A DARWEN woman has turned her two-up two-down home into a fantasy world where what you see is not what you get.

Gail Goodson has turned her terrace house into a country cottage using only paint, a bit of wood and a large slice of the imagination.

For Gail is an expert at the art of 'trompe d'oeil', where paintings are made to look 3-D and deceive the eye.

When she moved into her Sudell Road home, Gail was met with plain carpets and woodchip on the wall and she decided something had to be done.

"I knew I had to do something with the house. So I decided to use my house as a canvas."

Gail started practising at the Darwen Craft and Heritage Centre and took it up about 18 months ago.

Now almost everything on the wall is painted on. Three cupboards in the front room, a window in the bathroom, the net drapes behind the doors, even a grandfather clock are all painted on but look like they are real.

Perhaps the two most impressive aspects of Gail's work are the kitchen and the fireplace in the front room.

For the fireplace, Gail stripped the paper off and painted a tile effect. For the base she used a bath panel with the same effect.

In the kitchen, Gail has used old furniture to create the effect of a country cottage. I've always wanted a country cottage kitchen but money is a bit tight, so I used second hand furniture.

"I had the bottom of a dresser, so I used some tong and groove wood and painted it up so it looks like a full dresser," said Gail Even the floor as you walk out is not real, even the grout lines between tiles.

"Each one does not take me long to do and I get a real enjoyment out of it. My husband, Tom, helps me with my work." Her work has not escaped the attention of community leaders. Councillor Karimeh Foster saw Gail after a meeting of the Darwen Crafters.

She said: "When I looked in her home, it was difficult to tell what as real and what was painted on. It is a fantastic display."

Gail's work is not just confined to her home, she is currently working on an exhibition at Darwen Library next month where she will create a whole room using this paint effect.

"I have had to stop working on the house for two reasons," said Gail. "Firstly to concentrate on the exhibition work and also because I am running out of space."

The exhibition starts at Darwen Library on April 14 and will last for three weeks.