Making the Old Useful

I spend my life writing notes in various places and then either losing said bits of paper or forgetting what I have written where. Whether it be ‘Buy Milk’ or ‘Pay Gymnastics Fees’ a lot gets forgotten being so busy.

I found this really simple picture frame in a charity shop bargain box for £1. A lot of charity shops sell picture frames off cheap, or if you want to buy a more specific frame Dunelm and The Range have a great and cheap selection.

I decided that a chalk board would be good for the kitchen to be able to just scribble important things down in the hope I would stop forgetting the most simple tasks.

Here’s how I did it for under £5.


Take your frame apart and get rid of the glass and the print only keeping the frame and the back board.


I picked up this black matt paint from my local DIY store for £1 and a brush to use for 79p (Don’t expect to use the brush again because this paint will ruin the brush and you will be throwing it away)


Paint the back board with the black paint and use whatever colour paint you want to on the frame, I went for my good old Antique White chalk paint again. I did end up doing two coats for solid coverage depending on what colour the original frame was.


That’s basically it, put the backboard back in to the frame and pinch it all shut. Either you can put a picture mount on the back but I actually screwed in to the back of the door through the back board at the top and the bottom so it wouldn’t move around when i’m using it.



The Juice Box

If you are a follower of my Instagram channel you will already know I am well and truly on the OCD spectrum. I loathe mess, I loathe disorganisation and truly can’t stand not being able to find things.

In our house we have more technology that a post could even contain (partly due to what I do for a living) but this leaves me with the constant sight of cables charging various electricals everywhere. On top of annoying me immensely these cables get chewed by the puppy, played with by the cat and I’ve also been known to suck a few up the hoover (plugged in I might add) talk about hazards!


I searched on Ebay and various other sites for some kind of ‘charger organiser’ plenty came up, there were colourful plastic ones, holder ones that held various things up, but nothing shouted out at me ‘i’m great value and I will fit with the country chic theme of your house’. I went on to pinterest and searched various options these ideas all amalgamated in to ‘The Juice Box’ so i moved over to Ebay for my supplies.

The box was just over £11 with a fast and free delivery option: here’s the link

The multi USB charger stand was just under £10: here’s the link

You can use any paint or colour you want, I went for chalk paint in antique white as i’m pretty much obsessed with the stuff, and the writing is optional (if anyone want’s to know how I did that just ask and I can put together another blog or video).


Here is what the box looks like when it comes, there is an option to have a lid or no lid but wanting to hide it all away I went with a lid.


Measure out where the power cable needs to feed in and with a wood bit drill out until you have made a whole big enough. I know there are big drill bits that would make a much bigger hole but I wanted to keep this low cost (and realistically when would I use it again).


Once you have made your hole then it’s time to paint, I painted the whole box inside and out for a nice fresh finish but it’s up to you what you want to paint and the colour.


Next I added my text (this is totally optional) but like I mentioned earlier if you want to know how I did it just ask). This was sanded to finish hence the dust everywhere.


Attach the power cable and fix the USB tower in place with  little bit of double sided tape then add as many cables as you plan on using (as you can see for us it was rather a few).


Done an in place without a cable in sight when the box is closer. It really was so easy. If I haven’t made sense or can give you any more tips please just get in touch or leave a comment!

Enjoy and thanks for reading.



Homemade Pom Pom’s

So easy and so effective! I am probably the world biggest pom pom whore, I literally love them. On my clothes, in the house, on the pets (and my child) and now even on the Christmas tree.
I have been known to buy the fluffy pom poms but when I saw a lovely Pintrest post with wool pom poms I decided it was time to learn how to make them. There is always the option of getting a ‘pom pom maker’ which personally for me I think takes away the fun (and will set you back anything up to £10) I can honestly say you really don’t need them this is not a hard craft project at all (unless you are 5 and overtired).
All you need for this craft project is some wool (colour is your choice) some string and a pair of small sharp scissors!

Cut yourself roughly a 10 inch piece of string and slip it between your middle and ring finger.


 Start wrapping the wool around all of your fingers keeping the string out of the way.


 You want to aim to finish with about this much wool on your hand (roughly 60 times round)


 Next you want to pull the string forwards and start to tie to pull the wool together before you remove it from your hand.


 Slowly start to pull the wool up your fingers until it is free and then finish the knot.


 now tie another knot and make sure it is nice and tight so the wool doesn’t slip out.


Taking your sharp scissors start to run them up either side cutting the wool in the middle, do this as evenly as you an as it will save you time on the next step.


Once you have done both sides give the pom pom a good shake about using the string to make sure you have cut all of it apart.


 Then all you are left with is the trimming of any rouge strands to even the finished pom pom out. Tie and trim your string and you’ve got a pom pom ready for the tree



 If you have any problems jut pop me a message on instagram! @lifeinthecottage

Thanks for reading