Blush & black dressing room refresh

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Our middle bedroom has the honour of being the only room in the house that hasn’t had a full back-to-the-brick renovation. By the time Husby and I had finished the first two bedrooms, we were knackered and the idea of hauling more half-tonne rubble sacks full of building detritus down to the dump made us want to pack it all in and go live in a yurt somewhere.

Fortunately, the plaster was sound and the original pine floorboards were in fairly good nick, so we decided to spare ourselves another messy demolition job and instead got to work on a few cosmetic projects to quickly (ish) whip the room into shape. We stripped back the original cast iron fireplace, had the floorboards sanded and oiled and slapped some fresh paint on the walls. Oh, and we had the plaster coving fitted too, because what’s a high ceiling-ed Victorian bedroom without coving?

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I had a plan for the fireplace wall - a tall wardrobe and chest of drawers so I could use this space as my dressing room, and paint in a flattering light pink (Pink Slip by Little Greene Paint Company). But the rest of the room was white and sparse for a couple of years while we focused on the chaos that was our kitchen renovation. And then the loft extension. And then the lounge renovation. Well, you get the idea.

My original plan was to paint a very de rigueur half wall behind the dressing table in the same Pink Slip. I have to be honest, Mad About the House’s influence has rubbed off on me and I’m obsessed with a good half wall these days. But sadly it wasn’t to be. I only had a tiny bit of paint left in the tin and I wasn’t keen on buying more…our existing paint can collection is already a spectacle to behold.

So with a roll of Frog tape and a level, I created a focal point above the dressing table. More commonly known as a rectangle.

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The star of the show, and one of the first items I chose for this space, is the cork and brass wall light from NOVE Lighting. Their lighting range is made in Portugal by a family of craftsmen who have specialised in sustainable cork manufacturing for over 50 years. And it shows - the marbling pattern in the cork is really something special. I also love the simple wall bracket that the flex just loops around in a very casual-chic sort of way.

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I inherited this mid-century teak bookcase from my grandparents and it fits perfectly next to the window. But it did create a bit of a design challenge - how to make use of this corner for storage (yes I’m one of those people who can’t resist collecting mini hotel toiletries I’ll never use). Ikea BESTA wall units to the rescue, in a shallow depth perfect for for bottles of hair products, in white to disappear into the background, and with the addition of sexy black leather strap handles from Dowsing & Reynolds.

One of my most successful procrastination techniques is searching for affordable art online, framing it up and then leaving it in stacks on the floor for a very long time. So that was the next task - a little gallery wall above the bookcase to show off a few of my favourites.

Art sources: top left,  Sisterhood is Powerful  by my friend  Ana Koehler  (gift) | top centre,  Lungs  screenprint by me | top right,  Wind IV  by Valdas Misevičius on  Etsy  | middle left,  Artichoke  by Tillydagnall on  Etsy  | middle right,  Herba Mythologica  by Paulina Varregn on  Etsy   |  bottom left,  Forest  by Katy Lawson on  Etsy

Art sources: top left, Sisterhood is Powerful by my friend Ana Koehler (gift) | top centre, Lungs screenprint by me | top right, Wind IV by Valdas Misevičius on Etsy | middle left, Artichoke by Tillydagnall on Etsy | middle right, Herba Mythologica by Paulina Varregn on Etsy | bottom left, Forest by Katy Lawson on Etsy

This patterned rug was perfect when half the room was white and empty, but now that there’s quite a lot on the walls, I’ll probably change it for something plain. Or at least a little less patterned.

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Art sources: peony poster,  There’s Beauty  from  Desenio  (gifted as part of a previous collaboration) | black floral print,  1936 Vintage Plant Print  from  Persephone Prints  on Etsy

Art sources: peony poster, There’s Beauty from Desenio (gifted as part of a previous collaboration) | black floral print, 1936 Vintage Plant Print from Persephone Prints on Etsy

I had been collecting ideas for a compact floating dressing table for a while (see my Pinterest board) and in the end this Ikea wall shelf with drawers was the perfect solution. But I didn’t want to mount it with chunky brackets that I’d smash my knees on, so I decided on some pretty legs from Pretty Pegs in combination with very budget-friendly Ikea Ekby Stodis brackets. If I did it again I’d probably use two brackets (one centred behind each drawer), instead of 3 spaced evenly, for a more streamlined look.

I also swapped out the wardrobe handles, adding this dreamy knurled black pair from Dowsing & Reynolds, which have been on my wish list for a very long time.

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So there it is. The empty corners of this room were a dumping ground for most of our renovation, and it feels like a breath of fresh air to have it all organised with a place for everything and everything in its place. Just please don’t look inside the wardrobe…there’s still some major Marie Kondo-ing to do in there. Yikes.

I’d love to know what you think or if you have any favourite storage solutions for awkward corners.

 

 

The simple Ikea wall-mounted dressing table hack

Wall-mounted furniture is a brilliant way of maximising space and adding storage with a minimalist look (without taking up floor space). And if you’re handy with a drill (or have a friend or partner who is) it’s pretty straightforward, especially on solid walls.

I looked at quite a few small desks and dressing tables but they were all too deep to fit comfortably next to the door. There are lots of blog posts and tutorials out there featuring different ways of mounting the Ikea Ekby Alex wall shelf - it’s such a versatile piece. I chose the Ekby Stodus brackets for their slim size and affordablity (50p each!) but they aren’t sturdy enough to support the shelf on their own.

And I fell hard for the simple lines of these solid wood table legs from Pretty Pegs. They come with a fixing plate that screws on to the bottom of your furniture, and the legs screw right on to that. Easy, sturdy and…well, pretty.

BEFORE: EMPTY WHITE WALLS

BEFORE: EMPTY WHITE WALLS

ATTACHING THE LEGS FROM PRETTY PEGS TO ADD STABILITY TO THE DRESSING TABLE

ATTACHING THE LEGS FROM PRETTY PEGS TO ADD STABILITY TO THE DRESSING TABLE

THE WALL SHELF AND BESTA UNITS ARE UP

THE WALL SHELF AND BESTA UNITS ARE UP

JOB DONE AND NO MORE WOBBLES

JOB DONE AND NO MORE WOBBLES

 

 
 

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This project was supported by generous product gifts from NOVE Lighting, Dowsing & Reynolds and Pretty Pegs. I chose all of the lovely items myself and all thoughts and opinions are my own. This page contains affiliate links.

SOURCES:

DRESSING TABLE – IKEA | WALL CUPBOARDS – IKEA | CORK WALL LIGHT & BRACKET – NOVE LIGHTING (GIFT)  |  DRESSING TABLE LEGS – PRETTY PEGS (GIFT) |  BLACK LEATHER CUPBOARD HANDLES, WALL HOOK & WARDROBE HANDLES – DOWSING & REYNOLDS (GIFT)  |  BLACK SHEEPSKIN RUG – MODERN RUGS (GIFT FROM A PREVIOUS COLLABORATION)  | ROUND WALL MIRROR – MAISONS DU MONDE |  CHAIR – MUUTO AT CONNOX  |  CHEVRON BONE WALL MIRROR (NO LONGER AVAILABLE) – WEST ELM  | TABLE LAMP (NO LONGER AVAILABLE) – WEST ELM  |  WHITE MARBLE TRAY – HOMESENSE |  PINK BASKET, PINK AND GOLD TEALIGHT HOLDER, BLACK VASE ON MANTLE & BLACK POT ON DRESSING TABLE – H&M HOME | CEILING PENDANTS – MADE.COM |  BLACK WATCH (NO LONGER AVAILABLE) – MADE.COM (GIFT)  |  RUG – LA REDOUTE |  JEWELLERY BOX – STACKERS | ART – VARIOUS SOURCES, SEE PHOTO CAPTION |  TEAK SIDEBOARD – VINTAGE, FROM MY GRANDPARENTS |  WARDROBE (NO LONGER AVAILABLE) – JOHN LEWIS  |  CURTAINS – IKEA (BEFORE THEY REDUCED THEIR CURTAIN LENGTHS FROM 3M TO 2.5M…ARGH! | PAINT COLOURS – SHIRTING AND PINK SLIP, LITTLE GREENE | HAND CREAM & BODY LOTION – MILLER HARRIS (GIFT FROM A PREVIOUS COLLABORATION) |  PERFUME (MY FAVOURITE SCENT EVER)  – FLOWER BOMB, VIKTOR & ROLF AT BOOTS | BLACK CHEST OF DRAWERS – VINTAGE FROM EBAY