D. I. Why Not?

D. I. Why not?

There are many projects in and out of your home that are ideal to do yourself.  Perhaps not only the glamorous projects, but with guidance (like from fellow blogger Menards), it's feasible to do many "upgrades" on your own or in a simple way with some help. 


Outside, here's an uncomplicated list:

     Maybe paint just shutters and/or the trim.  It's a great way to freshen up the first impression of the house and maybe change the first impression with something totally new.

     Choose new accessories for by the door.  This works in a house, condo, apartment...how about some flowers or dried plants in the winter?  Welcome mat?  Outdoor sculpture?  (I'll leave plant recs to garden bloggers but gardening is a passion).   A bench or a stool or little table would add personality for a comparatively small expense. 

     Replacing outdoor light fixtures can also update the whole house and it's noticed all year.


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Then, look inside and here are DIY classics:

     Paint!  Kits can supply all you'd need for textured paints (glazing) or a new color will brighten up your home just with the fresh new background.  New paints are out there.  Let your supplier explain the pros and cons of the materials you consider.

     Wallpaper!! It's B-a-a-ack.  I will write another blog someday.  But it's in fashion again and it can be a DIY project if you are a good learner.

     Again:  light fixtures.  I will encourage replacing fixtures with new on your own, but don't encourage messing around with electricity.  Changing a switch to a dimmer or timer is easy.  That is not the same as rewiring or adding lights.  It might be legal (check on it first), but it is not something I recommend without a licensed electrician.  Take down a flush (flat) ceiling fixture and put up a track, chandelier, fan, or fan light for something that will completely change the way your room feels.

     Window coverings:  blinds and shades can be replaced pretty easily.  You can have them measured and installed or you can just have someone measure and you can put them up yourself.  Drapes and other fabric treatments are do-able.  Fabric stores like Hancock, JoAnn, Vogue, Calico Corners, Loomcraft and others can sell you the materials and give you advice, or perhaps sell you a completed product if you are not interested in working  "with the trade" -that's the phrase for "with a designer or architect".   We work with the vendors/fabricators and somehow are compensated, but we also share responsibility for the timeliness and quality of the work and finished product.

     Flooring:  tile (ceramic, stone, cork, vinyl), prefinished wood can all be done yourself, with the right guidance, support and skill.

      Kitchen backsplash:  This is a small(ish) project and could be lots of fun.  You can buy leftovers from top-line showrooms/suppliers, and there are lots of retail outlets for tiles.  The sky's the limit on the design aspect.  So many materials are out there.  Just check out the installation details from your seller or make designing a layout and buying materials the DIY and get a pro to install (I vote for that).

     Re-doing furniture - your own or something you might find reasonably can be refinished, repainted.

Purposely, I didn't suggest/recommend what I view as more advanced DIY projects.  These are all hobbies for skillful, patient, committed do-it-yourself experts:  cabinetmaking, reupholstery, kitchen remodeling or bath remodeling (plumbing part).    A myriad of helpers are around at showrooms and stores as well as many DIY web sites (including Bob Vila's).  Also, books abound, as crafters will attest.

If it's a huge project, and you could be earning more than the time is costing you and it's NOT fun or rewarding, perhaps it's not the right thing for you!  Hire it out.  BUT if it's fun and rewarding, that's wonderful!  That's lots more important than what you might be able to keep (or put) in the bank.






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