Saturday, 13 April 2013

HINTS and wrinkles

ADDING A BORDER.  Wallpaper is quite expensive although it does make a huge difference to some rooms - if funds (and ideas) are in short supply for a small room, a border can add a good touch of colour and interest if chosen with care - this idea was for a poky little loo room where there was not much point in spending a lot.  On holiday, I ate some very delicious shell fish in a little cafe in Brittany and on the table were some rather attractive paper table mats with crabs, shells, blue sea and golden sands framed with a knotted thick rope.    I asked the owner if I might have a few more and when I brought them home, painted the little room a sandy beige up to the dado height, in emulsion, stuck on the mats in a neat row and backed them with pale blue 'azure' sky up to the ceiling;  it worked alright, and reminds me of my seaside holiday.

   In my last house in Freshford, I was inspired by the name of a previous owner of the house, Capt. Bythesea,V.C.   I used several lengths of shell border to make a big frame on the first floor landing for a collection of Sailors' Valentines.  The wall paper was too expensive for me. !
   Luckily I had a very clever and accurate paper hanger who matched the corners beautifully and made a very good composition and he 'framed' the bathroom opposite.   The curtains were of the matching chintz - very 1980s and rather frilly!  The background was, once again, just emulsion in the palest cantaloupe shade.   The chair seats are pieced remnants of an old French furnishing cotton where the pattern is based on lace flounces in a 'meander' pattern, no doubt inspired by a beautiful ball gown.  The little painted washstand holds a small collection of little shell boxes given to me by grandchildren. The Japanese writing below shows this is an excerpt from a Japanese ladies magazine called Two plus One - for a couple with one child, (as laid down by the Govt.!)  30 of the readers came to tea and we all sat down in the dining room with tea and cucumber sandwiches and a Victoria sponge cake!  They were very sweet and so well mannered.
Bathroom Mr Bythesea's house

Brunshwig gothic cornice border added to a small damp lobby which shows signs of mould and now has a look of faded glory.. A small remnant saved from a previous house came in handy!


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