Tuesday, 19 February 2019

DIY // how to make a marble table

Long time readers will know that I'm partial to a bit of marble. Having had a bit of a family room makeover lately, I was on the hunt for some side tables to go with my Gatsby inspired curtains and cushions. I've been gradually starting to layer in touches of gold, copper and rose gold to add warmth to our dark inky blue walls, and I knew I wanted the side tables to be in fitting with our affordable luxe scheme.

THE SEARCH

Don't get me wrong, I saw plenty of tables online that I loved. But before you buy big furniture items, always make sure to check the dimensions and get that tape measure out. In doing so, I saved myself money (P&P is killer for furniture deliveries don't you know) and the hassle of  returning a bulky item (I discovered that one beautiful table in question wouldn't have fit the space). Specifically lots of the tables I found were knee high (Ok I exaggerate) meaning that rather than reaching across for that cup of tea, you'd have dip down into a dark corner to retrieve said cup of tea. Which is bloody stupid. Nobody got time for that.

THE SOLUTION

I came to the realisation that I wanted something that didn't exist. I couldn't find a table that was high enough (why are all tables so low??). So I took matters into my own hands and one weekend I popped into my local DIY store feeling inspired to wing it create something of my own.

Disclaimer: in light of the recent collaboration guidelines and red tape, let me make very clear that this post was written of my own accord and has not been funded or incited by B&Q in any shape or form.

SEARCH 2.0

I went to my local DIY store and picked up MDF for my table top, screws and table legs. In an ideal world I would have loved hairpin legs, but 1) our local B&Q didn't have them and 2) sometimes you need think about practicality (for example, where will your table sit?). In our case, the table would be tucked away in a corner, meaning that we couldn't justify spending more on hairpin legs, only not to see them / enjoy them fully.

We were debating leaving the wood as it was, but the labels on the MDF didn't come off particularly smoothly... so we knew there and then that we'd want to cover the table top up in some capacity.We found some great sticky back plastic / laminate designs in our local store and picked out a realistic looking marble print which we decided to try covering the table with. Here's how we achieved the final result.


YOU WILL NEED
  • 18mm MDF (sizing completely up to you)
  • 3.5 x 12mm wood screws
  • x4 table legs of your choosing (ours were these B&Q kitchen work top legs)
  • Marble sticky back plastic (or any other design of your choosing)

This was the marble we used (they also have this amazing version in black)


METHOD

1) Position your table legs where you want them (we kept some centimeters spare around the edge of the MDF so the weight was better distributed nearer the centre of the table). Mark holes for drilling.


2) Drill said holes and align the legs with the holes.

3) Screw into place using those trusty screws you picked up


4) Repeat this process for all four legs until you are left with something like this


5) Stand the table correct side up and check its stability.

6) Lay out your sticky back plastic and work out where you want the pattern to sit. Naturally Bailey had to "help" at this stage.


7) Peel back the sticky back plastic and start one end at a time, gradually pulling as you go and smoothing out any bubbles. Don't worry if you see a crease or a bubble or two - it's easily fixable. The beauty of this material is that you can unstick and try again until you are happy with the finish.

8) Finally, leave enough excess to fold away under your table top out of sight, and trim the edges at an angle for neat corners.


THE FINAL RESULT

I was really impressed with how high end the final result looked. To me, this table reminds me of the one of the French Connection ones, but at a fraction of the cost.


I love how the table makes use of the dead space that was once in the corner of our room. It's almost like a hovering shelf. And seeing as I don't trust myself to be drilling holes into walls, it's a super easy way of getting the shelf look. Without actually being a shelf. Also feel like it was a good shout not going for the hairpin legs - it's not like you'd see them anyway!


We received some lovely coasters from my sister for our anniversary and given that she didn't know we were even building this table (let alone the design!), how spot on are these coasters??!


This table has been so handy for drinks, magazines, vases, you name it. Bailey loves it too despite me frequently telling him TABLES ARE FOR GLASSES NOT ASSES


COST DIFFERENCE

The tables I was looking at originally were £100+. Some high street supermarkets had good options below the £100 mark, but I read mixed reviews about the finish / quality and then there's that question mark, you know? Like when you find a hotel you like the look of and then a bad TripAdvisor review puts you off. All in all, the MDF, screws, laminate and table legs cost us the following:

  • MDF - £8.99
  • Screws - £1.10 for a pack of 25
  • Legs - £3.98 each
  • Marble sticky back plastic - £6.50

= £32.51 

...bear in mind that the above is an upfront cost. We didn't use the whole roll of sticky back plastic, meaning we have plenty left over for another project. And we used 16 of the 25 screws. So the actual total cost of our table is potentially less than £30 - not bad eh?

NOT INTO DIY?

If you're not feeling particularly crafty, here are my top picks from the wonder that is the Internet:

Dark glass top geometric table // White marble table (I'd spray paint the legs gold or copper)
If you like hairpin legs, how about this table? // Don't you just love the black outline of this table?

This marble table with gold legs is also available with silver legs here

In summary, I love how we created something unique and how rewarding it was seeing it all come together. I definitely feel inspired to keep it up with the home DIY and life hacks so watch this space!

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Monday, 11 February 2019

10 funny as f*** Valentine's Day cards

If you're in need of a laugh, this one is for you. Words cannot describe how much fun this was to pull together (FYI some of the below are rib achingly good). So without further ado... 10 of the funniest Valentine's Day cards out there right now

As found here

My partner and I have this unspoken bond that chicken dippers and chicken nuggets are the dogs bollocks. We always have a fully stocked freezer (as well as fish fingers BECAUSE FISH FINGER SANDWICHES) and a huge plate of these bad boys are a a pretty standard weekend lunch for us. However they have also been prone to work their way into late nighters / midnight snacks (we have no shame). We're also all about chicken katsu (hello again breaded chicken), the Old El Paso crispy chicken fajita kit, and adding breaded chicken sides to any pizza takeaways we have. LITERALLY ADDICTED. Sound familiar? If you and your partner are the same, this may be the card for you!

As found here

I love how the site in question responds with the following:
"...like a flute, a saxophone, a clarinet or bubbles" 
Ok then hun ;)

As found here

I don't even have children and I still love this card!

As found here

I often make this joke when it snows... a CLASSIC

As found here

If you're from the UK and follow This Morning 
(specifically Phillip, Holly & Gino's antics) 
then this may make more sense to you!

As found here

Because any reference to Stranger Things is pure gold

As found here

THERE ARE NO WORDS

As found here

Honestly, the Jon Snow "winter is coming" ones are so 2011 
Loving some of these alternative Game of Thrones memes

As seen here

Works of art with silly captions added in?
Definitely something I can get behind

And finally a very topical one...

As found here

WHERE CAN I GET THESE?

All links provided in situ above

There's still plenty of time to order ready for the big day (if Valentine's Day is your bag)
And if you hate Valentine's Day with a passion, hopefully you can appreciate this piece for the lolz
Besides, isn't it refreshing to read a blog post that isn't moaning about the Instagram algorithm?

#justsaying

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Thursday, 7 February 2019

A sneek peek at what I got for Christmas

Well hello there. I'm already doing a lot better than last year when I published my What I got for Christmas in March. I'M A WHOLE MONTH EARLIER GUYS. But anyway, I digress.

I love reading these types of posts and looking at the performance of my previous gift guides, you guys seem to too! I find them invaluable for giving me gift ideas for friends and family for the year ahead. Plus it's always a bonus discovering new products that you may not have known about otherwise. As ever, I am incredibly grateful to friends and family and feel very lucky to have people in my life who know me so damn well!

White Company White Pompelmo collection

The White Company is one of my favourite brands so anything from here is always a winner. Hello there White Pompelmo hand wash and lotion (which FYI incorporates grapefruit, lemon and lime). As with lots of the other White Company products, these smell fresh and like an absolute dream.


White Company Winter candle

It wouldn't be Christmas without a White Company Winter candle (FYI the Winter range is currently 20% off here). With sweet cinnamon, cloves and a subtle hint of orange, nothing makes me feel more festive.


Yankee candle [not pictured]

And talking of feeling festive, Yankee Candle's Festive Cocktail candle does exactly that with a scent described as "mountain berries with a sprig of fresh-snipped pine". Currently down to just £2 in the sale here, I have packed mine away ready for next December.

Cath Kidston Alice in Wonderland cups

You will no doubt notice a theme (it's no secret than I'm an Alice in Wonderland fanatic!). We've been saying for the longest time that we'd like to throw a lot of our old mugs out and start over with uniform mugs that all match - so these Cath Kidston Alice in Wonderland mugs came at a really good time.


Alice in Wonderland V&A tea set

Last year I received these lovely side plates from the V&A collection, so it was a nice surprise opening the matching milk jug, sugar bowl and tea pot this year. The packaging is really well done with each box snapping open / shut effortlessly (magnets) and is very on brand with the "open me" script. I especially love the top of the tea pot ("we're all mad here!")


Alice in Wonderland tea tidy

And last but not least... when you consume as much tea as I do, lots of tea equals lots of used tea bags. Eventually they go out into the food compost, but because I'm the laziest person alive, they usually sit for a little while in teeny dishes that came from an old Jamie Oliver olive oil and balsamic vinegar dipping set. It's with joy that the Jamie Oliver dishes can return to their intended purpose, and we now have an actual tea bag tidy! Our new one can be found here and much to my relief, it's dishwasher safe so I can keep those tea stains at bay!


Maldives guide book

Don't get me wrong, I've been excited about our up and coming trip to the Maldives for MONTHS now, but receiving a Lonely Planet guide book for Christmas made it feel even more real if that makes sense?


Travel kit

We also received two travel kits filled with all the essentials which will come in really useful. We will need to pack many more bottles of factor 50 sunscreen though!


Personalised passport covers

Remember these passport covers I coveted in my couple's gift guide? I amazingly received a pair for Christmas and can't wait to take these to the Maldives!


Hotel Chocolat chocolates [not pictured]

Not pictured, because THEY GONE. I love Hotel Chocolat's dark rum chocolates and also the mixed pack with cognac, whiskey and rum. Always a winner.

Food hamper [not pictured]

Not pictured, because edible things don't last long in this household! We received a similar hamper last year with lots of Italian cooking essentials like pasta, sauces and the like. This year we received wholefoods like seeds, nuts and pulses all contained within a cupcake carrier (the latter being very useful since my Poundland cupcake container broke after only one use!)

Mason Cash mixing bowl [not pictured]

Not pictured, because I'm an idiot and forgot. Remember how I was using an old discoloured plastic mixing bowl with the popcorn machine here ? Our new mixing bowl is a much more aesthetically pleasing affair. Mason Cash have brought out a range of pastel coloured bowls like powder pink and powder blue (we have the blue). They also have this amazing black mixing bowl

Umbra geometric diamond wall art

How amazing are these? I'm looking to create a gallery wall with lots of wall art and quotes and typography, but also want to incorporate lots of extra decorative touches, which is where I think these Umbra diamond pendants could work really well!


Dessert candles

A product combining two of life's greatest things - dessert and candles. I'm intrigued to open these up and smell what their take on chocolate brownie, lemon meringue and cherry bake-well are like. And how amazing is the packaging?!


Kitkats

How mad is it to say that you received A RED DOUBLE DECKER BUS OF KITKATS for Christmas? It's a lovely little set and would be a great gift for overseas friends or family with the iconic London red double decker bus. Saying that, I'm a Londoner and I still think it's bloody brilliant!


Whittard hot chocolate gift set

I would say that Christmas isn't Christmas without hot chocolates aplenty, but who am I kidding? Let's be real here. I'm a hot-chocolate-all-year-round kind of girl (FYI Whittard's white hot chocolate in this gift set is AMAZING).


Calvin Klein body lotion

True story, but this is one of my favourite products that I swear by. It's perfect just after a shower as it's scented, meaning that you don't need to shower in anything particularly fancy beforehand. It was hard to picture this one as Bailey decided he wanted to get involved!


Have you tried any of these products before? 

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