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I’ve been long overdue a ‘house spruce’ as I’ve been letting things slide in the last year or two. There’s been a lot of stuffing things in drawers and under beds. Anyone who came to visit us would think things looked pretty streamlined and tidy, but if you just rummaged around a bit you’d find a lot of hidden chaos.

About six weeks ago I decided it was time to address this issue. I knew that when I’d streamlined my house in the past it had been hugely satisfying. But I felt I needed a little extra incentivising to get things going! So I decided to book Interior Designer Nicola Cummins to help me via Zoom.

Nicola Cummins Interior Designer.
Nicola Cummins, Interior Designer

I knew that it was a combination of decluttering/storage advice I needed with a bit of interior inspo thrown in. Luckily Nicola was up for this!

So… a couple of Zoom calls and a lot of emailing later, I cannot believe what’s been achieved!!

First up was addressing the crazy way we were storing a wide range of miscellanous items under the beds in our bedroom and the guest bedroom (think pots and pans, bathroom tiles, computers etc). Everything was brought out, sorted and various items bagged up for charity. I bought some storage boxes and voila, it looked and felt SOO much better.

Next up was tackling all the wrapping paper and second hand envelopes I was stashing in corners of rooms… between wardrobes and walls. They were pretty unsightly. Nicola suggested I invest in some vintage suitcases and use those for storage and also as a nice focal point in a room. See the photo below (on top of the wardrobe) for the finished result. I LOVE them!

Bedroom with vintage suitcases.
Vintage suitcases are an elegant storage solution

Another problem area was my office. I have a lovely mustard locker that had just becoming another dumping ground for paper work and all sorts of other crap! There was no system. Nicola came up with a number of suggestions for getting my cabinet more streamlined and organised – including getting an in tray – which has been such a game changer. Honestly I feel so much happier and more clear headed about my office now.

Mustart Made Mustard Locker.
The joy of a well organised office!

Our dining room was causing us a few problems because Jamie’s vinyl collection had got out of control, and he was starting to store his records on the floor! We had a lovely antique white chest of drawers in the lounge, but it was rather broken and unfunctional (the drawers are so stiff it takes about 3 hours to open them). It became clear when I spoke to Nicola that it was worth investing in a sideboard that could store the vinyls and other items we needed easy access to. We decided to buy a new Zara Home sideboard as the measurements were perfect for vinyls. We’re very pleased with it, and it’s so nice to have a piece of furniture that works. We’ve put the white chest of drawers in the lounge where it’s looking very pretty!

Dining room with orange ercol chair.
Happiness is furniture that is functional and beautiful
Rocking chair in mustard lounge.
I’m so happy with this new look in our lounge using our broken chest of drawers!

Another neglected bombsite zone was by the bed in the spare bedroom. It was home to Jamie’s brewing kits and his cycling gear, and it looked horrendous!

Messy side of bed.
A very neglected corner of our home!

After talking to Nicola, yet again buying a piece of furniture felt like the best way forward. We tidied up Jamie’s cycling gear, found a home for the brewing kits in the shed and bought a lovely Mustard Made locker. It’s all looking a lot prettier.

Mustard Made White Locker.
This locker makes all the difference.

To be honest I’ve just shared the highlights of the work I’ve done with Nicola in the past six weeks. There’s loads more cupboards and corners that have been transformed. And there’s lots of exciting plans in the pipeline, including painting the kitchen peach, the bathroom mint green and dreaming up a colour scheme for our bedroom.

Spending time and a bit of money on our house has felt like a hugely postive and satisfying thing to do during a time of so much uncertainty. It’s filled me with optimism and a sense of clarity. I highly recommend giving it a go. And Nicola’s words of wisdom to me were to do things in tiny steps to get started. If you just organise one shelf of one cupboard, it can start the momentum to bigger things. Good luck if you decide to go for it!

If you enjoyed this you might like to read 13 Interior Instagram Accounts To Get You Excited.

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