As crazy as it may seem, it’s already time to stock up on school supplies. There’s nothing quite like a fresh pack of ballpoint pens and a color-coded assortment of spiral notebooks to start the year out right. But for many, it’ll be more than just basic supplies on the shopping list. Some of our HGTV.com readers will be packing up and heading into the brand-new cramped quarters of a shared living space. Yay, college! The key to this new living adjustment is making the space feel as comfortable and homey as possible. And just like living in a rental, there are plenty of ways to add decorative charm to the walls, floors and doors of your temporary living space without breaking the bank.
Check out a few of my favorites:
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Hang Custom Artwork: Make a corkboard map to showcase travel adventures >>
Top Dorm Room Decorating Ideas
Did you like my post about musical instrument design ideas? Then I’m betting these sheet music crafts will be up your alley, too! If you’ve got old sheet music that hasn’t seen love since your childhood piano lessons, consider turning it into something you can enjoy and admire every day. (Of course, you could always keep an eye out for old sheet music at flea markets, too.) If you object to repurposing the original sheets for crafts, you can easily make copies on similarly-colored paper.
Design: Marian Parsons
Old Sheet Music –> New Decoupaged Dresser
This idea for old sheet music from Marian Parsons serves another purpose: hiding imperfections like gouges or water marks on furniture. The lovely aged color of the music looks totally at home in this shabby-chic style setting, too.
MORE CRAFTY USES FOR SHEET MUSIC
Metal pails have a variety of practical household uses, but in the right context, they can be quite pretty, too! If you’ve got one devoted to cleaning supplies or gathering cobwebs somewhere in your garage, take a look at these beautiful ideas for buckets and consider repurposing it for something with a little more flair.
Design: Susie Fougerousse
Old Metal Pail —> New Toy Storage Solution
Make an old metal pail look shipshape again by adding some red and white stripes or an adorable whale design. After its makeover, the bucket becomes an attractive toy storage solution in a nautical kids’ bedroom, as in this example by Susie Fougerousse.
MORE BRILLIANT IDEAS FOR BUCKETS
Did you celebrate Father’s Day yesterday? I’m thinking there are probably a lot of special guys out there who got a shiny new toolbox as a gift, and if so, the old one may be hanging around, collecting dust. Before you ditch it, take a look at these clever ideas for repurposing old toolboxes. (Now who’s the handy one around the house?)
Old Toolbox —> New Grooming Kit
An old metal toolbox looks right at home in a teen boy’s bathroom as a grooming/toiletry kit. It adds just the right rugged edge to the space and keeps products neatly tucked away from prying eyes. Want to complete the look? Check out Laurie March’s gallery on DIYNetwork.com.
MORE IDEAS FOR OLD TOOLBOXES
You’ve done it again — you waited until the last minute to get a Father’s Day gift, and now it’s too late to order his favorite gadget online. If you aren’t the crafty type this can really limit your gift options. Well, what if I told you you could make him an inexpensive, custom gift with zero crafting skills? Yes you heard me correctly — all you need to make the T-shirt below is our free printable pattern and an iron. It’s super easy, and it’s something Dad will love and actually get use out of.
Get the Full Step-by-Step Instructions Here>>
And if a T-shirt isn’t his thing, use our printable to make him a custom tote bag. Download it here>>
Happy Early Father’s Day to all the wonderful dads out there!
It’s his turn — time for you to show your favorite guy how much you really appreciate him. The man in your life (whether it be your dad, grandpa or baby-daddy) most likely selflessly gives 364 days out of the year. June 15th is his day to do and get whatever he wants, and we are here to help you make that happen.
Get Him Gifts He Wants
He probably has enough ties — make him the ultimate grilling accessory instead or a personalized catchall tray for him to keep his things at hand.
More Handmade Gift Ideas for Dad>>
Get More Father’s Day Ideas
Antler decor makes any place feel a little more like home to me. (What can I say? I’m originally from Pennsylvania and my dad’s side of the family counts a long line of hunters and outdoorsmen.) If you live near a wooded area where deer, moose or elk roam, you can find shed antlers in the winter through the early spring. Urban dwellers, you may be able to pick them up at flea markets or online. But whether you spot a single “shed” or a few matched pairs, there are so many interesting ways to accent your home with antlers, as you can see below. (Not feeling real antlers? Go faux, like Erin Loechner did in her laundry room.)
We’ve basically exhausted the crafting possibilities around wine (see: corks, bottles, glasses, crates AND barrels), but this ingenious antler wine rack from Meg Caswell is a cool way to store and display your wine before you’re ready to sip it/craft with it.
UNUSUAL BUT ATTRACTIVE IDEAS FOR ANTLERS
As spring and summer approach, my inner hostess is starting to mentally plan some fun and festive get-togethers that say “yes” to all things spring. Bright colors, outdoor activities and light food are in order. Let’s kick this winter gloom to the curb and break out the multicolored dishware! I think some handmade details are needed, right? How about some DIY coasters where nature and bright party colors collide? I can get on board with any craft that turns a dead stick into a fancy coaster.
Let’s Get Started
Previously on Designer MacGyver…we’ve covered wrapping paper and newspaper, but surprisingly, wallpaper hasn’t made the list. I say “surprisingly” because I am a wallpaper fanatic and my bio won’t let you forget it. I don’t actually own the apartment I live in now, so I’ve had to resort to more temporary solutions there. Rest assured that once I own, I’ll be armed (with as many rolls as I can afford) and dangerous (with these genius uses for wallpaper other than on walls, obvs).
Sherry and John Petersik, excerpted from Young House Love (Artisan Books), copyright 2012
This idea from Sherry and John Petersik of Young House Love is perfect for putting wallpaper samples to work. A thrift-store dresser makes a statement when it’s covered in a big, bold pattern. Get the DIY details here.
MORE WAYS TO DRESS UP YOUR HOME WITH WALLPAPER
I don’t know about you, but the first thing I tackle when I start spring cleaning is my closet. There’s something so satisfying about pulling my lightweight dresses out of storage (yay!) and clearing away pieces I just don’t find myself wearing anymore. I have a bag of old garments to donate, but this time around there were also a few neglected hats and hat boxes in the mix. If you’re in the same boat, check out these chic ideas for reviving old chapeaus and their containers.
Hats off to Nancy Ondra for this genius container garden idea. Old hats feel fresh when you upcycle them into hanging pot covers. Let leaves poke out of a baseball cap’s sizing tab or cut the top of a hat and feed stems through the hole.
MORE FASHIONABLE IDEAS FOR OLD HATS
Spring is one of my favorite times of the year. I love the blooming flowers and much-needed warm weather. Easter traditions mark some of my greatest spring memories with friends and family. Who can say no to deviled eggs, dip-dyed eggs and egg hunts? But let’s be honest, we dye, boil and devil eggs then toss the egg carton out. After a particularly egg-ridden dinner party I was staring at my leftover egg cartons and wondering how I could incorporate their fun and funky shape into my Easter season this spring. Then I came up with a plan to transform the egg cartons into Easter gifts stuffed with all treat essentials.
Follow These Three Steps
We’re your one stop shop for all things Easter! Have you picked out an egg decorating idea? Have you planned your egg hunt party? How about baking spring-themed cupcakes? No worries — we are here to help you throw the perfect celebration.
Start your Easter morning with a brunch filled with cheerful hues and delicious food ideas, such as colorful fruit salad, or try one of our favorite recipes.
Make Deviled Eggs Three Ways>>
After you have filled all your guests’ bellies, gather the kids (and adults!) for some egg decorating. Forgo the traditional dyes, and embellish your eggs with one of our creative decorating ideas including temporary tattoos and marbleized dye. Once your eggs are ready, plan an egg hunt for the kids!
Dye Marbleized Easter Eggs>>
And if planning an Easter celebration isn’t your cup of tea, you can still decorate your home with our easy ideas that will last through the spring season.
Make Spring Chalkboard Pots>>
Tell us, how do you celebrate Easter?
Do you ever have one of those projects that you just can’t seem to wrap up? Mine is my son’s room. It’s a darling room and one of my favorite things about my home. But, so help me, it’s as if the cosmos are conspiring against me and their only wish is for me to feel shame as I walk past an almost-finished-but-just-needs-art-and-caulking room.
Well, last week I shook my fists at the sky and finally finished the caulking. All that was left was some wall art, and I could smugly apply a large check mark on my to-do list. And let’s just all agree that wall art can be a bit of a bear. What I wanted for my son’s room was something a bit masculine, a bit industrial and simplistic. After my caulking success I was not about to let artwork get the best of me, so I came up with my own idea using wood and paint. I like to call it “easy typography wall art”. Super original and catchy, right? It is, however, easy and wall art.
Let’s Get Started
I think the old saying that “when one door closes, another opens” is absolutely true. For example, when you’ve finished using a door as an entry or exit, a whole new world of decorating possibilities opens up before you! Check out our fave upcycled furniture ideas for old doors and get ready to fancy up your home with these former barriers.
If you liked the rustic appeal of the shutter headboards I featured last week, I’m thinking you’ll love this old door headboard from Dreamy Whites. Weathered wood + a chandelier = a bedroom combo with great high/low contrast.
MORE DECORATING WITH OLD DOORS
I love vintage furniture. I love that it has a history and that someone else loved it before me. How great is it that I can breathe new life into them? One of my most prized possessions is a set of vintage lamps that I inherited from my great-grandmother. The lamp bases are fabulously gold and embellished with cheesy and wonderful designs. They are perfect lamp bases for a little girl’s room, but the lampshades need a fierce update. A feminine and lovely makeover was in order, and I had just the craft: fabric circles used to create a ruffled lampshade!
Let’s Get Started
Shutters keep prying eyes out of your home, but if you want all eyes on your decor, shutters can come in handy there, too. Old shutters are a surprisingly versatile craft material and you can repurpose them without much effort. These crafts are just a few ways you can turn old shutters into something unexpected and chic.
If you like a headboard with height, Layla Palmer’s clever use of old shutter doors here should appeal to you. The coastal cottage vibe is perfect for quaint country havens and sunny beach houses alike. Find all the DIY instructions here.
MORE CHIC OLD SHUTTER CRAFTS
When I say in my blog bio that I’m a “mid-century modern magpie,” it’s not just an excuse to get alliterative. Like the bird of the same name, I too hoard small shiny objects. Jewelry is a particular problem for me, and no matter how many boxes or trinket dishes I fill, I’m compelled to collect more baubles. Now that I’m in spring cleaning mode, I’m trying to get organized and part with the pieces I rarely wear, but what can I say? I’m sentimental. This Pinterest pin inspired me to start thinking of old jewelry in a new light and I found even more amazing craft ideas to turn my paste into priceless decor. Now I can keep it all! [insert evil supervillain laugh here]
Old jewelry is a perfect way to get creative with curtains. Use a beaded necklace as an eye-catching tieback that won’t break the bank, like designer Brian Patrick Flynn did here. (Bonus: It picks up the colors in the wallpaper, too.)
Don’t have a beaded necklace you can spare? Thick bracelets or men’s cuffs also work well in this context. Cinching your curtains is a cinch with old jewelry!
MORE BRILLIANT OLD JEWELRY CRAFTS
This spring I am hosting a little ladies get-together, which sounds an awful lot like an activity at a resting home. It’s actually going to be a fun and fresh party, and I want the guests to take home a little treat that can keep the spirit of spring going long after the party ends. I am always racking my brain for creative party favors (aren’t we all?) and for the theme of spring I was completely stumped. I kept running through spring-y words like “flowers”, “fresh”, “fun”, when it hit me. Duh — why don’t I just send some fresh flowers home with them?! What says “spring” more than flowers? I just wanted to add a few handmade and heartfelt details to my floral party favors, and I’ll quickly teach you how to make some flower favors of your own.
Let’s Get Started
We’ve covered crafts you can make with wine corks, bottles, glasses and crates…what could possibly be left? This great post on Made + Remade reminded me: Wine barrels! Small scotch barrels make for attractive shelving and storage, but you’ve gotta think bigger for wine barrels. Take a look at some of our best ideas and if you’re inspired, hit up your local winery or hardware store’s garden center to claim your vessel.
This wine barrel fountain‘s got a clever twist: the water flows out of the wine bottle on top! This would make a charming water feature for any oenophile’s garden. Get all the how-to details here.
MORE IDEAS FOR WINE BARRELS
There are always a few holidays that get discarded around my house when it comes to decorations. It’s not that I don’t adore the firework magic of the Fourth of July or the festive hearts around Valentine’s Day. Honestly, I wouldn’t even know how to decorate for Groundhogs Day if I had the time and energy. Some years I feel like the one holiday that doesn’t get enough appreciation is St. Patrick’s Day. A celebratory toast and a green shirt seem to be the limit to our festivities in years past. But not this year! Nope, this year I am going to celebrate with a little St. Paddy’s Day dinner with my husband and toddler (so it’s going to be a real party up in here). To make the evening really fun, I wanted to create special place setting tags for my lucky guys and I am going to teach you how to make some of your own, too.