D.I.Y. FEATURE | Laura Ashley Statement Necklace

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Yes, that’s right folks…I’m back with a Laura Ashley special!

Once again, I’ve collaborated with the fabulous interiors and lifestyle brand to give you something fun and quite the show-stopper.  If you remember the ‘Make & Do‘ series i’ve done with them in the past, you’ll know I love a bit of wallpaper crafting and this DIY explores another way of using everyday decorative home items to create something creative. I mean, who would’ve thought that some floral/tropical themed wall paper and curtain tie-backs would make some statement necklace or halter neck detail for a dress, right?

Well, it’s definitely one for the brave creatives and fashionistas who like to stand out from the crowd….but hey, regardless of that, I reckon you should still have a nosey at the FULL tutorial over on the Laura Ashley Blog and maybe….just maybe, it’ll tempt all of you to try something funky! (psssst…if you do have a go, please make sure to share it on social media and include the hashtag #craftwithMolu!!)

I hope you like this one folks…..! xx

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[All Images: ©MadebyMolu]

**This post was sponsored by Laura Ashley, however all words and opinions are my own, dictated completely by my love for  DIY and styling**

D.I.Y. Feature | Laura Ashley Kitchen Makeover

MbM-Kitchen-Makeover_After 07Hello! Hope you’re first day back at work is going well or somewhat bearable!

Well, with this month being all about resolutions and makeovers, I thought I’d take this opportunity to share with you the kitchen makeover I had done last autumn, courtesy of Laura Ashley who were incredibly generous to sponsor me for on this project.

I’m not sure if I’ve ever talked about me wanting a better and brighter kitchen on here but its something I’ve been longing for, for quite some time now. While I’m super grateful for the larger-than-your-average-London kitchen, I was never a fan of the dated fittings which made the entire space look dull and dreary, particularly with just the one window we had in the one end of the room (as you’ll see from the images below). Of course, refitting and revamping the entire thing was completely out of the question for us, as a project like that would cost round about 5k or more (depending on the specs you go for) so it got me toying with the idea of a DIY alternative as a solution. We did actually paint the walls when we moved in; from a horrendous blue (what were they thinking!!) to a bright white just to help brighten up the space but even then it seemed rather lacklustre. It was clear that we just needed to do something about the horribly fitted 70-esque veneer kitchen cabinets that were sucking every ounce of day light we got!

So as you can imagine, I jumped at the chance when Laura Ashley offered to send their new range of ‘no-hassle’ furniture paint to trial it out on veneer cabinets. Funnily enough, painting the cabinets had crossed my mind briefly so the timing could not have been any more perfect!MbM-Kitchen-Makeover_BEFOREMbM-Kitchen-Makeover_WIP-strip

The entire process, while simple enough, was relatively lengthy, simply for the fact that the work had to be spread over two weeks, painting them in the evenings and on weekends. The job couldn’t be done at home because it would have disrupted our daily use of the kitchen and of course we didn’t have the space to accommodate all the doors that were dismantled so I had them brought to the studio. I could have easily tackled the entire job on my own, but I decided to rope my husband into just to help speed things up – the more hands, the better I say…much to his disappointment! ;) Anyway, the time we put into this paid off nicely and I’m delighted we have now have white cabinets that significantly help reflect more light into the space creating a much cheerful space to work in.  MbM-Kitchen-Makeover_WIP-01

If you’d like to read up more about the painting process and about the paint in itself, then you can find all the details including a load more images over on the Laura Ashley Blog. I can also tell you that after 3-4 months, we haven’t had any issues with the paint (i.e. peeling, staining or general wear n tearing) which is both brilliant and relieving! :) So yea, I hope you enjoyed this and I’ve got you thinking about their beautiful paint range. I can’t tell you how lush it is applying it on so much so I’m on the look out for more projects with the leftover paint! ;)

Happy Monday folks and hope you’re week is a good one! xx

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[Image credit: ©MadebyMolu]

**This post was sponsored by Laura Ashley, however all words and opinions are my own, influenced completely by my love for interiors, DIY and styling**

D.I.Y. FEATURE | Laura Ashley Wedding series – part 4

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Don’t you just love the versatility that you get out of wallpaper? Well, if you like to know more ways to use them, here’s how, with my final wedding installation I did for Laura Ashley. I show you how to go about creating a simple yet visually effective backdrops for your wedding, so, whether it’s for your guest book table, a photo backdrop, or behind your top table, you’d be surprised what a couple of rolls of wallpaper and props can do! Cost-effective transformations too so what’s not to like eh? :)

Hop over to the Laura Ashley blog to read more about it, and if you fancy checking the other DIYs I did for their Make & Do Wedding series. I really do hope you’ve enjoyed these and that I’ve managed to inspire you all to be a lot more savvy and creative when it comes to DIY weddings. Oh and these can apply to any occasion and not just weddings by the way! :)
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[All Images: ©MadebyMolu]

**This post was sponsored by Laura Ashley, however all words and opinions are my own, dictated completely by my love for  DIY and styling**

D.I.Y. FEATURE | Laura Ashley Wedding series – part 3

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Remember the wedding DIYs I was doing for Laura Ashley over the Summer (the table place settings and wedding love sign)? Well, here’s the third instalment for their ‘Make & Do’ wedding series, that shows you how to make fun paper pinwheel fans out of wallpaper! So, if you’re getting hitched somewhere tropical, in enviable warmer climates, then these will be a right little treat for your guests – they’re both practical and make lovely little keepsakes that they will no doubt enjoy!

You’ll find the full tutorial over on the Laura Ashley blog.  Let me know what you think and share away if you know anyone who may like this one! :) xx

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[All Images: ©MadebyMolu]

**This post was sponsored by Laura Ashley, however all words and opinions are my own, dictated completely by my love for  DIY and styling**

D.I.Y. FEATURE | Laura Ashley Wedding series – part 2

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Hey folks! I hope you’re enjoying the…..ummmm….sunshine? Seriously, where has the sun disappeared off to this week….just when we were getting used to its warm sunny rays. Anyhooo, I hope this fun DIY will still bring a bit of summery cheer to all you folk in the UK

So, my second DIY for Laura Ashley‘s ‘Make & Do’ wedding series is now up on their blog. I’m showing you how to make this fun LOVE sign for your summer wedding; whether you want to jazz up your dessert table or use as a prop for your wedding photography….the choice is really yours. To be honest, you can make this for any occasion really especially if, like me, you have a thang for all things ice creams and popsicles!!

You’ll find the full tutorial here, where I’ve even given you guys templates to work with (so even less work!!). I hope you have fun with this one and I’ll be back for more in the coming summer months so do stay tuned! Oh and if you want to take a look at the last DIY on how to make floral place settings out of wallpaper, you’ll find more meets here. Enjoy lovelies!! xx

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[All Images: ©MadebyMolu]

**This post was sponsored by Laura Ashley, however all words and opinions are my own, dictated completely by my love for  DIY and styling**

D.I.Y. FEATURE | Laura Ashley Wedding series – part 1

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I was beyond delighted when Laura Ashley asked if i’d be interested in contributing towards their fabulous ‘Make & Do’ series on their blog by introducing their first ever series of wedding DIY. tutorials…and in good Molu fashion I said “I do!” (sorry, couldn’t resist!)

The first of my wedding tutorials is on how to go about creating these pretty floral place settings out of their wallpaper (uh huh!) which I’m so excited to reveal that it’s now LIVE on their blog. So if you fancy making these, you can find the full tutorial over here. Oh and do stay tuned for more wedding DIY inspiration over the next few months and have a nosey at all the other fabulous crafty creations on there too by some other fab bloggers!

Have a wonderful week guys!!! I’ll be mid-air on my way to Washington DC when this post comes through so I will admit there won’t be a lot of action from me over the next 10days but I’ll def try and keep you posted on all the stateside shenanigans via Facebook, Twitter, etc….so come follow me there ;) xxx
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[All Images: ©MadebyMolu]

**This post was sponsored by Laura Ashley, however all words and opinions are my own, dictated completely by my love for  DIY and styling**

[D.I.Y. tutorial] Personalised hard covers for journals

MbM_DIY-TUTORIAL_JOURNAL-COVERS-mainOkay, so here’s how to make personalised hardback covers for your journals and sketchbooks, like the ones you saw in my February Styling the Seasons post a couple of weeks back where I used the Laura Ashley Blue Bird Seaspray wallpaper to spruce up some new notebooks. You don’t need to use wallpaper but if you have any left overs then perfect, otherwise any kind of pretty patterned paper will do!

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What you will need:

  1. Wallpaper scraps, wrapping paper or any kind of textured/patterned paper you have kicking about
  2. Glue or double-sided sticky tape (something strong enough to bind cards together)
  3. Scalpel or Stanley knife
  4. Spray Mount (or similar spray-on adhesive)
  5. Cutting mat (and a steel ruler!)
  6. Notebooks (anything cheep and cheerful, like the 5-pack ones you get from Muji, that you can bond together or go for a thick one)
  7. Thick card (about 2-3mm thick)

MbM_DIY-TUTORIAL_JOURNAL-COVERS-01Firstly, stick your notebooks together to make up one thick one (ideally, you want a spine that is at least 2cm thick) or go for one that’s already thick to skip this part. If you opt for putting bind a few together, then you can do so by using glue (hot glue, UHU or PVA) or double-sided sticky tape. Leave it aside to dry and place a couple of heavy books on top to help it stay in place.

In the meantime, get the wallpaper and the sheet of card and glue them together using Spray Mount. Make sure you apply a nice even coat of this so to avoid any chance of the paper peeling off over time. Put this aside for a few minutes, with some heavy books on top. Once it’s dry, measure out the exact width and length of the piece you’ll need to cover the sketchbook, using the sketchbook as a guide. I would add an extra 1mm to the edges just to be on the safe side – it’s a lot better to have the cover 1mm or two bigger than it falling short to reveal the edges of the notebook. Also, when marking out the width of the spine, (big note: make sure this is marked out on the nice patterned side of the card) allow half a mm leeway too so that when you fold along those lines it’s not sitting too tight against the book. This will prevent the hard cover from being too stiff to open once stuck down.

Once the long strip of card has been cut down, take your ruler and scalpel/stanley knife and score down along the fold lines you marked out for the spine. Remember to score on the patterned wallpaper side of card for the fold to bend the right way! (You’ll see what I mean, when you’re doing this). When you’ve scored along those two lines, gently fold along it. You’ll know if you’ve scored well if the card bends easily without creasing or damaging the paper, and you have a clean fold. :)

Check the notebooks against the cover to double-check the fitting before you proceed onto the gluing phase. If it’s all great to go, then get your glue and apply it to both the inside faces of the back and front cover, and press them tightly against the notebook. You can apply glue to the spine but I’d advise otherwise as it does give it a lot more flexibility when you open the book. Make sure you apply some heavy books on top of this while you wait for the glue to set….give it a few minutes, and voila! You’re very own personalised hardback journals! You can of course, embellish and customise it further by adding a contrasting colour to the spine or add either rubber bands or ribbons to tie your book shut. It really is up to you how you decorate it further.

What do you think? Pretty darn effective right? Well, I hop you enjoyed that and if you have any questions, just drop them in the comments section. Let me know how you get on! Happy crafting folks! xx

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[Image credit: ©MadebyMolu]

[Styling the Seasons] February, with Laura Ashley

MbM_STYLING-THE-SEASONS_feb1501So, I’m totally excited to share with you this month’s ‘Styling the Seasons’ (which has come round ever so fast…..but that may be down to leaving January’s post right up to the very last-minute!) where 14 bloggers, who regularly take part in this monthly series, were offered a fabulous opportunity to collaborate with Laura Ashley to style a few pieces from their SS15 collection.

Yep…dream come true! :)

Aaaaaand, to make things a little more fun, Laura Ashley are inviting you lovely readers to choose your favourite styled entry (hint hint), that will automatically enter you into a draw for a  chance to win a £50 gift voucher! Read on to find out more….

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The inspiration behind this month’s styling stemmed from the concept of ‘new beginnings’ and ‘creating adventures’. So with that in mind, I chose the lovely Blue Bird Seaspray Wallpaper and the Brooke Vase which I felt complimented the wallpaper beautifully.

Having recently switched careers, the swallows (symbolic of hope, strength and journey) on the wallpaper were a perfect representation of my new creative beginnings and the journey that lies ahead this year for me. It does also tie in nicely with this time of the year; with the change in seasons and the coming of spring.

As many of you know, I’m rather big into journals and sketchbooks, where I’m constantly jotting or sketching down ideas, inspiration, dreams and goals I have…even those endless list of things to do! ;) So, I decided I would style the little desk space we have in the bedroom with the chosen SS15 items to create a calm and inspiring place to sit and write at home. I also, knew I wanted to create something special out of the wallpaper, which would be both inspirational and helpful to me.

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I used the swallow-motived wallpaper to make two key pieces; a hardcover for a new journal, which I created from binding together three notebooks I had (I will be sharing a tutorial on this later!), and a cute little garland for the desk space out of the swallows I cut out. Being a small desk space, I kept the worktop quite minimal, using the Brooke Vase to hold some of my vintage rulers, along with a few other favourite items for the desk such as my twine holder from Papermash and the cute owl dish from Tiger.

The overall look is simple, clean and calming, which was exactly what I was after so I think it’s safe to say that I’m pretty pleased with how it’s all turned out despite the unconventional approach….hopefully these photos do it some justice. And I can’t wait to use my new journal already! :)

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So folks, if you’d like to see more amazing entries and obviously try your chance at winning the £50 voucher then please go hop over to Laura Ashley blog now and place your vote! You’ll find that they are spilt between two posts; part 1 and part 2, the second one is where I’m featured in……..so go go go, place your vote! :)

Also, for those of you who wish to join in on this fab monthly styling challenge, simply style a surface area in your home or studio and post a photo or two on any social media or blogging platform you’re on. Simply add the hashtag #StylingTheSeasons (preferably tag Katy and Charlotte) with your entries so that it’s easily found.

Happy styling!!! (oh and VOTING!!) :D xxxx

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[Image credit: ©MadebyMolu]

**Terms and Conditions: All entries for the Laura Ashley Styling the Seasons giveaway will be drawn at random. There will be two Laura Ashley £50 gift cards to be won, one for the giveaway on Tuesday (Part 1) the 10th of February and the other on Wednesday 11th of February (Part 2). Entries for Part One must be received by the 15th February 2015. Entries for Part Two must be received by the 16th February 2015. A winner will then be contacted via email. No prize cash alternatives will be given. The competition is only open to UK residents and you must be 18 or over to enter. There will be one entry per household.

This post was sponsored by Laura Ashley, however all words and opinions are my own, dictated completely by my love for  DIY and styling**

[Sneak peek]: Styling the Seasons

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[Image credit: ©MadebyMolu]

So, a few of us bloggers have been working on a fun and special collaboration with Laura Ashley for this month’s ‘Styling the Seasons. Unfortunately, I can’t share much right now but all will be revealed on Wednesday! Please do remember to pop back over here on the blog to find out all about it……AND there’s a chance for you lovely readers to win a £50 voucher too! Sounds good right? See you on Wednesday! xx