-Decorating – Rustic Chic on a Budget

rustic chic on a budgetDSC_0203DSC_0196DSC_0236www.jessicasarahdotcom.comDSC_0189DSC_0185DSC_0182


Due to the fact we have moved so frequently our houses have been hugely varied. In the last few years we have lived in an ugly besser brick house, a tiny quirky apartment in England, a polished 5 star pad in Cairns and now we are living in a shack-like house on the North East coast of Tasmania, Bridport.

One thing I love to do- particularly now we have a family is create a home wherever we are. Having small children can limit décor choices- who would have a white suede couch with children that can smear chocolate all over  possibly the most valuable item in a house in under 3 seconds?

These are my top tips for turning a house into a home without breaking the budget-

Currently our home is taking on a beach side theme crossed with a bit of cosy chic and a pinch of art house flair. So yes it incorporates alot….

* Consider what the house is going to lend itself to if its not your permanent dwelling!!. Work with the flaws- Our house is on the rougher side, timber floors and a not so flattering ice blue painted throughout… however it’s workable having chosen a more rustic theme.

* Think big- Invest in larger wall art canvases/mirrors/pieces rather than those that are small and tend to get lost. If you are unable to hang pieces, larger canvases can be propped against the wall. This look is often seen in many an interior decorating book. If you are on a tight budget or love to get creative buy canvas’s and scour the internet for easy geometric paintings to inspire and replicate.

*Work with your standout pieces. You have a stand out chair or an awesome wine rack? Work with those and add touches of the same colours throughout. You have nothing that screams “Look at me!!”- try painting a chair a bright shade that you love.

*Be creative with storage- Use the unusual to store the usual. Our wine rack is usually packed with wooden trains as opposed to wine…. (Much to husband’s horror)

*Add texture- If you love a cosy chic look, pile knitted blankets together and layer throws in different textures over one another (This is a great idea if you have little ones as opposed to just ruining your couch- you can just wash your throws…). Texture can be added by creating nooks with objects varying in materials- glass, wire and wood.

*Use the usual, unusually… -Have a vintage coat, a special dress or scarves that are exceptionally coloured? Use as a feature- A beautiful dress on an ornate coat hanger hanging in the bedroom can look fantastic. Mannequins make great feature pieces in a home- It’s like having a small shop window to dress…

*Remember lighting- Lighting can vary a home’s feel immensely. Cover any naked bulbs ASAP!!! Paper lanterns are a cheap alternative to expensive light shades. Choose white to create more space. Or mismatch colours to create an eclectic touch.

*Style luxe with less- I like to combine a more expensive item such as the wine rack (pictured) with a rustic pallet table my husband created, or teaming an antique Turkish vase next to a vintage suitcase.

*Less is more- If you’re anything like me you possibly have a lot of decorating items. Put away what isn’t working and keep living space clean.

*Use a colour continuously- As mentioned before work a colour throughout the main living areas but don’t be afraid to use something bright. This season I have chosen neon yellow. Surprisingly it works well with rustic style furniture.

*Kitchen looking bland- Colour block with your kitchen bits and pieces. Kitchen appliances are a bit special these days with all their colours and artistic shapes and really deserve a spot in the public eye.

*Remove ugly condiment containers. Replace tea, coffee, sugar and anything else that is frequently out on display with jars of choice. I have a thing for inexpensive plain glass containers at the minute.

*Be open to change- I change the décor a lot. If it’s not working change it.

*Above all have fun.



Text and images provided by http://www.jessicasarahdotcom.com- not to be reproduced without the author’s consent.


The not so practical hat stand….

DSC_0929For quite some time I have been contemplating a fairly mundane, practical purchase. I wanted no other than a hat stand. Or perhaps some may call it a hat rack or a coat stand, however for today’s post I will call it a “hat stand”. I wanted my “hat stand” to be beach-ey, white and that classic hat/coat stand shape.

Today I found it. I was in what appeared to be a beautiful but seemingly overpriced boutique that had 40% off storewide. Hmmm I spot a hat stand that ticked all the boxes. Even better the 40% off pushed the hat stand into reasonable even cheap cost territory. “I think I might get this, we need it” I say to my husband. I buy it and it easily fits in the car breaking down into three neat parts (clearly it was meant to be- such a practical buy in so many ways).

We get home after a four hour drive. I am not fussed about getting the suitcases out of the car although I am fussed about getting the new hat stand out. My husband reads my mind. In comes the hat stand.

“Why don’t you put it in the laundry?” my husband suggests. “Oh my god, no way” I think to myself- “My new hatstand is a feature and is not to be put in the laundry”. “I could put it in the bedroom but who would see it in there?…no I will put it in the kitchen/dining area”… “Yes, that way guests can hang their jacket up” I think to myself. I end up finding the perfect spot. It looks really nice. It really compliments the space. I am just loving the hat stand.

“Are you going to put your coats on it” my husband asks. “Yes, but only the ones that suit”. Hmm this is now bordering into a not so practical purchase. I look in my closet “Black satin trench- no way … that does not suit my seaside theme.. remotely, Black leather biker jacket absolutely not, hmmmm what am I actually going to put on this hat stand ???”.

I know what I will put on it, another impractical purchase.
A never worn (by me anyway) vintage beige fur jacket…. now that does work! I knew I bought that jacket for a reason.

I look around the room and note other impractical yet on first impression practical purchases. Firstly a large wine rack with nothing in it, a vintage high chair that is unsafe yet very stylish, an embossed leather guitar case with no guitar actually inside it, an empty 1970’s empty suitcase….oh and a chair for display purchases only.

On the positive side- the rooms looks rather fabulous. However, guests please be aware- only fur coats to be hung on hat stand. Oh and don’t sit on that chair and don’t pop your baby in the fabulously stylish vintage high chair either. But apart from that … come in and relax I really am easy going.

text and images provided by http://www.jessicasarahdotcom.com

Home…….creating meaningful space


Home is where the heart is, and for me creating a meaningful space is  just as important as its aesthetic qualities. I love constantly recreating areas , “collages”  that reflect the going on’s of the people that live there- us.

For this look I have combined classic white wooden shelving against a more rustic look wine rack. Twine wrapped glass bottles pull the look together with personal pieces to create a warm inviting atmosphere. Pop of colour comes from an on trend lampshade featuring this seasons striped look, further adding to the effect is stacked design books creating subtle stripes of colour. Personal memento’s such as the “photo booth” photos, antique collectables, vases and bowls picked up from overseas travels, an heirloom favourite toy and one off art pieces add a sense of home. Original artworks that reflects our interests occupy the walls with a “floating” ukulele ready to be played when the mood strikes!!!  


Fashionable Flags……


Type British Décor into your search engine and you will be greeted by a bazillion images of every item imaginable covered in the much coveted Union Jack. Personally although the trend has been around for awhile and I am not ashamed to admit I am still partial to it. It works well on many levels it can be arty, funky and frankly pretty darn stylish.

In contrast type Australian Décor into your search engine and there isn’t a lot to look at infact I think it gave me an image of a giant pair of rubber flip flops, no not arty, funky or remotely stylish. I thought about other flags that were attractive such as the Canadian flag, perhaps they do décor that I had just missed…no just a small amount of cup cake toppers with their maple leaf and some low key canvas prints.

I don’t know why but the union jack has mass appeal whether is stemmed from Ginger Spice in her sequinned boob tube Union Jack number is anyone’s guess. Again this is a trend that seeps into fashion, I recently bought a union jack jumper or sweater for you Canadians :-), Its not the newest thing in fashion but again I have a soft spot for this trend.

I guess I wish I was English and I am not, however my husband luckily is….well half and he came with an English passport !! I am hoping that perhaps this will entitle me to reside in England for longer than my 2 year now well expired visa. I can just see it now…. A whole house decked out in Union Jack Décor…

Here are 3 of my favourite pieces from less to luxe……


Starting at the less price point is your cult classic- the union jack cushion- This one is for Etsy  retailing at $16.05 Australian dollars  and it is sent all the way from fashionable France.

Commode with British Flag

   I found this at “RG The Shop Library” titled “Commode with British Flag”, priced on the luxe side of things from $1,450.00

smegOh and if you are ever to get excited about a fridge then at least make it a SMEG. I love this and you can view it on SMEG’s website, www.smeg.com, oh and FYI they also do it in an Australian Flag version, I kid you not.

Images provided by www.ronamag.co, R.G The Shop Library, Etsy & tumbler.com

Interior motives….

from Iheartshabbychic.blogspot.com

Interior Design or perhaps more modestly, DIY Interior Decorating or even humbly Home Decorating is in fact a highly becoming  hobby for a large percentage of the population. I would imagine it is mostly women making up this percentage, however I could be wrong but I am doubtful. It appears women of their late 20’s although more frequently early 30’s and beyond seem to be completely addicted to this trend. It seems to combine fashion and décor into one.

I never imagined myself crossing over into a love of linen at 30 and abandoning a love of overpriced fabulous fashion . Well this hobby seem to blur fashion and living into one.Not only do I choose to wear my new Aztec printed tights but I can also rest my patterned legs on a matching Aztec throw, I know… Its a sinister trend and I have not been the only one cast under its spell. I find a bazillion blogs, websites and Facebook pages dedicated to the art of  well… decorating.

However it’s not the timeless decorating of the past.  I can clearly remember my own mother decking out the house in ruffled three tiered chiffon drapes on any window or glass surface or buying a leather couch with outrageous stud detailing. Its something far more involved and far more changeable (the ruffled chiffon curtains were around at least 10 years). I believe for this group of people (myself included), who I am sure have some kind of name that I haven’t heard of… are completely obsessed by.

This kind of decorating in labour some, tiring and tedious although greatly rewarding (and way better than actually cleaning the house). The addict or home decorator scours design shops, second hand stores, fabric centres, auctions, online stores, EBay, garage sales even other people homes at a push for items to create the perfect setting, the right ambience, the perfect palette, the right impression, Oh I could go on.

This hobby is not exclusively for the rich, well it could be… however it appeals greatly to us middle class masses for its appeal lays in finding fabulous pieces at a great price. This is not to say that the decorator/designer/homemaker/addict is a cheap skate. Oh no they will find away to find that perfect piece at a fraction of the price and boy do they research…. A fabulous blog writer recently searched high and low for a deer head for her perfectly stylish dwelling and wow did she find her followers some great deer heads for less than $50 dollars, I know… I was excited too…I didn’t even want a deer head until I knew that I could get one for that price and then I thought for that price I could buy 2…… or even 3.

Text provided by http://www.jessicasarahdotcom.com & Images provided by iheartshabbychicdecor.blogspot.com