There are plenty of creative ways in which you can use DIY in the home to ensure that you are not splashing out on expensive furnishings. If you are a student, or you just want to do things a little more cheaply, it can make very little sense to be spending hundreds of pounds on things, when you could be ‘upcycling’ old furniture or making new stuff! Many people now go in for a certain style that is called ‘Shabby Chic’ which uses lots of reclaimed wood, battered antiques and repainted items, to make a feeling of carefully curated casualness throughout the home, a sort of run down affair that has been painstakingly achieved in many cases! Of course this style comes from seeing houses where people have decked out their rooms in a way that showed them to be indifferent to trends and luxury brands, but rather more interested in how things go together, and showing their own personality through it. Much of this style comes from doing things cheaply and for yourself, and if you are creative and think carefully about such things, then you too can achieve this.
Have a think about what you need for your room. Say you need a coffee table, what kind of material would suit the room, and what size do you need? Many styles now use discreetly modern surfaces, shiny, and dark colored, rather than expensive wood veneers. You should have a look around local car boot sales, and on gum tree to see if anyone is giving away a nice old desk, or an interesting looking door, that you could make a table surface from. For instance, a dilapidated old desk could have the surface removed, sanded, and re varnished to look like a beautifully conditioned table top. You could then place it on a railway sleeper or two and make a perfect coffee table. Think about the juxtaposition of materials – painting a railway sleeper a deep lacquered black, or even a bright color could make it sit strangely but stylishly with the table top, giving you the kind of intriguing coffee table that prompts people to ask of the designer’s name! Of course the main fun in all of this is telling them that you made it!
Try finding old scaffold boards for various uses. You can use them as is for interesting shelves, or cut them to size and nail them to wooden palettes to make an interesting looking platform bed! Again, if you wanted something a little less shabby, then you can sand and paint them any color you want. Try a glossy white for that beautiful french look, or matte black for a more modern, tactile feel. The most important thing is that you match it with the room. If your room is a fully carpeted living room with white walls, then you want something simple that won’t clash. If your room is old fashioned, then why not think about going a little more modern to offset the antique furnishings? Modern houses look great with a couple of antique bits in there, but perhaps try getting them cheaply and refinishing them in a new color to fit your home, and make them you own, as otherwise it may end up looking like a museum of design, rather than a harmonious living space! You can do absolutely anything you want to, but be sure to research all the methods beforehand, and be safe when you are carrying out all of the processes.
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