Don’t CRY over DIY: Some Tips And Tricks

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The thought of a DIY project, especially around somewhere as important as your own home, can be quite daunting if you’ve never tackled anything bigger than putting up a shelf before. Still, it doesn’t have to be quite so overwhelming. Just think of it as similar to the process of putting up a shelf and following that with repeated, similar, small and manageable tasks. If you’re still unsure where to begin, however, then here are some great tips and tricks for getting started on your very first full-scale DIY project around the home.

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Use the internet.

The beauty of YouTube and other sites on the internet is that tutorials can be more than a series of text-based instructions; now you can see somebody perform a construction task with your own eyes, ensuring that you mimic the procedure as accurately and precisely as humanly possible. There are channels dedicated to DIY, so you could binge one after the other and move through your home, renovating one room after the next; all with the the help of a simple series of videos.

Know your limits.

It’s not always your job to fix the bigger problems around your home, and you probably shouldn’t, either. You most likely have a limited set of skills when it comes to DIY, else you wouldn’t have read this article, and you shouldn’t be tackling areas of your home which require a keen, professional eye to solve. You could consider Foundation Repair DFW, for example, to ensure that the soil beneath your home is sturdy enough to support your house, but you don’t have the expertise to do it alone.

There are certain times that DIY is just not the smart solution for your home, and you have to think about safety above all else. Some aspects of your home will require structural or engineering expertise, and, unless you have that, you shouldn’t be tackling the task by yourself. Just keep the DIY work to design-orientated things or minor “fixes” around the house.

If in doubt, get inspired.

When it comes to matters of interior design around your household, maybe it’s not the prospect of getting stuck in with manual labour which intimidates you, but the prospect of making a poor design decision and struggling to go back on it later. Of course, if it’s the physical construction side of things which you prefer, there’s no harm in looking at magazine and interior design websites for inspiration as to an actual theme or colour style for your room. If you live with friends, a partner or your family, looking to them for input might also be a wise decision. Once you get started, you’ll find that creativity follows more easily as a vision of how the house or that specific room will look at the end of the DIY process starts to form in your head.

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Stick to beginner projects at first.

If you’re still in doubt, keep things simple until you get a feel for how well you cope with DIY builds. Something such as fitting insulation in your attic, for instance, is a meaty DIY task in terms of manual labour, but a very easy one at the same time. A hard day’s work doesn’t always have to be hard on your mind. There are ways to get stuck in with construction without driving yourself insane.

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DIY And Home Maintenance Tasks To Do Now!

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Spring is in full swing, and before we know it, summer will be here. Now is the time to get those DIY and maintenance tasks ticked off. Here are some ideas to get your home shipshape in time for summer.

In the garden

Spring is all about clearing out the garden and preparing for long, lazy days in the sunshine. Before summer arrives, take some time to get out into the backyard and do some maintenance work. Start by clearing out your flowerbeds, weeding, and tidying up any trash. Wait for a dry day and mow the lawn. Avoid cutting the grass too short, as this can slow regrowth. If you’re a keen gardener, now is the time to sow your seeds or grow your own vegetables. Follow planting instructions on seed packets or look for tips online. Jetwash patios and decking areas. Get your outdoor furniture out of the garage and give it a wipe down.

Once you’ve done the menial jobs, you can start thinking about adding color and finishing touches. Add free-standing lanterns and outdoor fairy lights for ambience. Or create a chill out zone to retreat to at the end of the day. Invest in a wicker sofa set or lay some giant floor cushions and bean bags on the decking with material drapes and LED candles.

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Odd jobs

Have you not quite finished painting the spare room? Do you still need to unpack boxes in the study? Is the kitchen waiting for a new door? Spring is a fantastic time to get odd jobs sorted around the house. If you’re busy or you don’t trust your DIY skills, enlist the help of a local handyman. Ticking off even the smallest jobs will make a massive difference.

Air conditioning checks

If your air conditioning units are due an MOT, now is the time to get in touch with your air conditioning engineer and book a service. It’s essential to arrange regular checks to make sure your system is working properly and reduce the risk of problems, such as leaks.

Spring cleaning

If you’ve been meaning to tackle the garage or the loft for months, don’t put it off any longer. Take a weekend to go through each room and create separate piles. Set aside things you want to keep. Make a mound to give to charity or start putting together items for a yard sale. Once you’ve sorted out your stuff, put away anything that you want to keep. When you’ve successfully decluttered your house, give it a thorough clean from top to bottom. Dust the furniture, vacuum throughout and give the kitchen and bathroom a good scrub.

clean-571679_640Image from https://pixabay.com/en/clean-rag-cleaning-rags-budget-571679/

Spring is an ideal time to tick off essential maintenance tasks and odd DIY jobs. Make a list and work your way through it. If you’re stuck for time, call in a local handyman or get friends and family involved. If you put in some elbow grease now, you’ll be able to relax and enjoy the summer sunshine.

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How to Live a More Sustainable Life

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It is an alarming fact that our way of life is threatening the future of our planet. Changes need to be made now to protect our environment for our children, and for their children. By making a few simple changes and leading a more sustainable life, we can make a difference.

Make Do and Mend

Don’t be too quick to throw things away if they can be mended. How often have you discarded socks or sheets because they had a hole? Many items can be mended with a few stitches. If items are beyond repair, then try and find an alternative use for them. Torn sheets can be cut up into washcloths or similar. Plastic pots and bottles can be used as planters. Before discarding, ask yourself if items can be reused.

Collect Water

Consider collecting water in the garden. This can be used in the summer months to water the plants. Or consider a more sophisticated water tank from The Water Tank Factory. This would significantly decrease your water consumption.

tomato-676532_640Image from Pixabay

Grow Your Own Food

Growing your own fruit and veg will cut down on packaging and transportation costs. It will also cut down on fuel consumption and emissions from these processes. You will also know exactly what is going into your food and how it has been produced. Start small with a few herb pots and tomato plants and gradually expand.

Cut Down on Takeaways

Cutting down on takeaways helps reduce fuel consumption, carbon emissions and packaging. Cook food yourself when you can. This will also save you money and will benefit your health.

Cut Down on Paper Towels

It’s true that paper towels come in very handy for messes and spills. But it’s surprising how many we get through in the space of a week. Try replacing them with cheap, washable cloths. They do the same job, but they can be washed and used repeatedly.

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Make Your Own Cleaning Products

Rather than buying supermarket cleaning products, make your own. They are just as effective and contain less harmful chemicals. This article will help get you started. Also, read our article on making your home more eco-friendly.

Unplug

Unplug electrical items when they’re not in use. Many items that are plugged in go into standby mode and are still consuming electricity. Save money and resources by unplugging them.

Think Before You Travel

Most modes of transport consume fuel and release emissions into the atmosphere. This includes your car. Is it necessary to take the car to the shops? Can you walk instead? When traveling to work consider car sharing or taking public transport. Dust off your bicycle and put it to good use.

Cut Down on Printing

Cut down on the number of documents you print. Think before printing and ask yourself whether you need a hard copy.

All these little changes accumulate. Over a few weeks or months, they can make a real impact on the environment. Imagine if everyone adopted a more sustainable lifestyle? Many of the suggestions have multiple benefits such as promoting a simpler and healthier way of life. Not everything will be relevant to you and so pick out the tips that will benefit you and your family. There are no excuses. If you want to pass on a habitable planet, then you need to make changes now.

 

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Preparation Is Key When It Comes To DIY

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As an avid fan of DIY, I think that I have a little bit of knowledge that I can share with the world. Even if the people that know me don’t agree, I know that this post is very important for the DIY lovers out there. Why? It is important because I am about to tackle one of the major aspects of a successful project – preparation. Yes, good preparation is essential if we want to achieve a high standard when we finish the task at hand. But, preparation is not easy, which is why I have compiled a list of the best ways to prepare for your next project.

Gather The Info

Before you start, get all the info with regards to the project at hand. The last thing you want is for an issue to arise from nowhere and you not to have an answer to the problem. If you have all the information you need, you have all the knowledge to get the job done as quickly and efficiently as possible. For your research, head to your laptop and do a Google search. A Google search should give you everything you need, but if it doesn’t ask family and friends. They may have tips and advice that could be essential for the future.

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Make A List

Not every project is going to take five minutes. Some will take a lot longer, and for that you are going to need to remember a lot of info. No one is expecting you to remember everything off the top of your head, which is why you should make a list. List everything from the tools you need to the cost of materials to give you a better indication of what it is going to take to finish the job. And, just as importantly, make a list of all the dangers and hazards that you can predict before you start.

Move Everything Out Of The Way

To attempt a DIY project, you are going to need space to move. If you are cramped and confined when you are tackling a job, you are bound to make mistakes. At the very least, you will find the job hard work, and it will frustrate you to tears. Thankfully, there is a solution. Get a hold of all the items that are not bolted to the floor, or that are too heavy to move, and escort them from the area. Moving big and bulky items away from the zone will give you a lot more freedom to do your thing.

Tidy Up

Don’t wait until the job is over to tidy up – tidy as you go along. Again, mess causes clutter and restricts your space, which makes a DIY task harder to complete. Throwing unnecessary items in the bin, or putting them back where they belong, will unclutter the working area. And, when the job is over, get in touch with cheap rubbish removal services to ensure you home is spotless.

Keep One Extra

DIY will sometimes make you use more than you have. When that happens, it is a problem because you have to waste time sourcing the item. However, if you have one extra with the ‘one extra rule’, you will always be prepared.

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Don’t Break the Bank With These DIY Halloween Costume Ideas and How-To’s

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Halloween is almost upon us but don’t be scared by the idea of making your own costume. Here are some frightfully good costumes that won’t break the bank and are easy to make!

 

Check out Halloween Style Scene: Tricks and Treats for a Festive Eve

by Glam Editor at Mode

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My Dazzling Suggestions to Help With DIY Around the House

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I like to do quite a bit of DIY around the home. And I have a lot of experience from when I first started out. So here are some of my suggestions that will help you with you DIY tasks around the home.

Have the Right Tools

I can’t stress enough how much you need to make sure you have the right tools. When you’re attempting to do tasks you’ve got to have the right stuff to be able to do the work. I worked out all the tools and equipment I would need to do the work I wanted. Then I figured out which ones I already had. After that, it was a case of taking a trip to the hardware store and stocking up. Make sure you do this before you start anything major.

Start off Small

If you’re just getting started on DIY projects I’d recommend starting off small. This is the approach that I took, and it worked out well. You see, small tasks are quicker and easier to complete. So you get through a few of those and build up your confidence gradually. Once you’ve done this you’ll be ready to take on more ambitious tasks. If I had just jumped straight in and tried to do the huge projects first, I’d have been overwhelmed. By starting off small I found it easier to transition, and I suggest you do the same.

Prioritize

The key to successful DIY is to make sure you prioritize things. I made a list of all the work I wanted to do. And then figured out a cost and timeframe for the projects as well. Once you have a clear idea of what you need to do, you can start to focus. If you can order the tasks, so you decide what to do first, you’ll make the process run much smoother. Whatever is the most important thing needs to be addressed first. You also might want to favor the smaller tasks early on as you can get through them quicker.

Hire Experts if Needed

There will be certain DIY tasks that you might want to think about hiring experts for. Some of the tasks will require professional skills to complete. So if you have the money you need to look at bringing in experts. Think about the areas of the home where you might need outside help. I made a decision to bring in a general contractor and roofers because I wanted a professional touch. It might depend on the tasks you want to do. But make sure you do your research, so you know whether you have to bring in experts.

Take Your Time

You need to understand that many DIY projects are going to take time to do correctly. Some will be small tasks that can be completed in a matter of hours. However, the larger, more complex tasks can take weeks or months. I wasn’t prepared for this when I first started out, and I wanted to get everything done right away. But you’ve got to make sure you’re prepared for the fact that it will take a while. The worst thing you can do is rush something. It’s better to make sure it’s done right than to skim over it. So prepare for the fact that some tasks will take a while. Try not to get too frustrated, and always keep your eye on the prize.

As someone who does their fair share of DIY I know how stressful it can be. You need to make sure you are prepared for the tasks at hand. I like to make sure I thoroughly plan any work before I start doing it. This makes the entire process easier and much less chaotic. By following my suggestions you can achieve the same.

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Are You Ready For The Ultimate DIY Project?

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As a lover of DIY, it can be fun to come up with new projects to challenge ourselves with. Lots of these project ideas involve using a range of tools and skills. Some of them may have been used before, and others may give us the opportunity to try out new things. So how far do you want to push yourself? Are you willing to take on the biggest challenge of all?

Building your own home is an enormous project to take on. But if you have some DIY experience, you might be readier than you think. House building can be as involved as you like. You can buy country house plans off the shelf and employ professional builders to put it together. Then you are left with a shell to customize and turn into a magnificent home for you and your family.

Of course, there are some daring people out there who want to work from the ground up. Once they have their plans approved, they want to get straight into preparing the land their home will sit on. Next come the foundations and floors. Soon walls and a roof will be installed. This takes a lot of labor and a lot of time, but there are a small number of people out there willing to get their hands dirty.

It is unlikely you could build a home alone. You will require certification, qualification and sign-offs from your local authority. You will also need extra manpower to lift the materials physically. The cost of this can quickly escalate if your build takes longer due to unfavorable weather conditions or delays in deliveries. When you are budgeting a big project like this, you need to include a sizeable contingency.

woodImage courtesy of Flickr.com

As a DIY enthusiast, you project-manage each of your tasks. As a house builder, project management is essential. It helps you monitor the budget and organize the people involved. It can be quite a stressful undertaking too. There are professional project managers who could take this task on for you. Alternatively, some professional software or an app could be very useful to you.

It’s not easy to build a house from scratch. The planning phase can take months on its own. Gaining permission to build from your local authorities could also take many months. But the hardest part of the job is the physical build. It takes a cool head and a strong body to navigate the many tasks that come up. When you have identified what all the tasks are, you can decide which ones you can take on yourself.

Many people dream of being able to say they built their own house. These days, regulations are rigid and uncompromising. Safety standards are high. People involved in building must be highly qualified and experienced.

It is a good thing. But it means many DIY fans are left to wait for the interior jobs rather than erecting walls and laying foundations. Would this be enough for you? If you are building a house this year, take the time to enjoy the process, even if the going gets tough.

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Use your Noodle With These Great Pool Noodle Ideas

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Check out Use your Noodle With These Great Pool Noodle Ideas

by ThisIsCori at Mode

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Upcycled Envelope Bookmarks

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envelope bookmark collageMy girls and I love crafting.  When we’re looking for ideas, one of the places I discovered to look is MyPrintly.com.  MyPrintly.com is a great site for fun craft ideas and printing solutions.  Here’s a very simple Upcycled Envelope Bookmark Craft that uses very few items.  It’s great because you can keep the supplies you need for it in your car or bag and your kids can create a mess free craft in minutes.
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Supplies:
an envelope (we like to use used envelopes to upcycle them)
a glue stick
scissors (or a paper cutter)
printouts of your favorite characters, photos, etc. to decorate your bookmark

How to Make It:
1. Cut the corner off of an old envelope into a triangle.  (You can use a new envelope in a pinch.)20150511_1558232. Test the envelope triangle on the corner of the pages of your book to make sure it fits.
3. Put the triangle on your character print out, photo, etc. and trace the triangle.  You can trace just the triangle or if your image hangs over the triangle like in my example you can trace around the top of the image to create a bookmark that sticks up from the book.
20150511_1604264. Cut out the image.
20150511_1604565. Put glue on the envelope and glue the image down.
20150511_1606156. Put the bookmark on the corner of the pages you wish to mark.
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Enter to win an HP Envy Printer:

Creativity is contagious, which is why we hope you’ll follow @MyPrintly and help us spread the word to your friends and followers! They’ll be choosing ten (10) lucky winners who will each receive an HP Envy printer and an Instant Ink Enrollment Card, worth over $150!

To be eligible to win, please perform at least one of the following options:

  1. Follow @MyPrintly on Twitter and tweet a message encouraging your followers to visit the site and follow along, using the hashtags #MyPrintly #CMYK and linking to:http://bit.ly/MyPrintly
  2. Like MyPrintly on Facebook and post a message on your Facebook wall encouraging your friends to visit the site and follow along, using the hashtags #MyPrintly #CMYK and linking to: http://bit.ly/MyPrintly
  3. Follow MyPrintly on Pinterest and pin a MyPrintly project to one of your Pinterest boards, using the hashtags #MyPrintly #CMYK

For every option you choose above, you will receive an entry into the contest. Perform all three of the above options and receive three entries!
Submit a complete link to your post(s) HERE by May 15th, 2015. Winners will be selected and notified the week of May 18th, 2015.

Disclosure- This post is part of a sponsored campaign with MyPrintly and MomSelect. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Cool Ways To Get Started On DIY Projects

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DIY is a great way to reduce the costs of decorating your home – as long as you do them right! It doesn’t matter whether it is a large project or small; there are opportunities to make savings everywhere. Let’s take a look at some of them now, and get ready to get your hands dirty!

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Search Online

Scared of DIY? Worried you will mess up? Well, there are hundreds of websites out there that offer free tutorials for anyone that wants to look. Have a peek at sites like Family Handy Man for some inspiration. There really is no excuse. If you want to start making improvements to your home, sites like these are all there waiting for you!

Get A Good Toolkit

No DIY enthusiast should be without a toolkit they can blame things on when things go wrong. You will need a fair amount to get you started, and spending a little more on quality tools will always be more cost-effective – and useful – in the long term. There’s a good list of essential tools for homeowners over at Houzz.com. Don’t forget the importance of looking after your tools. Clean and dry them well after you have used them to help their lifespan.

Start Small

It goes without saying that you should take things steady when you first start DIY projects. Learn essential skills on small projects first. You will find this will be a good basis to work from when you start on the bigger tasks.

Be Creative

The key to good DIY is to take those small essential skills and turn them into something creative. You don’t have to spend a lot of money for amazing results. Use your favorite home design resources for inspiration. The idea here is to borrow ideas rather than recreate them. That’s the great thing about do-it-yourself; you can get stunning results that are completely original to you.

Know Your Limits

When you are just starting out in DIY, it is really important to know your limits. Some things just should not be touched. Hire a professional electrician for any rewiring work that involves more than fitting a new plug. And if you are tiling your bathroom, have an emergency plumbing company on speed dial in case you mess up a water pipe.

Get A First Aid Kit

Accidents happen, unfortunately. And when you are just getting started, they will happen more often. The least you can expect is a nasty bang on the thumb and a few splinter. But you could cut yourself or slip and cause serious damage. Make sure you are prepared by keeping your first aid box well stocked.

Show Off

Your very first DIY effort may not be the nicest thing in the world to look at. But you made it. It came from your hands so you should be proud, no matter how many mistakes you have made. Don’t be afraid to show it off to family and friends. Even the experts amongst them. They could end up giving you even more tips!

Hope you enjoyed this little guide and can now get started on making home improvements yourself. Catch you next time, when maybe you could share your latest creations!

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