Welcome to 2015 everyone! Yes, I know it’s a bit late but I have a good excuse – I don’t do New Year’s celebrations. Ever since having to fork out a fortune to enter my (normally free) local pub at the millennium I’ve taken a rather different outlook on the whole ‘new year’ thing.
This year, it got to about 3pm on the 31st of December and it suddenly dawned on me that it was New Year’s Eve. Oh, that’s why Tesco’s closed early! This is how much New Year’s registers with me. At the time I was busy doing one of the many projects I had set myself to do over the long Christmas holiday I’d managed to procure, wallpapering my office/walk-in wardrobe.
The opposite wall to my lovely walk-in wardrobe was completely bare and I wanted to add some glamour into this side of the room. I wanted to go for something Rococo inspired and had fallen in love with Laura Ashley’s Josette range. The linen colour matched the already painted cream walls so it seemed easiest to go for that colour, particularly when I spotted the complimenting plain silks that go with it, perfect for a heavy, pooled curtain.
I hadn’t wallpapered in a few years so it took me a little while to get back into the swing of it. My first join wasn’t my best but after a while I really started enjoying it. I love doing practical projects like this as it is so satisfying once it’s done.
It took me about four hours to complete seven drops and I was so chuffed when I’d finished. It really sets off the room and once I’d pushed my desk back in place it looked fabulous all together, really elegant. Next part of the project is to make the big swathing silk curtain and find a fabulous deco styled ceiling light that doesn’t hang down too much (my ceiling aren’t very high).
As with the Christmas holidays, I always like to set myself goals or plan projects to complete each year. I never make New Year’s resolutions because, quite frankly, they’re a waste of time. It’s unrealistic to think that going from the 31st of December to the 1st of January is magically going to make you stop eating chocolate for the rest of your life. Besides, I eat pretty healthy, I don’t smoke, I’m not a big drinker, although l do like a whisky every now and again, and there is no way I’m ever going to a gym (bad memories from school!).
In 2014 I had two goals, the first being a huge one – moving home – tick, and the other was to make it through Christmas without ending up in A&E – tick. The second one is because I spent Christmas Day stuck in casualty with some unknown illness that was effecting my heart. I then spent the first three months of the year signed off work and taking beta blockers. It was a horrible way to spend Christmas and the start of 2014 but eventually I got back to normal and managed to get on with selling my house.
Goals for 2015
I started making my goals for 2015 not long after I moved when things started to niggle me in the new house. Since then, I’ve added a few more to the list. I never give myself a start date or any kind of completion date, just that everything must be done by the end of the year. This way, there is no immediate pressure to get things done and I can take my time.
My first and biggest goal is to have a new kitchen installed. The current kitchen is so impractical that it irritates me every time I use it. There is no storage space for things like your ironing board or vacuum cleaner and I hate the way all of my crockery is tucked away in a corner cupboard (I love having it on show). Also, the previous owners had small children and there are rather a large number of scratch marks across the doors which I hadn’t noticed when I went to look at the house.
This goal I have already made a start on because Homebase had an amazing offer on of 60% off units and another 20% off the total order that I just couldn’t afford to miss out on. I’ve chosen a Hygena kitchen in a dusky duck egg blue and have chosen a matching broom cupboard to go in one corner for all those bits that are currently shoved under the dining table.
The worktop is going to be oak which I’ll treat with linseed oil, rather than have it varnished as they had it in the shop (eughhh!) and I’ve gone for silver coloured handles with a white ceramic section in the middle. I’ll have some off-cuts from the worktop which I will fashion into shelves for an empty wall space next to the French doors, perfect for all those knick-knacks I never know where to put.
The sink is also going to be ceramic but I’ve opted for a normal sink and drainer rather than a Belfast one. After the wooden worktop in my old kitchen, which had a Belfast sink, got ruined by my ex leaving wet dishes on it I thought it was more practical to have an attached drainer. The tap i want isn’t sold by Homebase so I’m going to have to try and find it elsewhere.
I’m also going to get a Welsh dresser, similar to the one above, from an odd little shop in town that sells junk as well as handmade pine furniture! They can finish it however you want so I may have it painted cream, which can then easily go with any other kitchen if I move in the future, or get Homebase to match the paint of the new units but I think I’ll get the kitchen installed first before I decide.
My second goal follows on from this and is to free up some more time and money to work on the house. Now I’m all settled there are so many things I want to do to the house such as panel the bathroom, as well as repaint it, completely revamp my main bedroom and renovate the gorgeous brick shed at the bottom of the garden which is looking a bit sad since it lost half its roof over the holidays. I’ve also got a ton of curtains to make or take up due to none of the old ones fitting very well. Currently I spend most my weekends socialising, going to vintage fairs/events or shopping, so I need to be strict with myself. The fact that I need to be saving money for house stuff will definitely help me curb on the clothes shopping!
And talking of free time, I also need to make time to concentrate on my writing. I have been writing (or trying to write!) a novel for about two years now but over the last year I have been extremely lax in actually sitting down and doing any of it. I belong to a fab writing group and we have made a pact that we are all going to turn up to our first meeting of the year next week with something to share. Hopefully this will help to give me the massive kick up the back side that I need and then I need to stick to a regime to get it done.
I want to get more involved in my local community. Having moved to a small town where I know no one, except my cat Norman, and it is a little bit strange. It would be really nice to find some friends here! As I have no intention of going to the local gym (see above), and going to the pub on my own really isn’t an option, then I can only think of joining a community based club or project but I need to do my research. I do have my eye on the local WI, though, and have already joined their Facebook page, as, apparently, they have quite a young demographic.
Lastly, and more vintage related, I need to add some sense of casual vintage to my wardrobe. Whenever I go shopping I’m always lured by the pretty circle dresses or killer evening gowns that all of us love so much, but they’re not exactly practical for nipping down to Tesco’s in! This year, after trying to hone my wardrobe into a more grown up, Joan Holloway inspired look I have somehow managed to avoid the ‘it’s winter and I have nothing vintage to wear’ issue that I have encountered in the past by adding more separates that can be mixed and matched. Now, all I need to do is figure out a way of toning down the overdressed-for-grocery-shopping look!
I’ve already started taking inspiration from some other lovely bloggers (always the best form of inspiration), including the gorgeous Frantically Jenny Frances seen above in her super cute handmade cat top. She does casual vintage so well! I’ve also been eyeing up some pieces on the Freddies of Pinewood website, particularly the Norma jeans and Bardot tops. Their Instagram account is also worth having a nose around as it features many of their fabulous customers doing their casual thang.
Do you celebrate New Year’s or do you ignore it like me? What are your goals for 2015?