Play Room Make-over

The playroom is finally finished! It was the one room in the house that I was most looking forward to getting stuck into but then when I started, I just got totally and completely stuck.

I started venturing away from my original idea because I simply couldn’t get it to work, no matter how hard I tried.

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In the end, I let the room guide me and I am really pleased with the result! Although it is not really about me being pleased, I do spend a LOT of time here so I needed to be happy with it. The first priority was that my kids should love it and thankfully, they do!

You’ve seen some of my more recent additions to the room, like the tent and the dress-up trunk. But here is what I have been able to do with R1000!

Paint                     R135
Curtain Pole        R180
Fabric                   R386
Cushion                R120
Foam                    R150
Fairy Lights         R60
Total:                   R1004

Many of the things that I used here I already had: the curtains are old ones from our last house; the bed and chest of drawers I grew up with; the picture frames were laying in the storeroom unused. But even so, I love how using all these old elements and giving them new life just automatically adds something to a room.

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I found the lovely graphics free on and played around with the colours in Photoshop until it suited the scheme.

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A bit of Annie Sloan Chalk paint quickly transformed the old frames. I used the Old Violet and just adjusted the colour slightly by adding a bit of white before I painted the second and again the third frame. I think the 3 colours make it a bit more interesting!

Shop your chalk paint online here!

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My old bed was transformed into a day bed with the help of a loose cover over a piece of medium density foam and another denim loose cover that I cut to a fitted sheet. The yellow chevron cushion is from Mr Price Home – I love the pop of colour!

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This horrid dusty pink ceramic base was claimed from my parents’ attic and brought into this century with some Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Graphite.

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I used an old wire-frame shade with it and made a simple slipcover for it. Like most things in my house, I need to be able to wash it should dirty hands find their way to it!

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One of my favourite things in this room has got to be the JOY light: I used a jigsaw to cut the “joy” out of a piece of ply and painted it to match the wall colour. I then used my staple gun with u-shaped staples to secure fairy lights to it. It’s so simple but it’s fun and really does bring joy to an otherwise bland wall. Just be careful when you use the staple gun – I lost a set of lights in the process because I stapled right through it! For the how-to on this light, you’re going to have to wait for the new book!


The retro chest of drawers was destined to be painted from top to toe. But as soon as I removed the old handles and saw the beautiful light oak underneath, I decided to gently sand down the old girl. I resprayed the original coppery handles with a metallic charcoal spray paint and she not only looks brand new, but she also smells amazing after I treated her with some raw linseed oil.

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I repainted the wall 4 times before I was happy with the colour. It started off to be the wonderful warm yellow that I am so fond of, then white, then grey and finally this duck-egg which I ended up mixing myself from paint I had. Point is this: I am a professional interior designer and I seriously get it wrong sometimes! So take heart next time when you are not happy after you’ve finished a room – it happens to everyone!

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And just to show you that we live a completely normal life, this is the playroom 10 minutes after I finished the photo shoot!

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