10 Easy DIY Home Improvements

If your home feels stale and in need of a breath of fresh air, then it may be time to make some updates to your living space.

We found affordable and easy DIY options you can replicate to improve your humble abode.

Paint and accessorize

According to Winnetka interior-designer Suzanne Danilek, the number one inexpensive upgrade for your home is paint. “Cool gray tones are always sleek,” Danilek says. “Dark gray walls make lighter furniture, mirrors, and art pop. Add colorful accents like mustard yellow or vibrant orange, which look beautiful and unexpected when paired with gray.

Don’t dismiss updating accessories like new lamps, pillows, rugs, towels or lighting, which can all instantly change a space. Display an object on a piece of Lucite or rearrange your art for fresh visual change.”

(Photo courtesy of Suzanne Danilek) 

Make it golden with a primer

Sarah Dippold, interior designer and owner of Sarah Dippold Design, says, “My favorite inexpensive and quick update is using Rust-Oleum Paint & Primer spray. It’s super easy to use, dries fast, and can be found at any big-box store. My ‘go to’ favorite is their Metallic Oil-Rubbed Bronze, which is great for turning dated mirror frames from gold and cheesy to modern and sleek. I’ve used it to touch up display stands, window-treatment hardware, and even to update the finish on lighting fixtures. My favorite, however, is using their High Heat Spray to freshen up the interior of my fireplace after each winters use. The key is to prep properly to avoid over spraying and WEAR GLOVES!”

Image via Pinterest

High-end and high-style light fixture on the cheap

Chicago designer and photo stylist Joshua Moss first spotted this decorative branch-like light fixture at a pricey home store, but found that he was able to replicate the fixture himself. “What’s great about this piece is that it’s totally customizable,” Moss says. “My fiancé and I purchased silver bulbs and black socket adapters for a small price on Amazon, but if someone wanted something even funkier it would be cool in white with a bunch of different colored bulbs. The fixture has now become a focal point of our kitchen.”

Find full instructions to create this easy project here.

Photo credit: Mariko Reed

Funky bookcase in minutes

Sarah Campbell, owner and interior designer at Bumblebeet Design says, “My favorite quick update is taking the back off of a bookcase, laying the back flat, and using spray adhesive and a fun roll of wrapping paper to create a colorful backdrop. It’s much cheaper and easier to use than wallpaper.” Campbell bought the popular “Billy bookcase” from Ikea and added a patterned wrapping paper with an acid-free spray adhesive.


More quick-fix DIY ideas: 

  • Add an area rug

Adding a rug to the kitchen or bathroom can brighten up the room or disguise an older floor.

  • Make your sink sleek.

Put your liquid soaps into pretty dispensers instead of leaving them in the plastic containers they come in.

  • Change out hardware.

Give your cabinets and drawers some interest by changing out the handles or knobs. Look atOverstock.com, Anthropologie, and Amazon for options.

  • Add something living.

You’d be surprised by how much fresh flowers or plants can change the ambiance of a room. They will make your space more stylish, yet homey.

  • Organize your jewelry.

Use small wire hooks to hang delicate necklaces and bracelets without any tangles. Position the hooks on the inside doors of a cabinet in your closet or armoire. We also love how blogger Emily Schuman of Cupcakes & Cashmere used painted nails to hang dainty pieces.


  • Restore your tile floor.

Using a toothbrush, clean up dirty grout between tiles with white paint. Try Polyblend Grout Renew, a colorant and sealer all in one.

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