Category Archives: DIY

Little tricks that help make your life easier!

Spark Up Your Home With Wood Shutters

Wood shutters were originally installed on homes to protect the homes windows from inclement weather. They were operational for the home owner to close them to keep flying debris from smashing thru. As time went on, many factors contributed to shutters no longer being used on most houses.

Shutters are now finding there way back into style, mostly as decorative features of a house.

Building your own wood shutters can add charm to just about any home and improve the curb appeal of your house.

Some things to keep in mind when making your shutters; Making them the correct size so they look like they belong, they should fit the height of the opening and be 1/3 to 1/2 the width of the window to look good.

Check out the video below to see how to make some simple, cost effected board and batten shutters.

There are many other shutter designs that you can build, although non quite as simple as board and batten shutters.

Be sure to weather proof all sides and edges of your shutters to help them last a long time.

 

The Magic of Floating Shelves. Want to Make These?

Aren’t shelves that seem to float on the wall just awesome? Ever wonder how to make them?

It’s really not magic, and something any DIYer can accomplish with the steps in the video below.

Here is all you will need to make your own floating shelf.

Tools You will Need:

Circular Saw OR Miter Saw
Table Saw
Drill
Kreg Jig (optional)
Orbital Sander
Nail Gun or hammer and finish nails
Tape Measure, Straight Edge, Pencil
Eye and Ear protection
<h2><strong>Supplies Needed</strong></h2>
Lumber for the frame and shelf – see wood list below
Steel Wool &amp; Vinegar Solution or Stain
Water-Based Polyurethane Spray
3” Wood Screws
1 ¼” Nails
Wood Glue

Check out Pete’s Step by Step directions at http://www.diypete.com

Garage Door Springs

There are 2 basic types of door springs, Torsion, which are on a bar above the door when it is closed or Extension, which are above the horizontal track on each side of the door.

You Must learn what you are doing with either as they can be very dangerous.

Check out the video’s below for instructions on replacing the 2 types.

Torsion Springs

 

Extension Springs

Great Ideas For A Back Splash!

Adding tile, stone or metal to a back splash can make a major change in the look of any kitchen.

Adding your own flare with deco’s, borders and patterns will make it uniquely your own.

You can mix and match materials, tiles, colors and sizes to make all sorts of fun designs.

Here we added a pencil above the first row and then did the top on a diagonal.
Between the stove and microwave.

 

Here we used glass tile to blend with the granite countertop.

Glass tile used for the back splash.

 

Here we used

4×4 tile with deco strip in the middle
deco backsplash

Head over to the Next Page to for a video on How to Install Back Splash Tile.

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Are You Making The Right Flooring Choice?

When you are in need of new flooring in your home, it can be a real task to figure out what your best option is. There are so many choices today, that when you get to the store, you just sit there scratching your head.

Doing a little research before ever entering a store and figuring out what is best for your needs vs what do you like, can make the whole process easier.

Many factors to consider are:

Tile and stone are hard and cold. They can also chip and crack. Easy to clean.

Hardwood is warm and smooth. It can scratch and needs occasional maintenance. Nice warm look.

Carpet is nice and soft under foot. It gets dirty and hold allergens. Comes in many colors.

Sheet Goods such as Vinyl and Linoleum are inexpensive. they cut easy and require maintenance,

Exotic Flooring like bamboo or cork are soft. They are not cheap. They can fade in bright sunshine.

 

Stephanie has worked for Cancork Floor Inc in Canada since 2011 has this advice for her customers:

 

Homeowner Know Thyself

Take stock of what is needed for your home, your family and your lifestyle. Make a wish-list of characteristics you want in a floor. List what it MUST DO versus what it CANNOT DO. List special interests such as allergies, chemical sensitivities, asthma, COPD, aging in place, young children, etc. Work with the characteristics you must have, then go shopping. Ignore the trends. Find the list of materials that will offer the characteristics you require. Now that you know the materials to shop, you can find the look you are after.

Personal Preferences: Cleaning, Maintenance and Appearance

Personality plays a huge role in how a person reacts to the look of a floor. There are many people who believe shiny = clean. These shiny people enjoy the look of a newly cleaned floor because it offers a glorious, mirror-like finish when they are done. They feel happy and content when they see their floors shining like the sun. The personality that likes high-gloss will never be happy with a satin or matte finish. Today’s trend towards low-gloss flooring is a nightmare for shiny people. The hardest part of this is the homeowner maybe unaware of this themselves. Not until they have purchased, installed and cleaned their matte finish laminate do they realize something is missing – the glossy finish. Heartache ensues. New flooring is purchased quickly afterwards; often causing financial distress to those who can least afford it.

Expectations and Wear

Each floor material has different characteristics as they age. If you must have “perfection” for 20 years, then porcelain tiles are the perfect option. If you must have a soft floor then carpet, cork or rubber is the direction you must head. Expecting carpet or cork to appear perfect for 20 years is an unrealistic expectation. Expecting laminate to work well in a kitchen is another unrealistic expectation. Getting upset with hardwood floors that scratch is like getting upset with a baby who cries when hungry.

To Trend or Not to Trend, That is the Question

Purchasing flooring for resale value is not always the best route to take. Resale value should be looked at only when a 5-7 year plan is in the works. That means you KNOW you will sell your home inside 5-7 years. This is the short-term time frame that requires resale value to enter the conversation. Trends change and they change quickly in many areas of North America. Trendy areas will change their preferences in a heartbeat. More conservative areas will take a decade to change styles.

If you plan to live with your floor for more than 7 years, please purchase what you like/want/require for today. Tomorrow is too far away to make an informed decision. Solid hardwood, glue-down cork, stone and ceramic tiles are all long term products (20+ years of service) and should be viewed with that permanence in mind. Floors such as laminate, vinyl, floating cork, bamboo and engineered floors can be viewed as short-term (5-7 years) or moderate term investments (10-20 years). Carpet, sheet vinyl and linoleum all have their fingers in each pie with products capable of lasting 5, 10 and 25 years depending on type and style purchased.

To see more advice from Stephanie check out Thefloorpro.com

How To Do Your Own Home Repairs!

How to do your own Home repairs!

 

Do it yourself home repairs can make a lot of sense. We all want to keep our homes in good condition, so they are more pleasant to live in and will retain their value in the coming years. Some of us like DYI projects for the enjoyment of doing it and some of us just like saving money.

Doing a job on your own can be considerably cheaper than hiring a professional to handle the situation. It’s also can be very rewarding. There’s something uniquely satisfying about completing a project on your own, knowing that you’ll enjoy the fruits of your labor for years to come. Do it yourself home repairs continues to grow in popularity because more and more people are realizing that they can get the job done.

With the right tools, a bit of dedication and some great information your average homeowner can do spectacular things. Who needs the professionals, right? It’s true that you can decrease the need for calling in a high priced pro by doing things yourself.

Sometimes you need the pros.

There are times when it makes sense to rely on a licensed, experienced professional. Major electrical and plumbing installations that have a substantial safety risk attached to them certainly come to mind.

Most of the time, though, one can handle their repairs without that high-dollar assistance. However, before you get too sure of yourself, it is important to realize that the professionals have something that you don’t. Experience.

That experience really matters. It doesn’t just make them faster and free them from the burden of consulting manuals and guides every step of the way. Along the way, they also pick up hints, tricks and tips that don’t appear in your average installation manual. That, in large measure, is what separates the do it yourselfer from the hired professional.

Those little nuggets of knowledge, those tidbits and secrets that usually only come with time and repetition, are the difference between the pros and average Joes. This site is designed to level the playing field a little bit.
Now, we can’t give you the entire knowledge base of a contractor who’s been on the job for thirty years in one guide, but we can share some of those tips and hints that might not show up in your Home Depot instruction manual.

Let’s get to it.

If you’re going to embark on a repair project, it’s safe to say that you’ll secure the instructions and plans to get the job done before you reach for the clasp on your toolbox. You won’t, however, know the little things that can make such a big difference.

That’s what this site is all about. It’s your own little collection of professional tips. It covers virtually every aspect of home improvement and repairs, giving you a handful of insights and secrets that you wouldn’t otherwise have in your arsenal for all of them.

We’re here to help.

This isn’t a “how to” guide. It’s a “how to do it better” guide. it’s the ultimate home repair tip collection and it can close the gap between do it yourselfers and professionals.

If you have questions on a project you are working on or want to tackle, Send us a message and we will be in touch as soon as possible.

A Great Garden Shed Out Of Old Doors

Isn’t it great finding new uses for old items we take out of our homes? Old windows and doors can be use to make so many new and useful things.

A great example is this is making a 4 door garden shed. The makes a really nice looking and useful shed that save time and money on sheathing and siding.

Sharon from Liberty Rose shares with us her story of building her wonderful garden shed.

My most recent “conquest” was a garden shed that was made out of old doors.  I have been wanting a shed for just garden tools and pots.  They seem to end up all over the place and I can never find them when I need them.  Some nice person shared a tool shed they had made on Pinterest and I asked my husband if we could do the same thing since I knew we had taken several doors down in the house over the years.  

 My husband started drawing his plans for building the shed since there was only a photograph on Pinterest and after a $250 trip to Lowe’s for wood and supplies, he started the shed. 

I thought we would just hinge the doors together, slap on a roof and be done with it!!!  Well, he said if we did that it would blow over in one of our thunderstorms.  I decided the best course of action to take was to just let him do it his way since he was the one building the shed and I really wanted it done. 

We used three of our old doors and Pam from the Rusty Bucket gifted us with the “front door” which has panes of glass to let in a little light.  Also helps it not to look like an outhouse!

After getting all the parts together, her husband went to work on her shed. He got it done and then she added the finishing touches.

I love it and know that it will be very useful for me to have all my gardening things in one place. 
I have had the two children’s shovels for years and found them in my husband’s big shed and decided to hang them on my little shed. 

 

 

Great Use Of Hidden Space In The Kitchen

Every small kitchen could use some extra storage space. There are little spaces, hiding in plain site, that we don’t even think of as being useful. Then someone comes along with a great idea that starts you thinking, do I have a space like that in my kitchen?

Being a Do It Yourselfer, you can easily tackle one of these projects.

Roll Out Pantry

When installing kitchen cabinets, enough space is usually left for the maximum size fridge. Not every one puts in the biggest one available, this can leave space next to the fridge for storage. A roll-out pantry is a great use of this space.

This awesome project we found over at learning-to-b-me.blogspot.com were the Roeckers show us how they built it.

The great thing about this project is you can modify it to your situation.

For another version from Classy Clutter, Mallory gives us step by step instructions on how she built her rolling pantry.

Can Cab_2_noWM

They both did awesome jobs on their projects.

I have a few suggestions of things that could make these roll-out panties a little easier and safer.

I would suggest using straight rolling casters instead of swivel casters. This will allow the pantry to roll straight in and out without the wheels having to turn around. Image result for casters

 

Attaching a drawer slide to the back or top of the cabinet and the side wall will make it glide in and out better and stop it from coming out to far and possible fall. Or you can place a block on the wall above the unit and one on the back of the unit to prevent it from coming out beyond the wall.

Image result for drawer slides

 

If you decide to build one for yourself, share it with us, we would love to see it.

 

 

 

 

Upcycle Leftover Pumpkins

Now that Halloween and Thanksgiving are over, don’t toss those leftover pumpkins in the garbage. There are many things you can do with them to help keep them out of the landfills.

You can put them in your compost pile ( or a neighbors, if you don’t have one). They can be cut up to feed the wild life. You can sut out the seeds and plant them for next year.

They can also be repurposed into other decorations for the rest of the holiday season.

Laura over at Garden answers has this awesome idea to repurpose left over pumpkins.

Using just a few supplies she turned her leftovers into a snowman decoration.

Supplies:
Pumpkins leftover from fall decorations
Hand Pruners & Scissors
White Spray Paint
Drill
7/16 in. x 12 in. Drill Bit
1/2″ spade bit
3′ Bamboo Garden Stake
Glue Gun
Black Hat
Red Ribbon
Glittery Holly Holiday Pick
Scrap fabric for scarf
Carrot for nose, gravel for face and buttons
Spring Grove® Western Arborvitae
Juniper
Leyland Cypress

Watch the video to see how she did it.

Making the Family Dog Happy!

There is an ongoing debate on whether to have a kennel for your dog. Some people will say it is cruel to put a dog in a crate. Every dog and every situation is different. As well behaved as some dogs are, when left alone they become destructive.

To a dog who is kennel trained, this is their space. They feel safe and secure and no one bothers them there. Like a child having their own room.

The issue with wire kennels, is the look. They don’t really fit into most decor.

If you are handy you can build your own to blend in to your home like a piece of furniture. Check out some of these awesome ideas.

If you are not handy, check out B & B Custom Kennels.