DIY side table for the livingroom




Spring is finally here (yeaay!) and I have put together a pretty, spring themed living room idea; to help celebrate all the wonderful things that happen during this lovely season. What gets me most excited in Spring, is seeing the fluffy bees, newborn lambs, sprouting leaves on the trees and of course the flowers!  What do you love about spring?

I’m truly loving the pastel colours and decorative patterns that I’ve selected for this moodboard.  With peach, I’ve combined mint green, pink, coral, khaki and brown tones. They look so fresh against the white background.

Most of the items for this look are plain, and to break up the blocks of colours, I have added a floral wallpaper pattern. Some people are afraid of patterns, but I just love them! Too much pattern can look chaotic, but a little bit is nice and can bring some personality into a room.  It is all about balance. If you decorate one wall with a patterned wallpaper, then you can save some pennies by just painting the remaining walls. I’m all for budgeting, whether that be cutting down on unnecessary costs or doing a bit of DIY. In my spring themed living room idea, I’ve included a side table, which you can make yourself. It’s so easy to make and you can find out how to assemble the DIY side table for the livingroom by clicking here.


DIY side table for the livingroom


All the other furniture pieces you can find on Pinterest


You can find so many ideas on the Internet to help you redecorate your home. I have posted a number of ideas on my blog, Modern Retro Living Space and Retro Livingroom Interior, where you can get tips ranging from ultra-modern to classic retro. In more ways than one, sprucing up your home provides a wonderful opportunity to showcase your creativity. There are endless how-to’s on-line and in magazines. Some of them are simple, and some require specialised equipment, such as a bandsaw, to help you create really intricate and fabulous pieces.

Firstly, it’s important to understand the use and features of a bandsaw. Screwfix, a UK-based multi-channel retailer specialising in hardware products, describes it as a tool that helps the user cut straight or irregular shaped lines meticulously. In short, having this power tool allows you to be as imaginative as you can. So when it comes to redecorating or re-purposing your home’s furniture, you can go down an unconventional route and come up with simple conversation pieces like a bandsaw side-table for the livingroom.

Choosing a Pattern

To create this avant-garde furniture, you have to start off by deciding on a pattern. You can opt for an abstract piece or even go with a mid-century side table like the one on Sugar and Cloth. After choosing, print out your preferred patterns on two 8 ½ x 14 papers. Use spray adhesive to stick these patterns on the wooden panel, and then drill four line-up holes in the waste area for the legs.

Cutting Process

Cut through the outline (including the legs for drawers). Conversely, if you opt to have drawers – start with ½ inch off the back part of the box, followed by the top four drawer slots. Do the same on the front side. Once you’ve done these, it’s time to drill 1/32nd through the front pattern lines so you’ll have a guide when sawing the drawers.

Finishing Touches

Using a bandsaw, hollow out all the sides, as well as sand the interior cavities and the inside faces (both on the front and back side). You then have to glue the front of the box back to the actual body before attaching the back part. Put the final touches on your side table project by sanding the outside crevices to ensure a smooth finish.


Have fun and I’d love to see what you make!

Emma Jayne x


About Me







Hi! My name is Emma Jayne and I love Surface Pattern , Illustration and blogging. My degree is in Surface Pattern, for which I studied at the University of Huddersfield. I got a 2:1 with honours. I’ve always had a passion for design and my previous work was heavily influenced by pattern, graphic design and illustration.

About me

Here’s a little information about me… I currently take inspiration from colour, shapes, texture, fashion, graphics, nature, interiors … actually, pretty much anything I come across which piques my interest! From childhood I have always been passionate about art, coming from a creative family. My father and grandfather both loved DIY, my mum loved fashion and interiors and my grandmother, who spent every Thursday and most weekends sewing and knitting with me. I knitted my first jumper at 8 years (it was too big and I could not get to wear it till I was about 10!).

My design BA and studio work at Dorma made good use of my drawing and colour skills. At Dorma I was involved with the whole design process, from initial concept to bulk printing. I have undertaken various freelance projects over an 10 year period, selling my designs in the UK, around Europe and in America.

I love being creative and playing around with sketches, which later, I develop on my computer. I don’t really have one particular signature style and I find that this allows me to be versatile. This flexibility is a useful attribute to have when working on briefs for different types of clients.

In my spare time, I continually search for new ideas and new inspiration; whether that would be in stationery, apparel, corporate promotional literature and web design, to interiors, and even colour themes. I am also a Pinterest addict and before I used Pinterest, I used to keep boxes full of magazine clippings and marketing material.

Things that I like are; vintage patterns & interiors, old and contemporary illustrations, typography, printed fabrics, retro wallpaper, posters, Scandinavian design, pick”n”mix sweets, collecting stamps and listening to music whilst working on my computer.

My objective is to keep up with the current trends, keep updating my skills to constantly strive to become a better designer and to hopefully inspire you through my blog.



I started my blog in 2010, when I was studying on my masters. I wanted a site that would display my development work (like an on-line sketchbook) and where I could store written thoughts and ideas. As time went by, I started blogging inspiration for my designs and updating my design artwork. Now I like to keep up with current trends and to share my passions for different aspects of design and what inspires me. I also add in the odd piece of design work, which you can see on my Etsy shop.



Altogether I have spent approximately thirteen years in education, after leaving school at 16. My qualifications, apart from the usual gained at school, include:-

Diploma L4 Graphic Design
Masters Textile Illustration
BA (Hons) Surface Pattern
PGCE Teaching
NVQ I&II Business Administration
”A” Level (x2) Art
BTEC Nat Diploma Graphics

and a few more…………….



Current – Shop owner/Freelance Designer in Design & Illustration
Deva Design – Surface Pattern Designer
IF Agency – Intern Graphic Designer
Ultimate Communications – Intern Graphic Designer
The Oldham College – Art & Maths teacher
Turner Bianca – Intern Textiles Designer
Dorma – Creative Textile Designer
R.E.D – Freelance Illustrator & Surface Pattern Designer



Halloween cake recipe






I love cake, nearly any cake, and for this week’s Foliofocus brief, we were asked to illustrate a recipe to celebrate the Fall (Autumn). For this, I decided to illustrate a family favourite cake recipe, which I used to bake with my grandmother when I was a little girl. It is a delicious, Halloween cake recipe.

Every Sunday, my sisters and I would visit my grandparents and with my grandmother, we’d bake lots of different type of cakes. One of my favourites and I’m sure my sisters would agree with me, was the black treacle parkin. It’s so yummy and I remember that I would make a huge slab and carefully take it home, wrapped in two layers of tin foil, to share with the rest of the family. It was such a treat, either eaten warm with vanilla custard or toffee flavoured ice-cream. Mmmm…

Here are some of my initial drawings. I started off by doodling in pencil, then finished off the artwork using PhotoShop. I tend to work traditionally, however this time, I wanted to create most of the illustration digitally. I thought I’d give it a go and see how I felt about creating a digital piece. As it turns out, I’m pretty happy with my final, Halloween cake recipe illustration. It can now be seen on They Draw and Cook.


Halloween cake recipe





I wanted my design to have cute, Halloween characters and I hand drew these for the main text. I kept to a softer colour scheme using pastel shades with black for contrast.

Here is my final ‘Spooky Treacle Parkin’ design. I hope you like it!




Happy Halloween!

Emma Jayne x


Inspiring folk art artist





Witch & animals

This weekend I went into Manchester to visit two different types of exhibitions. Both were situated near Piccadilly Station. I went with my dear friend Emma (yes, two of us named Emma!) who is a big fan of fine art, whereas I love pattern, illustration and prints.

The first exhibition was at the Rogue Studios and the second, was at the Manchester Print Fair (London road fire station). Comparing both exhibitions, I have to say, that I much preferred the artwork at the Manchester Print Fair, because the style of prints are more my cup of tea! This is where I bought a stunning print from Karoline Rerrie, who is an inspiring folk art artist. Her work is beautiful, has a retro feel and I could have bought so many different prints. I also bought a Christmas card too, which I may just keep for myself!

Here is just a taster of some of the work which Karoline produces.

Inspiring folk art artist


Ginger cat & flowers



Bulgarian Girl



Bulgarian Man



Folk tree & flowers



Russian Dolls



A selection of Karoline’s folk art prints



I bought one of these beauties! It’s called Arabesque Coffee Pot, which will be placed with the rest of the original prints in my hallway.


If you like Karoline’s work, then you can follow her on Facebook, Twitter and her blog.

The images I’ve used on my blog are from google. Please credit the artist or my blog if you want to use them for your own blog. Thank you kindly!


Emma Jayne x