Hello! Everyone ok? It's Friday and half term next week so I'm smiling. I'm also high on DIY because I'm so excited to share with you a little project we've had going on here over the last month of so: the creation of a peg rail and shelf in our porch.
The porch (or you might call it a lobby or mudroom) is a small enclosed area between the front door and inner door into the our hall. It serves no purpose whatsoever other that it holds a shoe rack and some of our shoes, but the main bulk of shoes, boots, coats and scarves etc are stored in a big built in cupboard at the end of our hall, so you still have to walk through the porch to hang up your coat anyway. I would happily remove that glass wall and door tomorrow which would instantly make the whole hall bigger and brighter but that's an ongoing discussion for John and I to have.... ;-)
But the porch is the first thing you see upon opening the front door so I like it to look nice. You can see more photos here.
Anyway, before I warm to my theme too much and get out a sledgehammer, it all started after the millionth wet dog walk we endured over the endlessly rainy Easter holidays back in early April. It must have rained every day over those two weeks and I got sick of trying to find somewhere to hang our dripping wet coats so that they could dry off. I couldn't put them in the hall cupboard, because they'd make everything else damp. I needed some hooks!
Opposite the shoe rack in the porch, we have a funny glass wall, a window that looks into the garage. The idea is that it lets borrowed light into the garage but it also provides a hideous view of, well, the garage, and no-one wants to see that so I covered it up with window film three years ago when we moved in. The window film was always peeling off and looked terrible so we decided to cover over this glass wall and create somewhere to hang wet coats.
My brilliant Dad took me to the local timer merchant - that was an education, you have to take your own saw! - and we bought some wooden tongue and groove panels and then he kindly spent one Saturday building a frame then fitting the panels on top to cover up the window.
I swear, I could hear angels singing when I saw that panelling. The difference! No more peeling window film looking onto cobwebs, just a smooth wall of beautiful wood. I set about filling in the nail holes and undercoating and painting the tongue and groove panels with water-based eggshell suitable for wood.
Knowing we wanted to hang a shelf on this wall, my Dad positioned one of the horizontal batons behind the panelling at a pre-agreed height so that we could screw the shelf into that, to give it extra strength and security. (I told you he's brilliant, thanks Dad.)
Then I just needed my hooks. After hunting high and low for a simple and affordable set of peg hooks with a little shelf on top, I gave up and asked John to make me one. We bought wood and a circular baton, and a drill bit with the same diameter as the baton, and John made me a beautiful shelf. Ever the perfectionist, he is annoyed that the top of the shelf bows a little. (I didn't want brackets. Maybe I should have had brackets?) But I put a trailing plant on it and said I don't care, no-one will notice. I've deliberately left it unstained and unpainted for now, although I might change that later.
But I could not be happier with our affordable homemade solution to the dripping coat problem and of course since we made the hooks the weather has been absolutely glorious, and I haven't needed a coat, never mind a rain coat. But don't worry because I've got a few, just one or two you understand, crochet bags to hang on those pretty peg hooks, what a relief....
Shall we look at a before and after? Oh go on then, if you insist.
I hope you like it. Of course, since we boarded up the window to the garage it's dark in there and you need to switch the light on when you go in, but that's really not remotely inconvenient and a small price to pay for a beautiful panelled wall. Discussions about how and when we will remove that internal door are ongoing. I will keep you posted.