Friday, September 6, 2019

from photograph to art: painting for dummies

Although I hardly ever do it anymore, I love painting.
The way in which a few splotches of colour are able to create an image or evoke a memory, are quite magical. 

I do not think that in painting we have to strive for resemblance; in fact perfect resemblance usually creates boring paintings. 
However; while we shouldn't be bothered by not being able to create picture-perfect paintings, it is a reason why most people stop doing it. I mean: there is a limited number of times where you can start out painting and hoping to create a beautiful portrait of the person you love, only to end up with what can only be described as: Gollum with severe constipation. 

And being surrounded by people who stopped being creative just because they weren't able to reach perfect results, I decided to think of a way to get adults back into painting, and getting the fun of painting without worrying over the results.

So, are you one of those people that has ever said: " I can't paint?" Then I urge you to grab your paintbrushes, and read on! Because I've got news for you: you can! 

Friday, August 16, 2019

bleach polkadot trousers.

Long gone are the days that bleach dominated our kitchen cabinets. My Grandmum -not really known for her casual disposition towards hygiene,- would clean her entire house with it, like a criminal wiping down a crime scene.
Luckily, these days, most of us are a little more careful with such aggresive products, and Pinterest offers us plethora of ideas to clean our houses with products that don't make polar bears cry.

I've been busy to make my cleaning habits slightly more sustainable than my grandmothers' routines, and usually endeavor to stay away from bleach and its nasty companions, but somehow I had a bottle of bleach leftover somewhere in my cleaning stash. With the rate I'm using it now, this bottle will probably last until 2040, so, feeling all good and fluffy about myself and my greener cleaning habits, I decided to treat myself to a little bleach-powered refashion: polkadot trousers!

Thursday, July 18, 2019

refashioned shirts: t-shirt yarn version

I'm not entirely sure how it happened.. I blinked a few times, and all of a sudden my youngest niece, Eefke celebrated her fourth birthday..

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

I dig it! Garden upcycling

Hi friends and other creatures!
I just started to write this post, when I thought about what this project must have been like from the point of view of Joost. You probably remember him: my long-suffering boyfriend.
I'm guessing it must have been something like this..

"You know.." I looked up from my computer to see Marije looking at me. Before continuing her sentence she smiled with what she probably thought to be an innocent smile, but what actually looked like the expression of a gnome brooding on an exceptionally bad idea. 

I sighed, putting my pleasant thoughts about work, sports and computer games aside, because in my three years experience of dating Marije, I know that whenever she says "you know.." in that way, my peace of mind flies straight out the window.

And there came the rest of the sentence: "I'd like to have a pond!" 

Of course, I should have known better: ever since Marije developped an unhealthy addiction to a BBC tv show called 'Gardeners world', Marije had been frantically digging in our garden, moving plants and bits of grass around, and planting every thing that vaguely resembled plant-life. But a pond, really?

" I don't think I like that" I tried.

"You dug a pond that last year, and it was shitty" I tried.  

"We have quite litterally finished an enormous renovation in the bathroom 10 minutes ago" I tried. 

But Marije didn't listen, having refocussed  on what that blasted tv-show said about installing a pond in your garden, and googling every picture of ponds that the world could offer her.

"The chickens would drown in it" I tried as a very last resort ( because, in fact two of our chickens had drowned in the neighbours pond over the last months, and I knew Marije -rightly- felt quite guilty about it.)  She did indeed look a bit guilty, remembering the fate of our beloved chickens 'Omelet' and 'Nugget'. But it wasn't enough: she should absolutely, most definitely wanted to make a pond. 

And so, while I reevaluted my life-choices and thought about the possible benefits of having a post-order bride instead  of strong-headed Dutch girls, it happened that Marije grabbed her spade, went into to yard, and started to dig a pond. 

Monday, February 25, 2019

far away and back home again (oh, and an easy necklace!)

Who doesn't think of him- of herself as a traveler at heart? I most definitely do: fawning over pictures beautiful landscapes, whistfully writing "wanderlust" on he back of my notepad (you gotta give it to the germans; for a language that sounds so much like sneezing, they do come up with awesome words), secretly wishing I was the kind of person that could throw a suitcase and a tent over her shoulder, and just disappear for a year...

And every now and then actually travel!

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

It's like magic.. floating bookshelves!

Happy new year, all of you!

Last week I read an article about the good news resolutions that people make, and was gobsmacked to find that "reading more books" was in the top 10. I thought: well, there's at least one new year's resolution I don't have to worry about!

I don't read books; I devour them, and have done so ever since I was a little girl.
I read secretly at night, I read outside, during holidays, in school, in my old tree house... I simply read everything I could lay m hands on. There's even one not-so-proud moment where my mum found me reading the telephone-book, because I liked reading the adverts in it, and the weird family-names.

Some books I read so often as a little girl, that they literally fell apart, and I can still remember the weirdest little details about them, such as what Harry Potter ate during the start-of-term feast. (a bit of everything except peppermint humbugs) It's weird how willingly my brain absorbed such useless facts, while it blatantly refused to remember any of the French grammar rules during tests.
But the general message stands: 1) I love reading, and 2) We own way too many books.

Monday, December 24, 2018

the upcycled christmas necklace

You must feel betrayed, my friends!
You probably came to this blog thinking I did nice and cute refashions, and all of a sudden I've gone  full hulk-mode and only do projects that involve power tools, muscle and a lot of rubble, and I'm sure you're sometimes wondering.. "Can't she just do a nice skirt instead of a bathroom?" (No, cuz you can't take a bath inside a skirt, baby)

But today, as my lil' christmas present to you, I'll make it up!
And will do so by making the cutest, frilliest upcycled christmas necklace ever, entirely maken out of thrifted, broken and unwanted old pieces of jewelry.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

photography shelves.

It was late august last year, and Joost and I -in all our wisdom- decided to throw a housewarming party, even though the house was still in utter chaos.

"Meh, we'll be fine.." Joost said.
"We'll finish in time" Joost also said.
" It's okay if I don't help with the house this weekend, because I have a football match, isn't it?" Joost also said.  ( he did help. sometimes........)
" Is it okay if we sleep over after the housewarming?" several of our friends said.

What ensued were a few weeks of utter panic; insulating, installing drywalls, painting, cleaning and finishing a last minute guest bedroom.
Miraculously, we we ready just in time for the housewarming: with the paint still drying on the walls, I stuffed a bed into our tiny guest room (literally as big as the bed itself) and figured: "hmm, our guests might need a night stand of some kind to store their belongings.."

With no time to waste on night-shelf shopping (I mean, the guests were practically already arriving), I went back to my infinite supply of.. wine boxes. I know I have made wine box shelves before..  (You don't remember? Well, it was here!) But this time, I added a twist!

Saturday, September 15, 2018

on playpens and coat racks

A slightly decaying scent wafts across the restaurant. "Oh wait, there's poop, I smell poop, which one is pooping?" At my question, four of my friends quickly set down their cappuccino's, grab their children in an upside-down manner, and start smelling their pants in a sort of professional, evaluating way that only one group of people in this world is capable of: new mothers. 

A final sniff, and one of the friends nods affirmatively. The culprit -together with a bag full of diapers- gets carried away towards the toilets. Quickly the chatter amongst my friends resumes, with as the main topic their children, and everything that comes with (or out of) it. 

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

On thrifting love and the spoils of the hunt.

Sometimes you gotta write about amazing DIY's, and sometimes you just.. gotta write. 

I'd like to tell that my love for thrifting began with porcelain.
But the more accurate thruth was that I refound my love for thrifting through tableware. 

My actual love for thrifting, as my mother likes to tell me, began with a bathing suit.