Who would buy a renovation project hey?! Especially in the age of social media when some people make it look as though it’s all so easy. When it comes to looking after or improving our homes, trying to contract out every little job is very frustrating at the moment. I recently approached the decorator I sometimes use to paint our top floor landing which needs a lot of repair work too, only to be told he isn’t available until early next year! So when my DIY mojo returns it may just be a project I will have to tackle myself. Learning how to do some renovation tasks is not only satisfying but incredibly practical. According to YouGov, DIY ranks amongst some of the British public’s most famous and popular activities.
Are you a fan of DIY or doing any this summer? Here are some tips and tools that will hopefully help you make sure you get the job done as professionally as possible.
- Pride: There’s nothing quite like seeing your creations come to life. After all the attention and hard work you put into a project, it’s satisfying to see the finished article and I know I always give myself a big pat on the back. So, for a good boost of self-confidence, get stuck in!
- Skills: I’ve learned so many different skills over the years from painting to wallpaper hanging and tiling and the more I do them the better I get. Being able to tackle these jobs definitely makes me feel more in control of household maintenance.
- Choice: You’ll be able to complete a project to your exact specifications and vision. How often do you hear people saying that tradespeople try and talk them out of certain decisions? So, if you’re very picky (*puts hand up*) you may find DIY to be the best option for finding the finish you want.
- Money: The savings from doing things ourselves can be immense and one of my main inspirations. Paying someone to do jobs like painting, panelling or tiling can quickly add up. If you are intending to redecorate your home, you may just save a small fortune by learning how to do it yourself.
Just like with any new hobby/skill, getting started and seeing technical specs or names can be so overwhelming, with so many recommendations of what to buy. Take your time though and just get some key tools in the first instance, adding to your collection as you go.
Pick up high-quality gear, such as a DeWalt oscillating multi-use tool, which can be used in almost every DIY project. Multi-use equipment has so many capabilities, including trimming wood, slicing off pipes and screws, sanding down furniture, and cutting open drywall.
I’d also recommend buying slightly more materials than you need to allow for testers or mistakes (because especially in the beginning mistakes will be made!) There’s nothing worse than running out of something that you need at the 11th hour and have to make a mad dash to the DIY store.
Where to start
My top tips would be to do your research via online videos or accounts which explain things in a basic way and take your time. It can be all to easy to find someone whipping up a fabulous set of alcove cabinets and think you can get stuck in too but it’s not always as easy as it looks. Changing a light fitting, having a go at painting or caulking some cracks are some of the smaller tasks you can try to get going.
Planning is key! Make a list of everything you’ll need before you start any task and have a clear plan of what you’ll use and when. This way, you’ll save money and get things done more efficiently. It’ll also help you avoid any errors (she says, optimistically.)
When it comes to some projects, such as involving electricity, please don’t attempt to do the work yourself as it can be incredibly dangerous. Whilst it’s great to have a go at some projects, trying to paint a room hopefully won’t have the potential to cause any injury to yourself unlike fiddling with electrics. This can also invalidate any home contents insurance and may cause issues in the future if you try to sell. Overall though DIY is really fun and there are so many inspiring accounts for inspiration online. I hope my motivation returns soon!
Post in collaboration.