What's not to love about Do-It-Yourself (DIY) projects??? You get to choose something that's exactly to your tastes, everything from the material type, shape, colour, style, texture and budget is selected by you. At the same time, you create a one-off piece that is fantastically unique and, compared to ready-made items, you'll save a lot of money by doing your own labour. Mentally, there are benefits to DIYs too as you get to take a much-needed break from Netflix, focus on what's right in front of you, and feel a deep sense of pride and satisfaction when your project is completed.
There are plenty of great reasons to pick up the tools and get creating; whether you are looking to make your home more efficient, learn some new skills or challenge your ability, you are looking for fun, need to make-over your home or yard or just wanting to warm up with some simple projects to boost your confidence and skills around bigger DIY initiatives, this is the page for you.
We've collected a range of DIY projects that are quick, easy and suitable for beginners (including kids). Read through and see what takes your fancy!
Transform regular glass jars into stunning lights that can be placed in and around your garden or your deck, even as a decorative glow at the dinner table.
Wrap some yarn or twine around a jar, paint it, and peel the yarn away once it’s dry: you’ll be left with a gorgeous luminary for tea lights or candles.
• Glass Jars of any size (even washed-out pasta or sauce jars will do). Make sure they are clean and dry after scrubbing off any labels
• Spray paint
• Drop sheets or newspaper to make a protective screen for surfaces
• Tea light candles or battery run LED strings
1. Wrap the string end around the middle of the jar tightly and tie it in place, leaving a generous tail. Wind the roll of string around in any way you like, has high or low as you like, crisscrossing up and down. You can use as little of as much of the string as you like. When you like what you see, tie the end of the string to the tail you left, making sure it's secure and tight. Cut the ends nice and short and neat.
2. Make sure you have a protected space to work and that the jars are okay to rest there while they dry (which might take some time).
3. Turn your jars upside down and give them an even coat of paint all over. You will repeat this step to get a thicker coverage so don't feel as though you have to douse the jar straight away, which will cause the paint to pool and run. Leave the coat to dry.
Repeat two to three more times so you get a good thick even coat all around.
4. When the last coat of paint is dry cut the string in one place with scissors and unwind.
5. Place a candle or LEDs into the jar for a soft and decorative glow.
NOTE: These don't have any waterproofing so you'll need to store them out of the rain.
There is nothing more breathtaking than giant woven string lights. They can showcase a garden or give a magical feel to an event. The great thing is it's really easy to make these yourself.
NOTE: Don't over inflate the balloon. The bigger you go the more oval they will be in shape, but also, the more sensitive they will be to the rough string fibres. To prevent your balloons from popping while you work, choose the super large size so you can get a good round shape without extending the balloon elastic too far.
• Drop sheets or covering to protect surfaces this is a good project to do outside
• Large Balloons
• Cotton Yarn
• ½ cup (125ml) PVA glue
• 1/2 cup Corn Starch
• 1/4 cup Water
• Mixing container and something to mix with to make the glue
• Petroleum Jelly like Vaseline
• Fast drying spray paint in your preferred colour/s
• Lights of your choice or string or line for hanging the completed spheres
1. Prepare your work area with protective sheets or newspaper.
2. Inflate your balloons to the desired shape/size. A range of different sizes looks great too!
3. You'll need some way to work on the balloons, hanging them from a shower rod, clothes rack or clothes line can work or you can stand them on a table inside a lid or bowl.
4. Make your paste. A proven mix is equal parts corn starch and PVA glue with ½ part warm water (suggested measurements are in the materials list).
5. Cover your balloons in a coat of Vaseline or other branded petroleum jelly to help get the balloon free later on.
6. Cover the string in the glue paste and drape the wet string over and around the balloon. Work vertically over and over, then horizontally around and around. When you have as much coverage as you like, tuck the ends of the string into the weave to hide them.
NOTE: When applying the string make sure you leave a hole at the top (where the balloon is tied), big enough to allow the light bulb to go in. If this is Christmas lights or LED strings, you won't need a large opening, but garden lights will need a space for the globe to fit.
7. Allow to dry for 24 hours.
8. Pop the balloon and clean up any glue webbing with a butterknife or chopsticks.
9. Use a fast-drying spray paint to cover the ball and secure it in place and protect it. You can use any colour/s you like!
10. Your globes are ready to hang from lights or fishing line.
Here's a great, cheap and super easy to do it yourself alternative to tiles, lino or any kind of flooring: Paint.
The way to make it work is with beautiful stencils that are amazingly cheap and oh so easy to DIY. You can paint right over existing flooring, be that concrete, tiles or lino making it a perfect floor lift for your kitchen, bathroom or patio.
You can look for stencils you like online or from paint and hardware specialists. They don't need to be overly extravagant to have an impact.
Lacey stencils create a romantic and wowing look. In most cases you'll want to select two contrasting colours, to give a beautiful effect, however in some cases a concrete floor might be the perfect base so you can just stencil over the top!
You can create the look of intricate tiles if you stencil over your existing tiled floor. Ask your paint shop about the best paint brands for your colour and texture choices and don't fret about heavy foot traffic, this effect will last!
NOTE: The effect you want will determine the paint type you choose, glossy, chalk etc. So check in with a paint store to determine the right tools for your situation.
• Cleaning solution
• Stencil and stencil brush
• Foam roller and tray
• Painter’s tape
• Paper towels.
• Paint/s in style and colour of your choice
1. Use a scrubbing pad to clean the surface (ask your paint shop about the right cleaning solution for your chosen surface type). Make sure you remove any remaining cleaning product and allow the surface to dry.
2. You may wish to use a primer. Again, it's best to talk to a professional about what you need. They will be happy to give you advice for your surface. You will probably apply this with a foam roller.
3. When the primer is dry apply the first coat of base colour (unless you want the existing floor to show through, then skip this step). With the foam roller cover the entire floor with base colour. Allow this to dry before applying a second coat.
4. Now for the stencil! Start in the center of your room and secure your template down with the painter's tape. Load a stencil brush with the top colour paint and offload any excess paint onto a paper towel. Stencil the design.
5. Your stencil will most likely come with guide markers to show you how to place the stencil alongside to match. Make sure you feel confident with the sequence before you get started.
6. Continue to stencil the design over the floor piece by piece
NOTE: Be sure to use the painter's tape to protect the side walls, bathtubs and cupboards where they join the floor.
7. When you get to the edges and corners use your free hand to press the stencil in tight and flatten it up the edges so you can still achieve the pattern. You may need a little paint brush to get into those tight spaces.
8. Seal it! Again, the seal you use will depend on the final look. If you are working in the bathroom for example, a water-based polyurethane top coat will do the trick. Allow the first coat to dry before applying another.
9. Stand back and admire!
Wallpaper does not need to be limited to just the wall. If you are intimidated by the idea of a feature wall but are in love with a certain wall paper design, try applying it as a cover for drawers, wardrobe doors or even covering some old books or your diary! You can turn cheap pine furniture into works of arts to create your own styled toy boxes, dog kennels or anything else that takes your fancy.
Lost for space on where to store your jewelry? This is so easy. Take a wooden coat hanger and a range of eyelet screws or hooks. Screw the eyelets and or hooks into the underside of the hanger, making the spaces between them as close or far apart as you like.
Stylish pet bed
If you have a vintage suitcase or find one in an Op Shop, this a fun project.
Any hard-shell suitcase will work. Even a battered suitcase is fine. You can make this with or without the lid, if you have two pets you can also halve the case and use the lid to make a second bed. If you do keep the lid attached, an added bonus is that you can throw all your dog toys into the case and close it so it’s neat and tidy (although you might get some sulking from your furry one).
This project is so versatile, you can make it exactly to your pet’s needs. The simplest approach is just to squash an old pillow in the bottom of the (cleaned out) case and fluff it up for your pet.
You can get as fancy as you like with relining the lid with fabric, adding a soft pocket or as mentioned before...lining with some beautiful wallpaper or even atlas maps. If you don’t want to do any of those things and don’t like the look of the original lid you can also try stuffing the lid with a second pillow or simply removing it.
The cushion you use can be fancy too, although you’d probably want to keep it comfortable so your pet can snuggle in. Some people have even attached legs to the case using long screws, or little peg or half circle stumps to the bottom using nails for a little elevated sophistication. It’s a matter of what you can find as well as how big your pet is.
So, there you have it, some things to get creative about and feel great about. I dare you to get out of your comfort zone and try something new! You never know when your skills might be needed down the track.
With property sales going haywire in Australia through 2021 and prices soaring to record-breaking highs, it’s important to know where you stand on price and how much flexibility you have to negotiate. Knowing where you stand means you won’t overpay, which is especially important in a hot market where panic can set in.
This is our final post in this particular series. In this blog, we are focusing on the highs and lows, so you know what you're getting yourself into. This information does refer to some facts from the previous two posts, so get back and read our Renovation planning guide and the types of renovations to get up to speed on how all these ties together.
We know what you’re thinking – not another email sign-up!
But hear us out.
Our monthly update is full of valuable news and advice on all things property.
Sign up and your future will thank you for it.