Love gorgeous home accessories but not the price tag? I’ve been trawling the web (and Pinterest) to find the most stylish home DIYs that are easy to follow, cost less than £50 and can be done in a weekend. I’ve added my own comments on how long they take, how difficult they are and how much they cost, plus a few ideas for variations to match them to your own taste and decor.
So without further ado, here are my top ten fast and affordable DIYs from across the web!
1. Paper Mache Lampshade
Time: Weekend to make + up to 2 weeks to dry
Cost: Less than £10 if you already have the pendant lamp fitting
This Paper Mache Lampshade is from a tutorial by PrettyPrudent. What about mixing some paint or food dye into the mixture to create coloured lampshades? Or you could paint the inside a vibrant blue or yellow while leaving the outside plain for an unexpected burst of colour.
2. Aerial Perspective Mural
Time: One day – weekend depending on how many layers you do + drying time
Cost: Free if you use leftover paint from other projects or paint from a recycle centre
This Mountain Mural video is by Pam Lostracco. Pam is of course a wonderful artist, though there is no reason that you can’t create something beautiful with an image from the internet, careful planning and a steady hand. The trick is the layered silhouettes in neutral colours using aerial perspective to get that far away look. What about doing a forest or cityscape?
Time: 1-2 hours
Cost: Aim for less than £5 for the thrifted container and £9.50 for 8 Sempervivium Plants on Amazon.
You can make a terrarium like this using this tutorial on Dezignable. Why not use something unusual or thrifted as your terrarium such as a glass teapot, coffeepot, fish tank, jam jar, lantern, votive candle holder, drinking glass, bottle or even an oil lamp. So long as the container is glass to allow light in (and you to admire the plants) it should work.
4. Framed Thrift Finds
Time: Less than 1 hour
Cost: Less than £5 if you buy the hanky and frame from a thrift shop
Make wall art by framing thrift finds. These are some vintage hankies but you could equally frame vintage board games, fabric, scarves, sewing/ knitting patterns, book illustrations, crochet pieces or record covers.
5. Two Tone Walls
Time: Weekend depending on room size
Cost: £12.49 for a pot of Dulux Feature Wall on Amazon, you will also need a spirit level, masking tape and a paint brush.
Pinterest is buzzing with two-tone painted walls. This tutorial from ColourHousePaint is the best I’ve found to show you how to get the crisp line that is so essential to this look. Her images are also just stunning!
6. Tassel Garland
Time: 1-2 hours
Cost: Free if you use left over wool, or £15 for this multi-pack of 24 colours on Amazon.
Make a tassel garland by LaLaLovelyThings. This one is a great way to use up the ends of wool left over from other projects. You could make themed ones: red and green for a kitch Christmas, or what about red,white and blue for 4th July?
7. Wallpaper Origami Lampshade
Time: 2-3 hours (depending on your paperfolding prowess)
Cost: Free if you have the pendant light fitting and use left over wallpaper
Origami lampshades range from simple to fantastically complicated. This one by Erin Francois for Homedit is somewhere in between. It is made of wallpaper, string and an IKEA light fitting. If you made this for a light fitting you already hand, using leftover wallpaper you could make it for free!
8. Decoupage Chair
Time: 1-2 days depending on your glue/ varnish/ paint drying times
Cost: Cost of thrifted furniture + images + glue/ paint/ varnish
The chair below is a DIY hack by Mark Montano inspired by artist Pierro Fornasetti. Its simple colour scheme and high quality finish make this piece look more like something from a high end furniture store than a weekend DIY project. Montano’s chair is inspired by Fornasetti, but why not try floral patterns, comic book pages, vintage wallpaper, maps or photocopies from library art books?
9. Stencil Coffee Table
Time: 3-4 hours + drying time
Cost: Free if you use left over paint and make your stencil, otherwise you can buy stencils for less than £16 on Amazon.
Stencils have been used for tens of thousands of years – some early cave paintings use stencils. If you’re feeling like revisiting some prehistoric technology to breathe new life into your home the try stencilling a table like this example from prettyhandygirl.
You can make your own stencils with stencil paper or buy them at you local craft store or Amazon. The styles here are endless. You could try Moroccan patterns, clouds, geometric patterns, flowers, birds, chevrons, Art Nouveau patterns or even Japanese paper patterns.
10. Classic Jute Place-Mats
Time: 1-2 hours
Cost: £5.99 for 64ft of Jute on Amazon + gluegun
This last one is a classic DIY to make on a rainy afternoon. There are variations where you stitch the rope together for a no-glue approach, but this glue gun tutorial from City Farmhouse is super quick and easy. You could try the same idea with plaited fabric strips for a rag-rug style effect.
Try one of these tutorials and let me know how you get on in the comments below. What do you think of my variations? What would you do to put your own slant on these tutorials?
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[All of the images included are from the posts linked to. This post is intended as a review of tutorials available online. I did not write any of the posts mentioned.]