Tag Archives: storage

Round up: Hanging fruit bowls

For simply aaaaages I’ve been wanting a hanging fruit bowl in our kitchen. Not just to free up some bench space (although that is always useful) but to add another dimension to the kitchen. So far we’ve been pretty slack in getting some more arty layers added. We got the basics in and I love how functional our kitchen is despite its smallness, but it is lacking some personality in the way of feature art.

So, I’ve just done it. I’ve made a purchase that is the first step in making our kitchen a little more layered.

But first, here’s a quick round up of 6 of my finds. Most of them are more crafty by nature, but there’s a couple that would look just as at home in a totally modern and minimal space.

0318_hanging-fruit-bowlClockwise from top left:

– Three tiers of handmade, available in a range of colours, from Etsy
Cocoon planter and fruit bowl in one
– Wire basket from Tea Pea (this one would need you to attach the hanger part, but it can’t be too hard can it?!)
Modern macrame in lilac and lemon
– Rope hanging planter (which this Etsy crafter is bring out in a fruit bowl style in the near future)

And now I’m going to leave you guessing as to which one I’ve bought! But if you can’t wait, I’ve already spoiled the surprise on Facebook!

 

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Somewhere to hang your hat

As anyone with small people will know, anything that encourages a tidy bedroom is worth having.

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So I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to just go ahead and get this tree hanger from Mocka. Really, how hard is it to click Checkout??! I’ve also had this and this in my shopping cart, but have yet to purchase… It’s my financial safety mechanism – leave things in your shopping cart overnight, have another look in the morning and ask “do I really need this?!” Boring, but it’s probably wise to prioritise the mortgage right?

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A little secret: Mocka is great at sales. Every week they have a handful of their products on sale. So I got a lovely 20% off this gorgeous green tree hanger!1104_8449

I love how it adds another dimension to the washi taped skyline that I did a while back. 1104_8450

This corner has previously been the dumping ground for bags and jackets that are just a bit too annoying to stuff away into a cupboard or drawer. Sooo much more visually pleasing to see them hanging off a tree branch! 1104_8453 1104_8454

I’m impressed with the quality (at only $39.95 on sale, it could have been a bit average) and expect to have this bit of indoor greenery for many of the kids growing up years. And it was super easy to assemble – It took no more than 5 minutes, and at least 2 of those were going to grab an allen key, only to see then that of course it came with one!

Nice one Mocka!

And I just might have another little DIY something going on to match one of the other Mocka products in the links above…

See these posts for more of the kids bedroom (I cheated with close cropped photos of this latest addition so I didn’t have to tidy the room completely!).

 

Pin of the day: Wishy washi dishes

I may have mentioned making a play kitchen for the kids for Christmas? Well… this idea just made it a bit easier:

washi tape dolls house by Frida Ramstedt

Take some simple shelves and add washi tape to fancy it up. Done!

As soon as I can find some replacements for our master bedroom bedside cabinets, they’ll be hacked a little to accommodate a play oven, fridge and kitchen storage.

I’m not one for big investment (money or otherwise) into kids toys so I plan to keep it super simple and go crazy with washi tape for the fancy bits. Then, if it’s a hit I can turn the fancy bits more permanent perhaps?!

Image from my Kids Room Pinterest board.

A good declutter

I’ve just come across an interesting article on Apartment Therapy, that introduces a new (to me) concept in the ongoing process that is a clutter-free home.

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It’s called an outbox – a defined space (out of the way of everyday living, like in a closet) to act as a halfway house for all those “things” that you’re not quite sure what to do about… and need a little time to consider a more permanent separation.

My current way of dealing with excess stuff is to sort as I go. I have a box for “give to friends”, another for “give to charity” and another for “list on Trade Me”. However, I recently had a minor panic attack after overhearing a conversation between my mother and aunty, at a family birthday, about a gorgeous handmade dress my aunty had made for me as a baby, and a lovingly knitted blanket my mum had made. Mum commented that she was pretty sure both had been handed on to me at the arrival of my own baby girl. Having just done a massive sort of all baby clothes and bedding I was rooted to the spot trawling through my picture memory again and again, trying to spot the precious hand-me-downs. Come Saturday morning I begged and pleaded with Andre to climb back into the roof space and have one more look to see if he’d left any vacuum bags up there after bringing them “all” down for me a few days before. There were tears of relief when I spotted the creamy lace of the dress and the ribbon on the blanket. They didn’t end up being dumped unceremoniously at the charity shop after somehow getting in the wrong box. Nightmare averted!

This outbox concept would deal with such situations, as it offers time to really make a decision on what goes where. No treasured items mistaken for rubbish.

So, here are the rules:

1. Anything can go in the Outbox
2. The Outbox is allowed to get messy
3. Everything must stay in the Outbox for at least one week
4. After that time you have several choices
a. Take anything back out
b. Leave anything you are undecided about for one more week
c. Dispose of the rest by moving to the garbage, recycling bin, or giveaway pile

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Currently we have a complete room that is acting as an outbox. It’s the “green bedroom” – so called because of it’s bright green wallpapered walls. And because we don’t know what else to call it yet… it’s currently suffering from personality disorder – part spare bedroom, part storage room, part project room. I may as well just go ahead and call it “Outbox”. And hope that one day I’ll get to the bottom of the pile!

By the way, here’s the AT take on an outbox space:

Day 4: Set Up a One-Room Outbox

Hmmm… really? Nothing? Not one thing in the whole house is up for trial by outbox to decide it’s fate? Because surely those gumboots are keepers – noone in their right mind would consider not keeping sunshine yellow gumboots (ahem… wellingtons).

How’s your outbox looking?!

 

An organised office nook

I don’t know where to start with this, so maybe I’ll just start at the end?

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Aaah that’s better! I guess I just didn’t want to start by showing you this:

0625_0554That is what was left of the doorway off the lounge into the kitchen, after we started working things around to create a new bedroom, laundry, and the office nook.

I can’t seem to find a photo from before we got started with demo, but here is the view from the other side, looking from the original kitchen into the lounge.

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Here is the wall as it was getting cut out…

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And after the framing and lining was completed…0625_1586

Eventually the trim got finished and we got some paint up. That is how it stayed for longer than I care to remember – one giant filing cabinet across the lounge, and a definitely seen better days student desk, with piles of all sorts half hiding behind it.0625_2087

Then the magic started to happen. We bought a piece of laminated timber benchtop off Trade Me, cut it to fit, varnished it up and one evening last winter it got installed!0625_4832

That was followed by some much needed shelves.

0625_4948And the delay since then has been all mine. I guess I was busy elsewhere.

So now I am delighted to introduce you to my office nook. Enjoy! Feast your eyes!

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Here’s something of a source list:

Desktop – Trade Me
Shelves – Bunnings
Pinboard – inherited
Storage boxes – The Warehouse, Briscoes, Boxalong
Jars – collected
Ringbinders – Warehouse Stationery (labels my own)
Drawers – Ikea via Trade Me

As for a budget… do you mind if I skip that today? It’s been quite the challenge enough to get photos done and a post up!

I love that the pinboard will be a constantly changing artwork, but I also plan to hang something gorgeous to the left of it for balance. We are also toying with the idea of a narrow shelf (like this) above the pinboard to balance the shelves either side, and provide a little more storage space.

I do hope you love this space as much as I do! I’d be delighted to know what you think… comment away or tell me on Facebook.

 

Beer crate to kindling box

Last week I finished a little project which was free and very simple, but so useful and satisfying! Many of you will have seen sneak peeks on instagram (@duckeggblueblog) or Facebook, but here’s the step by step process with all the details!

I started with a beer crate, which came from a little liquor store down the road and around the corner a bit. I expected to pay a few dollars for it, but they were happy to give it to me for free. Ask around – I’ve heard some places will charge up to $7.

When I got it, I wasn’t sure what, if anything I was going to do with it. But being free, I thought I may as well attack it with the sander to start with. Just to make the beer branding a little less obvious.

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Somewhere along the way I thought I’d give it the dipped look, so I didn’t worry about sanding it back too much. I’m a bit slow on the uptake with creating a dipped piece of furniture (although my dining chairs have a similar look – and caused a bit of controversy over on Apartment Therapy!).0604_7123

I started with a coat of primer, and decided it didn’t need a top coat. I don’t want it to look too polished (it’s a kindling box, not a lingerie drawer) so the roughness of the primer is perfect. And there is just a teensy bit of show through with the ABC branding and wood grain, which I’m delighted with!0604_7124

This was all done one sunny afternoon when we were all desperate just to be outside for a bit. We’ve had a lot of rain lately and moods are washing up with the grass seed. We are not good at winter around here, but this new kindling box is helping a little!

The crate is way too small for a firewood box (which I originally thought it might be) but perfect for kindling and paper. So I built a divider (which also covers the gaps in the bottom of the crate to prevent the kindling dropping out) by screwing a piece of scrap ply at right angles to another. Rough… really rough… but it does the job. And you can’t see it when the box is full of kindling and paper!0604_7126

I did consider adding castors (these are authentic vintage! It’s truly amazing what one can find in the husbands garage!) but a friend brought up a very good point that it would only encourage the kids to trundle it all over the house. Totally right. So we’ll give those a miss. They would have looked awesome, but I prefer my kindling and firewood mess to be confined in one spot. So the retro castors are back in the depths of the man cave, until I think of something else to do with them.0604_7128

One beer crate turned kindling box (I keep wanting to call it a firestarter box but it sounds a bit wrong?!) – nice huh?!0604_7131

And here it is insitu alongside the Rondo log basket which I bought from The Warehouse (one day after the sale so it cost me $50 instead of $30… too  s l o w  for the discount).0604_7139

I’ve grown used to the fireplace now and barely notice it’s motley appearance, but if you’re new to this blog you can see what happened here. The hearth definitely needs some tile, but the brick surround may just stay as it is. I kinda like it!

Here’s a couple of gratuitous close ups and birds eye views.0604_7142

0604_7143Love how such cheap and easy projects can be just as satisfying as the more costly and time consuming ones!

Note: The wardrobe poll is sitting at over 80% for freestanding! Wow! It’s still running, so go and have your say if you want to join the argument. Me: “Huh! Over 80% for free standing!” Andre: “Yeah, but how many times have you voted?!” Me: “None! I promise!”.

Thinking about log baskets

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Hi Winter… nice that you waited until late May. I’m usually sick of lugging firewood already. This year, I’m determined to make it easier on myself with a superb log basket.

Counter clockwise from top:

Large Kobu basket from Freedom $99 – on the pricey side but also on the awesome side
Flax hamper from Homie $40 – a good size and I love the leather handles… but strong enough? Worth a try at that price.
Hogla basket from Trade Aid $75 – basic, functional, slim style
Rondo log basket from The Warehouse $30 (on sale now) – purpose built, nice shape and a bargain!

Hope you’re all keeping warm! Our insulation does seem to be helping but of course it’s not got reeeally cold yet…