I still haven’t worked out what to do when I grow up! I’m mainly a writer, an artist, and a fairytale dressmaker with various crafty hobbies! Here (and on YouTube) I share bits of my life, thoughts, and what I’m learning along the way. Let’s find magic and inspiration; join me for this creative living adventure!



Doing up the cellar and games room + review of Focus paint.

I just can’t seem to start one thing and finish it. I left the kitchen alone for a couple of weeks and focussed on the rooms in the cellar. My eldest daughter wanted to use it for her birthday party, and I welcomed the change of scenery.

The cellar had previously been rented as a separate flat and while the removal men were lugging our stuff into the house last year, the tenant just happened to walk his dogs right past the house. He told us all about the leaks, the well under the floor that rose and made the floor wet, the rats he could hear scurrying about in the drains up the walls and seemed to relish the fact that we now had all these problems to deal with.

In actual fact, the previous owners did all the damp-proofing and sorting out any drain issues, and having lived through the wettest, coldest winter, I can safely say that the cellar is probably the least damp place to be in the house now. It wasn’t the most welcoming though. The walls were painted white, but with some areas with brown nicotine stains showing through and it just felt cold and uninviting.  The kids were allowed to choose the colours and they agreed to use both their favourite: hot pink and purple. There were ideas about one colour on one wall, and a different one on the other, but we persuaded them (subtly) that the games room should be all pink and the den all purple.  The wall surrounding the fireplace though is black chalk board paint.

So, on to my favourite subject: paint! Unfortunately Farrow and Ball don’t do hot pink, and if you’ve read my previous reviews of paint, you’ll understand why I didn’t want to go back to cheaper brands. It also seemed that hot pink is not a posh enough colour for any designer paint with decent coverage. (The only brand of eco paint doing hot pink is ECOS, but there are no stockists nearby and I didn’t have time to wait for tester pots to be posted to me. I will go through this route though later as eldest daughter wants her bedroom in hot pink and black

The room before I started painting.

The room before I started painting.

and I definitely want her bedroom paint to be healthy.) Anyway, if I had to use cheaper paint, I was only willing to use One Coat, and the only local place doing the right colour was Focus. Yes, it was good, but it was no where near as good as B&Q One Coat paint. The room is only about 9′ square, and covering only three of the walls – all with windows and one with a door, I used a whole 2.5L tub, plus the tester pot and didn’t have enough to do the inside of the fireplace.  It took three slightly watered down coats to cover over white; so not that impressed, but it’s still better than the six coats of normal paint it took to do my dressing room.

I’ve still got the woodwork to finish in silver, so I’ll update again when it’s completely finished.

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As a fellow thirty one year old – I feel a little old when agreeing loudly – to my empty lounge (if you exclude the cats!) with the Farrow and Ball comment!

Hope all is good with you – have a wonderful Christmas and New Year.



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