Now I’m certainly no stranger to upcycling old clothes, but I haven’t really ventured into repurposing furniture or homewares much, mostly because I spend most of my free time at my sewing machine. So I couldn’t turn down an invite to a crafternoon run by Hillarys Blinds and Joe Blogs, in which a bunch of crafty bloggers were set a challenge to upcycle pretty wooden shutters using Annie Sloan chalk paint. Throw Kilner jars (and coffee and yummy sandwiches!) into the mix and that’s pretty much my idea of a perfect afternoon.
The event was held at At Bristol, meaning it was a great chance to meet some other South West bloggers. Before getting stuck in, we were shown what to do by designer Becky Clarke (she made it look so easy, and it actually surprisingly was! You can find out for yourself how it’s done on her website). Then it was time to choose our shutter and get started.
I chose to paint my shutter a lovely turquoise colour, which is one of my fave hues, and attach my jars in a random formation (no measuring required, win!). This was my first time using Annie Sloan chalk paint, and it really did live up to the hype – I now want to paint everything in my house! My paint application technique was, well, quite messy, but I imagine/hope that with practice I would improve.
Waiting for the paint to dry provided an excellent excuse to stop for a coffee and a sandwich or two from the rather delicious spread provided for us and have a bit of a chat. This paint dries really fast, so you can get a project done fairly quickly (although that does leave less time for scoffing sandwiches!).
Even my boyfriend, who has seen so many of my creations that he usually just responds with a “that’s nice dear” (especially when it’s yet another dress), was impressed when I proudly presented my finished shutter. It certainly won’t be holding any of his stuff, though – my jars are, of course, going to be used for sewing kit storage!
Never one to know when to stop when it comes to craft projects, I decided I fancied giving my shutter a distressed look, so set to work distressing it with a piece of fine sandpaper (and adding a bit of Washi tape to the jars for good measure) before filling the jars with vintage cotton reels and other sewing bits and bobs. I am super chuffed with my new bit of storage and have definitely caught the upcycling bug. Thanks to Joe Blogs, Hillarys Blinds and Becky Clarke for an inspiring day!
You can read Hillarys Blinds’ account of the event on its blog.