The blotter and some of the other pieces are actually glued onto the desk so I'm not changing a thing with this. The chair will also remain in its natural wood finish, though I shall probably recover the seat cushion.

The rest of the furniture though, that's all being painted. Several coats of green and cream paint later and this is where we're at. This is where I started wishing that I'd never started! I know that once it's all sanded down and topped off with a coat of matt varnish it will all look fine. I've also put a couple of false doors onto the base of that bookcase, which has always looked a little odd.

Those four chairs are from the tea room itself so now I'm committed to changing at least that room too. At the moment the only room I'm still quite happy with is the attic, but I'll save all of that for another day.

See the pile of books that I've been making to add to the few plain ones that were originally on the bookshelf. If you look closely you can see a bowl of fruit and other ornaments in there too. I think that the little shelf unit may keep its natural wood finish, but I'll have to see what it looks like when the newly painted pieces are in place.

I've been knitting for the tea rooms too - well, actually for the flat upstairs. About an inch into that cream blanket I wished I'd never started that too and it was thrown to one side. The pink blanket is fine - 1 ply wool and slightly thicker needles, which grew quite quickly. Eventually, unwilling to be beaten, I decided to go back to the cream one (Venne Colcoton - which is like sewing cotton - and 1mm needles) and several weeks later I decided that it was finally long enough to throw across the end of the bed. The hot water bottle cover and tea cosy took no time at all to complete. And I couldn't resist making the pair of dainty little slippers.

I've also fallen in love with biscornu. These are clever little items, simply made from two squares of embroidery, stitched together corner to side centre, which are actually intended as pincushions, but I like them thrown in this black bowl as ornaments.

As a footnote ... today is St David's Day - the day on which the Welsh nation celebrates their patron saint. One of my close friends is Welsh and every year I accompany her to the local Welsh Society's St David's Day Dinner. So tonight I too shall be lifting a glass to toast St David and be singing along (albeit in English) to some traditional tunes.

A happy St David's Day to you all!



  1. I like the writing corner.
    Bye Faby

  2. Cleaning and renovating can be an interesting project when it deals with miniatures. You get to touch your tiny treasures and remember how and when things were collected.
    The little pincushions are stunning.
    Happy St. David's Day to you too.
    Hugs, Drora

  3. your renovations are coming along well, I find working small so hard I really admire how you make the most wonderful tiny pieces.
    I am also hooked on biscornus but make big hardanger ones, will put a couple on my blog this week to share, had one on SF and got to the top of the leader board which was an achievement for me.

  4. I found you via Fi (marmalade rose) and just had to say how beautiful your handmade things are. I have a dolls house, a detached Edwardian (part of a terrace but only have room for one now!) wherein lives Mr Bartholomew, retired bank manager. It is therefore a rather male interior, with dark furniture and sensible things. I long for a quirky cottage filled with silly things, wherein would live Maggie, happy spinster, weaver, spinner of yarns both woolly and fictional. But I can no longer make fine/small objects and don't have the room anyway. But your tearooms etc., look delightful.

  5. Judith, thanks for explaining how biscornu are assembled (yes I'm reading posts backwards again!) - they are so attractive. And I agree - we start our spring makeovers with such enthusiasm and energy, and the whole task becomes bigger as we go along. But it is looking great and the result will be well worth the effort. Hugs, Sandie