Monday 30 September 2013

Modern Country Table Setting Craft Project

I absolutely adore this little corner of our home. 

We bought the table as extra seating for the littlies when we have lots of people over. It looks so sweet tucked away to one side.

One day, not so long ago, I decided it needed a tablecloth...for its finer moments in life.

The edges were given a straightforward hem on my sewing machine. This was SUCH a simple project. If you see a couple of metres of a fabric you love then please snap it up and make one for yourself...even the most nervous of beginners could pull this off with considerable aplomb. 

No excuses now...particularly as this Heligan fabric is currently half price at Laura Ashley's website.

The fabric transformed it in a flash into Modern Country perfection, particularly with these beautiful flowers perched atop.

It takes a special kind of fabric to be able to take such a beautiful bouquet. The combination of the greige background, and simple white and greens of the hydrangea motif doesn't fight with the beauty of the real thing; it somehow enhances it.

Poppy heads, eucalyptus, roses, lilies, feverfew, nigella....
flowers fit for a king and queen!

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Friday 27 September 2013

How To Create An Ultra-Matt Finish Using Chalk Paint

Welcome to Part 2 of my Beginner's Guide To Chalk Paint. Autentico Chalk paint can easily be used to create a super-smooth, ultra-matt finish with no need to prime. Huzzah!

I'm including lots of How-To photos so you can be confident about repeating the steps in your own home.

Here's how easy it is...

I applied the gorgeously rich Nearly Black paint using a paintbrush. No priming needed but I did make sure I sanded the bare wood extra well to give a lovely smooth surface. 

I used a large paintbrush to cover the bulk of the surface and a little 'un to cut in around the edges. It gives the best and smoothest results if you apply the paint in long sweeping strokes. The paint looked pretty patchy when drying but each coat dries very fast and magically morphs into a thick, perfect finish!...

Nearly dry...


Once you have the paint coverage that you need (this needed two coats) then you have a choice of finishes, which I'll cover in more detail soon. For any surface that needs to be really hard wearing, such as a desk or tale top then I'd whole-heartedly recommend using sealant, rather than wax. Autentico's Sealant is water-based and gives the mattest finish that I've come across. Perfection in a tin!

However, as you apply it, don't panic if it looks a it like this... long as you use thinnish coats of sealant then it will dry clear and smooth and matt, matt, matt.

And that, my sweets, was as easy as 1,2,3...
Have a go, and tell me how you get on!

Our Modern Country Style Office is starting to take shape! 

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Wednesday 25 September 2013

Beginner's Guide To Chalk Paint

In our new extension, we have an alcove, which was crying out to be an office area. We designed a bespoke desk and oak shelving to fit the space perfectly......

but it definitely needed a bit of Modern Country Styling....

I've only recently discovered Autentico Paints, which come in a range of more than 130 colours. Just take a look at this palette....

Aren't those shades beautiful?
There's a grey to suit every mood...

Inspired by this view outside our window, I picked out Nearly Black, a very dark charcoal, for the desk. The Autentico Chalk Paint can be left with its lid off to thicken up, for a textured, aged feel...

 ...or can be layered for a super-smooth finish.

Coming up on Friday.....

Beginner's Guide To Chalk Paint Part 2: 
How To Get A Super-Smooth Matte Finish With Chalk Paint

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Monday 23 September 2013

Modern Country Kitchen LOVE!

I've just stumbled across this kitchen and my planned blog post went flying out of the window faster than you can say, "Oh. My. Goodness."

Could this be this kitchen of our collective Modern Country Kitchen dreams?

black and white kitchen in a Victorian cottage

Soapstone work surfaces, cup hands, white fitted cupboards, grey green walls? 

 I am literally gasping for breath....

Image via: Orchidluvr

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Wednesday 18 September 2013

Sheardown House: Modern Country Garden tour!

Shall we move outside for a moment?
I am an absolute sucker for a mix of sharp Modern topiary, and soft Country planting.


If our garden was free from little children's tricycles, and homemade dens for staying the night outside, and leftover campfires from said adventures, then my dream garden might look something like this gem, designed in conjunction with Taylor Tripp.

Climbing Rose

Walled Garden


If....if....if.....but I wouldn't give up my life for the world..... 

In fact, we've just got this fab bucket barbecue from Garden Trading so that we can enjoy our outside adventures to the full! It's apparently inspired by fishermen cooking their suppers over a bucket of coals at the beach, hence its name: Whitstable.

Sturdy but light, with a slight industrial touch....the thought of late-at-night sausage suppers has never seemed so cosy.

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Monday 16 September 2013

The Old Monastery: Modern Country House Tour

This house is called The Old Monastery  Yes, it had me from the start! Are you with me? With a name like that you imagine gorgeous Country Style splendour, beautiful grounds and heaps of character.....

And you won't be, siree.....especially because there's also an incredible Modern twist to this huge Country pile. Have a look around this stunning Modern Country house....

Yes, I think I speak for us all when I say there IS such a thing as Monastery Love.

Who'd have thought?

Images via Unique Home Stays

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