New Royal Bird Prints

Royal Blackbird & Royal Kingfisher

I've received lots of complimentary feedback about my little bird watercolour paintings I did some time ago, so ..... Drum-roll please ......
I now have A4 Prints of my Royal Blackbird and the Royal Kingfisher on 380mic Pulp paper. These will be available to buy from my online shop and through Facebook for £15 per print (inclusive of postage). I'll keep you posted once I've got them all packaged up and ready to go.


Magazine Mention ...

Oooo, We've been quoted in the latest issue of the 1625 Independent People magazine.  We hope our advice can help young people make their homes more enjoyable ‪#‎makeoversonabudget‬ ‪#‎upcycling‬ ‪#‎paint‬ ‪#‎revamp‬

We help the Cash Pointers project team with assisting young people who have moved into their own homes to revamp and make the most of one of their rooms, we normally have a budget of just £50.  This can be rather challenging but it can do done.  Following the link above to read the full article on the Independent People Website


Room Makeover on a Budget

We completed another room makeover last week for 16-25 Independent People.  This was rather a challenging room as this was a joint house with six individuals to listen to and pull together a room from their shared ideas.  It turned out surprisingly well we have to say!  The room had magnolia walls (as most seem to have in this project), a dark blue carpet and two red walls, no furniture and no real central point.

The budget was £300, £50 per person and we had the whole kitchen come dining room to fill!  The house mates generally wanted to create a space that they could use, sit in and eat meals together.  Pictures on the walls to make it more homely and a space that they would want to spend time in.

Room before image, bare walls, no furniture, blank canvas

The original room was bare and cold.  No warmth or comfort at all.  We were rather excited with what we could achieve with this room as it was such a bare canvas to start with.

 PROPOSED ROOM PLANSColour Swatches and Room Plan.  Coral and Navy

Colour Swatches and Room Plan.  Coral and Navy.  Sourcing guide
Colour Swatches and Room Plan.  Coral and Navy.  Sourcing guide

Monogram canvas and Room Plan.  Coral and Navy.  Sourcing guide

The House mates at first were a little sceptical, strangers (me and the support workers) entering their home and supplying them with mood boards and money to decorate the room.  We discussed the budget and what we could do for them.  The ideas soon started to flow and after a few shopping trips to local second hand shops, we sourced many items for such reasonable prices!!

The dearest outlay was £50 for a red corner sofa from Gumtree!! £50!! We know, AMAZING!  We then sourced an amazing dropped leaf table from Sofa Project in Old Market, again for the amazing price of only £30.  I think a rather large part of the budget was spent on paint which was unavoidable really.  We refreshed the whole room (with most house mates joining in!), painting most of the walls white.  Apart from the previously red walls which we revamped with a lighter Coral, just to add a little warmth really.  The colour works really well with the dark carpet which we couldn't really do that much with.



The house mates all contributed images that they wanted to hang on the walls, it works really well as a collective and the mismatched frames add to the eclectic tastes.  There was a roughly attached panel in the far right corner of the room which is access to pipes etc, we used a wooden trim and black board paint to make this into a feature and a useful corner instead of an eye sore.

The cushion covers were made from left over Ikea curtain fabric.  Tying in the scheme of blue and coral.

The stools were also an Ikea find with vibrant touches to add a personal touch to them.  Paint pot testers were a freebie donated by local groups.

The black blind was removed from the kitchen and replaced with a light voile, tie backs were made from left over curtain fabric to tie in the scheme.

The finished room was rather a success.  We sourced everything from either, Gumtree, Freecycle, Ikea or high Street second hand shops.  The total coming in at just under £300.  We managed to provide the house mates with a room that is functional.  A table to sit at and enjoy meals, a sofa to sit and relax on.  The open cupboard that had mysteriously lost the doors were improved by hanging a cheerful curtain with a fruit design which the house mates can colour in themselves.

Feature Wall Paint
Drop Leaf Table
Sourced from Sofa Project, Old Market
Mixed collection - 5 of frames sourced from Country Studio Framing, Old Market
Stools / Chairs
Light Shades
Red L-shaped sofa, Gumtree
Picture hooks
Fixa picture hooks, Ikea
Inner cushion pads
from Ikea
Curtain pole
Fabric Pens
from Ikea
Picture frames
Mixed collection of 4 bargain frames from Ikea
Picture frames
LED lights
from Ikea
Wood Primer & Undercoat
Hemming tape
Wooden trim / Chalkboard
B & Q

We also managed to source rather a lot of items for free from various locations.  I'd like to thank all of the facebook groups that provided paint samples and left over fabrics that enabled us to add the finishing touches to the room.  Bristol you are such a generous city.

To find out more about the wonderful work which the charity 16-25IP do follow this link - 1625ip.co.uk/What-We-Do


Interior Design - For Young Independent people starting out

I've been asked to write an article about how I've been assisting the Charity, 16-25 Independent People with their room makeover project.  This got me thinking about the whole ethos behind Interior Design and the current climate.  I've always been interested in interior design but often felt that it wasn't achievable on a limited budget.  It's the same for many people when looking through glossy magazines, they depict dreamy living rooms that just don’t seem affordable.  Even the weekly papers and their ‘home’ pages list items that are supposedly ‘affordable’, with ornaments coming in at the £30 - £50 price range for one!  However, I was to be proved wrong.  This is the article I wrote for the charity 16-25ip.

After buying Hannah's first home in Bristol three years ago her and her partner had to have major work carried out to make our home liveable.  This left them with a rather limited budget to decorate and furnish our home.  Freya, Hannah's daughter who was only 11 months old at this point, 'Hannah Redden Interiors & Textiles' was 'on hold' and Hannah's partner’s salary was paying the mortgage and bills.  They had to be clever and think of ways that they could achieve their desired home.  Hannah signed up to Free CycleGumtreePreloved, and was regularly searching on Ebay.  Hannah was visiting the local Charity shops so regularly that she was on first name terms with the staff.  Facebook selling pages were also another handy source for all sorts of items.  Now two years on and they have managed to decorate and fill their home, creating the style they wanted on a limited budget, often with surprising finds for very little or even free!  Our favourite find has to be from a lovely lady from who gave Hannah an amazing anglepoise lamp for free from Free Cycle which is now pride of place in her living room.

"I’ve been working for the Cash Pointers Project branch of the Charity 16-25IP for over six months now, within that time I have been able to assist four households create their desired rooms on a budget of just £50 per person.  £50! I hear you say, YES it can be done! 

Decorating on a budget doesn’t mean that you have to discard your ideas of your dream room.  It's all about changing your way of thinking.  Rather than rushing out to buy something new every time you want to revamp a room, it's about learning to work with what you've got or can get for a fraction of the price.  Just simple, stylish updates that anyone can have a go at make a considerable difference.  Paint, wallpaper and fabric are key to unlocking a new look.  There are many websites out there that will give you samples of fabric and wallpaper that could be framed and used to create a feature wall."

It's alleged that out of these times of economic catastrophe comes great creativity, and this isn't any less true when it comes to interiors.  It may be difficult to change your mind set at first.  One of our clients from the Cash Pointers Project Makeover scheme actually stated that “Sewing was for old people” Having spent four years completing a BA Hons in Textile Design Hannah really wanted to show her that this isn’t true, this client then went on to hem two sets of curtains all by herself, with her brother also having a go on the sewing machine.  This was one of the moments when this project has felt so worthwhile and rewarding.  Another client managed to source fabric table runners from Ikea for 50p each which we then transformed into cushion covers for her existing sofa, revamping the feel of the whole room.

Before:  The room was dark with red accents darkening the room further.
If you are clever with your money and spend time sourcing items, you can do it!  Alternatively, if you hate a piece of furniture but don't want to pay to replace it, you can hide it by painting it the same colour as the walls of your house.  Tester pots of paint may not cover a wall, but there is enough in those little bottles to paint old picture frames and hang them together on what was an empty wall.  There is potential in everything you own, that nondescript kitchen dresser that suddenly takes centre stage once you wallpaper the inside with a vibrant print, those plain Ikea drawers that are instantly updated when you replace the handles with mismatched vintage ones, even those plane pine draws that could stand out after being given a lick of something colourful.
After:  We used pale shades of blue to lighten the room and replaced the red voiles with a white calico and a blue trim

And for people who still harbour concerns about whether all this is worth it, you can easily make simple changes first and see what a difference it makes.  Change the focus of the living room from the TV to the fireplace; or face a sofa and chairs towards each other for a more sociable set-up. Once you have done this you will see that it really is worth moving on to the bigger stuff. Above all, don't be afraid to have a go – you can always change things again if you don't like them.

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