Spending a lot of time at home has its upsides, and one of those is being able to really give it the love and attention it deserves. You know how you have that ever-growing list of tasks to do (ie: cleaning out those junk drawers or switching up your wall art)? Well, now is the prime time to start crossing them off. And while some upgrades should be left up to the pros, there are plenty of easy home design projects you can do on your own that won't take a ton of time to complete.
Yes, it's great to work on some overdue functional updates, but now is also a time to think about the ways you can make your home a more enjoyable place to be. For some, that might mean some serious spring cleaning and organizing, while for others it's beautifying your bathroom to make it a sacred space for self-care. What's more, you don't have to break the bank to get a major payoff: Some simple-yet-effective DIY projects might not even cost a thing.
Not sure where to start? Sara Malek Barney of Austin-based BANDD DESIGN has a few ideas for mini renovations that you can tackle on on your own. Ahead, learn more about five she recommends starting now for surprisingly dramatic results with minimal effort and time.
Move Things Around
If things are feeling a little stale, one of the easiest things you can do is try a new layout for your furniture and accessories. But Barney suggests thinking practically before moving things around at random. "Consider the layout of the room and make sure that your pieces will fit right in the area that you're moving them to," she says. Another pro tip? Use furniture sliders, so you don't damage your floor in the process.
Give Your Pantry A Little Love
You might not get it to Kim Kardashian West status, but a little love in your kitchen pantry can go a long way. "To create a more functional, organized, and stylish pantry, all you need are some decorative baskets, food containers/ jars, and some peel-and-stick wallpaper," Barney explains. "Clean everything out of the pantry, wipe down the surfaces and measure the walls behind your shelves to fit the wallpaper. Once you have your wallpaper put in, go through your pantry items and toss out expired products. Add the remaining food products into your bins and containers by category."
Update Your Kitchen Cabinets
While you're in the kitchen, take a moment to inspect your cabinets. Are they in need of a bit of freshening up? "To give your kitchen a bolder, updated look, all you’ll need is some primer, paint, and new hardware that fits your cabinetry," says Barney. "First, use painters tape to section off the area that you are painting from the floor and countertop so that you don’t have to worry about it getting anywhere else. Then, using a paint primer, add one coat to the surface. Once the primer has dried, paint using two to three coats. As it’s drying, start to switch out your hardware to give the whole area a new look!"
Turn Your Bathroom Into A Sanctuary
So many people are finding a little (much needed) serenity through self-care, and a beautiful bathroom can make your luxurious baths, at-home facials, and other rituals so much more enjoyable. First step to make it a more soothing space? Ditch the clutter. "Hoarding beauty products is one of my guilty pleasures, but boy can they create a mess of your bathroom," says Barney. "To tackle organizing your bathroom, first clear out everything and sort through your products, getting rid of expired makeup, face lotions, etc."
Once that's taken care of, give your vanity a little face lift by using drawer organizers and storage bins. Think cute jars, baskets, and trays that can display your essentials in a more attractive way. And don't forget the power of aromatherapy: Bring in a candle or diffuser that can instantly set the mood.
Makeover Your Fireplace
A fireplace is such an asset — even when it's not functional. Yours can become the focal point of the room with a little TLC, and Barney says that a bucket of paint can make a huge difference. The color is subjective, but once you've narrowed it down, she's got some suggestions for tackling this task. "Stick with [...] a matte finish so that it looks more natural in this setting," she explains. "Start by adding a coat of primer so that the paint won’t absorb into the porousness of the brick. Once that dries, add two to three coats of oil-based paint to your fireplace. If you also want to paint your fireplace doors or the inside, use a paint that is made for high heat so that the color doesn’t fade or look burnt when the fire is on."