Thursday, August 6, 2009

Saving Money By Doing it Yourself: Start Small

(the two rooms pictured are rooms that I have recently re-done in this house. I will be discussing them more in depth in further posts)

There are so many small things you can do to make a big impact in your home. Things that cost you very little to no money. By starting small you will learn and once you start to accomplish small things it will give you the courage to try harder things. Before you know you will be doing things around the house that you may have normally called someone in to do.

First off, things like deep cleaning, de-cluttering and rearranging a room can often make things look brand new again. All of these things anyone can do.

A fresh coat of paint or hanging new curtains can totally change the look of a room.

Here is a list of the do it yourself things I have done over the years. Some are small things and some are not so small. Over series of posts I will be discussing how I accomplished these things.
  • painting
  • changing switchplate covers
  • putting up a new light fixture (indoor/outdoor)
  • putting up a new ceiling fan
  • refurbishing old furniture
  • sewing simple curtains
  • painting old picture frames to match a new room or new decor
  • sewing simple throw pillows
  • building an extra wide gate for an extra wide door way
  • tarred a trailer roof
  • torn up and put down carpet
  • refinished a hard wood floor
  • put down linoleum floor
  • put up a new ceiling
  • put in a wall unit/closet organizing system
  • not to mention putting together about 10 zillion pieces of furniture/toys/etc.
One of the most simple things you can do to change the entire look of a room is to paint it. If you paint yourself you are only out the cost of supplies. If you are not super picky about the color you can even find discounted paint. When my sister bought a house a couple of months ago she had to paint every room before moving in. We went to Walmart and she picked a specific color for her living room and that was mixed. Then we went to the shelf of discounted paint and found paint for every other room that was half off. This is paint that didn't come out exactly like the paint swatch when they mixed it. She saved a ton of money that way. You will find that most home stores also have a section for discounted paint. I have seen them at Home Depot and at Lowes

I like to find picture frames at yardsales for next to nothing, then you can bring them home and paint them to match the rest of your decor.

For instance the picture of Jonah below is in a 5X7 frame that was originally a shiny gold color. I have the same frame for a picture of Emeri too. In our bathroom at our old house I need them to be silver. So I spray painted them both and then rubbed in just a bit of stain, let it set for a minute then wiped it clean. Some was left behind in the crevices which toned down the super silvery color.

I have done this type of thing to picture frames many times and it always looks nice on the wall.

Another great way to get cheap picture frames is clearance!

(Sorry the below pic is at such a weird angle)

The pictures below are on my bedroom wall. The walls have paneling underneath and were painted peach and had floral borders all over the place when we moved here. I stripped down the borders and painted a nice neutral color on the walls.

I got these frames at WalMart, they were on clearance because during shuffling around at the store the white paint had been lightly scratched up. To me honestly I liked them fine just the way they were. It makes them look a little distressed which is fine with me. I paid 75cents a frame.

Then I came home and looked through the digital camera at some of the outdoor pics my hubby had taken. After I chose 4 I printed them out on regular printer paper on grayscale. I really love them on the wall and hubby loves having his art work displayed.

There are so many things you can do with paint. I have only just touched on a few. Paint is a very inexpensive way to make changes to your home and you can definitely do it yourself.

In the next post I will be talking about refurbishing old furniture pieces.

Being a Do-It-Yourselfer Can Save You Some Dough

Do you have any really cool things you have done with paint around your house? If so I would love to see pictures. Leave a comment with a link to your post.