Harley is the latest addition to the Millie’s Beach Hut family who opened on the 30th July 2016. Having shared videos and pictures of him for the very first time this weekend, I’ve been a tad overwhelmed by the fantastic response to the choice of décor and style. Despite being shortlisted for Towergate’s Beach Hut of the Year two years in a row, no matter how many beach huts I renovate and style, I’m still very, very nervous at revealing my final designs and beach hut décor choices.
Whenever I launch a beach hut, I spend time answering questions re where I sourced products. This is fantastic as I’m hugely passionate about supporting the businesses that I buy from. It takes a significant amount of time to find businesses that you love working with as well as loving their products. These are truly talented and special people!
So if you are thinking about adding some items to you own beach hut décor or inspired to decorate a room or even a summerhouse, then you’ll find everything you need to know below.
Creating Harley: Beach Hut Décor
I stumbled across Harley when having a little nosy at current beach huts for sale. A case of curiosity getting the better of me rather than pro-actively looking to source a third beach hut. I’d heard that a beach hut had been sold just a week before for £20k in Walton on the front row and wondered if the pricing had increased so significantly that the financials would no longer work using Walton-on-the-Naze as a location.
I was pleasantly surprised when I found this run down blue front row beach hut advertised purely with Boyden’s Estate Agents in Frinton-on-Sea. Advertised at £12,500 but with clearly a lot of work to do, I negotiated the cost down to £10,500 to allow funding for renovations (there would be a lot!). It took an hour to negotiation and within 24 hours, forms were signed and funding transferred.
With just two weeks until the school holidays, I was now on a mission to have him open asap – and yes, it was a ‘HE’. Harley was one of my original beach huts and having just sold him a month previously I had a head start on décor items.
Choosing Paint Colours
Earlier this month, the inspiring Cara (who you’ll know by know gives me some sound advice re sheds!) opened her show area at Gillies & MacKay. She has a gorgeous yellow beach hut in the show area and as the original Harley was yellow, it felt apt to go with the ‘Fali Straw’ that she’d used. Again Sadolin Superdec paint was my only choice!
In my previous blog re How I created Isla, I provided some tips re buying sample pots and checking that the colour chart reflects the colour you want. Do bare this in mind before you purchase.
Day Bed and Furniture
Having used a day bed in Isla, I went on the hunt for a day bed to use in Harley and make the most of his new open space.
With expensive short delivery times, I chose to use a day bed from my spare bedroom. This one was originally sourced via Groupon (and have sourced a replacement from Groupon for around £70 with mattress, excluding trundle).
I covered the day bed mattress with Cath Kidston Cavendish Rose Oilcloth which was in the most recent sale for £15 per metre (3 metres required).
Butcher’s Table – The House that Craft Built
The butcher’s table was a great find from The House That Craft Built, who not only went on the hunt for one of these but upcycled for me. They even then sourced a courier for this to be delivered to me last year.
You’ll spot some fantastic stencilling on the trays and I love the internal chopping board and trays (and it is on wheels!).
Kitchenette/Vintage Larder – Ebay
I’m a huge fan of the kitsch style (you may spot some of this reflected in our branding) and had sourced this kitchen larder from eBay. They are very hard to find at a reasonable price and I’d sourced this some months ago and popped in the garage for the right beach hut to come along.
Whilst I’ve repainted the exterior to match Harley’s style, all fixtures are original (e.g. handles).
The interior the kitchenette remains as per the original, however, I’m thinking of ideas to style and you may see a little change over the next few months once I source the right paper!
Table and Chairs – Age Concern, Wokingham
This place is such a find with a huge range of furniture both ready for you to put your stamp on them, or already painted/upcycled. As I didn’t have a huge amount of time on my hands and a front window hatch that folds inwards, I didn’t have much space to add additional seating.
The table was £20 as unpainted and each chair was £30, as they had already been painted in a gorgeous yellow and bluey/green tone. I added a coat of pink chalk paint, layered with a yellow KOBRA spray paint and a final finish of the pink chalk paint, sourced via Age Concern.
I love the retro feel of the Formica table which has small sides that can be dropped down and I left the legs unpainted.
Directors Chairs – BuyDirect 4U (Amazon)
Charles Bentley collaborated with the National Trust to develop a range of new garden furniture this year. I loved the dragonfly pattern on these director chairs sourced via Amazon.
Folding Chairs and Seat Pads – Domu Uk and BeyTug Uk (Amazon)
To add some additional seating options which can be moved down to the promenade, I added two folding wooden garden chairs with yellow seating pads for comfort.
You’ve met Sarah from Baxter and Snow, haven’t you? She makes the most wonderful items from wine boxes and the key shelf is the perfect place to store children’s’ books, pirate snap and dominoes for you to enjoy when taking a break from the beach.
I’ve featured Sarah in a previous blog which you can find here.
Furnishings – Cushions and Throws
I love a good cushion and if you have a day bed then, you need a LOT of cushions.
I’ll try to explain which cushion is from where from left to right
- White/Red flower print cushion – these are handmade by myself using Cath Kidston fabric.
- Yellow Sunshine cushion from Hesperoo (Not on the High Street). Bright, fun and yellow – a perfect fit!
- Biscuit Cushions via Nikki McWilliams. There are so many choices it was very hard to choose. My personal favourite is the large yellow custard cream cushion. YUM!
- Emoji cushion and wafer cream/biscuit cushion via Nikki McWilliams.
- Remaining cushions were handmade by myself.
The pink/raspberry throw that you’ll spot in one of the Sun Jellies Bags (see below), was from the Cath Kidston outlet shop in 2015.
China, Crockery and Children’s Tableware
As with my other huts, the crockery and cutlery has to be Cath Kidston. Whislt the kids have fun on the beach, us adults are allowed a little luxury 😉
The main plates are all from the Ditsy Mews collection but you’ll spot a Highgate enamel tin and the new Ashdown teapot. Do keep an eye out for their sales and outlet shops. The online sales tend to reduce prices two or three times before going into an outlet. I picked up the Cranham 3 tier cake stand and Ric Rac sugar pot and jug for half price in the most recent sale.
The children’s Belle and Boo melamine and cutlery has been sourced via The Retail Nurse. I’m still a sucker for the Pirate theme!
Harley’s Happy Wall
I loved creating the happy wall in Isla and thus decided to create a similar style for Harley. It has had so many great comments and well, it makes me happy. Definitely a work in progress, but some amazing items so far:
- Marnie Makes – you’ll spot two original illustrations on the happy wall. This includes the most recent addition from a seaside themed market night. Ships Ahoy! This one came with an original story which I need to frame and add to the wall. Prints are available, though originals are very hard to source – you have to be quick when they go on sale!
- Fabric Heart from Tied with Love – created in the original beach huts colours, an item from the original Harley.
- Shell heart – a gift (origin unknown)
- Wooden beach huts in a frame – Isabella & Louise created two special personalised items for our original huts. As this was where it all started, it only felt right to add to both Harley and Millie once they opened.
- Button Hoop Art by DollyDearLove – unfortunately no longer able to purchase, I love these button hoop art pieces. They certainly are always a popular item!
- Glass clock (beach hut themed) from Fused Glass by Emily – I’ve had this item in my study for some time. It seemed to fit in!
It’s always about the small finishing items in our beach huts for hire.
- Jelly Bags via Sun Jellies. A recent addition to all my beach huts, I’m in love with these bags. You’ll find Flora and Jane versions in Harley.
- Dog Biscuit Tag and Ceramic Coasters – Spotty Dog Designs. Original items from Harley, I love the style of these.
- Large whistling yellow kettle – via Amazon. Large gas stove kettles are hard to find in bright colours. A little more expensive but I always end up coming back to these and they are very hardwearing.
- Hello Sunshine hanging sign from Ellie’s Beautiful Mess.
But wait, there is more to come!
Having bought Harley, renovated and opened him within just three weeks, it was hard to get all items in time. Therefore, there are a couple of special additions that I’m yet to add to the beach hut.
These final additions are very much part of our beach hut family and are winging their way to us. Well, they are very special items and we can wait – sometimes these things take a little more time!
- Jean Jean, Moulin Roty from Betsy Boo Creations. All of our beach huts need a guard dog overnight.
- Welcome boat and boat bunting from The Little Boathouse. I know Amanda is working hard to create new items for Harley.
Looking for more Beach Hut Decor Ideas?
If I’ve missed out an item that you love in Harley, then do just drop me a comment. I’ll be more than happy to respond with details of where you can purchase.
If you are still looking for ideas for your beach hut decor, you may also want to have a look at our previous blog posts re Beach Hut Interior: How to Design and Decorate your Beach Hut and how I created my other beach huts Isla and Millie.
You’ll also find more inspiration on our Pinterest boards. Enjoy!!
You can book HARLEY directly HERE
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