Friday, 24 April 2015

The Storeyard

Last week I brought a friend to one of my favourite haunts; The Storeyard


It's an antique shop/salvage yard with an amazing tea room right in the middle that serve the best desserts and cakes! We spent about three hours mooching around. It's not exactly cheap but I have never left without picking up something. It's a bit like being in a museum. Admittedly, I had to look at the tags on several occasions to determine what exactly I was looking at! It's essentially a big warehouse but is designed really well with lots of little roomsets and areas of interest. Here are a few sneaky pics from inside...


Have my eye on 'The Abbey' metal sign for a while now. The Abbey Theatre is the national theatre of Ireland. Can't understand why no-one has snapped this up already. 


On this table is a Victorian gentleman's travelling suitcase with lots of the original glass bottles inside with cologne, etc. On the outside are stickers from Dublin hotels which have long since closed. I can't help but wonder about the gentleman who owned this. This is what I love about vintage pieces.


These were being sold separately strangely enough. So cute! They were quite large pieces and had lots of lovely details, made mostly of wood.


Loved this little garden vignette. I'm thinking it's a vintage saddle rack!? Bought some of these mini terracotta pots on my last visit.


Love this royal blue upholstery. And the trumpet. I've always kinda wanted one, I don't play or anything!


My friend purchased one of these vintage watering cans. I bought one of these on my very first visit. Behind them is an amazing piece with eight drawers all hand labelled; Ironmongery, Screws, Brushes, Show-Maker...
And my all time favourites, vintage suitcases!!


This was one corner of an amazing Chinese inspired bedroom. The detail in the fabrics and the furniture pieces was astounding. Sorry it was a bit dark in this room.


Love that gorgeous wooden panelling and that feather/down filled sofa was so comfy.


And this sofa with it's lovely cushions.

So what did I buy???


This cute little book on Birds Eggs....


And this vintage wooden golf club. 


This was for Mr. Auburn as he's a golfer but I have a plan for this one... 

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Sunday, 19 April 2015

Homemade Irish Moss Topiary

This is the third instalment in the 'things I want but can't get a hold of' series. I'm not saying that I couldn't get these in Ireland but I don't want to spent €150 for a pair of them! 


So I decided I was going to have me some made by my own fair hand!
These were all the things I needed....


Two rustic looking clay pots from my local garden centre, €12 each.
Foam balls (x2), foam bricks (x2) and some moss pins (free) from the florist, €26 of total extortion.
PVA glue and a couple of bamboo sticks which I already had.
Lots of good old Irish moss from the bog which I dried in my airing cupboard! Totally FOC!!


I started by cutting one of the foam blocks in half and carving both halves up a bit so they were a really snug fit in the pots. (I actually only needed one and used half in each pot.) I gave it a smattering of PVA glue and sat a little moss on top. 



I covered the foam balls in PVA and wrapped the moss around them securing in places with a couple of moss pins. I did this in two stages, sitting them on a bowl to dry before turning over and doing the second half. The moss worked really well because it came off the bog like a piece of carpet!


Once dried, I pushed both balls onto the bamboo canes which I trimmed to size and inserted into the pots ensuring both were the same height.


There you have it, homemade Irish moss topiary. 


They are rustic looking. The moss is not as perfect looking as the Finland moss you can buy in the florist but I'm not in Finland. And I think it's in keeping with the rustic pots. 


Apologies for the photos, it was dark by the time I had finished. I like how they balance out this little vignette on my landing. I needed something on either side with a little height that wasn't a lamp. I love how they've turned out. They complete this little ensemble which has been in my head for so long. Best of all they cost me less than €50 for both.

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Sunday, 12 April 2015

Bargain of the Year - 2014

Hi all, hope you've had a great weekend. I am back in Blogland again.
Well we had an amazing St. Patrick's holiday in Chicago, the first time I have ever been outside this green isle for Paddy's day. I suppose I see St. Patrick's Day as something intrinsically Irish so it was amazing to see so many people dressed in green and celebrating 'our' holiday. Not only did they turn the river green but they turned the beer green too! We had a ball. Unfortunately we came home from our holidays to three funerals, one of which was very sudden and a close family member of my husbands. That's life eh? Ups and downs. 

 So after a busy couple of weeks I am finally caught up on all my blog reading, it was nothing short of a marathon, you guys were busy! I too have lots to share but as usual I'm lagging behind!


From the title I'm sure you have deduced that this one is a while coming. You see it was and is part of the Hall-Stairs-Landing redo so I couldn't share before now. He's been there in plain sight all the time though! See the little hooves...


Okay maybe not 'plain' sight.

This was another of those items everyone in Blogland had. Teasing me with vintage looking horses of all descriptions, adorning beautiful mantles. Looking at the cost of these on eBay I had pretty much thrown in the towel!


So last September on our return from a stay-cation in beautiful Ireland we stopped over in Co. Kilkenny. I was having a wander around TK Maxx when I spotted him on the very top shelf at the end of an isle. 


I may have knocked some people down on route to that isle! He was like a reproduction plaster Tang horse, subtly painted in tones of beige and green.  


RRP €93.00! TK Maxx price €23.99!  I carefully took him down. He had some signs of wear, some of his paint was chipping and the plaster was revealed. 


Honestly, this added to the look. However I stuck my brass neck out and asked if there was any reduction for the damage.  


 Imagine my delight when the sales assistant returned to tell me, "the manager apologizes for the damage, she doesn't know how it could have happened, would €15 be okay?". 


It took all I had not to squeal and instead reply with a very composed "thank you very much". I am not joking when I tell you that I carried him all the way home to the Midlands like a baby!


He's another piece in my new vignette puzzle.
I promise not to hold out on you much longer!!

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Sunday, 5 April 2015

Wishing you a Happy Easter!!

Hope you're all having a happy Easter. 


We're having a lovely long weekend here in Ireland. We had Good Friday and have Easter Monday off from work. It has been a hectic couple of weeks of ups and downs so Mr. Auburn and I are catching up with family and on some well deserved rest! Today we went to mass, visited relatives, ate lots of Easter eggs and relaxed at home. 

We are having some glorious Spring weather which allowed us into the garden yesterday for the post winter overhaul. It has to get worse to get better, right?

 I am a little behind on my Blog reading, please bear with me while I catch up! 

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Faux Vintage Chippy Window

It seems like everyone in Blogland has one. A REAL vintage window that is. 


Layers of chippy pastel paints. Small thick squares of handmade glass. Problem is I don't find them in Ireland. Maybe because we get so much rain they rot in their old abandoned houses. I have really wanted one for the top of my grandparents chest ever since I moved it to our landing. 


So I had to improvise. Necessity is the mother of invention you know! When I saw an old door hanging off a broken kitchen dresser I knew I was onto something. 


It was already missing it's knob. I carefully taped the glass and gave it one coat of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Original. Don't you love that orange wood?


With some heavy grit sandpaper I distressed it quite heavily, taking off lots of paint in places to give it that aged look I was after. 


A clear coat of wax followed by a hint of dark wax and it was ready to adorn my new look landing! 


Using some ribbon and a thumb tack I added a twig wreath to which I wired this little metal butterfly. It used to be a belt buckle.


I'm so happy with how it turned out. 


It's all part of a little vignette that has been in my head for almost a year now. All will soon be revealed!!

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Sunday, 1 March 2015

A Fresh Coat of Original

I mentioned in my last post that as we replaced all the furniture in the hall, stairs and landing following the paintover, some pieces just didn't seem to work anymore.


Colourwise, they didn't work. They weren't terrible but they looked a little tired against the crisp new colour scheme. And so cream has been replaced by off-white. 
Does this make me crazy?

First up was this huge mirror and it was a mammoth task that involved the use of much frog tape.  I used Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Original followed by some clear wax. Most items got this treatment. Here is the before...


And here is the after...


You can see a difference right?

Next was the radiator cover, aka my entrance table/hall stand. This I painted Almost White like the rest of the woodwork. I'm not sure why, maybe because this piece feels more like the rest of the woodwork even though we treat it like a piece of furniture. 


A little shelf...


Granted, it still looks a little cream. Perhaps it should have got another coat!
These framed prints...


This frame was painted in ASCP Country Grey... 


Originally, it was a pale gold and the frame was dented and scratched. I got it from my sister who was throwing it away. I was never in love with it, it hung around the corner where no-one really saw it. I love it now, I think the Country Grey really brings out the picture. I didn't wax it as I like the chalky finish. It has been given pride of place at the top of the stairs. 

This was the last piece to get a freshen up...


It was originally stained a dark colour. 
It belonged to my grandparents and lived in their bedroom. 


About 10 or 12 years ago I painted it Jasmine White which had yellowed over the years. The stain coming through I think.


It was naturally distressed over the twelve years I have had it which I recreated before sealing with a coat of clear wax.


This chest used to live in our second bedroom but recently got upgraded to the landing. I knew exactly how I wanted to dress it. If you look carefully in this picture you will see I have moved onto styling, aka the fun bit!

Mother Nature decided to give everything a coat of white today too. Did I say it hardly ever snows in Ireland?


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