Wednesday, October 4, 2017

tetris for grown-ups, sideboard edition (studyroom part II)

-slightly rebellious language ahead- 
Every niche has its own holy grail: for mountaineers, it's the Everest, for bikers the tour de France, for bird-watchers it's the ivory-billed wood pecker (or so Google tells me).

And for a reason that is completely beyond me, the holy grail of second-hand-hunters is Pyrex bakeware (why???) and... Lundia shelving (and unclaimed van Gogh's of course, but let's not get too excited here).

'Luckily', when I met Joost, he already was the proud owner of a Lundia shelf-set that he (and by 'he' I mean: probably his ex-girlfriend) bought online for next to nothing, which is quite an achievement in itself, because those things are really expensive over here.

Which made me ab-so-lu-te-ly ecstatic.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

studyroom reveal (part I)

"Hi Joost and Marije! So, I'm gonna come by this weekend, and I really want to demolish something!"
That could only be one person: Joost's oldest friend Bram. He was ready to get the crowbars out!

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Oh Duvet, where have you been hiding?

Hi friends, it's been a few busy weeks!

We celebrated a belated housewarming, and invited way too many friends with way too many kids to our humble house (we had a blast, though)

Since we live in the middle of nowhere (at least: to Dutch standards we do) I also had to arrange a few sleeping places for our friends, thus I took all our spare duvets and pillows from their hiding place, looked at how bulky they were and figured: 'well, that's a bit of a shame, filling my storing space with this!

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

short summer series. hot tub time (machine)!

This project began somewhere in March. Okay, maybe that is not entirely true: it actually began when I was sixteen years old, when my big brother -the most inventive engineer I know- crafted a wood burning stove with a water heating system to warm up our inflatable kiddy pool. Due to the enormous succes of the invention, he and my dad quickly replaced the inflatable pool by a more durable tub made from something that was previously used as a cattle watering tub, and hence the first DIY hot tub of our family was born.
When I first took Joost to my parents' house, and showed him the hottub made by my big bro and my dad, he immediately responded: "We should totally make something like that!

Sunday, August 20, 2017

short summer series: a miniature bride

I may have mentioned it before: my little nieces love absolutely nothing more than dressing up.

For the oldest one this means imitating her favorite Disney princess of the week.
For her little sister, it usually implies putting on her hot pink rain boots ( your guess is as good as mine on why she does that..), wrapping herself in whichever kind of fabric is at hand as "a dress" and skip off to chase the cat. So, when I had to think about birthday gifts, it wasn't a difficult decision: dress-up clothes!

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

back with a backless shirt)

hey guys!

"How on earth is it possible" I muttured in Joost's general direction, "that all of a sudden it is summer? What happened to April, and May, and June for that matter? I was supposed to get work done in spring, get some rest, and you know... enjoy life, but all of a sudden it's almost summer holiday, and everything is still unfinished!"
Joost turned his eyes away from from his computer screen exactly long enough to look at me and indicate that he had heard me, knitted his eyebrows together, and hummed incomprehensibly in agreement. His screen showed at least 5 different projects that he was frantically working on. Ugh, I do love summer and summer holidays, but could it please not arrive in such a hurry, and be preceded by such an ungodly amount of deadlines? thank you very much!

But somehow we managed to survive the wave of deadlines and summer hols arrived in all its glory. So Joost and I decided to throw a tent in the back of our car, cue the (frankly awful, since we both have absolutely no taste at all) music, and head towards France for a few weeks of camping, hiking, paddle boarding and generally embarrassing myself with my not-so-smooth French language skills..

"l'art est amour, l'amour c'est la vie, la vie, il faut la vivre et non la subir", (Carrasco , the painter of this church)

Saturday, June 24, 2017


As soon as I reach for my running shoes, it starts to rain. Not a gentle drizzle, noo... it's pelting down, as if the rain gods are laughing at my attempts to establish a proper exercise regime.
I sigh, withdraw my hand and stare at through window. A half-hearted thought crosses my mind to just brave the weather, and go for it. But my inner Shia laBoeuf  ("just do it!") loses it to my desire to stay warm and dry inside; with a cup of tea and my laptop, writing you all this post.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

dress up, girl

It's past 10 o' clock in the morning, and while the rest of the world is already at work, I'm still sitting on my bed.Inky is fast asleep next to me, I'm balancing a plate with a sandwich with chocolate sprinkles (I know! How Dutch of me!) on my left knee, there's an enormous cup of tea on my night stand, and Nick Drake is playing on the background.
If there is a better lazy morning, I surely can't think of one.

It all vaguely reminds me of the way we celebrated Mothers and Fathers day when we were young, when me and my brother would make breakfast in bed for our parents, which usually came down to a breakfast of boiled eggs with golfball-like properties, sandwiches with a mountain of chocolate sprinkles on top of them, tiny hand picked bouquets in coffee cups, and a trail of orange juice and tea on the stairs, where we clumsily and excited carried the breakfast upstairs to my parents' bedroom, who would always pretend to be still asleep and completely unaware of our surprise. ( and looking back, I can only applaud them for always eating everything).

But though I feel very motherly towards the cats and chickens, I'm not a mum, and this isn't mothers day, it's just a lovely lazy free morning, after pulling an all nighter for work, and instead of doing chores, I decided to write a bit. So, hereby!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

the maxi-dress that wasn't maxi enough

I can't really remember what I was thinking that day, but on hindsight it must have been something along those lines: "Ah! a big, ill-fitting stripy tent! Just what I need!"

It came from one of those shops that only sells disposable fashion: you know the kind: stores that think they do you a big favor by selling you clothes for a buck or so, that will only last a season or two before disintegrating in a heap of misery.

Disposable fashion.. I don't know who came up with it, but I can only hope he/she is eternally hunted by a herd of angry hippo's in ill-fitting garments, in whatever kind of afterlife there is.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

beasts, benches and bed frames

Lately the weather has been so beautiful, that even the biggest sceptic (and for Dutch people, blaming the weather for being bad comes as natural as breathing) can’t deny that spring is operating in all earnestness, and everything is teeming with life. 
The branches of our various fruit trees are heavy with blossoms, and the air itself is positively buzzing.

Our cats, Inky and Lieve, have gotten so fat that every time they squeeze themselves through the cat flap to go outside, it looks as if our backdoor is giving birth.

Friday, May 12, 2017

branch becomes coat rack!

"your house is so cool.. it's like.. magic!" the two girls from next door (9 and 10) came by to say hi, and check up on our renovation-progress. Being the little girls that they are, it took them exactly two seconds to make their round through all the rooms, but they had high praise. Their comment was honestly the nicest thing I had ever heard about our house, and I stood there basking in the glory for a moment..

Until I heard the youngest say to the eldest on their way out: "When I grow up, I also want a messy house, just like Joost and Marije!"  hahaha, ouch!!

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Throwing some (lamp)shade... a diy'd industrial lamp!

The cashier, a man with an alarmingly bushy moustache, gazed upon all the stuff we had dumped upon his counter (two books, a slatted bed base, cd's, some kitchen stuff and the star of this blog:an enormous lamp) scratched his equally bushy ear and announced in a loud voice: "madam, sir, 10 euros please!"

Monday, April 24, 2017

Be sure to wear some flowers in your hair

What do you get when you take a bit of plain white cotton, some buttons, a few felt-tip
pens, and a bit of elastic ? Duh! A flower crown of course!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Sunday, March 19, 2017

From winter to spring. The bee hotel

Hi! I'm back!

I would have loved to write you sooner, but I spend 1,5 week in a world without internet, and after that a week in a rush to catch up with work :( But here I am!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

An explosive post ( Or: how to fail miserably at pinteresting)

Oh my, oh my!
I really want to write you a post, but truth is: I have nothing to post about! What has happened to me?

It's not that I have been lazy and didn;t make anything at all. I made a sailing bag for my dad... and forgot to take pictures. I made a bee house from an old piece of wood ... and forgot to take pictures.
I made 'this' from an old bed sheet, with the idea to make a bathrobe from it....


and well... I was almost finished, but then I realized that I don't like pink, I don't like flower prints, I don't really like bathrobes, the fit was horrible, and that the fabric was a bad choice for a bathrobe to begin with. I am failing miserably, my friends!

(I'm guessing my nieces will receive some pink, flowery tutu's in the near future though..)

So what to do? Wait with writing until I have tracked down my mother and convinced her to take some pictures of the finished bee hotel.. ("oh hey, mum! pretty pretty please??")
Or.... write about something else perhaps?

Saturday, February 11, 2017

colourblocking the blue!

Oh, the inspiration that my last refashion has given me! I. Need. To. Refashion. More. Clothes!!

I quickly started digging through my wardrobe until I found this...

"Ah, you mean my new napping place?"
Oh bugger off, Inky!

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

refashioning: sizing up

Whenever you visit a refashioner's blog, the basic lesson on refashioning is always the same:  "when buying clothes, Go a few sizes up!" This makes a lot of sense: the bigger the clothes are, the more fabric you've got to work with, and every seam will eat up some of that fabric.

But what if you want to refashion something that is actually too small?

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

rock it

In the introduction in one of my favourite movies, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, main character Joel Barish walks on the beach, and says: "sand is overrated. It's just tiny, little rocks".

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

2 birdhouses for the price of 1 hangover!

I hope you have made it safely into 2017, my friends!

Currently, I am going back and forth between having peaceful thought about a new year and having very hateful thoughts about the inventor of the new year's kiss, and trying to find out where the guy lives so that I can make his life miserable. 

Why all that hate? Well, because WHY would you invent a tradition that involves kissing all kinds of strangers in the middle of flu-season? that's just the evilest thing I can imagine! And as a result, Joost and I are down with a very impressive collection of flu's ( and mind you, I even got a flu shot this year),  and take turns in keeping each other up at night with our symphonies of coughing, snottering and cursing our own -and each other's- existence. 

But well, back to the peaceful thoughts, and from that into a big topic that always resurfaces around new years eve: new year's resolutions. 

I've loved them, I've hated them, and now I'm growing older (well...) I'm kind of settling for a position in the middle: resolutions and goals show that you are able to reflect on your own being, and are willing to grow and improve yourself. So let's embrace it. But there shouldn't be a strict deadline on improving yourself. Also, I think there is an important difference between wanting to improve yourself, or wanting to fit in to an expectation that is just not you. And last: failing is part of learning. So already completely cocked up your resolutions? Great, that's the first lesson, so don't despair just yet! 

resolution: being more attentive to the beauty around me.
(my favourite photo of 2016: the harbour of Iraklion with fish swimming (unfiltered)