Be careful what you wish for...

Reading back on my New Year message at the start of 2020 I was talking about my desire for more time to do what I love - to create.


And then the pandemic hit us all! 


I started the year with a month in majestic New Zealand and ended my trip in lockdown for a further three weeks.


I came back to the UK in April to summer weather and then joined the rest of the country in lockdown.


I, along with everyone else not working on the front line or in Government, suddenly had that rarest of commodities as an adult - time on our hands.


It was heartening to hear families laughing and playing together in their gardens, to hear birdsong without the regular interruption of sirens, to have clearer air to breathe with fewer cars on the roads and planes overhead. It was like someone had pressed the pause button on our lives, and we were given the opportunity to take a step back, and to just be. 


I don't need to elaborate on the destruction this virus has inflicted on our World, we are all painfully aware of that.


Instead I choose to focus on the silver linings. That fathers have enjoyed time spent with their children, have enjoyed helping cook dinner, and are now opting to work from home more often, rather than the grind of the daily commute. 

Parents and children have grown vegetables, and created havens in their gardens, window boxes, and balconies, to allow wildlife to flourish.

People have changed careers, followed different pathways, been more entrepreneurial, adapted their business to meet need when their existing business was struggling. 

Some have up-sticks and moved from city to country.

People have come together to support our front line workers in any way they can - even if it is just to clap and bang our saucepans with wooden spoons to show our gratitude and appreciation.


They say time is a healer. Time to pause and reflect on our lives has certainly been the saviour of many.


But perhaps most importantly, the restrictions that have been imposed on all of us, have, in a sense, brought us closer. We have chosen to talk rather than text, to face-time or have video calls so that we can see our friends, family, and loved ones. We have recongnised how vital it is for us to be with people - to talk, laugh, touch, hug, kiss. And that these simple gestures, that cost nothing, hold far, far more value, than any material possession we own. 

I hope that we all remember that in the years ahead, and no longer take the simple things for granted. 


Let's all look forward with hope - for a healthy, happy, and prosperous New Year, and time spent enjoying the company of our friends, family, and loved ones. 




December 2020

New items for your Home

Bring calm to your space with furniture and cushions in heritage colours

Leaf Garland Stencil Table

Good things come in threes. Small, medium and large side tables in pale French Grey & Linen.

Natural Awning Stripe Cushions

Bring timeless appeal to your home with these cushions in soft, natural shades of cream, beige and mink.

Ornate Chalk White Mirror

Reflecting the beauty of your home this stunning mirror features ornately carved flowers and leaves.

Pair of Small Cushions

Awning Stripe Natural Cotton & Linen

This lovely pair of small cushions will bring timeless appeal in this awning stripe fabric in soft, natural shades of cream, beige and mink. 

Latest News

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We regularly update our online Shop with new items of refurbished furniture, soft furnishings, decorations, artwork, personalised cards and gifts.


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Bespoke Upcycling Service

Do you have a refurbishment project that you lack the time and/or experience to do yourself?


We offer a bespoke Upcycling and Refurbishing Service - the contact form can be found below

Seek & Find

Is there a certain something you have been looking for but just can't find? For a moderate fee we will endeavour to source it for you.


"You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream." 

                                                                                                   C.S. Lewis


Another year ended, and a new one just begun. In fact, a new decade has just begun and I have set my goals for the year ahead but also need to make new 5-year and 10-year goals.


As we enter 2020 this is the third year of House & Garden Shop and time to develop and grow the business. I still have lots of plans of what I want to do - more unique furniture renovations, paintings, children's furniture, garden accessories and repurposed garden furniture. I'd like more time in each day but instead I will have to be more creative with my time!


I look forward to sharing my dreams with you all through the furniture I refurbish and hope you will be excited and delighted with what is on offer in the days and weeks ahead.


With so much to do it's time to put down the laptop and pick up the paintbrush! Please keep coming back to see what's new at and follow us on Instagram #houseandgardenshop


Please contact me at if you would like to view any of the items for sale.


Wishing you all peace, love and laughter in the New Year ahead xx


Martene xx




Why I do what I do


I love a bargain and am sometimes guilty of buying something I don't need, simply because it has been so magnificantly reduced! But they are always of good quality and worth much more than I paid for them. And whether I strictly "need" them or not, I will love them, use them and wear them.

However, I do not agree with buying one ... or many items, simply because they are cheap and "throw away". Too often these items of clothing lose their shape or start falling apart after the first wash and so "throw away" is invariably the reality.


Like clothes, any furniture that is mass produced and cheaply made will often have a short life span. Once it has been assembled it can rarely be dismantled and reassembled successfully.


Not so, lovely solid items of furniture made of good quality materials and created by craftsmen. And that is the reality of the items of furniture I'm working with. The only negative is that the darkness of the wood doesn't fit well in the light filled interiors we now desire, and so these gorgeous, well made items of furniture are often disregarded and may well end up on landfill - negatively impacting on our environment.


So I buy these discarded items /donated items of furniture and sand them, paint them, wax them and give them a whole new lease of life so they will once again, be loved and cherished by their new owner. 


When you are buying an item of furniture from House & Garden Shop you are buying something with history, that is unique, and that has been refurbished with passion, creativity, vision and a desire for a safe and healthy planet for our future generations.


Happy shopping xx



Our address:

House & Garden Shop

Queens Road


Kent BR3 4JN

Tel: 07810 443354


Or please use our Contact Us form.


Schreiber Tallboy Chest of Drawers painted in Pale Linen


"My beautiful set of drawers from House & Garden Shop fits in the alcove of the lounge in my little cottage perfectly. 

I love the drawer linings - very pretty."


Carole - October 2020

A beautiful cabinet! I am looking forward to using it for my art equipment. 

Martene was very lovely, friendly and helpful.


Nina, April 2020


I wanted to thank you for the beautiful decoupage wine table and the stencilled chest of drawers I purchased from you. They are so pretty. They have been painted and decorated so well. 

It was a pleasure dealing with you Martene and I know where to come when I need another piece. Thank you.


Mary, November 2018


I wanted to say how much I'm in love with the cabinet! It's in the hallway outside our bathroom and couldn't be more beautiful or fit more perfectly. It will become the new home to our towels.


Every time I pass it, it makes me happy, and I remember what a pleasure it was purchasing from you.


Absolutely delighted, thanks again Martene.


Catherine, April 2018

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