What’s better than delicious macarons and glitter you can eat? Absolutely nothing! These classy and delicious cookies would be the perfect pairing for a dinner party with your girlfriends or a great addition to the dessert bar at a bridal shower! Continue reading
When my books covered more floorspace in my bedroom than my actual furniture, I knew I needed to make a change. And I sure wasn’t planning on giving up my book addiction, so the next logical step was to give my books a place of honor in my home, on shelves made specifically for them. And thus, my library was born. Six months of painting, building, shopping and organizing later, and the storage room in our house was converted into my very own home library. And I’ve never been happier.
So if you’re thinking about tackling the same project in your home, here are a few tips from what I discovered about creating my home library.
1. Plan, plan, plan!
The last thing you want to do when transforming a room into your home library is cost yourself extra time and money because your not sure what you want. So grab a tape measure, a utility knife and an old cardboard box and plan yourself a room. I’m a fan of visualizing things in advance, so I found it helpful to measure the dimension of my room, including the locations of the door and window, to see just how much space I had for shelves, seating and any decor I wanted to add. Then, using the box, I cut everything down to size for a mini-model of my future library. Without it, I might have bought a couch so large it blocked any and all entry into the room.
2. Know your limits
Even if you have a small space to work with, don’t underestimate the time and (potentially) money that you’ll be putting into your library. Shelving, if you choose to make your own, cannot be built, primed, painted and ready for books in one day. Heck, your room cannot be painted and ready to move in all in one day for that matter. Plan a weekend for a small, solo project, or grab a few buddies and make it a transformation that lasts a couple of weekends. Just don’t stress yourself out. Creating your own library is supposed to be fun and something to be proud of when it’s all finished.
3. Pick your style and get creative
Decorating a library can be expensive if you plan on buying everything new. And that’s where flea markets, antique stores and Pinterest all come in handy. There are plenty of cool DIY decorating projects that you can tackle all on your own for a lot less money. I wanted my library to have an antique feel, but I’m living on a recent college grad’s budget, so flea markets became my best friend. I dug through some of my grandmother’s old pictures to make a stylish black and white photo collection, used antiques bottles that I had collected throughout the years to decorate empty shelves and bought discounted fabric to sew accent pillows.
And don’t let anyone fool you into thinking that you can’t make cool things!
I loved the idea of this window coffee table but I didn’t have the budget to buy it. Instead, I hunted up an old window of my own, used the extra wood and paint from my shelves, and viola! A total of $16 was all I spent to get the coffee table of my dreams.
4. Splurge on seating
One thing you don’t want to do is skimp on seating. Assuming that you’re creating a library to not only house your book collection, but to also have a comfortable and relaxing place to read, you’ll want a seat that won’t make your back ache or butt fall asleep 15 minutes into your newest read. Here’s where saving on decor allows you to spend a bit of extra cash on a super comfy couch or chair. Just make sure it fits nicely in the room and doesn’t overpower the space. Stores like Ikea and Overstock.com have good deals on furniture from time to time, but shop around until you find something you like. I managed to snag my loveseat at Walmart for a good deal.
5. Make it your own
Lastly, make sure the space is all you. If you want hot pink walls and purple carpeting or white everything, it’s cool. As long as your library is a space where you can unwind, then do your thing. Don’t be afraid of color. Add movie posters, pictures or your own art to the walls. Have mini-bookshelves or fill the entire room with books. Ask for suggestions from the people around you, but ultimately make sure that the final result is a space that you’re going to love just as much a year from now as you do the day you finish.
So for all my book lovers out there, I hope you’re adventurous enough to give creating your own home library a shot. And I seriously hope you have as much fun with your project as I had with mine.
DIY Library Gallery
Every now and then you may want to get fancy and throw on a little bling, but infrequently worn jewelry may be stored out of sight, collecting dust or rust. If you don’t want to spend money at a fancy cleaner’s, try these methods to spruce up your jewelry before decking out your latest outfit. In most cases a toothbrush, a shallow bowl, and one easy household item is all that is needed! Continue reading
A lot of home renovations take all kinds of time, money, and professional talent. And let’s face it: most of us don’t have those things on hand. But you don’t need to do a complete overhaul on your house to make it look good. Even the smallest improvements can make a huge difference and get your humble abode looking a little less humble and a little more like the home you’ve always wanted. There are lots of do-it-yourself projects that will spruce up your home in no time. We’ll take a look at each part of the house for some ideas to get you started. Continue reading
I’m a funky nail polish kind of girl. I’ll wear just about any color under the sun, as long as I can’t see my natural nails through the paint (oh, the horror). Nope – unless it’s serving as a topcoat for a midnight blue or a sea foam green, clear nail polish does not touch my fingertips, thus taking forever to use up a bottle. So, for all those who have had the same bottle of clear polish sitting idle on a shelf for years, here are five clever uses for clear nail polish. Continue reading
Decorating a new place can be a difficult task. From deciding on color schemes to taking infinite measurements and arranging furniture and the like, it’s probable that you’ll feel extremely overwhelmed. However, the wonders of this technological era are here to help. Endless apps and websites are at our fingertips to simplify the decorating process, and these are some of the best out there. Continue reading
Cleaning… Sadly, it never ends. Your house could be shining like diamonds in the morning, but if you intend to live in it, it’ll be dirty by the afternoon, and then the cycle starts all over. Laundry, dishes, dusting, floors… The trouble is, the home-cleaners we buy in stores, despite their efforts to make our living spaces cleanlier, leave us breathing in toxic chemicals and smearing them on every surface of our homes. If you mix the wrong two cleaners, the reaction can be lethal. Have you ever heard of death by bathroom cleaner?
Luckily, these chemicals and toxins can be easily avoided by making our own home-cleaning solutions. Chances are you have all the necessary ingredients in your cabinet already. All you need are a few basics: baking soda, white vinegar, lemon, hydrogen peroxide, rubbing alcohol and water, obviously. Between those six ingredients, all kinds of cleaning can be done, without the harmful side effects of chemicals and animal testing. Continue reading
I always find it funny when magazines recommend jewelry pieces that cost upwards of $50 as items that can be afforded on any budget. I don’t know about you, but as a recent college graduate who has yet to begin her career, there is no way I can drop $50 or more on a necklace or bracelet, no matter how cute it is.
That’s why I love these DIY Jeweled and Studded Cuffs from Life in Mod. Blogger Camille Dipaola created these gorgeous and affordable bracelets with just a few supplies you can find at your local craft store. She walks you through the project step by step, and once you know the basics, you can take your own creative spin with designs of your own.
These cuffs would be a great addition to any wardrobe. They’re great pieces of statement jewelry for your next girls-night-out or date night. To get crafty, check out the Full DIY over at Life in Mod.
- DIY Cupcake Mini-Mason Candy Jar by The Daily Sugar
- DIY Galaxy Necklace by Oh the Lovely Things
- DIY Confetti Shirt by Studio DIY
Hi! I’m Abbie. I’m a Wisconsin girl who just completed a degree in journalism, which I hope will help me achieve my goal of reading books and writing about them for a living. In my free time, I enjoy reading, watching Doctor Who and hanging out with my boyfriend and his two cats.
Check out more from Abbie Reetz on TDQ…
I have always felt that January was the middle month, separating two of the best parts of winter: Christmas and Valentine’s Day. Though the Christmas festivities are long over, we can now begin building excitement for the next holiday in line. Even if you don’t have a significant other this Valentine’s Day, that doesn’t mean you can’t embrace the Hallmark-created day of love. The best way to show someone you care about them is through a good old-fashioned DIY present. Continue reading
Practical décor is the best kind of décor, isn’t it? While paintings, posters, and shelving can add some excitement to otherwise drab walls, there are perhaps few decorative pieces more important for our everyday functioning than a clock.
That’s why this Printable Cuckoo Clock, created for Handmade Charlotte by Sarah Neuburger of The Small Object, makes a mighty fine DIY project that is worth the effort. Conveniently, the site offers a template for the clock. After printing (preferably on a stock card or watercolor paper), you can be on your merry way making your cuckoo clock with the help of a few items you probably already have like glue, tape, and a X-Acto blade, and some you may not (like a Quartz Clock Movement Kit). Continue reading
Lately, I’ve been on a DIY binge, especially with Christmas around the corner. To me, there is nothing more special than giving a gift that is unique to the person receiving it and was crafted by my own two hands. It makes my heart smile just thinking about it. After weeks of searching, I think I’ve found the perfect gift to try out this year, and it’s so simple you may not believe it: infused sugar and sea salt. Continue reading
If you’re a Harry Potter fan, behold: the perfect excuse to throw a Harry Potter holiday party. Round up your closest friends, kick back with a frothy mug of butter beer and get crafting on these adorable DIY Golden Snitch Ornaments, brought to you by Tiny Apartment Crafts. Perfect for distributing as gifts to friends and family. The best part is that anybody can appreciate these golden snitches, not only Harry Potter fans. They’re festive and gorgeous and go well with any Christmas ornaments and decorations. Continue reading
Before digital cameras and our beloved Instagram, memories were captured in analog instant photography. Polaroid, one of the most popular companies to produce analog instant photography cameras and film, stopped doing so due to advancing digital technology; but can we still capture our favorite moments with the brilliant cool and warm hues that we did with analog instant cameras? The founders of The Impossible Project turned an “Impossible dream into reality- allowing instant photographers to continue their craft! Continue reading
Galaxy print items have been popping up all over the place for a while now, especially in fashion. You can get everything from leggings to t-shirts to shoes with a galaxy print design.
The blog, Oh the Lovely Things, now presents us with a DIY necklace with this popular trend. It’s super cute, and, better still, easy to make! All you need is a charm, a chain, a cosmetic sponge, and nail polish. Oh the Lovely Things takes you step by step through the process of how to make this astronomically cool necklace with easy to follow directions and helpful pictures. Continue reading