Friday, 27 May 2016

Inside and outside

I am so very fortunate that right now my biggest 'problem' is that too much life is happening all at once.  The last week has been non-stop and everso slightly mental but no complaints because we've achieved a huge amount with relatively little, if any, stress.

Monday:  Kate arrived for a week of painting furniture, skirting boards, kitchen kickboards and a wall and the morning was a whirl of bookcases being emptied and furniture being moved once we'd agreed with her which pieces she would work on.



We have had all of this furniture 15+ years, it's tired and we want a change.  But there is nothing structurally wrong with any of it and we like the basic shapes.

Apparently I am the only client of Kate's who thinks the first undercoat is exciting . . .



Alan was here to fit the aforementioned skirting boards and kitchen kickboards.  No photos of newly fitted, unpainted kickboards and skirting board but he did a great job and we look forward to having him come back to do other woodwork.



Tuesday and Wednesday:  LP was here to finish up the path edging in the Cottage Garden, which looks great and once I've put black membrane down we just have to wait for Walter to bring more slate chippings.



We had a major clear-out of the hidden path behind the laurel hedge taking out the (now rotted) bark chip which has gone into the bottom of the big compost bin.  Bit by bit as materials are available we'll replace this with a hard surface that won't act as such a welcoming seedbed for the weeds.



He then worked on the raised beds behind the house which have only been planned for about three years . . . and one of them is finally finished!  Guess it is time I stopped using this space as a dumping ground for flowerpots . . .





Paintwork, day two:


Thursday and Friday:  Kate is a delight to have in the house and (apart from dustsheets and furniture out of place) there is remarkably little disruption. Every day the depth of colour builds but it is not until the very end that you get the full effect of six carefully applied coats of Farrow and Ball.











Although the painting is complete we'll leave the furniture for a few days whilst the paint hardens.  Gives us a chance to paint the rest of the walls, oh goody, looking forward to that so much, not!



I still managed to be on the go non-stop with house stuff, Daisy stuff and garden stuff, so at the end of each day I was barely been able to keep my eyes open for an hour of Chelsea Flower Show on the TV. 

Not that I really care, Chelsea is not my idea of the pinnacle of horticulture even if the RHS would like us to think it is. Perhaps I am mean but this year I was delighted to see and hear criticism - for the crowds, the rubbish that is on sale and the stupidity & waste of resources which goes into show gardens which exist for only a week. I also continue to be distinctly unimpressed with the forcing and artificial growing conditions in the build-up to the show which mean that the public see plants in flower at the wrong time of year and this creates combinations that they could never ever repeat. Even though the display of Heppatica by John Massey of Ashwood Nurseries was probably the most outstanding of the entire show (and who didn't have a lump in their throat seeing his emotion on winning Gold and the Diamond Jubilee Award), they are plants for early Spring and should not be in flower at the end of May.











rubbish piccies today, I'm in a hurry and doing a half-decent 'tweaking' job in Lightroom will take more time than I want to spend



14 comments:

  1. love the colours you've chosen for the furniture, really tranquil x

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    1. Thank you, they are the same colours we used in the kitchen. There's definitely a 'theme' developing {grin}

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  2. My oh my, we think along the same lines at times. I've toyed with painting our old dresser (more than 15 years old though), and would love a new (old) extending table and six mis-matched chairs painted in different colours. Possibly not your cup of tea, but what I've fancied for a couple of years now and seeing yours maybe I'll do a bit more about it. I see the garden is still progressing and the edging and chippings should look great. My old pots are lined up along the side of the shed, and I must either repurpose them or see if they can be recycled. Have a good week and take care.

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    1. Actually Susan, if you got the colours right then mis-matched would look fabulous, something I've thought of too . . .

      We're really getting on well with the garden at present, but it has hardly rained since mid-April so no excuses of weather slowing us down :-}

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  3. I love the green and white combination - very restful :)

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    1. Cheers Dani, I have a feeling we're going to be repeating variations of this combination around the house, you are spot n that it is restful to live with.

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  4. Loving the shades you have chosen! I know what you mean about Chelsea, beautiful but beautifully artificial and unobtainable xx

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    1. Thanks Hawthorn, glad I am not the only one who has doubts about Chelsea.

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  5. The furniture is looking fantastic. I would love to own a dresser but we just don't have the space. X

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    1. Cheers Jules, in truth, this dresser (and any I've owned in previous lives) are generally more decorative than useful. It's a large bit of furniture which doesn't actually provide as much storage as it ought to for the amount of floor space it takes up.

      So attractive, nice to look at, and a bit useless - rather like Daisy really!

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  6. You have had quite a squadron of workers to organise haven't you?
    I do agree with you about flower shows they are just far too contrived for my liking. The pinnacle of stupidity was when I saw Sambuca nigra used as bedding plants at one flower show.

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    1. Thanks Sue. Let's just say that on the odd occasions I watch Grand Designs these days I have much more understanding and great sympathy for people who have never rebuilt a house taking on the project management . . .

      I've seen some odd things used as bedding plants but that definitely takes the biscuit :-}

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  7. As I struggle to develop a border that is currently all green I do get a bit miffed at seeing Chelsea gardens stuffed full of colour with plants that have been forced or held back. Yes, the gardens are beautiful. And the designs are often truly inspirational. But how much more of an admirable challenge would it be if the plants were all seasonal AND hardy in the UK? If they have to manage with the same constraints as the average gardener?
    The hepaticas were stunning. But try growing one outside in woodland conditions in March. Wind blown, rain soaked, slug nibbled. You might not even recognise it as the same plant.

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    1. Excellent comments Jessica, I am so very glad I am not the only one who has doubts about Chelsea. Always feels rather "Emperor's New clothes" to me . . .

      If you struggle with heppaticas then I have no chance up here :-{

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So there I am, chuntering on to myself, but it would be lovely to hear from you. Thanks to all who take the time to comment - it makes my day :)

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