Cassiefairy – My Thrifty Life

Cassiefairy's thrifty lifestyle blog – Saving money every day with DIY crafts, sewing projets, low-cost recipes & shppping tips


Leave a comment

The next big thing in space saving design

Space-saving design is incredibly popular as it helps people get more out of their home. If you save space, then each room has more room to breathe and looks far less cluttered and compact. Not only does this improve a room’s functionality, but it also improves its aesthetic appeal. When space is tight – as it has been in so many of my previous homes – making the most of the space you have is extremely important. No wonder Ikea does so well!

This folding table turns into a storage cabinet

In this blog post, I’m discussing the next big thing in space-saving design. What’s the growing trend right now that everyone’s crazy about? For many, it’s this idea of transformable furniture. Furniture that looks like one thing, and then transforms into another thing to serve a different function. Yes, it’s the “robots in disguise” of the 21st century! This saves so much space in the home, as you get one object that can do two or three different things. As such, instead of having two or three pieces of furniture, you only need one. Transformers rock!

If you’ve been following my blog for a while you may have seen one of these space-saving cabinets in action because I gave one a thrifty makeover as a ‘baking station’ in my own kitchen. It’s kitchen cabinet that folds downwards to become a table for someone to sit at and eat their breakfast in the morning. A genius space-saving design that’s ideal for someone in a small studio apartment. There’s no doubt that transforming furniture is the next big thing in space-saving design. All of these examples are so smart, and it’s exciting to think what other things we’ll see in the near future.

Dining Room Coffee Table

Continue reading “The next big thing in space saving design” »


Leave a comment

The next big interior design trends for 2017

The New Year is a great time to think about freshening up our homes with new indoor furniture, updated colour schemes and a few of the hottest accessories in line with the latest trends. It’s also the time of year that trend forecasters pull out their crystal balls and announce the home décor trends coming up in the year ahead.
I’ve had a look at all the predictions and here are my picks of the top eight interior themes we can expect to see in 2017.

A photo posted by coshliving (@coshliving) on


Super Natural
As technology becomes more and more integral to our daily lives and developments such as artificial intelligence and 3D printing look set to cause greater disruption, people are looking to nature and natural materials to provide balance. A strong desire to bring nature into our homes and workplaces will see interiors filled with greenery, from hanging pots, to hydroponic indoor gardens planted with vegetables and herbs. Sustainable and recycled materials will also feature strongly, with worn or aged furnishings and accessories. Sofas and designer furniture will be made from sustainable materials;  designers are even beginning to experiment with algae and fungi to develop new products. Key colour for this trend is Pantone’s Colour of the Year for 2017 ‘Greenery’, a bright and powerful green hue.pantone-greenery-colour-pop-interior-design-trend-2017Nordic Influence
Scandinavian style continues to exert a strong influence on interiors with abundant natural light, a sense of space and simple well-designed furniture using natural materials. Natural textures and materials – such as wooden furniture, fur and shearling throws, hides and cork – ensure this look never appears cold or sterile. Bold fabrics and handcrafted accessories are also key elements. Key colours to recreate this look in your own home include white and soft gray with primary coloured accents.sideboard-sandinavian-danish-colour-pop-chair-mid-century-modernRaw and Industrial
The raw, industrial aesthetic is also still a strong influence, with concrete, clay, steel and glass forming the main materials. Again, this suits the trend for upcycled homewares as older items with rust spots, faded colours and patina fit in perfectly. If you’re lucky, you could give your home an industrial look for only a few pounds if you’re able to find disused shop/factory fittings, wooden pallets and rusted metalwork. The key colours for this look are gray, beige, off-white, yellow, white, walnut brown and glints of gold and copper.industrial-interior-design-trend-2017Reflective
For enthusiasts of contemporary furniture and décor, this design theme could be for you. The atmosphere here is soft and friendly, without being overly romantic and sweet. Modern materials and indoor furniture will feature cool mirrored, transparent effects. Look out for iridescent lamps, overlapping coloured glass shapes, shiny glazes, copper finishes, faceted shapes and reflective surfaces. These modern effects are contrasted with the tactility of handmade knitting and crochet to create a very livable theme. Choose muted key colours such as nude, blue, lavender, yellow, rose, turquoise, yellow-green, pastel yellow, peach, mint, lilac and pink.pop-of-colour-yellow-interior-design-trend-2017Pops of Strategic Colour

Continue reading “The next big interior design trends for 2017” »


Leave a comment

A quick kitchen DIY for National Upcycling Day

Tomorrow is one of the most exciting dates in any thrifty blogger’s calendar – 24th June is National Upcycling Day. If you have any plans to do up a piece of furniture or have been pinning sewing ideas on Pinterest for months, tomorrow is the day to start that task! I’ve always got a handful of DIY projects on the go at any one time so it’s a great excuse for me to crack on with them. Plus, if you get started tomorrow, you’ve got the whole weekend to really get stuck into the project and get it finished. Today I’ve created a really simple step-by-step to give your kitchen utensils an easy makeover and I’ve shared how to create your own compact spray-painting ‘studio’. Read on to see what I did…

I love the way that upcycling can help me save money by simply putting in a bit of time and effort to make something old and unwanted into something I can use and love. I’ve renovated an old display cabinet to use in my little vintage caravan, I turned a chest of drawers into a desk, stitched placemats into cushions and even made my own wallpaper from old books. Yes, my blog is full of DIYs and thrifty upcycling projects so I hope you’ll browse around my DIY Interiors category and get some inspiration for money-saving decorating.national upcycling day diy project makeover renovation step by step tutorial upcycle recycle thrifty thrift craft-10 national upcycling day diy project makeover renovation step by step tutorial upcycle recycle thrifty thrift craft-11For National Upcycling Day I’m sharing possibly the fastest and easiest DIY I’ve ever done. For a while now I’ve been pinning photos of kitchen utensils which have been dipped in paint to give them a splash of colour on the handles. I’ve taken inspiration from these projects and have spray painted the handles of my existing wooden spoon collection. There’s probably little need for step-by-step for this thrifty project but here’s what I did just in case you’d like to recreate these colourful utensils at home.national upcycling day diy project makeover renovation step by step tutorial upcycle recycle thrifty thrift craft-9 national upcycling day diy project makeover renovation step by step tutorial upcycle recycle thrifty thrift craft-2 Continue reading “A quick kitchen DIY for National Upcycling Day” »


Leave a comment

Create your dream kitchen on a budget

Refurbishing your kitchen does not always have to be a costly venture. By picking your finishes wisely and by planning and doing certain things yourself, you can really cut your expenses right down. The beginning of the year is the perfect time to revamp your kitchen, as many DIY stores will still have New Year reductions, and this is normally the time that people become most motivated.painted kitchen cabinets a beautiful mess

Don’t buy new – repaint your kitchen cabinets! Love these sunny yellow doors in the A Beautiful Mess studio

A good kitchen can really make a difference to your home. If you are thinking of selling, a modern and nicely decorated kitchen can add value to your home. Plus it’s a room that you are going to spend a lot of time in, so you can really enjoy the hard work that you have put in afterwards. Below are a few different money-saving shortcuts and ways to cut your budget, so you can get the kitchen that you’ve dreamed of without breaking the bank.painted tiles backsplash a beautiful mess

One of my favourite makeovers on A Beautiful Mess – painting tiles a funky colour!

Start by considering exactly what you want to get from your kitchen. If you have a theme in your mind, consider what you would need to do in order to achieve this style. Don’t be tempted to think that it is necessary to replace everything in your kitchen, even if it doesn’t quite fit in with the design. If your kitchen is Continue reading “Create your dream kitchen on a budget” »


Leave a comment

Operation organise! The never-ending battle to keep my desk tidy

Whether you’re working in an office environment or you’ve got your own personal space at home, keeping your work area neat can sometimes be a tricky task. I know I struggle to keep that stack of paperwork under control! Throw in numerous cups of tea and lunch at my desk and things are starting to look pretty messy by the end of the day. As the saying goes, a tidy desk makes for a tidy mind, so if you’re keen to organise your workstation, you could take the following suggestions into consideration.coffee table styling for work tea and romantic evening-6Invest in savvy storage solutions

Unless you have access to suitable storage, it’s likely you’re going to struggle when it comes to keeping your workstation and office organised. From cupboards and filing cabinets to drawers and shelving, there are a whole host of convenient and useful furnishings that can bring order to your work area. To keep your immediate workstation tidy, you could invest in an office desk with inbuilt drawers or you could position a mobile pedestal underneath. It made a real difference to me when I made a desk out of a chest of drawers (see my desk DIY project) because I suddenly had somewhere to stash away everything that was making the top of my desk untidy. Having storage solutions like this within such close proximity to your workspace should make it easier for you to maintain an orderly and clear working environment.

Ditch the paper and go digital

If you find that your desk is often covered in piles of paperwork, or your shelves are looking rather precarious with massive box-files balanced on them, you could benefit from going digital. Instead of having physical copies of your documentation, you could choose to scan and store them on your computer. There are a wide variety of software and hardware options available which allow you to store files where you can access them easily; I invested in personal ‘cloud’ storage so all my files are on a hard-drive on the shelf and I can access them via wifi from any device. Ditching the paper to digitise is not only a good way to save space and reduce cluttering, but it’s great for the environment too.coffee table styling for work tea and romantic evening-8Create an effective filing system
While digitising your paperwork is an easy way to rid your workspace of unnecessary clutter, you’re likely to have some important documentation that you simply need to keep. For paper-based items that you can’t be without, you could create an effective filing system. Whether you choose to use a filing cabinet or a hard-backed folder, keeping them labelled is the key to having well-organised paperwork. Alphabetising or ordering your paperwork by importance could make it easier for you to refer to a particular piece of documentation quickly and easily.

Schedule tidying time into your routine
So that your office looks smart and neat at all times, you might benefit from scheduling some tidying time into your daily routine. When was the last time I cleaned my keyboard? I literally can’t remember, which is pretty gross. I’m going to finish writing this post and then clean it straight away! From wiping down your desk to organising your drawers, making the effort to clean, tidy and declutter every day will help you maintain a well-kept workspace. You could try doing this at the end of the day so you can enjoy a clear office every morning and start work with a fresh mind.coffee table styling for work tea and romantic evening-9Taking some of these tips on board could help you create and maintain a tidy and organised working environment. What do you think of these ideas? What do you do to keep yourself tidy and organised at work? I’d love to hear your tips so please leave me a comment below, and if you’ve found this post useful please share it with your friends by using the sharing buttons below or by pinning one of my photos onto your Pinterest boards. Thanks!


1 Comment

DIY furniture makeover: A quick & easy distressed chair with Rust-Oleum

After packing away all the Christmas decorations, this time of year always gets me thinking about having a good old clear out and a bit of a tidy up. I often take a look around my home in January and pick out the things I haven’t used over the past year. With space at a premium in my tiny home, these are often the first things to clear out, and I love to make a bit of extra money in the new year by selling off a few unused bits and pieces. If something has been put aside just because it has become broken or needs a spruce-up, this is the time of year that I get stuck into new makeover projects and try to make the most of the things I have.Furniture Makeover Project Rust-Oleum paint retro conservatory chair_-24 Furniture Makeover Project Rust-Oleum paint retro conservatory chair_-36This week I’ve tried to breathe new life into an old chair with Rust-Oleum. I have a few of these chairs in the shed, waiting to be fixed and slowing growing a layer of mould. Each chair either had a wobbly leg, a missing seat or a rickety back support so I enlisted my husband to help me put together the best bits of all these higgledy-piggledy chairs to make one usable seat. After a thorough cleaning and leaving the wood to dry out in the warm for a while, the chair was ready to be painted.

I was hoping to make my quick makeover as easy as possible, yet I wanted to get a good finish rather than a slapdash result. I therefore turned to Rust-Oluem’s new range of brush-on chalky finish furniture paints, which can be painted straight on to wood without any sanding or undercoats. I picked out a rich ink blue shade for my chair to create an eye-catching spare seat for the conservatory. I also wanted to add a little opulence to the design so I also chose a metallic finish furniture paint in gold as an undercoat so that I could distress the blue top coat and see a touch of gold glinting through.Furniture Makeover Project Rust-Oleum paint retro conservatory chair_-5 Furniture Makeover Project Rust-Oleum paint retro conservatory chair_-6 Furniture Makeover Project Rust-Oleum paint retro conservatory chair_-7 Furniture Makeover Project Rust-Oleum paint retro conservatory chair_-4 Furniture Makeover Project Rust-Oleum paint retro conservatory chair_-12I wanted to be thrifty with my paint, so I planned to brush on the gold paint only in the places where I intended to sand it back after covering with the blue paint. When I saw how far just a small amount of the paint went, I decided that I could spare some more paint and give the whole chair a coat of gold. I still hardly used any of the tin, so there’s plenty left for other projects in the future. Perhaps creating a gilded throne would have been a better use for my chair?! You can see from my photos that the gold paint needs a thorough mixing when you open it, but it soon looked gloriously gold after a quick stir. It’ll be great for sprucing up photo frames, making DIY gifts, and I’m already planning to make my own Christmas decorations for next year using this sumptuous gold colour.

Continue reading “DIY furniture makeover: A quick & easy distressed chair with Rust-Oleum” »


2 Comments

DIY Christmas drinks cart project

With the festive season just around the corner I’ve started to tackle some DIY projects to get ready for the big day in advance. After finding a cute little kitchen trolley at Wayfair, I was inspired to create a Christmas cart – a place to store all my festive ingredients for hot drinks and somewhere to serve up mulled punch all winter long! custom made DIY christmas drinks cart project mulled wine hot chocolate spied latte-16custom made DIY christmas drinks cart project mulled wine hot chocolate spied latte-27 custom made DIY christmas drinks cart project mulled wine hot chocolate spied latte-14 custom made DIY christmas drinks cart project mulled wine hot chocolate spied latte-21I wanted to give the simple white trolley a festive makeover to incorporate it into my Christmas decorating. So rather than just loading my hot chocolate, coffee and candy canes onto the cart, I decided to add a back-board to the trolley, which I’ve covered in pretty polka dot wrapping paper. It will look cute in the kitchen all year round and the red-and-white paper fits in especially well with my Christmas theme this year.custom made DIY christmas drinks cart project mulled wine hot chocolate spied latte custom made DIY christmas drinks cart project mulled wine hot chocolate spied latte-2 custom made DIY christmas drinks cart project mulled wine hot chocolate spied latte-17custom made DIY christmas drinks cart project mulled wine hot chocolate spied latte-32 custom made DIY christmas drinks cart project mulled wine hot chocolate spied latte-28 I also added some mug hooks to the shelf in order to turn it into a dedicated drinks trolley and picked out a mulled wine pot with matching cups to help keep the drinks flowing. The fitted wheels mean that I can easily move it around the house, from the kitchen to the dining room, beside the Christmas tree, or wherever the best location is for it during my winter parties. Having all the ingredients for some seasonal hot drinks in one place allows my guests to help themselves to mulled cider, spiced latte or candy cane hot chocolates during every event.

Continue reading “DIY Christmas drinks cart project” »


13 Comments

DIY mid-century modern desk makeover

In the summer I work in my caravan. I spend hours in that little tin box, writing, sewing and drinking tea. The birds are singing and a cool breeze is blowing through the open windows. I love every minute of it and I can’t wait for the start of ‘caravan season’. In the meantime – when it’s cold and wet outside like it is today – I find it hard to drag myself outside to my garden workshop. I prefer to stay close to the radiators and kettle indoors, so during the dark winter months I set myself up at the dining table and work my socks off from there.diy desk makeover project - mid-century modern-3The trouble with not having a dedicated work space is that I end up with mess everywhere and I can never just leave my work at the end of the day. It either needs to be tidied away because we’ll be using the table, or the mess stays where I leave it and brings down neatness of the whole room. Plus, because I can see my laptop sitting there, I tend to go back to check emails and do just a little bit more in the evening when I should be relaxing. So I decided, as part of my new years resolutions, that a dedicated workspace was in order and I set out to find myself a desk. diy furniture makeover project - desk and shelf Continue reading “DIY mid-century modern desk makeover” »


2 Comments

My little vintage caravan ~ My patchwork mini desk

Last week I shared photos of my ‘new’ piece of furniture for the caravan. It was a tiny little desk unit, which I bought from the carboot sale. It had clearly been unloved for years, with peeling wood and scratches and stains all over it. I spent a lot of time sanding it down, cleaning it and spray painting – read all about the first stage of the makeover here. This week I’ve been spending a little more time on the project, adding the finishing touches and here’s how I got on…

Vintage caravan project - DIY painted cabinet furniture makeover-20

It looked like the drop-down desk had previously opened with a key, which had been lost long before I bought the cabinet, so the only way to open it was to prise it open with a screwdriver – not the most practical option for everyday use! So once the paint was completely dry, I added a ceramic knob onto the front of the desk. The colour of the roses matches the pink paint, and I love the fact that the design features a butterfly and will continue to remind me of the sleeping butterfly that came with my piece of furniture.

To finish off the project I pasted a patchwork of paper and fabric inside the unit using PVA glue. Initially I though that I would only use paper in the same way as my patchwork wall project but seeing as the desk will be in my sewing workshop, I thought it was only fitting to use scraps of fabric too!  So I’ve included lots of off cuts from other projects in there – such as my blue star curtains & my spotty cushion covers – which ties the whole space together. I pasted the cabinet itself, stuck down the fabric and paper squares and painted another layer of glue over the top to set it in place. I love the pretty, hand-crafted effect of this decoupaged patchwork and I couldn’t resist including a little square of Hello Kitty paper in the design!

DIY decoupage patchwork fabric to renovate an old desk-3

Overall I’m really pleased with how the unit has been transformed from a tired old cabinet (that may well have ended up in landfill or on a bonfire if I hadn’t bought it) into a perfectly usable mini desk for my workshop! I will get plenty of use out of it, and the size is just right for the space available in my little vintage caravan workshop.

 

 


Leave a comment

My renovation sensation project

When I first heard about the Renovation Sensation project my mind went into overdrive – so many ideas went whizzing around my mind and I was super-excited to get started. The challenge was set by Direct Blinds and I knew straightaway that it was right up my street: I love the thrifty nature of a makeover project to ‘get the look for less’ and I’m always keen to recycle and renovate old or unwanted items to keep them out of landfill. I headed to the car boot sale and kept my beady eye open for a suitable project to get started on.

Continue reading “My renovation sensation project” »

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close