There hasn't been as much sewing going on as I had planned, but there have been lots of other things. Post-move, sorting and tidying and de-cluttering. Selling furniture we don't need any more on the Gumtree. Buying different, replacement furniture (mostly also on the Gumtree). Tracking down other bits and pieces we need for the house, like a rug.
[Can I just say, it is really hard to find a nice, reasonably priced rug in Australia. There are cheap polypropylene ones which smell toxic, or gorgeous expensive Loom ones that cost $4000, and not much in between. I would like a soft, wool rug which costs about $500 and is not incredibly ugly, which doesn't seem too much to ask, but except for the range at Ikea and Freedom there isn't much to choose from. If you look at US websites there seem to be lots that fit the bill, but then shipping is prohibitive. If someone entrepreneurial could notice this gap in the market and start selling nice, reasonably priced rugs I'd be very grateful]
Anyway, we are slowly getting there with the house, and my goal is to have it all tidied up and the spare room set up as a guest room (instead of a horrible pile of junk) before Christmas. Which, scarily, is not really very far away.
One project I was happy to tick of the list was painting these little wooden chairs. The small yellow one I picked up off the side of the road, and the bigger one came with a little school desk that I bought for Ali a couple of years ago. There were two chairs with the desk, one was in good condition but this one was a bit damaged, so they've been waiting patiently to be fixed up.
Up until recently I had never really painted furniture, but a few of the pieces of second hand furniture we've bought have needed sanding and painting, and with the help of the electric sander and some helpful websites I've been getting better at it. The wooden legs and supports of these chairs were in good condition, but the ply seats and backs were splintering and flaking in places so I sanded off the yellowy varnish and then patched up the ply with Plastibond. Then I primed and painted the plywood, and finally finished the wooden legs with a satin varnish (left over from when I sanded back the desk).
Both chairs are stamped with the old NSW Department of Education logo, I think the smaller one must have been for preschool and the bigger one for primary. It's so good to have them out of the shed and in useable condition, and to get one thing off the "to do" list.
I loved these videos on Vimeo, one about an old Japanese farmhouse in Kamakura and one about a man who makes stools with his feet - it was the pride he takes in his work that touched me. [via Pacing the Panic Room]