Providence Cottage: From Garage to Guest Accommodation on a Budget

At long last, the cottage on the farm is done! I have been working with a team of builders, contractors, handymen (and not-so-handy men) and a throng of other people over the winter to get this tired old cottage ready for the summer tourist season in the Franschhoek Valley. Here’s how I turned a garage into a guest accommodation on a budget.

providence cottage

This is what it looked like before we started. The 50sqm extra-length double garage had been hastily converted to a garden cottage about 7 years ago. Since then, not much was done to the place. The bathroom was atrocious, the kitchen rotten, and the rest was in dire need of paint and repairs. But as always, I see opportunity where others see despair!

Here’s What We Did!

1// The Bathroom

providence cottage

spectacular bathroom makeover

 

The bathroom was the first project on our list. It was a transformation of epic proportions and the results are just gorgeous! Click here for the full post!

2// The Kitchen

providence cottage

tiny kitchen

tiny kitchen

Next up, was the kitchen. We really only built in a small kitchenette as the restaurant offering in the valley is outstanding and we doubt people will come here to cook their own food. None the less, it is equipped with enough to prepare a meal. Click here for the full post.

3// The Windows

providence cottage

The windows offered another challenge: the views around the cottage are very pretty, but the light can be very bright and in summer, the heat needs to be blocked out as well. Click here to see how we resolved that.

4// The Living Room

We bought the coffee table and side table from a discount furniture store; the sofa was a second-hand one with a loose cover one that we had redyed; all the accessories we bought at the end-of-season sales. The animal hide rug is on loan until we have made enough money to invest a bit more!

providence cottage

This Ikea Chair was an online second-hand find.

We kept the colour scheme really simple and neutral, with lots of textures.

providence cottage

I just love this little bench – also a treasure from a hunt around the used furniture store.

providence cottage

5// The Dining Room

providence cottage

The dining is definitely my favourite part of the project. I bought the used chairs online for R150 each. The table was new and the console table came from our local second hand furniture store. I indulged in the cost of the table lamp but saved the money when I made the glass jar chandelier and round studded mirror.

round studded mirror DIY

6// The Bedroom

providence cottage

The room is very small, so I chose to have a floating shelf with a hanging bar for clothes for short-term guests instead of a wardrobe. The luggage stand below provides an additional storage surface.

providence cottage

We have a huge affinity for proteas on the farm, so when I saw this cushion, I knew it had to be incorporated! I found that mirror for R250 at Sheet Street – what a bargain!

providence cottage

We made little glass jar night lights for the bedroom as well. It’s a really simple and inexpensive way to add light and save space over a nightstand!

The whole project cost R88,135 (including sponsors) and when you keep in mind that we started with an empty shell, I am quite pleased! That works out to a complete overhaul (including all building materials, labour, electrical and plumbing work, furniture, all kitchen equipment and utensils, bed linen, towels and cable TV) at R1,763 per sqm. I hope that this project has inspired you to do something about unused space that you can turn into an income-generating asset for you and your family. I’d love to get your feedback on this renovation – let me know what you think!

Happy Renovating!

This project was supported by Tile Africa and Builder’s Warehouse, Consol Glass, and Finishing Touches – and for that, I am so super grateful! Now, it’s up to Airbnb to get it occupied!

 

 

Super Easy Round Studded Mirror DIY

For our Cottage Renovation project, I wanted to have a round mirror to hang above the console table in the dining room. Our budget was seriously pushing red though, so I had to choose between buying a table lamp or a mirror. Knowing I could make a cool mirror, I bought the lamp, a pre-cut round mirror, and got to work! If you have a little spot that could do with something über trendy, then this round studded mirror DIY is for you!

You will need:

round studded mirror DIY

  • Mirror (buy one pre-cut or have one cut at your local glass shop)
  • Chipboard circle, cut to 10mm bigger than the mirror.
  • 4mm Hardboard, cut to 50mm strips that are long enough to go around the chipboard circle.
  • Chipboard screws
  • Matt black spray paint
  • Double-sided foam tape
  • Brass upholstery tacks
  • Metal to metal adhesive
  • Brass chain or leather strap – I was going to use the chain and then I remembered that I have an old belt laying around, begging to be used!

Method:

//STEP 1

round studded mirror DIY

Use the chipboard screws to fix the hardboard strips around the perimeter of the chipboard.

//STEP 2

round studded mirror DIY

Spray with the matt black spray paint (always spray in a well-ventilated area or outside).

//STEP 3

round studded mirror DIY

Fix the upholstery tacks around the perimeter, equally spaced. To cover the chipboard screws, cut the pin from the tack and fix over the screw with metal to metal adhesive.

//STEP 4

round studded mirror DIY

Fix the leather strap to the frame with the brass tacks.

//STEP 5

round studded mirror DIY

Fix the mirror to the frame using the double-sided tape. I used 2 layers to create some added depth.

Now, look at yourself in the mirror and smile!

Happy making!

 

Chandelier DIY with Consol Glass – and a massive sale!

As part of the cottage renovation that we’ve been working on for the last 2 months, Consol glass asked me to create something exciting using their glass products. Glass is such an amazing product to work with: it is free from harmful contaminants, it’s reusable and recyclable giving it a great green thumbs up, and it is inherently beautiful. Glass is something we literally use every single day and something that we might sometimes take for granted. While glass jars are great for storage and more recently, for serving trendy drinks in, we were in need of an impressive light fixture above the dining room table more than anything else. And so I set out to create a fun and contemporary light fixture with some electrical cord and Consol jars. Here are the step-by-step instructions for my chandelier DIY with Consol Glass – and remember that Consol has their REDHOTSALE from 28 Aug to 09 Sep so you can get these jars for a steal!

PLEASE KEEP IN MIND THAT IT IS ESSENTIAL TO GET A QUALIFIED ELECTRICIAN TO DO THE WIRING ON THIS PROJECT.

You will need:

consol glass chandelier

  • 8x 500ml Consol Jars with screw lids
  • 8x 1.1m 2.5 cabtyre electrical cord in black *SEE PRO TIP
  • Matt black spray paint
  • 8x black light fittings
  • 8x golf ball lamps
  • Electrical series connectors
  • Large ceiling bolt with plug
  • Hook with nut (length to match the height of your little bucket)
  • Small metal bucket to use as a ceiling cup
  • Hole saw to match the diameter of your light fittings

* PRO TIP: The light should hang around 80cm above the table, so in this specific dining room, the total length of the chandelier will be 1m. Add 10cm to each cord to give you some room to play with.

Instructions:

STEP 1 //

consol glass chandelier

Carefully mark out the center of each lid and drill a hole using the hole saw. Use pliers to press down any rough edges and to slightly adjust the size of the hole if necessary – it has to fit the light fitting snugly.

STEP 2 //

consol glass chandelier

Spray the lids and allow to dry.

STEP 3 //

consol glass chandelier

Wire a piece of cord to each light fitting.

STEP 4 //

consol glass chandelier

Make 8 equally spaced markings on the bottom of the little bucket and drill holes for the cords to go through.

STEP 5 //

consol glass chandelier

Drill a single hole in the center of the bucket and attach the metal eye, securing the nut underneath.

STEP 6 //

consol glass chandelier

Spray the bucket and allow to dry.

STEP 7 //

consol glass chandelier

Thread the cords through the holes and get the electrician to connect them to each other so that you end up with a single cord to connect to the power point in the ceiling.

consol glass chandelier

consol glass chandelier

STEP 8 //

consol glass chandelier

Attach the hook to the ceiling, connect and hook your chandelier in place.

Switch on and admire your work!

Happy lighting!

 

 

 

How to make your own wall art in your rental home

Knowing how to decorate your home can be hard when you have limitations as a renter. Anything that is done needs to be able to be removed easily, without leaving any marks or holes in the walls. Washi tape is a great solution as it lets you add a little personality to your space, while still remaining easily removable, with absolutely no fuss.

You could use any design you like, but origami works well as it’s made up of straight lines.

Washi Tape Art for your Rental Home

What you need:

Washi tape
Painters tape or masking tape (optional)
Design (Click here to use this design:  Origami Hummingbird - Pure Sweet Joy for Homeology.pdf)
Ruler
Scissors

What to do:

Start by finding your design, measuring out the length of each line and then scaling it up to be the size that you want it to be. The easiest way to scale it is to measure the length or height of your printed out version and then see how much that length needs to be multiplied by to get the final length you want it to be on the wall. That number then becomes your multiplication factor for all the other lines. Look, there is a use for high school math after all!

Example: The total width of the printed hummingbird measures 23cm (seen recorded on the rough sketch). I wanted the final bird to be roughly 70cm, so multiplying by 3 kept it simple, making the final width roughly 69cm. The left-hand line measures 9cm on the printout, making its final washi tape size 27cm (9×3=27).

Washi Tape Art for your Rental Home

Using painter’s tape (or extra washi tape), mark out the rough area where your final design will be. The final dimensions may differ slightly from those you calculated, as it does not take into account the width of the actual washi tape and slight changes in the angles of the lines. Stick your printed design on the wall for easy reference.

Washi Tape Art for your Rental Home

Starting sticking your washi tape strips from one corner, and work your way across the picture. Place your washi tape according to the printed picture. For awkward corners, cut the tape a little longer and leave it for now.

Washi Tape Art for your Rental Home

 

Washi Tape Art for your Rental Home

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once all the pieces have been stuck to the wall, go around with scissors and neatly cut off the little extra ends left at the corners.

Washi Tape Art for your Rental Home

Washi Tape Art for your Rental Home

What other rental decor ideas have you implemented in your space?

How to simplify your life with quick DIY organising hacks

Are you the type of person who has loads of little things lying around with no specific place to put them? I often find that simply giving something a home is the first and most important step to getting organised. It’s not always an easy thing to do though, especially if you have limited storage space. If you need a little inspiration, you can use these simple DIY organizing hacks to get you started!

Easy Cable Organising

Almost every time I need a cable for charging a camera, importing photos or tethering my camera I have to dig through a little pile of electronic cables. So while the cables as a whole have a home, the fact that all of their homes are in the exact same place means it still gets messy. By simply giving each little cable its own home in an empty toilet roll, this problem is solved. Decorate the toilet rolls with a strip of wrapping paper, Washi tape or a little hand-drawn design. Write the name of the cable on its new toilet roll home and you have an organised set of cables. No more scratching through the pile!

Use these simple organising DIY hacks to make your life that little bit easier

Mini Handbag Storage

Ever find yourself scratching through your bag for that little clip that you just KNOW is in there somewhere? You may find everything else that you didn’t even know was deep in your handbag, but just not that clip! One of the easiest DIY hacks, is to place your clips into a small mint container, like a Tic Tac box. Add a little glamour to the container with a simple strip of gold tape.

Use these simple organising DIY hacks to make your life that little bit easier

Use these simple organising DIY hacks to make your life that little bit easier

Or, mini stationery storage

Use the exact same method to tidy up your stationery storage for small things like paperclips, thumbtacks or pins.

Use these simple organising DIY hacks to make your life that little bit easier

Use these simple organising DIY hacks to make your life that little bit easier

Simple Plug Sorting

Tired of being unsure which plug is which? In an effort to not overload our plug points, some of our small appliances get unplugged when not in use. Not only does this mean the plugs get all knotted, but it also means that you can be waiting forever for the kettle to boil before realising that it isn’t even plugged in yet! Using a simple piece of Washi tape, coloured tape or even masking tape allows you to label each appliance close to the plug. This makes it much simpler when figuring out what is what. The same method could be used for all those pesky computer plugs or hair accessories.

Use these simple organising DIY hacks to make your life that little bit easier

Mini Ribbon Holders

Just like cables, ribbons can also get so easily tangled together. This is especially annoying when you’re trying to wrap a present at the last minute! Once again one, of the simplest little DIY hacks using a mint container can solve the problem. Keep one end of the ribbon poking out the hole to make it easy to quickly pull out however much ribbon you need.

Use these simple organising DIY hacks to make your life that little bit easier

Use these simple organising DIY hacks to make your life that little bit easier

Organising Kitchen Drawers

While you’re busy organising things a little more, you might as well tackle that kitchen drawer which holds all the odds and ends. Each drawer will need different methods depending on what you end up using it for, but here are 3 easy steps:

  1. Start by taking everything out of the drawer.
  2. Before putting anything back in, throw out or give away the items that you can do without.
  3. Finally add smaller containers to hold like items together, use a cutlery tray for storing the extra cutlery items such as spatulas, salad servers and measuring spoons or even an ice cube tray for very small items.

Enjoy using your newly organised space!

Potato Print Stocking for Christmas – in Blue & Black

This year, I went with a coastal theme for my Christmas tree because, well, a summer Christmas with green, red and snow somehow doesn’t make sense! Have a look at my Christmas tree post here – it is definitely one of my favourite trees! Once I had the tree up, I realized that my very festive and traditionally decorated Christmas stockings were not going to work, so I made these lovely potato print stockings to go with the theme.

They are really easy to make and I have to admit, I absolutely fell in love with the half-moon pattern and will definitely use it again in a project or 2.

potato print stocking

You will need:

  • Plain white cotton (an old sheet works really well!)
  • Pencil
  • Craft paint (I used Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® in Napoleonic Blue mixed with Graphite)
  • Roller or brush – more on that later!
  • Medium to large potatoes
  • Fork
  • Sewing machine and matching thread

Use a pencil to draw the outline of a stocking. It’s a really simple design so I did mine freehand, but you can also trace an existing stocking.

potato print stocking

Next, cut the potatoes into quarters and then place them on kitchen towel to dry. You want them to be very dry before you start to print, otherwise the moisture inside the potato will make the paint bleed. Just a friendly note from personal experience 😉

potato print stocking

Once they are nice and dry, stick in fork into the rounded back of one of the quarters. The fork just makes it easier to lift the potato after you’ve printed and helps to keep your hands clean.

potato print stocking

Now you can start to apply the paint using either the roller or the brush. I started using a roller and then, after a while, switched to a paint brush. I have to be honest, I much prefer the texture of the paint brush! Either way, always test the print on paper first before you commit to fabric. That way you can make sure that you’re happy with the consistency of the paint and that you are able to get a clean and clear print.

potato print stocking

potato print stocking

Then print away! To prevent a messy print, make sure you wipe the excess paint from the sides of the potato every once in a while.

potato print stocking

Once you’re done and it’s all dry, sew the stocking together and add a fabric or ribbon loop for hanging.

potato print stocking

v

I was so inspired once I started printing that I ended up making a gift bag as well, using just the Napoleonic Blue for a bit of variety. Perfect for keeping all the gifts together, especially when there are little fingers that can’t wait for Christmas anymore!

potato print stocking

Happy making!

germarie-signature-featherly

 

Printed Custom Gift Bags Christmas DIY

When it comes to the end of year busyness and Christmas craziness, we don’t always get to do everything that we set out to do. I always intend to come up with a simple, but unique, way to wrap up the Christmas gifts. Unfortunately, I so often end up doing it last minute. Of course, much of the shopping happens last minute too, forcing the wrapping to be even later! This year, you can use this easy little hack to make your own printed custom gift bags.

Make your own DIY custom gift bags for Christmas by printing on paper bags

What you need:

Plain paper gift bags
A4 scrap paper or cardboard
Masking tape or washi tape
Your own custom designs, names or Christmas greetings. A simple message done in Word or Paint is sufficient. (Or you can download the files designed for this post at this link)

Print DIY custom gift bags at home

Tape the paper bag to your scrap paper, with the front of the bag facing up. If your design goes right to the edge of the page, be sure to tape the under side of the bag to avoid printing onto the tape.

Taping the bag onto the paper allows for the design to go right to the edge of the paper bag as the printing border then falls onto the scrap paper. It also feeds more easily through the printer. Although higher-end printers may be able to handle the bag on its own, when I tried feeding the bag straight into the printer it made the most horrible crunching sound and jammed! Not fun!

Make your own DIY custom gift bags for Christmas by printing on paper bags

Once you’ve printed out your own custom gift bags, simply remove the tape gently and get wrapping your gifts!

Print DIY custom gift bags onto any paper bags at home

I love the difference in the effects of printing onto brown paper versus white paper bags. While I always prefer all my gifts to be wrapped in the same way, using the same designs on different colours of paper bags keeps the look uniform, while adding variety to each person’s gift.

Do you have any gift wrapping tips? We’d love to hear them!

Make your own DIY custom gift bags for Christmas by printing on paper bags

Wishing you the best Christmas season of relaxation and joy!

deborah-signature-featherly

P.S. If you like the animal Christmas tree ornaments, you can find the tutorial for them here.

Botanical Paper Leaves – DIY and Free Download

Do you ever sit inside and wish that there was a little more of the outside around you? I am really enjoying having plants in the house and my collection is slowly building. Unfortunately, I’m not all that great at watering them though. My simple solution to this is to just have some paper leaves adding to the look. No water needed and they’ll stay looking great all year round! Follow this DIY to bring your own low maintenance botanical feel into your home.

Fill a vase with botanical paper leaves that will never die. Win!

What you need:

Templates (download here, PDF template and Silhouette cut file included)
Cardboard, in variety of greens
Florist wire
Glue
Scissors and craft knife

Fill a vase with botanical paper leaves that will never die. Win!

What to do:

Start by cutting out your leaves from cardboard, using either the templates or the Silhouette Cut files. Cut a straight strip of cardboard, roughly the length you want your stem to be.

DIY your own paper leaves for decor that will never die

Glue the stem onto your leaf and then glue the florists wire along the stem. For the fern leaf, first shape the wire to the curve of the leaf, before gluing. Because of how the fern is cut it is naturally floppier than the other leaves, so it needs the wire to go along the full spine of the leaf. For the other leaves, it’s fine if the wire is glued just a few centimeters into the leaf shape.

DIY Paper leaves

Your paper leaves are then ready to go! For the delicious monster and split leaf philedendron leaves, you can fold them over to mimic how they flop on the plant.

Fill a vase with botanical paper leaves that will never die. Win!

Fill a vase with botanical paper leaves that will never die. Win!

While you’re at it, why not cut some mini leaves to make into a botanical garland of paper leaves? They could make a cute photo booth background for a tropical party or just add a little life to your desk, without needing to be watered!

Use this paper leaves template to make a mini botanical garland DIY

Use this paper leaves template to make a mini botanical garland DIY

What are your secrets to bringing some of the outdoors indoors? Do you have any tips for the rest of us?

Happy Greening!

deborah-signature-featherly

For more creative inspiration, follow my Instagram at @Puresweetjoy or visit me at Pure Sweet Joy.

Floating Drinks Holder: Fun Summer DIY

Have you ever been relaxing in the pool, so nice and cool, but then realised that you drink is “way over there”? Or worse still, it’s inside! This is a fun and easy DIY that you can do to keep your refreshments close at hand in a floating drinks holder.

What you need:

1 pool noodle
Craft knife
Strong glue, that will hold in water
Ice-cream tub lid or piece of firm flat plastic
Plastic cup or cooldrink can (stay away from glass, as you don’t want to risk any breakages)
Paint (optional)
Elastic bands (optional)

Easy floating drinks holder DIY for summer fun in the sun!

What to do:

Start by cutting two pieces of pool noodle, equal length, about 20 cm long.

Easy floating drinks holder DIY for summer fun in the sun!

The next part is the trickest part of the whole process. Using the size of your cup as a guide, cut semi-circles into the centre edge of each piece of pool noodle. Cut to the middle of the pool noodle. You’ll then need to cut a straight line, perpendicular to your semi-circle, making the base for your cup to sit on. This will then allow you to remove the chunk of pool noodle. If your cup is curved, like mine, get the size of the semi-circle correct and then add in a bit of a slant, by cutting some extra away from the top at an angle.

Easy floating drinks holder DIY for summer fun in the sun!

Keep placing the two parts together to check that your circles are still meeting up and that the cup fits neatly in the hole. Add a little personal touch with some paint.

Easy floating drinks holder DIY for summer fun in the sun!   Easy floating drinks holder DIY for summer fun in the sun!

Glue the two pieces together with a strong glue. Run glue along the full width of the join, on the underside.

Lastly, use a piece of firm recycled plastic, to reinforce the back, by glueing it onto the underside of your floating drinks holder.

Alternatively you can use colourful elastic bands as the additional support to hold the pieces in place.

Easy floating drinks holder DIY for summer fun in the sun!

Enjoy your summer swimming! Have you been brave enough to get into the pool or ocean yet?

deborah-signature-featherly

For more creative inspiration, follow my Instagram at @Puresweetjoy or visit me at Pure Sweet Joy.

Desk Organiser: Practical Spring DIY

Is spring cleaning fever starting to hit you yet? For some reason spring often brings along that feeling of needing a change, a fresh start. Is it the flowers that are already blooming or the fresh air? Who really knows? What we do know is that getting organised is certainly never a bad thing! One of the easiest places to start (because easy is always a good place to start) is on your desk. We spend so much time at our desks, so having a cute desk organiser seems like a no-brainer.

Cute DIY Desk Organiser with cork for notes and magnets to keep paperclips tidy.

This DIY desk organiser has 3 sections to keep your stationery, as well as mini cork boards for pinning notes and a magnet piece for keeping your paperclips tidy. It’s pretty nifty and is so quick to make!

Cute DIY Desk Organiser with cork for notes and magnets to keep paperclips tidy.

What You Need:

Foam board (2xA4 or 1xA3)
Clear adhesive glue
Craft knife
Ruler
Thin permanent marker
4-5mm thick cork (optional)
Adhesive magnet sheet (optional)

What To Do:

Start by cutting out all of your pieces from the foam board. Use a craft knife – scissors will squash the foam and make your edges harder to glue.

Cute DIY Desk Organiser with cork for notes and magnets to keep paperclips tidy.

Cut cork shapes to match the two outer houses, or whichever houses you choose. Draw your window and door detail and then stick the cork onto the front foam piece.

Cute DIY Desk Organiser with cork for notes and magnets to keep paperclips tidy.

Glue the front piece onto the long base piece. To make sure the base is not visible from the front, glue the front piece against the side of the base, rather than sticking it on top of the base piece. Use glue along the edges of the internal pieces and allow them to dry before adding your back piece. Be sure to glue down all edges of the internal pieces to keep it all together.

Cute DIY Desk Organiser with cork for notes and magnets to keep paperclips tidy.

Finally, cut a small square of adhesive magnet sheet to stick to the side of your desk organiser. I used a leftover piece from this Instagram Photo Magnet DIY. It’s always great knowing that the small leftovers kept from previous projects were not kept in vain!

Cute DIY Desk Organiser with cork for notes and magnets to keep paperclips tidy.Cute DIY Desk Organiser with cork for notes and magnets to keep paperclips tidy.

Do you have any spring cleaning or organising tips? We’d love to hear them!

Happy organising!

Deborah Signature Featherly

For more creative inspiration, follow my Instagram at @Puresweetjoy or visit me at Pure Sweet Joy.

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