Under-bed storage has changed my life.
Moving on to the boat, I was forced to part ways with some of my most prized posessions: my clothes. Gulp. Now, I'm a bit of a hoarder - I still have my year 11 prom dress which I won't ever wear again. I have 8 inch heels that I most certainly cannot walk in. And I have clothes that I keep hold of "just in case" I decide I like them again one day.
So obviously, throwing things away was a little bit hard for me. In fact, I still have a wardrobe, a cupboard and a chest of drawers full of clothes at my Mum's house (sorry Mum). But for all of those extra bits and bobs like Winter coats, jumpers and scarves? I bought under bed storage.
Before we modified the bed, it just had two pull out drawers which couldn't really fit much stuff in. I politely demanded that Rob get rid of them and clear out a huge space underneath the bed. I have now managed to fit six huge boxes underneath - most of them containing clothes (obvs).
This is one of the most popular questions I get asked when talking about the boat: "But Liv... where did you put all of your clothes?!", and really, those bloody boxes have changed my life! I can't believe how much stuff I can actually fit underneath the bed. I couldn't recommend it enough, especially if, like me, you're living in a small space and you're into fashion.
I labelled mine up into categories too, because I'm anal like that.
For the best under-bed storage, I go here, or you can just buy yourself a few boxes and a sharpie from here. For tips on how to de-clutter, I find this website a huge help!
I desparately need to organise my book shelf. It's just a scrambled mess and because of this, I rarely pick a book out from it.
Bookshelf styling has been a big thing recently, and I'm constantly being reminded how untidy my own is by Pinterest and bloggers and such.
SO... I'm making it my mission to make things a little tidier around here, and hopefully that'll get me back into the swing of reading again. I've compiled a list of my must-have accessories to jazz up that bookshelf.
1. Of course, the book shelf is the most important thing. If it's something timeless and classic you want, then opt for this grand ol' thing from Furniture Plus. If you're going for something a bit more quirky, then I'm loving this leaning book shelf from Urban Outfitters.
2. I just ADORE this Spaceboy wall art and think it would look super cute on a book shelf.
3. Candle holders are always a must. Although I'd try and refrain from putting these on the shelves lower down as it might burn the shelf above. Speaking from experience here. Ahem.
4. I have TONS of magazines and I always want to keep hold of them, but they can look messy on the shelf. Having one of these storage trays is a good way of making things look a little tidier.
5. I already have a million of these pretty decorated bowls, and they always look fabulous on book shelves. You can even put sweets in them if you wish ;-)
6. A plant, of course. Make sure it's a house plant though otherwise it'll die quickly. Again... speaking from experience!
7. Finally, a GLOBE (or some other abstract orniment). I've been looking for one like this for ages, and what's more? It's miniature size so it'll fit so lovely on the book shelf!
I blame Carrie Bradshaw for trying to fool me into believing I could handle the city.
I'd imagine strutting down the cement-lined streets in my Christian Louboutins, on my way to my well-paid job at a fashion magazine and then afterwards, I'd pop out for cocktails with colleagues before inviting them back to my top-floor apartment in Soho.
The dream is always the "big city": it's where post-grads aspire to be and what we're always told about in those stupid Katherine Heigl rom coms. But the truth is, I just can't handle it.
I remember my first "proper" visit to London. I was going to Fashion Week on behalf of Look Magazine, they'd put me up in the Hilton Hotel on Park Lane, and they'd even given me some money to go shopping with. On paper, it sounds like my Carrie Bradshaw dreams were coming true... and they were, but just not in the way I'd imagined.
In reality, I couldn't wait to come home, de-clog my skin and be able to walk along at a leisurely pace without getting knocked over by shoulder-shoving. I remember being shocked because passengers on the Victoria bus didn't thank the driver as they got off. Yep, I'm THAT girl.
I don't think I ever fully appreciated my life in the countryside as much as I did until a few years ago, but then again, I don't think many people do. Too often, we associate it with boredom, sheep and wellington boots, but it's not all that way, I promise. Here are some things we all need to appreciate about the countryside:
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1. People are friendlier. Every time I go to the pub, I tend to find someone new to chat to. And *shock horror* their first point of conversation is not "so, what do you do then?". In my village, there is such a strong sense of community. All the residents have stories to tell, and they're all so proud of where they're from.
2. You can eat food that was grown pretty much next door. The veggies you ate for dinner last night were grown by the old man that lives down the road, not Waitrose. The fish you're cooking for date night was caught by your uncle. That "fresh organic produce" that city people pay a fortune for comes standard to you.
3. You're forced to take down time. You can't just "nip to Oxford Street" to get a last minute clubbing outfit at 9pm, because the shops shut at 6, and realistically, there probably isn't a Topshop for miles around anyway. Nothing is open on Sundays, you can't get phone signal, and when you order a Cosmopolitan at the bar, the response you get is: "Ey? Yawhat? Gerra pint o' bitter down ya neck". But this is all because people understand that it's more important to live your life than to work through it. A sign in my local pub says: "No we don't have WiFi. Have a conversation instead" - and how right they are!
4. People don't care about your appearance. I had a perfectly normal conversation with my neighbour yesterday whilst wearing pyjama bottoms, a top knot, and toothpaste on my chin spot. She didn't even bat an eyelid, bless her soul. You London folk judge me if I'm wearing 2013 Topshop.
5. You appreciate just how beautiful England is. Which is funny, seeing as London is the capital city. I think the countryside is where you really get to see the real England - its peace and tranquility... walking through the long grass just before the Farmer cuts it... taking a stroll along the canal... having a picnic in the middle of nowhere.
I love London, but I can never wait to get home to my countryside. Give me a pair of wellies over Louboutins every day (don't quote me on that...)