My Collected Home

Vintage. Eclectic. Repurposed.

Rustic farmhouse style wall decor

Hi all, I didn't realise how long it's been since I posted! As you know I've recently moved to the beautiful Gold Coast. We are hosting the Commonwealth Games here next month, a huge event for the Gold Coast.  Anyway as is often the case where there are crowds of people viruses tend to to spread. Unfortunately a severe outbreak of gastro has broken out here and I was one of the unlucky ones that caught it. A whole school was shut down because of the sheer numbers of students and teachers that caught it, so that gives you some idea of the severity of it. It's taken me awhile to get back on my feet but finally I'm ready to roll!

My unit has brick walls and I love them. I've seen so many beautiful decor pieces online but they weren't in my budget at this time so I decided to make my own farmhouse wall decor. I love the farmhouse style and I felt it would look great against the rustic brick walls.  It's autumn here in Australia so I've been envisioning lovely old farmhouses with huge open fires, everyone snuggling around the fire drinking yummy hot chocolate and eating comfort food. I've stayed in a number of farmhouses over the years and some of my best memories are of my Aunt and Uncle's farm. It was a working farm with sheep and cattle and so many places to explore. Sliding down the timber ramps that the sheep went down after they were shorn was a favourite pastime until I slid down headfirst into sheep poop. I wasn't so keen after that episode!  OK now back to the farmhouse decor. Here are the supplies that I used:

1. Timber board which I already had
2. Grey and white chalk paint and brush
3. Wire bin and wire cutters
4. Faux Flowers
5. Fabric with home printed on
6. Ribbon
7. Piece of burlap
8. Glue
9. 2 small nails

The first thing I did was use the wire cutters to cut the wire from the top and bottom of the basket. You need to be careful when you do this because the wire when cut is quite sharp. You may want to use gloves. I didn't because I find it hard to work with gloves but I managed not to hurt myself.  
The timber board that I used needed to be painted so I did a dry brush using grey and white chalk paint to distress it. If you decide to do this you must make sure that only the tip of the brush has paint on it and don't use any water. That's why it's called dry brushing!  If you have too much paint wipe the excess off using a paper towel. It's a good idea to practice on a scrap piece of timber first.
Once that was dry I cut my wire to the exact size that I wanted and used 2 small nails bent over to secure it to the timber. I also did a dry brushing of grey and white on the wire. As you see from the picture it was originally black.

Once the wire was secured I added the burlap and ribbon with glue.
I felt as though it needed something else so I cut a piece of fabric that had the word home on it and glued that on.

I started filling the basket with the greenery first. Was that a mission! I fiddled and fiddled until I had it to my liking, which took forever. Finally I added the flowers in front. I haven't been able to put it on the wall as yet because I have to borrow a tool to drill holes in the brickwork. That's on my list of to do's.

That's it! It was actually  quick and easy to make, if you don't fluff around with the flowers for too long like I did. A bit of OCD coming out. 
I hope you like my rustic farmhouse decor, let me know in the comments below. Have a great week. Come and party with us at 
Vintage Charm party, Before and after Wednesday 

Last minute Valentines Day heart centrepiece

Hi friends, it has been hot here in sunny Queensland and I'm sick with the flu. I had planned this post for last week but my computer wasn't working so this week it is. Only I could get the flu in summer! No actually a few people namely my daughter and grand daughter kindly shared it with me. My daughter ended up in hospital with pneumonia even though her chest sounded clear, they took an X Ray and found she had severe pneumonia. She knew something wasn't quite right, being a nurse, so always listen to your body because doctors are not infallible. 

Anyway enough of sickness, today I'm sharing my last Valentines day DIY. The good thing about this is it can be used for any romantic dinner so even though Valentines Day will be over in a few days, romantic dinners are not.

valentines day, centrepiece

Here are the supplies I used"
1. Wire coathanger
2. Ribbon
3. Felt for white flower
4. Red flowers
5. Glue
6. Scissors
7. Container
8. Florist foam
9. Pearls
10. Material to cover foam

I started with a wire coat hanger which I bent into a heart. I had the red ribbon from a gift I received on Christmas day and used it to wrap around the wire heart. The small flowers were from a bunch that I snipped into individual flowers. I glued them on and started to make the felt flower which is easier than it looks. I'll be doing a post on felt flowers in the near future or maybe paper flowers. Anyway I cut out a template then cut out the petals from this.

Wire heart

Felt petal

Arranging petals

After I cut out all the petals I arranged them and glued them into position and let them dry. When the felt flower was fully dry I glued it onto the wire heart.

In this picture above I'm wrapping ribbon around the wire that I will put into the florist's foam.

I was looking for something to cover the foam with and pulled out 
an old tea shirt and covered it with that. 

After I'd arranged the material to my liking I simply stuck the wire into the covered foam and finished off with a large string of pearls.

So there it is, my Valentines Day Centrepiece. Or a romantic dinner for two centrepiece!  If anyone is looking for a last minute diy for a special person, give this a try. Whatever you do have a wonderful day and enjoy it with that special person. 

I like to party at these these parties:

Good news and a DIY Valentines Day project

Finally! I'm putting pen to paper so to speak! I have been out of action for awhile because I finally moved to live on the beautiful Gold Coast. I've been planning this move for a few years now and was waiting for a small unit to become available. Well it finally did! The week before Christmas! Believe me I was in no way ready, Christmas preparations were in full swing, buying presents and food and diying Christmas ornaments was what was on my mind. When I received the phone call telling me about the unit I had to go and look at it. When I first saw it I fell in love with it's surroundings. The back door leads to a meandering creek which travels to the Nerang River only a few kilometres away.There is a resident  bush turkey, a large lizard  and other fauna that I've spied so far. Being surrounded by nature and being near the beach were 2 of my priorities so it was perfect. Having internal brick walls was what I loved in the interior, but it was small. I call it my "tiny unit"! One of the other main reasons for moving was downsizing, I was finding it difficult to maintain a house and garden on my own. Here I have the best of both worlds. I'm surrounded by beautiful gardens and bush but I don't have to look after them. At my age that is a big bonus. I'm planning on doing some posts on redecorating and minor renovations to my little home. I can't wait to share them with you.

Now I'll get into my Valentines Day decorations, it's only two weeks away! Time is going too fast, I want to get off the merry-go-round and slow things down, but of course that's not possible so I'd best get on with it. I'm using things that I already had so this project cost next to nothing.

I started off with a heart shaped piece of cardboard that I cut from an old box, so no money spent there. I cut out the covering for the heart from an old gift bag so again nil dollars. I love projects like that, no cost and using something that would probably have ended up as landfill. This is what I used for the project:

1. Cardboard
2. Old gift bag
3. 2 different coloured ribbons
4. Lace
5. Glue
6. Stick on Pearls and pearl string


I did the same with the ribbon and the pearls. The pearls have a flat bottom with glue on them but I added a dab of glue to each one as well as they tend to come off too easily. Next I used my hole puncher at the top so I could thread the pearl string through. I already had the board and stuck a drawing pin in to hang my heart from.

Well that's it! You can use this decoration to hang on a door, a wall or use it as a card, writing your message on the back. If you're on a tight budget this would be perfect. I hope you all have a wonderful Valentines Day however you choose to decorate. I'd love to hear your thoughts so please feel free to comment, till next time. Please  come and see Where I Party for more inspiration

How to make quick Christmas gift tags and tree ornaments

Here I am again with another of my favourite recycle and repurposes. You know I hate waste and this post helps to deal with that. I know it's only in a small way, not on any grand scale whatsoever but I believe every little bit adds up to a big bit! So there's my philosophy for the day! Very indepth I know!

I've been doing some shopping looking at prices for Christmas cards decorations etc. and though it looks inexpensive I started adding up the prices of those little bits and pieces and it was more than I thought. My brain was on overdrive so I looked through my stash of recycled  odds and ends and decided to start with Christmas gift tags and Christmas tree ornaments. Here is a list of what I used:

. Old cards
. Cardboard from grocery boxes
. Scraps of fabric and felt
. Old bits of jewellery
. Ribbon
. Twine
. Tin can and bottle lids
. Buttons
. Hole puncher
. Glue (I used cement glue) or a hot glue gun

They were so simple to make and you can have your kids or grandkids help. It makes a great crafting morning.

Firstly I cut out a card from the cardboard and used it as a basic template. I changed a few details, cutting the edges diagonally but that was it. After I'd cut out all of my gift tags it was time to start decorating. I used my hole puncher to cut out a circle for the ribbon to go through. Then I added the decorations, and that was fun! I could have made more, it was so addictive!
For the tree decorations I used a lid from a tin can and a lid from a glass jar. I covered these in felt by tracing around the lid onto the felt then covering it front and back with glue. I used an old earring on the red and white ornament because I always lose one of my earrings and end up with one, so that little red earring was perfect! I'm so glad I decided to keep the odd ones and not throw them out. I think it added a glamorous touch to it. 

The green, red and white one above is covered in green felt and a piece cut from an old gift bag with a pearl sitting in the middle.

I thought these would be great for my granddaughter and grandson. I used buttons and scrap felt.

I had so much fun making these, my granddaughter wants to make them as well so we are setting up a date for school holidays next week. If you have cardboard boxes,which you can find in the pantry, tea, cereal etc, some bits of ribbon or twine, you can make them too. You can draw or paint designs, use stamps made from a cut potato or celery, old wrapping paper, old buttons, bits of broken jewellery, you're only limited by your imagination! 

Have a great week everyone, I have some more ideas brewing for my next post so till then stay safe and happy     

A White and gold Christmas wreath

Well Christmas is getting closer and closer and me being me leave my decorating and shopping to the last moment. It will be summer here in the southern hemisphere, hot and humid, so we'll be having Christmas day at the home of one of my daughters on the Gold Coast. We usually eat outside over a long and leisurely meal and afterwards go for a swim in the pool. So very different to celebrating Christmas in the cold weather as you do in the northern hemisphere.  

Now it's time I started to think about Christmas decorating. I won't be doing anything grand and certainly not expensive. Christmas is costly enough and I want it to be all about being together as a family, sharing lots of love and laughter, not on how things must "look". I love the time we spend together making new memories and traditions, they can never be replaced.   

I wanted to make my Christmas decor from what I already have instead of buying more. It's sad that so many people go into debt for Christmas and have to pay it off during the following year, which  takes the joy out of Christmas giving and places unnecessary stress on families. I don't want to put myself or any of my loved ones into that position. Looking through my supplies I decided to make a white and gold Christmas wreath for my front door . I wanted to put a bit of glitz and  glamour into it and I thought white and gold perfect for this. Simple but stylish.

These are the materials needed for this project:

.  Styrofoam wreath ring
. White ribbon
. Ribbon to hang wreath
.  Pearls
. White and gold twine
.  Glue
. Large gold key or similar

The first step is to start winding the ribbon around the wreath

I put a dob of glue onto the start of the ribbon and stuck it to the wreath to make it easier to wind around it and put another dob of glue at the very end. Once I'd finished winding all the ribbon around the wreath I started to wind the white and gold twine around it.

Once that was finished I applied the pearls with glue. I used a cement glue but a hot glue gun could also be used. As long it holds the pearls on. I placed them on randomly but you could put them all over and add more if you prefer. Next I tied the big gold key on with the white and gold twine. Lastly I tied a piece of cream coloured ribbon around the top of the wreath so I could hang it on my front door or as you see in the picture on the wall as part of a gallery.


There are so many ways you could make this, only limited by your imagination. I hope it's given you a bit of inspiration to try and make your own decorations, and get the kids or grandkids to join in. It's always so much fun and they love to say they helped make it! Let me know in the comments what you think. I love getting feedback and enjoy hearing from you

DIY easy felt bag to make

Today I'm going to show you how to make a toy bag out of a piece of felt measuring 23" x 18". I have a grandson who is mad about cars, he's such a boy!  He has a lot of small cars that he likes to take with him wherever he goes. As I'm sure you know travelling for an inquisitive, active 4 year old is not easy so when his family is on an outing in the car he plays with them. I'm sure most parents can relate to this. Much better than a bored child who is constantly whingeing. I'm sure those of us who have children or grandchildren can relate! You could use this bag for so many things, dolls clothes, any toys, colouring in books and pencils, the list is endless.
As Christmas is coming up I thought this would make the perfect gift. Here are the list of supplies you will need:

Finished bag

. Piece of felt
. Piece of cotton fabric or calico
. Fabric Glue (if used)
. Cotton or embroidery floss
. Needle
. Buttons
. Hessian Burlap) for handles

The first thing I did was fold the felt in half lengthways. You now have 2 sides to glue or sew or both if you want to make it extra strong. You'll be sewing one side and the bottom of the bag.

Piece of felt

Felt sewn 2 sides

This is where you would use fabric glue to bring the two sides together if you choose to use it and sew them together.

The next step is to turn the fabric in the right way. This is where I sewed a 5" x 5" piece of calico onto the felt and glued the buttons of the first initial of my grandson's first name onto it.

I meant to take a picture before I put the buttons on but it appears that I didn't take one but I'm sure you get the idea. Next I attached the handles which are from a roll of hessian (burlap) edging. I knew it would make a sturdy handle and that is what you want for children, sturdy! I glued and sewed the handles on to be on the safe side.

And that my friends is it! Very quick and very easy! Next I'm making one for one of my grandaughters, I have 8 grandchildren so there might be more requests coming up! I'm not really a sewer but if you can thread a needle and do a very basic running stitch then you can make one too!

Have a great week everyone, let me know your thoughts in the comments.

DIY Wall Hanging, a quick and easy project

Today I want to share with you a quick and easy project that I made for a Christmas gift. I can't believe we are in November already, it feels like we just had Christmas! The reality is we have only about 8 weeks left! I have 8 grandchildren that I need to buy presents for so I've had to put on my thinking cap. Their ages range from 21 down to 18 months.  I have a few members in my family that love homemade gifts especially my Ellie who is 18 because they know that a lot of love goes into making them. She has an all white bedroom and every time I visit she has  changed something. At the moment she has shells hanging on twine, so she loves decorating with natural elements.  I've been seeing blues used in autumn decor instead of the traditional autumn colours and I really love it. Maybe because blue is my favourite colour! So this is for Ellie, I hope she likes it!  OK let's start:

Supplies needed: 

. Hessian (burlap) cut to size

. A small branch

. Craft Paint

. Paintbrush

. Glue

Embroidery thread

. Pearls

. Twine 


Firstly cut your hessian to the size you require. Mine is 1 foot long x 8" wide. Next I painted my autumn leaves with blue craft paint.

The branch I used

Pearls and embroidery floss

Once I'd painted all the leaves I glued them onto the hessian. I used a waterproof glue which dries clear because I didn't want any glue to show where it wasn't meant to show. I am very messy!.  Then I applied my pearls to the hessian, again using the same glue. I already had these in my stash. They are flat bottomed and have glue already on them but I added mine as well to make sure they were well and truly stuck on!

After all the glue had dried I attached my branch to the hessian with embroidery floss in the same beautiful blue shade as my leaves.

 Once I'd sewn on all the embroidery floss I wrapped twine to each end, tied it and it was ready to hang

Here is the finished product! Quite rustic. What do you think? Do you think Ellie will like it? I'll have to wait and see, I'll let you know after Christmas.  
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