Inspirational Designs from Channel 4’s Amazing Spaces

Inspirational Designs from Channel 4's Amazing SpacesSince its first episode aired in 2012, the ingenuity, creativity and passion shown in George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces has inspired and influenced a variety of DIY-ers across the country to take on their own projects. From customised sheds that float on water to converted public toilets, each of these design projects showed how a creative eye, tenacious attitude and a bit of elbow grease can get you that amazing space.

Below you’ll find a few inspirational designs from the past series of Amazing Spaces:

Cormac Seekings’s Bothy

As a finalist in 2015’s Shed Of The Year, Cormac Seekings bothy was located in a picturesque (albeit wet and windy) Scottish forest. Appealing to our love of DIY and natural materials, this shed was built using nothing but raw material from the forest, including low grade timber, windblown oak, and a natural form of varnish for its finishing touch.

Laura Clarke’s Converted Underground Toilets

In the face of increasingly growing property prices, architect Laura Clarke made the choice to buya disused underground toilet in South London for a nominal fee and convert it into a habitable home.Appearing in the very first episode of Amazing Spaces, this converted public toilet retained the gated steps descending underground but after that you’d never recognise the place. Small but perfectly formed, the amazingly light home makes the most of its space featuring lounge, bedroom, bathroom, and kitchen. Needless to say with its prime location, it has since been valued at over £200,000!

Tracy Caroline Lewis’s Owl House

Another build from 2015’s Shed Of The Year, the aesthetically pleasing and cosy Owl House overlooked coastal sand dunes and was made entirely from recycled materials – it even had a living grass roof just to make it even more eco-friendly. Cosy, with amazing vistas, and all ultra-green, this converted shed was picturesque and built for purpose.

Pete’s Star-Gazing Clifftop Retreat

Using nothing but reclaimed materials from the beach, Pete’s clifftop retreat overlooked the beautiful Norfolk coast. With a background in sculpting and using no plans or blueprints other than the ones in his head, the bohemian shed had two levels with the mezzanine upstairs having a retractable roof for star-gazing with his son.Not only that but the fixed wheels meant it was essentially classed as ‘a caravan’ so he didn’t need planning permission.

Emma And Ollie’s Mobile Cinema

Looking like a collision between a bus and a green house, this mobile cinema was originally built for the Ministry of Technology to show the latest manufacturing techniques to factories around the UK. Lovingly restored from decrepitude back to its 60s glory days, the bus was structurally sound but needed a lot of work and TLC on the essentials. These days it’s a full time business for the couple, featuring restored 1930s cinema seats together with modern projection and surround-sound to seat 24 people for maximum intimacy and uniqueness.

If you don’t have the time or energy to make your own custom build at the end of the garden, there are specialised companies such as York Timber Products who can provide a variety of made-to-order workshops, sheds, and garden offices unique to you.

*Image Courtesy of Liverpool Echo 

Homemade Coffee Scrub

Reduce food waste and make yourself the best scrub you had ever had… trust me, your body will thank you for it.

Reduce food waste and make yourself the best scrub you had ever had… trust me, your body will thank you for it.

The idea for the scrub came from my friend Kate. Some time ago I was blabbing away to her about my new shop bought scrub and she told me about her DIY version… The difference is Kate has oily skin, I have dry skin, so I took her recipe and messed around with the measurements and added a bit of coconut oil as a carrier to make it glide on to my skin more easily… the results are perfect and I absolutely love it!

Coffee is a great antioxidant and it has some wonderful anti-cellulite properties; recently it has been appearing in the ingredients list of more and more beauty products especially those designed to fight the so called “orange skin” effect. It will help tighten and tone the look of your skin as well as get rid of any dead cells.

Coconut oil has unbelievably good moisturising properties. The fact that it is solid when left alone is a big plus as it makes it quite easy to handle and yet as you gently scrub it will heat up and then become a liquid allowing you to moisturise your skin at the same time.

Himalayan salt is the purest and the healthiest of the sea salts out there. It works as a great detoxifier and it will help with removing toxins from the skin leaving it feeling refreshed and well energised.

Cinnamon has been used for years to treat various skin disorders like acne or eczema, it stimulates the blood vessels, has nourishing properties and it can help with many forms of skin irritation.

Therefor when all these ingredients are put together they create a truly powerful scrub which works like no other.

I have extremely dry skin and normally I have to be very careful as to what I use but I’ve been using this scrub for a while now, including on my face, and I have not experienced any side effects, nor any redness or discomfort of any kind. I can highly recommend this DIY wonder mixture!

Ingredients:

  • 50g coffee grounds
  • 1tbsp organic, raw coconut oil
  • 1tbsp cinnamon
  • 1tsp coarse Himalayan salt

Method:

In a bowl mix the coffee (I used the old coffee from my coffee filter machine but if that doesn’t appeal you could always use some new coffee straight from the pack), cinnamon and salt, add coconut oil and try to combine. This process isn’t easy as your coconut oil is in a solid form but as you are mixing it will break into smaller chunks and with time it will form a sort of bread crumbs… once you get there you are done.

Move into an air tight container and use as needed.

This portion size should be enough for two full body treatments.

The scrub works wonderfully. The ingredients are beauty friendly and your skin will feel amazing, I am sure of it.

Mixology & Vaping – How to Make Your Own e-Juice

Mixology is a term used to describe the art of mixing cocktail drink recipes but what about e-juice? Vaping is extremely popular and more and more people take upon themselves to try and create their own flavours of e-liquids. Will the term mixology get a revamp one day soon?

Mixology & Vaping – How to Make Your Own e-Juice Mixology is a term used to describe the art of mixing cocktail drink recipes but what about e-juice? Vaping is extremely popular and more and more people take upon themselves to try and create their own flavours of e-liquids. Will the term mixology get a revamp one day soon?If you are a vaper then the thought of mixing your own juices has most likely already crossed your mind… they are cheaper, you can create exactly what you want and you can have some fun whilst doing it.

There are two ways of getting a bespoke juice:

You can make it from scratch by mixing nicotine concentrate, Propylene Glycol (PG), Vegetable Glycerine (VG) and some combination of flavour concentrates … it can be fun and it will sure give you a lot of satisfaction, it is a fairly easy but definitely not a quick process as the juice has to steep for a while before it can be used. Steeping is akin to the fine art of wine or cheese making in so far as allowing it to mature and the flavours to develop. Creating your own e-liquids requires a lot of patience and precision… a small mistake with measurements can really cost you dearly if for example you miscalculate the nicotine volumes, so only attempt it after a solid research and good preparation on your part.

You can mix existing juices to achieve a desired flavour combination. This is much easier way of getting your dream juice when compared to making it from scratch. Mixing existing juices is much safer, it doesn’t require so much preparations and it is ready to vape within minutes, not weeks!

So how do you mix existing e-juices?

Well, the process is pretty straight forward.

  1. Select the flavours you wish to mix together.
  2. Decide how much of each flavour will go to your new juice and decide how to measure it; doing it by ml seems to work well for us.
  3. Take a fresh, clean tank aka clearomizer and start adding the required amount of each flavour in.
  4. Screw the base back up.
  5. Shake well.
  6. Let it stand for a minute or two and you are ready to vape!

Easy isn’t it?

Mixing existing juices is a perfect way of getting rid of that flavour which isn’t all that good on its own. For example we have a few bottles of black coffee, well it sounded great when we were buying it but in reality none of us really enjoys it, but when mixed with cream and chocolate, it makes for a lovely vape.

There is no limit to flavour combinations you can create as the only limitation is your imagination but to get you started and to give you some ideas what might go well with what you might want to have a look at this easy guide how to make the most popular vaping cocktails created by VIP Electronic Cigarette.

Mixology & Vaping – How to Make Your Own e-Juice Mixology is a term used to describe the art of mixing cocktail drink recipes but what about e-juice? Vaping is extremely popular and more and more people take upon themselves to try and create their own flavours of e-liquids. Will the term mixology get a revamp one day soon?I am not a drinker myself but looking at this flavours I quite fancy an e-juice strawberry mojito to be honest 🙂

Have you ever considered mixing your own e-juices?

* This is a collaborative post.

Homemade Blueberry Ice Lollies

My Homemade Blueberry Ice LolliesHot weather and high temperatures very often call for a cold treat being somewhere within easy reach. Yes, of course we can pop to the store and simply purchase a selection of ice-creams but what about making them from scratch?

And no, you don’t have to own an ice cream making machine to be able to make your own ice cream… well if I can call my ice lollies ice cream… I guess they are sort of icy and creamy 🙂

Anyway, lately I am experimenting with frozen desserts a little bit. I have already shared with you my papaya & orange ice lolly, which were just pure blended fruit with natural juice – a super extra healthy option… today’s blueberry lollies aren’t as forgiving but still I would dare to claim they are healthier than most shop bought ice creams.

So what will you need?

Well, ingredients wise you need:

  • 500ml pot of natural fat free yogurt
  • 400g tin of light condensed milk
  • 800g blueberries

To add to this you will need a blender, ice lollies mould and well… a freezer… surprise, surprise…

Method:

Wash and towel dry a little your berries.

Pour the yogurt and condensed milk into the blender; add blueberries and blend.

You can either blend all the berries or keep some back and add them into your finished mixture later on – I added some whole berries into our lollies but I will blend them all in the future. The whole berries help keep the ice lollies frozen for a bit longer so they aren’t defrosting in a jiffy. If that is not a problem for you as you eat quickly then you might as well skip the whole barriers part and simple wiz them all into a lovely “smoothie” ready for freezing.

Once all the fruit is blended and you have a smooth mixture, simply pour your mixture into the ice lollies moulds and then pop them into the freezer.

Allow for at least four hours of freezing time… then dig in… or lick on 😉

Homemade Blueberry Ice LolliesHomemade Blueberry Ice LollyDo you make your own ice lollies?

What are your favourite flavours or combinations?