We’ve recently decorated our hall. It’s been completely replastered. With new tiles in the hall. New carpet on the stairs and landing. And now it is a blank canvas. The walls are cosy mocha – almost the same colour as the drying plaster had been – that warm pinky beige.
So now to decide what to hang on the walls. Mr R would be happy with nothing. No nails destroying his precious beautifully smooth plaster. But that won’t do. What a wonderful opportunity to express something of ourselves in this entrance to our home.
Take my wall of stars. I love it because each piece tells a story. It all started with the large decorative wooden star. When I was working at Asda Living Gateshead before Christmas as an active seller, this was my favourite item in our Christmas range. One Saturday, I put some batteries in it, switched it on and let the star work its magic. Which it did. We sold so many that day. When I was making announcements on the microphone, I was genuinely enthusiastic about it, because I wanted one and imagined that everyone else would too. People came up to me having seen one in someone else’s basket, wanting to know where they could get their hands on one. Other colleagues couldn’t wait to finish their shift to make sure that they got hold of one before they were all sold out.
So we had it up on the wall in the living room all through Christmas. We bought the string of matching white distressed wooden stars to match. We left them up through January. I couldn’t bring myself to take them down. And then I wondered if I really had to. We have hearts at Christmas and we have hearts all year round. What’s to stop us having stars up all year round too?
The chunky wooden star has a story too. I was involved in a Community Christmas Fair at a local project – GWK Woodshed – that works with the long term unemployed, young people and those from disadvantaged backgrounds, sourcing and collecting a range of waste and surplus timber products and turning them into functional saleable products. Beautiful functional saleable products. One item that caught my eye on the day was the pallet Christmas tree. I don’t know why. I just fell in love with it. So the pallet tree stood in the corner of my living room over Christmas, until it was chopped up for firewood and the star from the top was all that remained.
The frame was a present. I’d asked for vintage frames for my birthday. This was exactly what I had in mind. My daughter-in-law is amazing at upcycling and picked up this frame which had an image on that she wasn’t so keen on. Not to be deterred, she bought it and cleaned the image off with nail varnish remover. As simple as that. I would never think of that, would you? I found a picture I loved – well, less the picture, more the message…..’Shine Like Stars’. Because that’s an incredible motto for life, isn’t it? – that we should all be encouraged to shine like stars in the darkness and the darker the night, the brighter the stars.
And finally the little hanging sign – bought in one of those lovely little gift shop/tea shop combos that are springing up all over the place. ‘Reach for the stars’. I couldn’t resist. Not because I’m an S Club 7 fan, but because I had sent off a short story that day for a competition and title of that story was ‘Reach for the stars’. It felt like a sign.
So that’s the story behind my wall of stars. I’m not worried if you think it’s odd that I have stars up on my wall all year round. I love that my wall has a story. I love that my home expresses something of me. Something of my family. Something of my life. Everything that we choose to wear or have in our homes should remind us of something or someone. Every wall should tell a story.