23 Easy DIY Home Projects From the Experts That Look So Professional
These simple DIY home projects from expert DIYers will transform your space in no time.
Making a house feel like home is no easy feat. And for those attempting to create a personalized space on a budget, the task is that much harder. But even if you don't have a huge amount to spend on upgrades, the home you've always dreamed of is still within reach—as long as you're willing to put in some sweat equity. We spoke with expert DIYers to compile the ultimate list of easy DIY home projects that can help you transform your space, even if you're a novice.
Build floating shelves out of wood.
Storage furniture may help keep your home clutter-free, but it's rarely an attractive—or inexpensive—investment. Fortunately, according to DIY blogger Vineta Jackson of The Handyman's Daughter, "any chunk of wood can become floating shelves. Just drill holes for the hardware and mount it on the wall with brackets." (For the full tutorial, click here.)
Create a stylish blanket ladder.
Draping a blanket over the arm of your couch can add a touch of rustic chic, but there are only so many textiles your sofa can handle. Enter: the DIY blanket ladder. "You don't even need power tools to make this simple blanket ladder. All it requires is a miter box, a hand saw, and a few boards," says Jackson. (You can get the whole lowdown from her here.)
Resurface your fireplace.
This easy DIY home project can completely transform a room, but, surprisingly enough, it doesn't require contractor-level skill. If you're over your existing brick fireplace, "smooth out the rough surface with mortar, then give it a new look with modern tile," suggests Jackson. (Click here for more in-depth instructions.)
Redo your worn-out bathroom floors.
Even if your bathroom flooring is looking a little worse for wear, you don't have to rip up all that tile. According to Jackson, it's easy to "give your bathroom floor a bold new look with floor paint and a graphic stencil." (You can click here for more information on this easy home DIY project.)
Create a simple bespoke laptop stand.
That laptop stand you bought at your local big box store may serve a purpose, but it's not exactly pretty. Luckily, transforming it is simpler than you might expect with this simple DIY project. "It's so easy to swap out the faux wood top of this store-bought laptop stand for a custom design," explains Jackson. "You can glue several contrasting boards together to make a larger piece, or add a pop of color with recycled skateboards." (For the full tutorial, click here.)
Make an easy candleholder out of wood.
Have one too many mismatched candles kicking around your house? Turn them into a stunning centerpiece by creating your very own wooden candle or plant holder. "Dig through your scrap wood pile to put together this simple DIY candleholder that doubles as an air plant stand," says Jackson. "Just glue up the layers, trim off the sides, and drill a hole for the candle on top." Simple as that!
Create a fancy plant hook.
Even if you don't have much of a green thumb, hanging some easy-to-care-for plants on your wall can add major character to your space with a minimal investment of time. "Spice up an ordinary plant hook with a fancy wood backing, then add cute terrariums for air plants," says Jackson, who notes that this whole project takes under an hour to complete.
Redo your cabinets with contact paper.
A full kitchen makeover is a pretty time-consuming and expensive undertaking. However, you can "give your flat front cabinets a quick makeover with peel and stick contact paper," says Jackson. This is also a great way for renters to transform their kitchens without losing their security deposit. (For more information on how to make this easy DIY project happen, click here.)
Transform your kitchen backsplash.
You don't need to tear out your existing backsplash to give it new life. Instead, "brighten it up with a coat of bonding primer and floor paint that holds up to cooking messes and sink splashes," suggests Jackson. (Click here for more information on this tutorial.)
Add crown molding to your cabinetry.
Looking for a way to transform your kitchen that doesn't require a contractor? Adding some trim above your cabinetry is so simple, even a DIY novice can do it.
"This can be done by going to Home Depot to purchase the molding and trim and then painting it to match the cabinet color," explains James Judge, a Phoenix-based designer, Instagrammer, and realtor. "The finished look makes it look like the cabinets expand to the ceiling."
Install some interior wall paneling.
If you're bored of your drab walls—and even paint won't do—a great way to transform them is to add paneling, which is easier to install than you might think.
"Go to Home Depot and buy 1×1 boards and then create a graphic pattern," suggests Judge. He recommends drawing the pattern on the wall first before hanging the panels. Then, attach the boards to the walls and paint them in the color of your choice. "This is a great inexpensive way to achieve a new look and a nice alternative to wallpapering," Judge says.
Make your own pendant light.
A new light fixture can be an expensive investment—so if you're looking for a simple low-cost DIY lighting project to revamp your space, look no further than On the Fly DIY.
"Pendant lighting is so easy and inexpensive to make yourself, there's no reason to purchase new fixtures at retail prices," says Vicki Liston in On the Fly DIY's video tutorial. She made this fixture from pieces at a local hardware store, but you may find all the materials you need in your basement! "Start with a basic wiring set up and you can incorporate almost any type of DIY shade to perfectly coordinate with your style," she explains.
Sew a new set of curtains.
Curtains can cost a pretty penny, but you can easily make your own with a little DIY know-how. DIY blogger Alisa Bovino of A Glass of Bovino says it takes just about an hour to hem a set of four panels. Her only warnings about these pleated beauties? "Be sure you're using the same amount of fabric per pleat, you're spacing them about equal distance apart from each other, and you're also clipping in the same place." (For the full tutorial, click here.)
Revamp an Ikea media center.
Ikea furniture may be a staple in many homes, but on its own, it doesn't do much to stand out. If you want to change the look of your media center, try this Kallax hack from DIY blogger JZ of Just Might DIY. "With some thin wood, stain, wood glue, drawer pulls, and a free afternoon, I turned this piece from meh to wow," she explains.
The best part? It cost her just $40 to complete!
Upcycle an old record cabinet.
Have an old record cabinet that's seen better days? Click here to try JZ's trick for repurposing a family heirloom and giving it new life. "We decided to use the bones of the old [record cabinet] and cover it with red oak veneer so it would still be the piece that my mom used to store her records," she says.
Build your own surfboard headboard.
Whether you live at the beach or just wish you did, creating a surfboard headboard is a great way to liven up your bedroom with some ocean-inspired appeal. Despite her lack of experience and limited collection of tools, JZ managed to create this gorgeous piece. "This headboard is proof that with enough determination, you can make anything you put your mind to," she says. (And you can follow along to make your own surfboard headboard with the full tutorial here.)
Create a sola flower centerpiece.
Even if you don't have a green thumb, you can still add some natural elements to your space with this sola wood flower centerpiece, via Just Might DIY. "A little bit of water mixed with craft paint, and you can dip dye these amazing [sola wood] flowers and create a beautiful centerpiece that will last," says JZ.
Make your own postcard wreath.
This easy DIY postcard wreath is another great centerpiece that will look amazing on your wall all year round. "This wreath has it all: a funky Sputnik shape, silvery glitter, and a place to display retro postcards," says Tara Besore, founder of DIY blog Hammer and a Headband.
All she used was pre-cut pieces of wood and glue to craft the frame. "I created this wreath to hold holiday and special occasion cards, but for the rest of the year it's a perfect spot to showcase my favorite postcards," she says.
Paint a mid-century-style work of art.
Transforming your home with new art doesn't have to mean spending hours browsing Etsy or galleries for inspiration. "Since mid-mod art involves a lot of simple shapes and clean lines, anyone can DIY this kind of painting using a few basic shapes," says Besore. "Think footballs and bowling pins." (For the full tutorial, click here.)
Create a cool frame for your favorite pieces.
Not thrilled with the frame selection at your local store? No problem. According to JZ, creating this acoustic foam frame is pretty simple. "I created what we call the 'Soundboard Frame' out of square edged pine, black stain, and lots of patience. But it was definitely worth the effort!" she says. "Now this cool painting is showcased in a piece of art itself." (And you can make one of your own by following the instructions here.)
Make your own floral board wall art.
Need an eye-catching design element to liven up an otherwise bland wall? Try making your own piece of floral wall décor. "I had this wooden frame kicking around that was used as a packing element for a large appliance [and] could easily cover it in fabric via staple gun [to] have a gorgeous focal point," explains blogger Katie Hellmuth Martin, founder of Tin Shingle and A Little Beacon Blog. By simply stapling the fabric to the frame, she created this gorgeous piece of art, but you can also do the same with a piece of cork board if you want to create your own custom message center.
Paint a chalkboard wall calendar.
With just a little tape and some chalkboard paint, you can create a gorgeous reusable wall calendar that doesn't take up even an inch of space. Martin says this is one of the first projects she tackled in her workspace. "I sketched it out in my notepad, and then spread the blue painter's tape into the squares, making sure they lined up as I wanted," she says. "I applied black chalkboard paint with a brush in even lines. I commissioned local sign artist Jenn Ulrich to paint the scripty words on."
Build a theft-proof mailbox.
This easy home DIY project isn't just decorative—it's incredibly practical, too. "We use online shopping for almost everything, but porch pirates are putting a damper on this convenience," explains Liston in the video tutorial for this super secure mailbox. With some wood, a saw, a drill, screws, hinges, and spray paint, she managed to create her own theft-proof mailbox to outsmart those thieves—and you can, too!