Yay it’s Tuesday and another feature on an utterly inspiring and down right lovely blogger, Ness from Four Cheeky Monkeys.
I have adored Ness and her interior styling from afar for oh so long, I would see her pictures reposted all over Instagram and wonder where these amazing kids rooms where coming from. Her photography brings out the beauty in her children and their rooms.
When I finally found her I couldn’t believe she was a mum of 4, a teacher, sewer, artist and had time to effortlessly style her kids rooms. Her blog is filled with helpful DIY tips on interiors, kids room styling, birthday parties and gorgeous fashion finds. I have been inspired to Ikea hack my Bekvam stool after seeing Ness’ ikea hacks and add a mini chalkboard to our dollhouse, mirroring Ness’ life size one. She also passionately supports small where she can as you can see by the gorgeous products in her rooms!
But Ness is more than that, she is a mother of 4 kids – Summer, Oceanna, Toby and Indi and such a kind hearted, beautiful soul. Early on in life she learnt how precious life was when she lost her mum at aged 16. Having also lost her father and eldest sister to cancer, this is one women who has used her life experience to shape her outlook. Never take for granted what you may have as tomorrow it may very well be gone.
As such, Ness’ kids interiors are filled with light, colour, whimsy and they are a treat for the eye and soul. I always look at her kids rooms for inspiration, as they make me smile and brighten up my world. They make me realise kids are only small for a short time, so lets make things fun and exciting for them!
So before I waffle on anymore, all I can add is that Ness is a beautiful, down to earth mama who I know will inspire you, so let’s get reading a little more about this brilliant blogger from Four Cheeky Monkeys.
Q1. Your amazing styling and DIY skills for kids rooms are second to none Ness, tell us more about how your passion for kids interiors started?
I have always loved anything to do with interiors and DIY. Even as a child I loved nothing more than tinkering in my room, moving things around or creating. I once moved my entire room into the shed, just so I could totally change things around, until it got late and dark and I realised it meant I would be sleeping outside all by myself ( I don’t think I even made it through the night).
In terms of who inspired me and where my passion came from, number one would be my mum. She was extremely artistic and very talented in everything she did. Being 1 of 14, my mum didn’t really have that much so she learnt from a young age how to be resourceful. She would just teach herself how to do things, from sewing, painting, wall papering to sculptures, you name it she did.
As for my love of DIY, I think I can thank my Dad for teaching me all about power tools. Since he had no sons, I was the one helping him out with plumbing, retic, using the jigsaw, drop-saw and of course, and helping him hang shelves with the drill when we visited on weekends.
Q2. I adore your bright and colourful kids’ rooms with their hint of vintage and a dash of fun, what would be 3 cheap and cheerful ways to update a children’s bedroom?
My number one tip would be paint! It is amazing what a new coat of paint can do to transform a dated piece of furniture. I previously only ever used paint from department stores like Bunnings, but last year I found the most amazing spray paint form a graffiti artist store. The colour range was incredible and using spray paint makes it so much quicker and easier.
Number two – upcycle. I’m a big fan of second hand sites like Gumtree. My husband and I once furnished an entire home we flipped with quality furniture (most from stores like Freedom) from Gumtree. As I love to change the kid’s rooms around, I’m always scouring Gumtree for interesting finds. And I figure, if I buy it for a bargain, I can sell it for a bargain once I’m ready for a change. So technically, it ends up costing nothing!
Number three – decals. I absolutely love using decals in the kid’s rooms because of the way it creates the look of ‘wallpaper’ for a fraction of the cost. It is amazing the way it can transform a space and if you buy quality decals, you can take them down and reuse them quite a few times.
Q3. Out of the kids rooms, which one is your favourite and why?
My favourite room in the house would have to be the girls shared room. I love this space because it is extra roomy so we always have the option of putting all three girls in there if we ever need to. The larger space also means there are numerous options for changing furniture layout.
Q4. You are an Early Childhood teacher by day, a mum of 4 beautiful kids and a blogger, any parenting or mumpreneur tips and tricks to share on how you manage “mumlife”?
Can I insert laughter as I definitely do not manage it ‘all’. I once read somewhere that you can do anything, but you can’t do everything and I think this is so true. The past few months I have been really busy with teaching that I simply haven’t had the time to devote to social media or blogging that I would like to, but I’m ok with that. If there is one thing I have learnt in life, it is that the only thing we can’t get back is time so it’s important to make it count.
Q5. What are you 5 fave small businesses who are totally rocking 2016?
Hmmm, that’s a hard one as there are so many amazing small businesses out there and I hate choosing as I don’t like to miss anyone out. So maybe I’ll share a few interior stores I love – Castle and things, absolutely love her style – if I had the budget I’d have one of everything from her site!
Little Olive and Co – one of my faves for fun and quirky kids décor, Dessin Design – she was one of the first businesses I ever followed and her vintage style artworks are still the top of my list I also really love Done by Deer – they have some very cool décor pieces for kids and I’m loving that they have recently landed on our shores. And of course Pretty Tidy Roshnee for all things storage! Oh, can I also add Michelle Carlslund and Seventy Tree for very cool prints for kids rooms. Ok, so that was 7, can I keep going?
Q6. What toys do your children keep coming back to, time and time again?
Indi – her babies, Summer – Lego, Ocea – notorious for cutting bits of paper, wool, boxes, fabric and making things and leaving a trail of mess whereever she goes, Toby – anything outdoors, football, basketball, skateboards, if it moves, if you can kick it if you can throw it, if you can ride it, he loves it!
Q7. What are three helpful tips you have to a blogger who is just starting out?
Give yourself time. When I first started blogging I had absolutely no idea about what I was doing. I have been blogging for about 18 months now, with many things I still don’t know what I’m doing but I’m always using google to try to work things out.
Get your site stats – it can take a while to build up traffic to your blog and it’s a good idea to know where the traffic is coming from and what type of posts people are looking at. Using a plugin like jet pack or google analytics can really help determine what is and isn’t working.
Back up your site: This is probably the most important, if you don’t know how to do it, it’s definitely worth paying someone to do it for you or to teach you how to do it. With technology you never know what can happen and you don’t want all those hours of hard work to be lost.
Q8. How would you describe your perfect Sunday?
Perfect Sunday would be a Summer’s day spent at the beach with nothing more to do than enjoy the sound of the waves, the warmth of the sunshine and the smell of fresh sea air.
With some seriously helpful blogger tips (I can attest to backing up your blog – a must do!!!) and some wonderful kids room tips to get you started, show some love for the utterly inspiring, bright and beautiful Ness!
Blog – Four Cheeky Monkeys
Instagram – Four Cheeky Monkeys