Olives Room & Renting.
Olives room is currently one of my favourite in the house, despite being the smallest its bursting with colour, fun and character (it also probably helps that its been a great way to encourage Olive to go down at night)
I have been meaning to post about Olives room for a while now but I had also started writing a blog post about renting our home, I figured why not combine them both. I have grown more and more conscious of the fact that there isn’t a great deal of people I follow that openly talk about renting. Now we don’t hide the fact that our home is rented and I have mentioned frequently in any Q & As because I am often asked about it, but having said that the only reason it isn’t discussed more openly by me is that quite frankly I don’t feel as though our home isn’t ours. For us its not just a house, this house has seen me and Daniel grow into adults, its seen a wedding and the birth of our 2 babies. So a ‘home’ is exactly what it is, its a house thats very well lived in and shows signs everywhere of the family life we lead.
Me & Daniel were just 20 & 22 when we made the decision to move in together, I was about to enter my 2nd year of University and was faced with the choice of renting a house in Loughborough where I was studying or renting a home with my boyfriend of 6 years at the time whom I was certain would be my forever partner. It was a no brainer, we knew it was the next step for us so we moved in together and I had easy access to the main route to Uni so made the commute each morning. As young, content & happy people we didn’t think to much of the future, we didn’t look that far ahead as I had at least 3 more years of studying as I wanted to be a teacher at the time so knew that us trying to live together whilst I studied would be a good thing for us. It absolutely was the right thing, I don’t regret it and it cemented us as a couple and gave us the independence we needed to grow together, who knows without it we may not even be married today.
Did it mean we unknowingly landed ourselves in a renting rut? Yes. Has it prevented us from being able to save money quickly? Also yes. But we did make a decision to get married and have children as time waits for nobody, and spending a good 2-3 years back at our parents house for us to save a deposit was not an option for us. Everyone does things in different orders, the stereotypical stages that once were perhaps saught after are no more and I am so happy with the way our lives have panned out together. We are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel, and for the first time ever I can confidently say that our dream of being property owners are in sight, it may be in 2 years time but we once thought this day would never come.
I am sharing this for a few reasons, one being that I had a nagging feeling that was telling me to open up about this. I often share interior inspiration and are greeted with such lovely comments about our ‘home’ and its only recently as we get more serious about becoming home owners that its occurred to me how it may have an impact on other renters. You can still be a renter and love interiors, you can still decorate within reason and with permission to create a space which feels like yours and although you and I don’t have to explain that I wouldn’t want any renters like me to feel that pressure I was once feeling when seeing other peoples homes.
I have also been sent a few messages more recently regarding how I feel about decorating, as we don’t own the house are we ‘wasting our time’ or ‘spending unnecessary money’? etc These questions are totally valid, we are all different and our idea of what makes a house a home can also be incredibly different from one person to the next. For me its a feeling, the way each room in my house makes me feel means something. It also reflects our style, creativity and jobs too. Daniels a joiner and loves to design and build furniture, I have always been a huge lover of interior design and love being in a creative job which means we both see a blank canvas and instantly want to paint it. That may not be the case for some and that is perfectly fine too, using accessories to make a house feel homely may be a better option for some.
The changes we have made in our home haven’t been major, 95% of it has just been adding paint. The small amount of changes we have made include taking out a gas fire, laying some wood flooring downstairs, taking down an unsafe large shed in the garden and wrapping the kitchen cupboard doors in vinyl to modernise them all of which were done for as little cost as possible, using friends in the trade or Daniel being able to do it himself.
Paint plays a huge factor for us, we have painted each room as time has gone on and ‘decorated’ by changing curtains/blinds and then adding our furniture, in the meantime storing any accessories that were left here into the loft to bring them back out when we leave. So although it appears that we decorate often, if you packed each room away you would be left with only a small amount of changes and also very little expense, especially when divided into the months or years we have been here and its felt like ours.
I guess I wanted to share my insight and opinions, because they may offer a little relief to other renters or perhaps inspire a renter to ask questions to their landlord. I am so aware at the moment of many large accounts that I have followed for along time taking their feeds down an interior root, naturally our feeds change as we do and renovation projects, buying new homes and decorating as our little ones grow older is bound to happen but as a renter does it put a bigger pressure on us to feel less of an adult because we don’t own our home? I know its made me feel uncomfortable at times and as though I am less relatable because perhaps I am perceived as less ‘grown up’ Sounds silly, as I am a 30 year old wife and mum of 2, with what I would say is a fair amount of life experience.
There is a great Interior account on instagram called ‘@grillodesigns’ Medina (the lady behind the account) is a renter not too far away from me and she has created a beautiful home through design, she has started a series of visits to other rented properties on Instagram and uses the hashtag #howirent to share the journey with us. Its so refreshing to see rented properties in this light, I would highly recommend following along if you’re a renter or not. But without further ado I will share some finer details around Olives new bedroom, including where things are from etc.
Disclaimer: Olives room was part of a Paid partnership with Valspar paint, in which I was gifted paint. I was also paid for 3 Instagram posts but this blog post has no relation to this partnership and any items within the room that were gifted will be stated.
There are 2 items that inspired Olives room, both were purchased on our last holiday in Cornwall. I would say we are pretty obsessed with Cornwall, we have little touches around the house that remind us of our times there and they mean a lot to us. We picked up the ‘Tassel garland’ and the Jellycat official ‘Octopus’ separately and in different shops but without realising it the colours matched and I said I would use them when we wanted to give Olive a big girl bedroom. We were approached by Valspar Paint earlier in the year as we had started to think about Olive transitioning into a bed rather than a cot and this prompted us to create our Cornwall inspired haven. Some of olives accessories we already had, but half have been purchased since deciding to decorate, so although I will try my best to link it all some may be old and unavailable.
Links (some links are Affiliate)
The paint (gifted) shade- Oceans Reflection by Valspar Paint UK. Code X107R203D
Mustard Cushions & shelving- Ikea
Tassel bunting- Meri Meri (Found an Amazon link for the exact one, NOT aff)
Neon light & rainbow light (on window sill) - Lights 4 Fun. (Gifted)
Canopy- Amazon (Linked similar)
Pink Rug- Rice
Rainbow hanging (attached to the basket)- Betty Dream Gifts
‘O’ knitted cushion- Vanarag (Gifted years ago)
Rainbow cushion- Design 44
Cactus lampshade- Tkmaxx (Linked Similar)
Moneybox- Mamas & Papas.
Big soft bunny- Maileg (linked similar)
Crown (on elephant head) and matching wand- Bow beaus