Archives for category: Just because


Hey Maker's card.

Sweet potato stamp.

There’s quite a little creative community thriving here in our far north coast town of Murwillumbah. There’s been a real influx of young city tree-changers in the five years since I’ve been here.

Last night a new creative cooperative, Hey Maker, run by young mums, opened its first pop-up workshop here in town. Local farmers and business owners donated all the vegies for the craft activities and the cheese and biccies for the grown ups.

I didn’t photograph the event because I didn’t think to at the time. I just thought we were going for afternoon drinks at a friend’s studio and then arrived to find it was an ‘event’. But I did bring the girls handiwork home.


I’ve been getting a hard time from some work colleagues about my blogging. They can’t understand how a woman, who claims to be SO run off her feet, has time for such frivolous pursuits. “BAH,” I say to them!

I LOVE seeing other people’s homes. I’ve taken so much inspiration from the homes of others in my  own reno endeavours. I love sticky beaking into other people’s homes and I figure that other people must feel the same. I’m so excited about the developments here that I can’t help but want to show them off.

The other thing I’m terribly excited about is that we’ve managed to create such profound changes and improvements to our space for so little money. I’ve mentioned before that our building quote was $24,000. So far it looks like we’re pretty much on budget. We’ll do our own painting, of course.

On the weekend I was reading SMH’s Domain and came across yet another exorbitantly expensive home beautification story. It seems the average renovation spend for projects worthy of publication in Domain is about $200,000. OUCH! Last weekend’s story was about a family home that was purchased for $1.4 million and then torn down and replaced with a brand new million dollar home – except that it didn’t look very ‘homey’ to me. Everything was very ‘tasteful’ but was more than a tad ‘precious’. Of course, these people commissioned interior designers and decorators. Personally, I can’t think of anything more abhorrent than handing over the interior of my living space to a complete stranger.

So, I’m loving this world of blogging that allows us a glimpse into the possibilities that everyday people with good taste, imagination and a limited budget can achieve. And for the most part, it’s always the people with limited budgets that create the most interesting spaces. So, like Mel from Bungalow Bliss, go op-shopping! Start looking out for cheap box frames and  frame your children’s art. Hang it on the walls. In your LINING ROOM! Dare to recover grandma’s old lounge by yourself! Do whatever it takes to avoid creating a home that looks like a Domayne interiors catalogue. Life’s too short to live with a bland interior!

Over the last few weeks I’ve discovered this blogging world and it’s really quite addictive. Some of my faves are listed below:

Bungalow Bliss combines Mel’s home renovations, expert op-shopping, and design. A joy to look at. She also happens to be the most prolific “commenter” here on ‘Rachael’s extremely eventually bit by bit reno’. Obviously a discerning reader! Haha.

Housegoeshome is another fave. It is full of funny observations about life. Alana House used to edit famous women’s magazines until recently when she decided to be a stay-at-home mum. Now she has chooks and a messy kitchen. She doesn’t take herself seriously in the slightest and has a quirky take on life. She also posts heaps of recipes. And sometimes even posts about her ex career, giving her readers a glimpse into the world of magazine editors.

Craftmumship, a crafty little site by Lorelei is chock full of AMAZING craft projects and other family friendly creative  pursuits. I went to school with Lorelei and we haven’t seen each other for about 25 years but we’ve reconnected through the information super highway and I’m hoping that we meet up in person one of these days. She’s also just recently made a tree change so I imagine there might be some fun posts about settling into new home/decorating etc.

Finally, I must mention Fun and VJs. When I first decided that I might look into blogging about my home, I googled “Queenslander home renovations” and found this blog. It’s really comprehensive and I love watching the progress on the ‘Sow’s Ear’.

Check them out! Hope you enjoy! x

Now that I have a blog and a few followers and I’m feelin’ the lurve from the blogging world, I’ve decided to start a regular post about things other than the reno… just because I can. And this category shalt be named hereafter, “Just because…”.

Today I came across these photos of Christmas morn somewhere back in the early to mid 70s. I was struck by the modest pile of presents but how excited we were with such meagre offerings. SO unlike Christmas for our children who are indulged with everything. Seems I was pretty happy with bed sheets as one of my major pressies. You can’t play with bed sheets but I look suitably chuffed. Just a wee reminder that Christmas doesn’t have to be an orgy of consumerism. Or maybe I’m just jealous that my childhood Christmases never were? Yes, that could be it!