For years and years I have pored over house and garden magazines looking at the beautiful interiors. A few years ago I started thinking about studying interior design, but thought it would either be too expensive or too difficult.
It was almost 12 months ago that I discovered the Diploma in Interior Design by the Interior Design Institute, a self-paced online program. At that time I looked into it, but decided not to proceed as I was preparing to launch Upcycled & Co. as a business.
Over the past year I have been keeping the interior design course top of mind, all the time finding that I was being drawn to it more and more. So, at the beginning of September, I decided to go for it. I'm now three weeks into the course and I am loving it! I have completed three modules, receiving 10/10 for the first two, and 9/10 for the third one.
Why am I sharing this with you?
If you've wanted to study interior design, I'm here to tell you to "Go for it!".
Here's what I'm loving about the course so far:
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Last week I had a real treat!
On Friday morning I got ready and set off. The French Country House is only 10 minutes from where I live so I didn't have far to go at all. Before I knew it I was there pulling into the driveway with this magnificent home right in front of me.
Walking up to the huge double front doors my senses were already overloaded with all of the incredible detail of the property. A collection of beautiful planters either side of the door, exquisite tiles on the front entrance, intricate wrought iron, gorgeous light fixtures and a chalk board to welcome me made for a breathtaking start. Using the cast iron door knocker, I knocked twice and was greeted by Kay, the Manager.
We chatted in the entrance briefly before starting my own private tour of this stunning accommodation and wedding venue.
As we wandered from room to room my eyes were offered a new feast of exquisite artefacts from all over the world that accentuated each space. From the crisp white bed linen, to beautifully painted furniture, gorgeous robes hanging in the bathrooms and the most stunning views, everything was perfect.
With three guest rooms, each with it's own enormous bathroom, every detail is taken care of. Each room is furnished with elegant pieces that enhance the stunning design.
Take a tour through The French Country House with me...
Rustic outdoor fireplace and lanterns.
A beautiful collection of floral arrangements and furniture.
An exquisite chandelier sits over the kitchen island.
French country charm.
A stunning collection of French country furniture.
The blue room.
The green room.
The star of the show, Freddie.
Really, I could go on and on showing you more and more photographs and talking about The French Country House. But I'll stop here, and if you'd like to see more, head on over to my Facebook page or to my Instagram account where I will be continuing to share more images from my visit.
Take a look at The French Country House on Instagram too!
For a special occasion you'd like to celebrate in the most charming space, book yourself a weekend at The French Country House. Similarly, considering this exquisite wedding venue is a must!
Thank you Kay, The French Country House really is a testament not only to the inspiration and creativity of the owners, but also to your day-to-day management of the property and its guests. Thank you so, so much.
If you'd like to know how to create French country style furniture, sign up for my Furniture Paint 101 workshop (online or face-to-face).
Next weekend is the first of The Stone Effect workshops I'm going to be running over the next couple of months. This gorgeous finish is ideal for home decor items such as urns, vases, bowls, candleholders and more - it can even be used on furniture!
With a number of keen students all signed up and raring to go, I have a few places left. So, if you're in Tauranga, Pukekohe or Cambridge, be sure to book your place on The Stone Effect workshop before it fills completely.
You will learn this technique that includes:
In browns, blacks and golds.
Stunning in blacks, greys, whites and silver.
White, greys and silver.
You can create any colour combination you wish with this finish. In the class you will learn how to mix colours too, meaning you have an endless spectrum of tones to include.
If you're keen, head on over and book your place here.
I can't wait to teach this class!
See you soon,
I don't know how many years it is since I've been to a show home; I'm guessing it's at least eight.
A little over a week ago, I started a Diploma in Interior Design with the Interior Design Institute. It's something I've wanted to do for a very long time, and, now that I have a home decor related business, I decided it was a good time to do the course.
I'm so excited by what I'm learning, by the possibilities of where this could lead, and what I can do with our home, that I've been out to look at a show home today. As part of the course, it is recommended we visit as many show homes and open homes as we can so I thought, what better time to start than on a wet and windy Saturday afternoon.
Relatively close to where we live there is a lot of new building going on with a number of show homes.
I must say I was really blown away with the design, the decor and the styling of this beautiful home. I have seen plenty of examples of these trends on HGTV, which by the way I'm totally addicted to, but I hadn't seen them in real life. This GJ Gardner home really is quite lovely.
A beautiful entrance with a huge round mirror, wooden sideboard, flowers and greenery.
The barn door and recessed shelving in the kitchen and dining area are stunning.
Cane furniture, faux fur and iron all feature in the family room.
Soft pastels, dark green and browns in the guest room.
Artwork lines the soft grey hallway.
The huge master bedroom in blues, greys and florals.
Beautiful linen and furnishings.
A chair in the infant's room looks comfy too.
Well, I hope you've enjoyed that little tour of my afternoon out looking at a local show home. I know I'm inspired, and I'm guessing you might be too. Even if you're not building, there are lots of renovation and home decor ideas here to use Upcycled & Co. Furniture Paint on to bring them up to date.
If you're short on furniture painting skills, check out my Furniture Paint 101 workshops available online or in the Northland, Auckland, Bay of Plenty, Waikato and Hawkes Bay regions in New Zealand. Next year I will be travelling further into the Manawatu, Wellington and South Island areas.
Keep expressing your creativity in any way you can.
Until next time...
I love bright colours, and right now, all shades of Mustard are among some of my favourites.
Experimenting with mixing my Upcycled & Co. Furniture Paint in Mustard, I've been able to create some beautiful pieces for our home, and so have my students. As with all colour, there are so many shades you can achieve when you get your creativity flowing.
The Rustic Finish workshop.
Using a custom colour mix, I think you'll agree that this piece has really been brought to life.
A slightly different custom mix gives a different look altogether.
Painted in the same hue as the urn above, both work in our decor.