Hey you guys!
Okay, can someone tell me what is going on? Like I started 2020 all vibes high like "new year, new home, new me" wasn't expecting new year new world! It was like January - relocate to a new city with new hopes and dreams, February - lose my car, run out of money, March - lockdown. But look, you guys, I'm not here to say the C word and bitch about how it's ruining my life, I'm here to let you all know that I'm doing fine. But I do worry about you guys, are you all okay? Holla at me if you good (or if you not good - I'm here for y'all).
So, yes I am here isolating alone, and because I have asthma I'm in the "vulnerable" category so I've been isolating a bit longer than some but the amazing thing is, I don't feel alone with so many of my friends all around the world reaching out to me. I've been zooming all over the shop, I zoomed my amazing friends from Brazil, Germany and France all at once and we chat for hours! I even zoomed my old church in Dorking!
Plus the new friends I've made here in Brizzo are amazing, one who I'd describe as a work bestie (but she'd say a loose acquaintance) even shopped for me and delivered it -nearly- to my door. Toilet roll, avocados, barista edition oatmilk and all!
I guess what I'm trying to say is... I'm feeling pretty blessed!
So, what do you do when you're isolated in your new flat? Well, if you're me, you reorganise every cupboard, order as much furniture as you can afford, rearrange your living room and attempt to grow avocado trees. Ooh, it's such a treat when a parcel arrives and it's a self-assemble package! I save those for evening/weekend activities.
Here's a #lockdown tip; long out every single everyday activity you do. Like if you're brushing your teeth, floss as well, hell even pull out the teeth whitening charcoal - why not?! If you're painting your nails, give yourself a FULL manicure, scrub, mask, cuticle oil and all. You washing your hair? Do a full hair mask - use coconut oil, almond oil or whatever just put a rich conditioner in and leave for an hour.
Oh and film everything for the gram, like not only does it make everything take longer, but everyone else is bored AF and have already run out of stories so you're sort of doing them a favour. #youarewelcome
FYI - I know these insta challenges are all the rage right now but I am not doing it. Like I'm not 10 years old on MSN anymore forwarding on chain mail in case I have seven years of bad luck. Okay fine, with enough peer pressure I might give in... but I'm resisting!
Right, so I actually started writing this with the intention of showing you guys what my 11 days of isolation has done in terms of flat decor. And I realise I haven't really shown you my new pad unless you follow me on insta, so here's a free tour for you (because your four island Bora Bora tour obviously got cancelled).
Welcome to My House!
So, this was day one, right after I picked up the keys. As you can see, I was rather excited about the keys. My front door, complete with peep hole and letterbox, already had some mail poking out for me. My hallway looks great here, but it really needs a paint... maybe a lockdown job if I can get hold of some paint!
I'm thinking a dark green feature wall on the right next to the door - it will be a green/black/gold vibe with large round mirror, dark green plants and an old vintage style telephone (see living room pics). I'm thinking coat and shoe rack, console table, telephone stand. What do you think?
Bedroom One, with En Suite
You may notice a lack of wardrobe, or suitable curtains, shelves, wall art etc. but I promise you they are on the list. I was trying to get a second hand wardrobe off a selling page but lack of car/van makes it somewhat difficult. Notice the upcycled sidetables - they were an uglier orangey pine colour before I had them painted white with chalk paint (thank you Val!). I replaced the handles with these £3 half moon cups from eBay (thanks John) so all in all both side tables cost me £3.
Those cute ottoman footstools are a recent groupon purchase at £25 each, and I'm so pleased with them! The tops lift off to reveal a good amount of storage space.
With the lamps also free, as well as the wicker drawers, the most pricey purchase was my seafoam green velvet bed frame from Made. It took me 5 hours to set it up though, all whilst trying to manage a huge migraine. The legs were supposed to be copper but they turned up gold which I was actually very happy about since the room theme took more of a golden twist by the time this arrived (over 6 weeks delivery time).
Yes, I treated myself to a Taylor baby which cost more than the whole of the room put together but it was so worth it to invest in learning guitar on such a gorgeous instrument! #sorrynotsorry
Okay so there's a funny story here with the mini drawers in the en-suite bathroom which you may or may not recognise from a recent news article. The article read that a woman purchased a chest of drawers and when they arrived, they aren't what she was expecting. The gist of the story is she thought they would be a whole lot bigger than this miniature set that arrived. And so did I! But at least you all get a laugh out of it, and groupon get the last laugh because to be fair, they did put the measurements on there. Oops.
I'm proud to say I painted this room all by myself and without a step ladder! How, you ask? Let's just say a small table and that lovely cabinet proved useful (covered in newspaper of course).
The original idea was to get myself a lodger in this room, I know it looks small but it's actually bigger in real life. Now we're in lockdown, I'm thinking it's time to turn this room into a study. Because I don't think my back can handle yet another week of trying to work from a low down dining table/ my sofa/ my kitchen counter.
The idea here will be to use the space currently occupied by the white cupboard to install a space-saving wall mounted desk that could double up as shelves when not in use as a desk.
I haven't got much to show you yet with this one, but it's full of potential. Decor-wise, not a lot is required but space-wise I have a bit to work with! The soap dish is actually a jewellery dish from Primark - £3.50. The wicker drawers were free. I need some form of storage by, or underneath the sink, some shelves by the bath and some form of towel holder on the wall.
So it's worth mentioning that this room is a sun trap and a little square window lets all the light in most of the day - perfect for growing things (see my various avocado growing methods). It is just a pity because right now, the bathroom door blocks out all the light... so I'm thinking of getting a new door. One with small frosted glass squares that will let the light shine through.
Kitchen & Dining
At first, I really didn't like these cupboards but I'll admit they've grown on me. I would have preferred a wooden surface and white cupboards but these are in such good condition, it will be a waste to change now.
The thing I really didn't like about the kitchen is how it was designed so that the fridge would be on the carpet (to the right of the cupboards in the above pic) and the washing machine under the sink drainage board. Instead I've opted for an under counter fridge which I will upgrade to a bigger fridge when I can afford to cut that section of the counter off. I'm also planning to plumb my washing machine into my cupboard in the hallway, freeing up space in the living area.
As you can see, I went a little heavy on the copper/rose gold theme. Maybe I get away with it but the Tower microwave/kettle/toaster set that I got (groupon - £140) was supposed to be a much subtler rose gold rather than the bright orange that it showed up with. The fruit basket was from Asos (£8) and I painted the spoon holder myself at a local pottery place.
The foldaway dining table breaks up the room between the kitchen and living area. Another upcycled piece of furniture with the top sanded down and the legs painted white. The two chairs are also upcycled and painted with the same white chalk paint giving a homely slightly vintage vibe.
One of the first things I ordered when I completed on this flat was this Salter copper set of cutlery. It was something I saw once at a wedding and fell for instantly. Then, when I saw the Kosmo crockery range in Tesco, I literally drove around the stores looking for more plates to complete my collection. Kind of love it!
My living room has probably been the place to receive the most love, just because I already knew what I wanted in terms of decor. I wanted a mustard sofa, I wanted an accent chair and I simply worked backwards from there.
Like both bedrooms, the walls have been painted a just off-white colour with a hint of grey (white cotton by dulux - don't be fooled by the colour shown on the tin) which cools down the room making warmer colours stand out.
I chose chairs with legs to create a more spacious feel and I have added some plants to the room. The most expensive thing in the room is the sofa by DFS (which I'm still paying off now on 0% finance) at £450. Everything else has been upcycled freebies or sourced from surprising places at a much lower cost that normal. Take the accent chair, for example, that was an eBay purchase for £50. The marble side table, £15 from Lidl, the ceramic vase, £6 from the local charity shop and the plant pot was a gift sourced from Sainsbury's.
All but two cushions were from B&Q discount section for under £4 each. The coffee table duo was an amazon buy at £50. With the wicker basket and silver plated tray free, I think I got a good deal on styling up my living room.
Plus I really have to thank Val for painting this corner unit for me and gifting me some of these amazing old books, the unit was originally a very dark-nearly black- colour. But with the grey chalk paint, it really lifts it up making the perfect little book and games cupboard.
So, I guess the only thing left is to get your opinion on this... Do I use the blue and white throw (which I bought in El Paso back in Oct 2018) as a blanket or as a rug? As a rug, it seems to close off the space a little more but the colour combo is kinda gorg, as a blanket it'll be nice and warm but I already have another throw?
I'll leave you with this question, feel free to advise in the comments below. Also, if you want to know where I got other bits from, I'll be happy to tell you!
Ciao for now. Stay safe.