Before and After Vintage Wall Shelf Makeover

Thank you so much for all your lovely comments about our summer cottage master bedroom makeover on Wednesday. Per and I are so happy you like the update as much as we do! 

As promised, here is a post about how I transformed the pine wall bracket.

This wall shelf has been hanging on the bedroom wall in the summer cottage for many years (long before I arrived on the scene!). Needless to say, it belongs here! But the varnish on the pine had yellowed with age and while we all love the shape, the outdated look wasn't quite in keeping with the calm style we had envisioned for the newly revamped room. 

Caveat: I am not quite sure why there's an old mattress leaning against the wall in this picture obscuring the view - but I hope you get the gist as it's the only shot I have! 

So, we took it off the wall and I carried it to my studio where I scrubbed it down with soap and water (an important step!). 

I selected Tidlös paint by Jotun Lady to match the Sandberg wallpaper (the great thing about this paint is that I didn't need to sand down the wood first - but if you are looking to carry out a similar project on a wooden item, it's important to check the requirements first).  

I applied two layers of paint using two different paint brush sizes - one fairly small (featured) and the other very small (the knobs on the drawers were so fiddly!). Afterwards, I lightly sanded the edges of the drawers to ensure they slotted back into place and could be pulled in and out freely. I've learnt this from my childhood home - I had an antique chest-of-drawers in my bedroom and would need to wiggle the drawer for about 20 minutes just to get to my socks, it used to drive me insane! 

Once the paint had dried, we hung it back on the wall using a spirit-level app on the phone (have you tried these types of apps? so handy!). 

Aside from drying time, the entire process took about 2 hours. 

And hey presto! A brand new shelf! 


I hope you like the results and feeling inspired to revamp something unloved too. 

Who knows, perhaps you'll be looking at that piece at home that you were thinking about chucking out with new eyes now? Or maybe you'll discover a tired looking item of furniture in a loppis (flea market) that no one wants this weekend and give it a fabulous revamp? If you do, I'd love to see the pictures! 

Happy Friday friends! 

Niki

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Before and After: Our Swedish Summer Cottage Bedroom Make-over

This blog post is not sponsored. However, it does include some press items that I've received in the past and present (marked with *)! Thank you for supporting the brands that make My Scandinavian Home possible. 

Two summers ago we built a tiny cabin in the garden of Per's family's summer cottage on the Bjärehalvön coast, West Sweden. We love heading up there as often as we can, but this winter we had the perfect excuse: it was time to renovate the master bedroom in the main house! There was nothing wrong with the room per se, it just hasn't been touched for several decades and needed a major freshening up. But you know me, I can't really do things by halves, and this was definitely a case of 'in for a penny, in for a pound!'

I find winter is the perfect time for decorating - do you agree? Plus, Per and I love a project. So, back in October we cracked on in the hope that the room would be ready in time for spring. And it is! I hope you like reading about the transformation today!

The walls were covered in wood chip and since I had my eye on a wallpaper I loved, the existing layers needed to be removed - no easy feat! It was a gruelling, messy job getting rid of it all - but satisfying too! Underneath, we discovered that the century-old walls were also very uneven which meant we needed to plaster over them and then cover with a base wallpaper. 


The original wood floor is lovely but the varnish had slowly yellowed over the years, so we rented a sander to file the wood down, before adding several layers of white soap wash. Neither of us had done this before and the sander was a mighty machine! We had our heart in our mouths as we worked around the room - concerned that we might accidentally burrow down and wreck a plank! 

It all worked well in the end though and this is how it looks now: 


We'd also noticed that the ceiling was coming apart at the seams, and there was no outlet for an overhead ceiling light. 


Per added panels to cover the seams - which match the panels on the ceiling in the main room of the cottage. And we also gave the ceiling, skirting boards, architraves and door a fresh lick of white paint. 

We're willing to do most jobs ourselves (sometimes with the help of YouTube) but since we value our lives (and respect Swedish law!), we called in an electrician in to re-wire the room and add an outlet in the ceiling as well as power sockets to the wall! The lamp is called REGNSKUR from IKEA. 

We were keen to give the room a traditional cottage feel with a modern touch and a hint of green to match the rest of the cottage, so we looked at samples from Swedish Sandberg wallpaper, eventually settling on Karolina green*. 

We were a bit apprehensive about putting the wallpaper up but it was surprisingly quick and easy once we got going. You definitely need to be two pair of hands for the job - and pay attention to aligning the pattern down to the millimetre with each new section so nothing goes awry! Probably good to double check if it's the right way up to (my wonderful dad once learnt this the hard way!). 


And then the fun part began: decorating the room! 

We were keen to use as much as possible from what was already there. 

The bed is the same  but I added a simple headboard (115 cm high x 180 cm wide) and then added a white linen cover. The bed linen is from HM Home and the blanket and throw are old ones from home. The rug was already there. 


The windows are quite wide (measuring 197 cm) so I picked out the Mozart extendable curtain rod from Åhlens. I had some old-ish white linen curtains hanging around in the loft which turned out to be perfect for the room. You can find similar white linen curtains here

I don't go anywhere around the cottage without my well-worn Shephard slippers


The chest-of-drawers was already in place and the chair has always been at the cottage! 

Nothing says spring to me like a bouquet of Mimosa! it brings a little sunshine to the greyest of days, don't you think?

We re-hung the vintage mirror on the wall (it had been resting on the chest-of-drawers for years so it was nice to finally put it back up!). 


We also wall mounted two sets of simple wooden hooks from Swedish store Granit (I find hooks so useful in a summer cottage - they're perfect for hanging the few outfits you have with you, plus other essentials like a dressing gown for 'morgondopps' (morning dips) and a sun hat! 


The hooks also provide a great place for other items - including one of my favourite bouquet lamp* by Le Klint and a robe from Humdakin* (bringing a touch of Danish design to Sweden!). 

In this picture you can also catch a glimpse of the new dimmer switch* and power socket* (both from Corston). The electrician also added power sockets either side of the bed. 


The pine wall shelves had yellowed with age so I repainted them in Jotun Tidlös to match the wallpaper. I might write a separate post about this. It's amazing what you can do to give old pieces a new lease of life. Would you find that of interest?

The bedside table is the original one that was already in place. 


I hope you like the results as much as we do! 

Naturally, if you look very closely our DIY renovation it isn't perfect, but that comes with the territory of carrying out a project yourself, and I wouldn't have it any other way! 

If you have any questions, please do give me a shout in the comment section below and I'd be happy to help. 

Would you like to see a few other of my room makeover from the past? Check out: 


All a labour of love! 

Do you dabble in DIY too? 

Niki

PS I am starting a 30 days of Njuta challenge on instagram stories today, come and join me! #30daysofnjuta

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A Back-to-Basic Swedish Lakeside Cottage with a Wild Bathroom

While the snow falls here in Malmö, I am aware that those of you in the Southern hemisphere are basking in warm sunshine. So, today I'm pressing the pause button on my wintery posts and taking you on a journey to a little Swedish cottage by a lake in summertime. 

The little red and white cottage near Västerås, Sweden, truly embraces a back-to-basics lifestyle - and the great outdoors is as much a part of the living space as the indoors. Life here is all about switching off and enjoying a simple summer by the lake - just you, the trees, the occasional curious moose and a book by the water. 

Ready to dream? 

The main cottage measures a mere 20 m2 (215 ft2) and comprises a charming kitchen and sitting room area.

Remarkably simple, the cottage doesn't have any running water (you need to bring it with you - which is not unusual, I have a few friends that transport their own water to their cottages, some even located miles away on an island in the archipelago). It does however, have electricity! 

The charming kitchen has open shelving to display prettier items, which a chequered curtain covers the plumbing and pots and pans. An IKEA unit provides extra storage under the window. 

A placard behind the sink bears the words: 'For those who have good friends, the simple cottage becomes a castle'. Truer words were never spoken, do you agree? 

The cottage also has a fireplace for colder days (hey, this is Sweden - you never quite know what temperatures you're going to get come summer!). 

Notice how a curtain has also been used in lieu of a cupboard door - adding to the relaxed look of the space. 

A sunroom has been added to the front of the cottage, providing a perfect spot to entertain friends while looking out over the lake. An oil lamp overhead emits a warm glow at night. 

Blue and white is a classic theme for Swedish waterside summer cottages. Here a chair, runner and bowls draw the lake indoors.  

A stone's throw from the main cottage is a smaller one-room dwelling where you'll find the bedroom. A simple chair serves as a bedside table. 

The wild 'bathroom' comes in the form of a table, mirror nailed to a tree and the lake. There is also a compost loo nearby. 

To me, this picture embodies everything I love about the Swedish approach to summer, where even the most simple daily ritual becomes an event and brings you closer to nature. The perfect antidote to daily life in the city!

A lounge chair offers a place to relax and njuta* after a 'morgondopp' (morning dip) with a coffee.

Is this your kind of summer getaway? 

If so, perhaps this cottage is for you! Check out the listing here

Would you like to see a few other back-to-basic dwellings today? Feel inspired by:  


Happy Lillördag (little saturday)!

Niki

Photography courtesy of SvensktFastighetsförmedling, with thanks
*advert for my own work

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