Do you like to try your hand at a bit of DIY? It’s amazing how many things we end up paying for other people to do for us when we could handle them perfectly well by ourselves. Fixing up your own home is fun and it’s really satisfying to be able to sit back and think “I made that!” Although you should always prepare carefully and seek advice where possible, many home DIY projects are easier than they look, so what are you waiting for?
Revamp your old wooden furniture
Do you have wooden furniture in your home that just looks tired? Unless it’s well looked after, wood loses its spirit after a while, and sadly this often leads to it being thrown out when simply giving it a new finish could bring it back to life. Simply sand off the old finish and you’ll be ready to go. You could paint it in a bright colour that compliments your décor, or add a touch of metallic paint for a more glamorous look. Wood stains are easy to use and can give old wood a rich, vivid colour that makes it look like new again. You can also use coloured waxes to get just the shade you want whilst creating a smooth, shining surface that will protect the wood against future damage.
Install window shutters
Why stick with bulky curtains that cut out lots of light even when they’re open, when you could fit stylish new DIY shutters in their place? There are styles available to suit most shapes of window and although they don’t require a lot of work to fix up, they can dramatically change the look of your home. Shutters are easy to paint so you can change the colour of them quickly and cheaply whenever you want to redecorate. They add to the security of your home and they can be particularly helpful if you have toddlers or pets who like to chew on or pull the curtains.
Make a rag rug
If you find it difficult to heft big pieces of wood around or climb about on ladders, there are still ways that you can get involved in DIY. Making a rag rug is easy to do and you can even get your children involved in it. You will need a piece of hessian cloth to use as backing and you may find it easier to work with pliers, though many people just use their hands. Simply cut small strips of cloth from old clothes, curtains or similar items and weave them into the cloth, then repeat the process so that the colourful pieces of cloth build up and the hessian is no longer visible. You can make these rugs in many shape, colour or pattern you want, to suit your home.
Revive your old sofa
Are you tired of your saggy old sofa but not sure you can afford a new one? The pieces of foam used to stuff sofas can be purchased very cheaply online, and it’s easy to add more, or replace the old stuffing entirely, so that your sofa feels firm again. You might also consider re-covering it so that it looks bright and fresh. Any sturdy fabric will do for this but it’s advisable to find one that’s easy to clean. Put zips in the covers you make so that you can easily take them on and off to put them in the washing machine.
Build a bird box
If you’re enjoying working on your own home, why not make somebody else a home and keep t in your garden? With songbird populations in decline, bird boxes are a big help. They’re simple to put together but there are a few things you should keep in mind. First, give the box a sloping roof so the rain slides off it. Second, make sure it’s weatherproof. Third, make sure that hole for going in and out of it is no more than an inch in diameter – big enough for the birds but small enough to keep out predators. Finally, position it somewhere that’s not too exposed but where it’ difficult for cats to wait in ambush.
Projects like this are a great way for you to polish up your DIY skills and do something creative at the same time. They’re fun to do and everybody in the family can get involved. Getting to grips with DIY will really make you feel that your home belongs to you, when you know that a lot of the great things about it are a product of your own hard work.