Saturday, September 11, 2010

Painting the linen cupboard - a Housewife's Tale

I've always been a procrastinator and whilst reading or watching TV are good ways to not do what you're meant to, my speciality is starting other small projects. I'm still painting the sleepout but in the meantime the linen cupboard had been bugging me because it was such a mess.

You know how it starts off well but then the kids pull a sheet or towel out and with it 3 more. It's much too difficult to fold up neatly, so it gets shoved back in. Meanwhile, Hubby has been generously helping with the washing. He wants to get things put away with a minimum of fuss so puts things where they'll fit regardless of whether they are towels, sheets or blankets. Soon you open up the cupboard and a mess greets your eyes but it's too overwhelming to put right, so you shove things where they'll fit too.

One weekend I decided that I'd had enough. I was going to pull everything out and refold it and cull the excess. This is what it looked like as I took it out and stacked it to the side. I'm being brave and showing you things as they really are in my house. No stomach-turning perfection here.

Then I thought, what if I made it prettier so that I'd want to keep it clean. The rest of the house might be a mess but if my cupboards are tidy when I open them, it gives me such a little thrill in my stomach and then I can pretend I'm a good housekeeper. It's reverse psychology - we all know people who's houses are perfect...except for those hidden places they don't want you to see. I figure if people happen to open my cupboards and see them neat, (because lets face it that happens all the time, doesn't it) then maybe they would think I am really a neat person and the current state of the house is just a temporary hiccup. That's what I tell myself anyway.

The linen cupboards are nice, in a vintagey way with wooden boards and old doors. What a shame they are painted in 3 different ugly shades of cream and brown. I think they must of used up the rest of their paint tins in here.

I wanted to make it more like something you'd see in a Cath Kidston picture so I decided to paint the walls blue and the shelves white.

What's that?? I'm meant to be painting the sleepout? But I'm just cleaning the shelves. Oh, how did that paintbrush get in my hand? It's only a small job... it won't take long, just a couple of hours. I promise! Don't knock over the piles of linen stacked there. Yes, I know it's been two days now, but I might as well finish. Yes, I'm nearly done.

There. that looks so much better.

 The doors are still cream. I'd love to paint them white then fill in the squares with wallpaper or scrapbooking paper, but I should quit while I'm ahead. For the moment. Get back to the sleepout.

Although the pantry really needs a good cleanout, don't you think?


  1. OMG Esther I know EXACTLY what you mean... I have slightly different "other tasks" that I get distracted by but I recognise clearly the similiar pattern of behaviour... It made me smile while reading... I also think you did a great job of your linen cupboard... Lovely to read another post :))) Love u! :)))

  2. Oh Esther I found a site I thought you might like - she does up old furniture in her own style etc... anyway her blog is

    Catch up soon... xo

  3. Hi Esther .. Love your linen cupboard and the story going with it.... You know it maybe just because it's Spring and the birds are singing the the sun is shining.... I know I have this great 'Oh what a beautiful morning' feeling and I am getting stuck into yard and house OR more real, seeing all the things I want to do in the Yard and house :-) .. that means that it will get done one day.


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Get to know me

  • I love the smell of cinnamon and vanilla.
  • My favourite flowers are daisies.
  • My favourite trees are pine trees.
  • I always like to have the bickie jar full and a cake on the cake stand. I know...not that healthy, but so good to look at.
  • Autumn is my favourite month, although I do wish we had more of a change of colours up here in Queensland.
  • I love Anne of Green Gables and Laura Ingalls Wilder. They started my love affair with "old-fashioned" stuff.
  • I'm a boots and jeans kind of girl, but also love vintage skirts and dresses.
  • I like sewing and am in love with quilts at the moment.
  • I love reading. (I have a weakness for archeological thrillers and historical romances, but not Mills and Boon-type ones.)
  • I love old houses with character. No new estate houses for me. (Sorry Rosie.)
  • I love vintage/cottage/farmhouse decorating and pretty pinks and blues, with a splash of red for colour.
  • Polka dots can make me sigh with delight.
  • I have 4 chooks. They are MY pets. Another tick on my dream-come-true chart.
  • I don't eat dessert much any more. I'm not dieting, I just don't want it. (Does that mean I'm growing up if I say no to an icecream cone?)
  • I'll still always say yes to chocolate though!
  • I like to sit on the front stairs in the sun, to drink my morning cup of tea, while I contemplate what to do in the garden.
  • I've got the gardening bug again recently. It comes and goes with the weather. I'm envisioning cottage flowers in pink, blue and white to go with my green picket fence.