‘Tin tile’ cabinets. We painted these in a sort of zinc effect (despite reading a few hundred tutorials I’m still not sure if this is how it’s supposed to look but I like it) and added some samples of faux tin tiles that came from the USA. I don’t know why these (and many, many other interesting products) aren’t available here, or if they are, they cost about 10 times as much, maybe I should write to my MP? I’ll get off my soap box now…

This is a super sturdy chest of drawers, my knees buckle every time we move it, mind you I’m not getting any younger…. However because it, unlike me, is not old we didn’t have to spend hours trying to get the drawers to run smoothly, happy days. I’ve given it a rustic makeover with a very subtle cowslip design which I’m pretty pleased with even if I say so myself!

Things that make me go ooohhh! I love this chest and the matching tallboy and I love the display on top, if I was running a museum instead of a shop they would become a permanent fixture but we have to eat….

I love parrots, birds in general, horses, rabbits….In fact my house is like a flipping zoo. It does tend to affect my buying decisions so let’s hope I’m not alone or I may have to start opening to the public!

Petite early 20th century bureau painted in Nordic blue and stencilled with some random numbers. This is the kind of thing I see on cool online sites all the time (I spend a lot of time ‘researching’ I’m a martyr for my job 😉  the main difference being that ours costs a fraction of the price, oh and it isn’t mass produced. So basically you are getting unique design for a bargain price, what’s not to love?

I think these cabinets have an oriental look about them, or is that just me? Although they were probably intended to be bedsides, they would also make great lamp tables.

Everyone needs a horses head in their lives (unless you are a member of the mafia). I should know I have two already and if someone doesn’t buy this soon it may become a trio…

Buy buy buy the funky chicken (my homage to the Goodies hit from the seventies, apologies to those too young to remember it and those who aren’t but would rather forget it)

This super slim bookcase is perfect for hiding away your Mills and Boon collection or not so cool dvds, leaving your open shelves free for those intellectual books and films that have never been opened!

Early 20th century bookcase.

I loved the tongue and groove panelling on the back of this so Colin painstakingly sanded and waxed every board. What a hero!

Ampersand cupboard.

This actually matches the tall chest of drawers (with the numbers) we posted previously, hence the ampersand….

Funky filing cabinet.

I really must stop posting these late at night after a few glasses of wine. I think the picture speaks for itself, if it doesn’t then I suggest you pop into The Courtyard at No 6 and check it out. Hopefully whoever is in the shop will be making more sense than I am!

Competition – how many uses can you find for this cupboard?

This started out as an early 20th century oak wardrobe however, as is often the case, it wasn’t a standard depth (did they have narrower clothes back in the day or what?) So we added some shelves but kept the original hanger and hooks just in case. The outside is painted in white and grey but the interior is old violet, I even went the extra mile and added some birds inside the doors. I can see this in a kitchen or dining room for crockery, a hall for coats and shoes, a landing for linen, a bathroom for toiletries and towels or even (revolutionary idea) a bedroom for clothes. Entries on a postcard if you can think of any more.

Run rabbit, run

Super cute two drawer Lebus chest. I painted this white, then added some bunnies and crystal knobs because it seemed like a good idea at the time. While it would look lovely in a child’s bedroom personally I’d put it anywhere but then I’m a sucker for a stylish bunny…

You’ll never lose your pants again…

Pick a number, any number – maybe pants in No 1, socks in No 2, need I go on?

Dreamy dresser.

This early 20th century dresser has been painted white and distressed to highlight all the details. The oak top was lime waxed and we added some bird knobs and mother of pearl handles just to complete that shanty chic look (no I’m not sure what that means either but I just saw it on a similar piece on a very upmarket website so if it’s good enough for them…)

Bjorn Again

These filing/bedside cabinets have been reinvented Abba style with a vintage map of Sweden and some Gustavian inspired pale blue paint. Voulez vous?

Here comes another one a bit like the other one…

Just when I thought I was finished posting for the night I find one more. This compact cupboard matches the chest of drawers and also has very cool original handles. Can I go to bed now?

I’m too tired to think of a snappy title…

It’s been a long day so I’ll keep it brief! This is a modern oak veneer chest which means the drawers run smoother than George Clooney. It has had a gunmetal grey/whitewashed treatment and we kept the original handles because we like them, I think they have a military look to them.

Spot the table…

According to my photographer there is too much, and I quote, ‘rubbish’ on this table to get a good shot! I think he really meant quality merchandise, beautifully arranged by yours truly. This is a very substantial (my favourite euphemism for eye wateringly heavy) rustic oak refectory table that has a lovely weathered patina, and a pine bench that has been given the same treatment. If your mealtimes are like a war zone I can guarantee these could withstand any kind of attack…

Pack up your troubles in this old tin trunk and smile, smile, smile…

A vintage tin trunk that I painted in French linen and old white (I also painted the interior in old violet, what a rebel). I added the ‘atelier’ which is French for a workshop of the arty variety for no particular reason other than I wish I worked in an arty Parisian workshop. Somehow I don’t think our unit in Maids Moreton has quite the same panache!

Painted and decoupaged Edwardian dressing table.

This was painted in grey (I know, how unusual, you’re thinking) but this time we added anaglypta wallpaper to the drawers to mirror the lovely carving under the mirror. You can just see it through the plethora of frames, birds and tealight holders! I then painstakingly (and I mean that) highlighted all the raised details on the paper in white to accentuate them. Worth the effort I think?

Didn’t she do well…

I’m not going to lie this was a challenge, it certainly wasn’t going to win any beauty contests when we got it. On the plus side someone had lovingly crafted this from chipboard and repainted it a number of times so they must have liked it! Since I never give up on a piece of furniture unless it gives up on me, I decided to go with the layered look and many shades of paint later – voila. I think it would make a lovely potting station or maybe a conservatory piece so I dressed it with garden accessories.

Pretty painted pine dresser.

This was painted in Old White and Paris Grey (just for a change but hey if it ain’t broke don’t fix it as they say!) I added some letters for all you latin students out there and some birdy knobs just because I can. Enjoy!

Monarch of the hall….

For those of you under a certain age that’s a reference to a famous painting called Monarch of the Glen, prints of which were ubiquitous in the 70’s, I think it may be due for a revival! This hall seat has been painted in French Linen and reupholstered in a fabulous fabric, just add a chunky crystal knob and you have a thing of great beauty IMHO.

We are chinese if you please…Actually it isn’t, I believe it’s known as chinoiserie and it is hard to date as we have been producing these chinese style cabinets for centuries. If I had to guess I would say mid century. It has been painted in Grand Illusions noir to accentuate the panels and has tray style drawers inside, which are rather unusual. Anyone fancy going oriental? Mine’s a number 27 thanks 😉

Oh la la – this set of four chairs look like they have come straight out of a French chateau but are actually Victorian and apparently came from somewhere rather grimy as I spent more time cleaning them than painting them! After much scrubbing they were painted in old white and paris grey, vigorously distressed to show off all that yummy carving, waxed and finally reupholstered in gorgeous toile. Et voila!

Is this the most romantic Valentine’s present ever?

This dressing table was in the shop window and a lovely man bought it as a Valentine’s gift for his girlfriend. All you men out there take note… especially the ones whose wives drag them into the shop, so excited about some piece of furniture, only to be told by her grumpy spouse ‘I don’t like it’. You know who you are and if you love her does it really matter?

The one that got away –

Put this in the shop on Friday night, it was reserved by lunchtime Saturday and collected by 3pm! In the meantime we had customers gnashing their teeth because they hadn’t got there first…I always have slightly mixed feelings when this happens; relieved because we can afford to eat that week, gratified that people appreciated and liked the finished piece as much as we did but also a bit sad that we couldn’t keep it a little longer. Especially when I was reorganising the shop until 11pm the night before, oh the joys of retailing!

Mid century modern bureau. After sanding off the varnish we decided to restore this by using neutral wax and leaving it well alone! I did spray the original knobs in grey though.

A pair of painted and reupholstered Edwardian chairs. Painted white and distressed to show off those lovely carved details and recovered in a cool Ikea fabric.

Early 20th century two drawer chest. This has a matching dressing table currently in the shop window. They have been painted in a deep french grey and the drawers are silver with a paisley design in the same grey (I’m loving this stencil at the moment). The original drop handles have had the chrome treatment to funky them up a bit. Gorgeous – even if I say so myself!

Indian style table/desk. I painted this table white, distressed it and then highlighted certain areas with dark wax. Finally I stencilled a paisley design on the top with dark wax. Sounds easy doesn’t it? Trust me – it isn’t and a fair bit of bad language may have been involved…

Retro style chair. This contemporary beech chair has been decoupaged with a distressed wood effect paper because we like to mess with your mind!

Script two drawer chest. This has been painted in antique white and decoupaged with an antique style script paper, the original handles have been sprayed with white and chrome and distressed. Perfect for adding some chateau chic…

Early C20th oak dresser painted in French Linen. It was described as ‘Old Charm style’ when we bought it but in my experience an awful lot of dressers around this period looked like this, so the question is who was copying who? Answers on a postcard please…Anyway lots of storage,  somewhere to display your best china and funky clock knobs, it’s all good.

This pine monks bench has been painted in Paris Grey and lightly distressed before waxing. These are always popular as they combine useful storage with some extra seating and can fit into surprisingly small spaces. Oh and a few lovely Biggie Best cushions…

Reproduction mahogany veneer desk that has been given a makeover with white and grey washed paint and an eclectic selection of handles. Sold – I really must try to post these a bit quicker!

A mid century modern bureau. This was made in England when furniture was still rationed in the early 1950s. The original Utility furniture made after the war was so plain that eventually people began to complain at the lack of style and choice, so they started to employ designers who copied the popular Scandinavian styles. There ends today’s history lesson! I love the lines of this bureau and the light oak finish, which we sanded and waxed, and so did one of our customers as it has now sold.

This Victorian chest has been painted in a custom mix of grey and white and the drawers have been decoupaged in a bird and flower design, varnished and distressed. Last but not least we added crystal knobs and then covered it in gifts and reindeer, at this time of year anything that stands still for more than 10 minutes in the shop gets the same treatment, so beware!

Double wardrobe by Youngers furniture, painted in Grand Illusion Vintage paint in shutter. Not much more I can say about this really…

Christmas is coming! A small selection of loveliness but there’s a whole lot more in store – I sound like a bad American TV commercial but then I usually go a bit crazy this time of year….

This is actually an instrument of torture masquerading as a chair. I know this because of all the swearing and wailing that occurred as Colin reupholstered it 😀 I think it was worth all the pain though (but then it wasn’t me doing the job!)

Victorian side table. We love the legs on this table, they remind us of industrial plumbing! I painted them in Grand Illusions Vintage paint in Stockholm (a deep Gustavian blue) and finished the top with paint and stain for a weathered look.

Beautiful Biggie Best curtain panels. I actually sold the ones on the ladder before I could put a price on them but if you love them as much as I do, don’t despair as I can order more!

Dad’s army desk. If you are up for crawling around on the shop floor you will see there is a stamp under this desk saying ‘war dept’ and what we think is either a serial number or a date (1952?). I did contemplate going crazy with the colours on this piece and then I remembered we are actually trying to sell it! It’s easy to get carried away with a creative idea and forget that the furniture needs to go with someone’s existing decor…So it was given my favourite weathered look but spiced up with some compass knobs, Captain Mainwaring & co will never get lost again.

Black is back! I haven’t done anything in black for a while now but this petite vintage dresser was in need of some drama. I first painted it a taupe colour but it was just a bit blah, all was not lost though as it made a brilliant contrast to the black. Some industrial chic style numbers and the perfect knobs and she’s all dressed up and ready to go…

Vintage oak students desk with script wallpaper. If you’ve been paying attention you will know that I am very partial to a nice bit of oak and this was (in my opinion) just too nice to paint. The back, however, was another story…Uninspiring ply which was obviously considered the epitome of modern design in the 1930’s, not so much in the 21st century! We covered it in a wallpaper featuring calligraphy script and there is a prize for anyone who can identify the language/s because we sure as hell can’t.

A quick insight into the life of a furniture upcycler…This was part of a bedroom set from the biggest bungalow I have ever seen. The master was so huge this and a matching chest were used as bedsides! The dressing table/desk (which you can see on an earlier post) had to be cut down as it just wouldn’t fit most homes. I painted one of the chests and some matching bedsides as a set (also on a previous post) so that left this one. What do we do with this? It sat in our container for a while waiting until we got inspired. A couple of hundred cups of coffee later (and maybe a few glasses of wine) and this is what we came up with. We think it’s pretty cool but then we would wouldn’t we?

This painted Victorian pine bookcase is showcasing a lovely vintage Hornsea dinner service and some treen wooden bowls, amongst other things. The design is called Concept and I love the way they still look really contemporary.

I’m not sure of the age of this tilt top table, I suspect it may be a marriage of a Georgian base and a newer top. I have given it a subtle wash of grey paint to bring out the grain of the oak top and added a French stencil. I painted the base in Paris Grey and lightly distressed it. This would bring a bit of ooh la la to any home!

Birdcage with bird lights, someone please buy this before I take it home, I need it like I need shooting but I’m so tempted…

A Victorian mahogany chiffonier that we painted in Annie Sloan French Linen and distressed to accentuate the detailing. We kept the original hardware (to be honest it’s been there for over 100 years and it wasn’t going anywhere without a fight) and tried to keep things simple so that the piece can speak for itself.

An old pine (not sure quite how old so I’ll keep it vague) corner cupboard. I think it was originally wall mounted but it also looks good sat on the floor, which is just as well as we don’t have any walls straight enough in the shop to hang it! It has been painted in a wash of Grand Illusions Vintage paint in Zinc.

A neat little two drawer chest painted in Grand Illusions Vintage paint in Zinc and whitewashed. I sprayed the original handles white and chrome and added the stencil of a bird for a bit of added interest (and because I love anything with a bird on it!) A perfect size for the end of a bed or anywhere with limited space.

A Victorian satinwood chest of drawers with original castors and handles. This was painted in Annie Sloan French Linen and layered with Paris Grey and Old White for a chippy weathered look. Not just great for storing your woolies, I could see this in a bathroom or hall full of linen and towels, or a dining room, in fact pretty much anywhere!

Recycled vintage filing cabinet. This started life as part of an early C20th desk, we added vintage castors and cup handles and painted it in Grand Illusions Vintage paint in Stockholm. It would make a great bedside cabinet as well, I could even see it in a kitchen or bathroom for some cool extra storage.

The last of the armoires! We bought a set of four of these at auction, we didn’t have to fight too hard for them as everyone else obviously took one look and decided they were too much work. I’m not going to lie, they are eye wateringly heavy and take some painting but they were worth the effort in the end. This one has a bureau as well as shelves and a cupboard so is the heaviest of all and will be delivered if I don’t collapse first Monday evening….

This early C20th chest and matching bedsides were painted in Grand Illusions Vintage paint in a mixture of colours and then stencilled with an allium . I kept the original handles but painted them white. They also sold on Saturday but I wanted to keep a record as too many pieces are sold before we get around to taking pictures (not always because they sell straight away unfortunately we’re just not very efficient!)

Now you see it, now you don’t…Put this in the shop on Friday evening and sold it on Saturday afternoon! It is a bit gorgeous (in my totally unbiased opinion) and mostly the result of a lot of hard work and skill by Colin. So it’s back to the drawing board to come up with a replacement now.

An early C20th dressing table painted in Paris Grey. Some furniture needs a little help and some pieces are intrinsically lovely and just need their natural good looks enhanced. This was one of the latter, no need to gild a lily…

Matching tallboy/wardrobe and chest of drawers. Beautiful birds, bling knobs and cool grey and white paint work. These have now sold but we love them so much we’re posting them for posterity!

This buffet sideboard is more substantial than it looks and I have the bruises to prove it. I slipped on the shop steps while bringing it in and it ended up on top of me! I call it extreme retailing. It was supposed to be cherry wood but is obviously granite with a cherry veneer. I have painted it in three shades of grey (not fifty, totally unnecessary) paint and whitewashed it for a French country look. It is laden with more Biggie Best loveliness from our recent order.

A lovely oak cabinet that has a shaker look to it. We sanded it and diluted Paris Grey paint to create a wash so that the wood grain shows through, the drawers were washed with white paint as a contrast. You can also see a selection of our new stock, much of it from Biggie Best.

This early C20th desk started out nearly twice the size but since most of our customers don’t live in a stately home we decided to reduce it to more compact dimensions! It has been painted in Annie Sloan French Linen and the drawers have been decoupaged with a vintage map. A statement piece for any home.

This boring beech filing cabinet was painted in a mix of Annie Sloan French Linen on the outer and Grand Illusions Vintage paint on the drawers. Perfect for a funky office space or anywhere really…

French style three drawer armoire. This is a very good quality reproduction piece of solid construction (that is a euphemism for eye wateringly heavy but it is very well made!) This was painted in Grand Illusions Vintage Paint in Shutter with a contrasting interior in Pastille. It is one of four we picked up, because we like a challenge. This one sold in a day but there is another identical one on its way. We also have a variation with a bureau in the shop window, I don’t even want to think about how much it hurt getting it there but it’s a beauty.


From plain pine to perfectly painted and papered desk. This one was vintage 1990’s pine but after some Hurricane Grand Illusions Vintage Paint and Arthouse wallpaper it was transformed into 21st century cool. We moved it into the shop on Thursday and it sold on Saturday! As did the vintage collector’s drawers on top. Happy days…


A pretty little early 20th century two drawer oak veneer chest. I painted this in Antique White emulsion and added a lovely stencilled frieze of vines and birds of paradise in grey. You can also see a vintage oval mirror painted white with stencilled grey roses and an awful lot of candlesticks, but then as far as I’m concerned you can never have too many…(my house is a fire department inspector’s nightmare).


The details on this table are delicious! I’m not sure how old it is, probably not as old as it looks, maybe early 20th century. I wanted it to look as though it had been sitting in a French manoir for centuries. It has layers of grey and white and lime wax and some of the wood showing to give it a weathered look. Perfect for pretending you picked it up in a little brocante in Provence!


A lovely French style buffet sideboard. I painted this in Annie Sloan French Linen and then a top coat of Antique White emulsion so it is predominantly white with a hint of grey, then it was lightly distressed and waxed.This is a really well made, substantial sideboard from Younger’s, the range has some name like Phillippe de Fontanelle or Louis de Bouffe (I’ve forgotten but I think there’s a label somewhere!) Anyway it was obviously designed to look very sophisticated and French.


Finally got a picture of the front of the Victorian chair, see what I mean about the carved details?


This Victorian chest of drawers has been given the ‘lace’ treatment on the front of the drawers. The base colour is Annie Sloan duck egg and the lace design is in white. I guess this is a marmite piece – you either love it or you hate it! I think it looks amazing and fortunately a lot of people seem to agree with me. One thing that is in no doubt is that it is absolutely unique and will probably remain so as I rarely do the same design twice!

This is a reproduction Regency serpentine style console/side table that I have painted in Annie Sloan Country Grey (a super versatile colour that goes with nearly every other colour on the planet). I added some contemporary clock knobs just to mix it up a bit as I’m a big fan of the eclectic look. The lines of this piece are just lovely and would compliment  any interior.

You can also see the back of a painted Victorian chair which has been reupholstered with Prestigious’ Berkeley Square fabric. Pity you can’t see the front as the carving is fabulous! I’ve distressed the chair quite heavily to highlight this. I love this mix of old and new, not least because it means that antiques can sit comfortably with contemporary furniture.


More from the London hotel chain, this time a desk/side table. I think it almost has an oriental look about it. I painted it in Annie Sloan Country Grey for no particular reason other than its one of those colours that blends with anything so you could put this anywhere in the house. I added a vintage handle which seemed to suit it better than any of the contemporary knobs I tried.


This oak dresser also dates from the 1920/30’s but the design echoes back to the Georgian Pot Cupboard. It was painted in Annie Sloan French Linen (I tend to get a bit obsessed with certain colours and finishes and this paint is definitely one of those colours!). It has been lightly distressed and waxed to give it a durable finish and I added the clock knobs to give it a bit of a contemporary twist. This really has the wow factor, I know this because our customers are giving it a lot of love at the moment!


This started out life as an early C20th oak veneer bureau/bookcase but through the magic of paper and paint has become a unique designer (well designed by me) statement piece! It was painted in Annie Sloan French Linen which tones beautifully with the contemporary wallpaper by Arthouse, it also has new ceramic knobs. What’s not to love?


An early 20th century mahogany veneer tallboy, painted white and distressed. This has lovely detailing on the doors and provides really versatile storage. It’s the kind of piece that I can see suiting so many rooms, obviously bedrooms and bathrooms spring to mind but it would also look great in a hall or landing, or how about storing china and linen in a dining area? You can pack a lot of stuff into this without taking up too much room space.

Either side of it are shelving units. One is a little vintage corner unit which is meant to be wall hanging but looks quite cute sat on the floor, painted in a mix of greys and whites. The other is a waterfall style pine shelf that has been painted a mid grey then whitewashed (I know I just can’t help myself at the moment – everything looks so good with this finish – if you stood around my workshop for any length of time you’d probably get the same treatment!)


Painted bedside table, part of the set of furniture that came from the prestigious hotel chain. Hopefully we will be able to pick up a few more pieces as they are really good quality and look great painted. I used a mid grey for the body of the table and whitewashed the drawer, you may be noticing a bit of a theme going on here but I am really in love with this look at the moment…

You can also see part of a lovely vintage ladder that I stripped (I think it was previously owned by a Rastafarian as it was green and orange) and you guessed it  – whitewashed! These type of ladders are everywhere at the moment but this one is unique and I have the blisters to prove it.

On the other side is a vintage sewing machine table (complete with sewing machine). I actually got it working but unfortunately didn’t realise you have to remove the belt before putting it away, so a new one is needed to get it running again – oops. I painted it in Annie Sloan French Linen chalk paint and surprise, surprise, distressed it with some Old White. In my defence it really suits the piece…


A pair of vintage retro kitchen chairs, painted in a custom mix grey paint to match the chickens on the reupholstered seats. The background colour is a pale duck egg blue. I can see these in a country cottage kitchen but then they would look cool in a contemporary setting too. A must for chicken lovers everywhere!


This is a very well made reproduction regency style mahogany sideboard. Not one of those flimsy ones they mass produced in the 80’s.

I decided to give this a contemporary twist by painting the body in Annie Sloan country grey and doing an ombre effect on the drawers. After trying a selection of knobs and handles I realised that the original ones suited it best so I painted them too!