Sunday 21 February 2010

Thinking outside of the box

I love to see objects used for a function other than what they were originally designed for. I think I became interested when Baileys Home and Garden started appearing everywhere in magazines etc. You've probably their shoe lasts used as kitchen roll holders or wall-to-wall apple crate storage. RE do similar - I love their jelly mould lights and the way they display postcards in a wall-mounted carpet beater! Genius!

So we've had a very boring lightshade on our landing ever since we moved in. I've always hated it, so today we decided to 'carve a hole' in the bottom of a small enamel bucket to make a nicer one!Here are some other quirky touches around the place: a boat hook as a curtain rail....

In our last house we attached an old wooden oar to the wall going up the stairs - it made a fantastic stair rail! Unfortunately the buyers wanted it, so we had to leave it behind. Sorry, I don't even have a photo for you!
Here's a picture of the lightpull and shower switch in the bathroom...

Do you have any similar ideas to share?

I had a clearout in the shed today (after much badgering from Steve!) I think my boxes of driftwood were taking up more room than his precious power tools!
Having said that, I'm glad I did as I found lots of odd bits that I'd forgotten about - and I made this....!

Driftwood boat decoration available on Folksy. (Now SOLD)

I'm going to make a longer one next time, with more boats, and I thought if I put some vertical posts at either end, I could put a line of bunting over the top and it would frame it all nicely - what d'you think?


  1. Some fab Ideas there!! and thank you for introducing me to RE it looks just up my street!

  2. I love this post, we are quite keen on the same use, or re-use of objects. I love the idea of a wooden oar as a handrail, I use old wooden apple crates all over the place but m objected in the new house so I grow my salad leaves in them now.

    Very sweet boats, well worth the clear out.


  3. The decoration is beautiful, Kirsty! And your idea for a longer one with bunting makes me go quite giddy with excitement!!!!!
    I love your bucket lampshade... I don't think I have anything around the house being re-used in a different form.
    My driftwood boat is still very happy in his new home - currently sailing on a sea of bunting :-)
    Thank you for your lovely comment about adoption, and I shall certainly be back for a boat for his/her room ... well, most likely I'll be back before then, but at least when the little one arrives I will have an excuse ;-)
    Happy days to you,
    D x

  4. as always, I love all your pictures. I could do a post of my own like this, but I think all the things we've 'repurposed' are metal, and waiting to be shotblasted clean. one day I may carry this post on at my blog :)
    love the bucket lamp, once I saw gramophone horns as lampshades, but I dont have a link to them right now. I want one badly.

  5. The driftwood boats are lovely. A longer version with bunting would look great, looking forward to seeing it!

  6. Bloody hell Kirsty you are a design GENIUS. I Love it all I seriously do. The quirkyness of using unusual things in this way is just so much fun. Your home looks like it is full of character and beautiful boats as always. Hope you had a good half term. L x

  7. This is my first time visiting your blog and I LOVE IT!!! I live by the ocean and LOVE to collect driftwood, shells and the like. I also collect hearts and nautical stuff as I worked for 10 years on cruise ships, so expect me back soon for more eye candy :)
    Warm greetings from Mexico ~

  8. I love Baileys and RE - something vintage that can be made for a use again, with a kind of twist I guess.

    I just wish our very boring Edwardian (dark) semi could house such things so nicely - they just seem to look out of place.

    Have a lovely day,

    Nina xxx

    ps. it's chucking it down over this way today!

  9. I love your boats! I also love Baileys & RE their ideas are very inspiring!

  10. I think the bunting idea is fab. I can picture how good it will look. Go on, do it. xx

  11. Thanks for your comment Kirsty.... I love love love RE one of me fav's to shop in :o)

  12. Hi Kirsty, love your new boats. I will look out for an oar (you know Dan finds many things!)I have a question to ask about the 'a' word - catch up soon.

  13. What a tremendous ideas! So easy and clever in once! Nice work!
    Elli from Toronto.