Archives for July 2013

Dramatic Kitchen Makeover

Dramatic Kitchen Makeover

I found this dramatic makeover of a kitchen that went from drab to amazing on Designed with Carla Aston. Her story originally appeared several years ago in the Kitchens and Baths magazine. Her challenge was to take builder standard oak cabinets and make them look good.  Well, let me tell you, she did more than make them look good! Since I like to work with what I already have because I am frugal and try to be a good steward, I see this as a great example of how you can make drastic changes without ripping everything out and starting over.   Here is the Before Picture of the Kitchen that is Wall to Wall Oak Cabinets.     Carla was right about the cabinets being standard. After 2 years of looking for a house to buy in our area, the before picture looks like many of the houses we went through. Nice and usable, Continue reading

Old Baby Dresser into Master Bedroom Lingerie Chest & Matching Desk DIY

Old Baby Dresser into Master Bedroom Lingerie Chest & Matching Desk DIY

Get creative with that old unused furniture Don't give that old crummy dresser away! A couple of years ago just after my daughter was married, she called me up and said, "What are you going to do with that old baby dresser I used to have in my room?" Translated, that means, "I need a dresser and I can't afford to buy one. Can I have your old junky one?" As a mom, you need to learn to read between the lines when you get those calls. Since I have an emotional attachment to that old thing, I told her, "Umm, I don't think so." She of course knows how to read in between my lines as well. She knew it meant, "I'm attached; I have no idea why I'd like to keep it, but you can't have it." It's a little dance we do quite often. Fortunately, I now have reason to keep my old junk. Here is the before picture of that old baby dresser that I used for my first baby until my last child Continue reading

From Wine Rack to Towel Holder

From Wine Rack to Towel Holder

Do you re-purpose?   I saw on Pinterest a wine rack that was re-purposed into a towel holder. Here is the post from Ashley at Rustic Living, who had the original idea.   Ashley has a lot of neat ideas about decorating in a rustic look. She got her wine rack very cheaply at a consignment shop, but I searched online for the rack and found it but it was super expensive at retail price. So I spent the past year looking for a wine rack that I liked, but it also had to  be affordable and fit into my planned decor for my master bath.   I finally found the one I now use at a consignment shop in Rib Mountain. I bought it for $15.00 and I didn't even have to paint it! Here it is with my new towels from Kohls, of course!   What have you repurposed? Continue reading

Before and After Half Bath

Before and After Half Bath

  We moved into our house October of 2012 It was a foreclosure that had sat for a year unoccupied.   The story of how we found it was quite miraculous. We had moved from the Kalamazoo area in Michigan to Wausau, Wisconsin about 2 1/2 years ago into a tiny rental house. We didn't want to rush into a new house, partly because we had some pretty specific needs in our next house, and partly because we wanted to get a good deal.   We must have looked at 100 houses over the two year span...but that's another story for another day. But today, I'm sharing our little half-bath redesign. It is simple - just a bit of painting made all the difference.   I've had a lot of requests to show before and after pictures. Here is a "before" picture of our half bath. The whole Continue reading

Use Old Stumps for Tables and Seats

Use Old Stumps for Tables and Seats

Our neighbor kindly cut up a fallen tree for us a couple of months after a storm with high winds hit us in the middle of the night. While my grandson, Isaac, and I were picking up the wood and stacking it, I had a thought, "Why not use the thicker stump part as a chair for the grandkids at our s'mores roast?" So we dragged them over to the fire pit and placed them around in a circle. They work great for little end tables too. Fortunately our neighbor cut them to the perfect height and very level. I wonder if he thought of using them this way as he was cutting them up? Here's a picture of a family cook out that I snatched from my daughter's facebook page showing our stumps in use. Cost for tables and chairs: one dead tree, sitting around the camp-fire with family: priceless. In the picture you can see the Jones family (minus April), the Dack family, myself Continue reading

Old Watering Can Turned Deco

Old Watering Can Turned Deco

Porch Deco Series Here's an old watering can that was dented and scratched up that we got at an auction as part of another lot of "junk". Just remember, "One man's junk is another DIYer's treasure."  I had Mark bang out the dents and I sanded out some of the flaking metal. I gave into my spray paint obsession once again and turned it into another porch deco piece. I love saying, "piece." Sounds so artsy doesn't it?   Repurpose! Sometimes simple is good. Pinterest / Facebook / Google+ / LinkedIn / Twitter   Continue reading

Re-purpose Old Chairs

Re-purpose Old Chairs

More on my Porch Deco series... Often when you buy things at auctions they offer a smattering of this and that hoping to snag you on one item just to get rid of a dozen others. Some days my husband announces he won an auction and lists the different things in the grouping. It's not uncommon for him to submit a low ball bid just to see if he can win. (I think it's a sickness we've both contracted!) There is usually only one thing he wants in the group. If he wins, he brings the whole lot home and asks me if I want any of the extra stuff. Recently he won an auction that had 3 old chairs - dusty grimy old chairs that would only be valuable to someone wanting to have a bon fire... or a DH DIYer (die hard do it yourselfer) such as myself. What the auctioneer saw as a bunch of junk to unload, I saw as intriguing future projects. Often the items will gather Continue reading

Spray Painting Old Deco – A Quick Fix

Spray Painting Old Deco – A Quick Fix

We recently moved from a larger house in Michigan that housed all 17 of us - yes, I said 17. I have 15 children. If you want to do a little reading on our family and my life these past few years, visit my family blog at: www.momofmany.wordpress.com. Below you can see a picture of the last time we were all together in 2004. We weren't able to downsize when our last 3 children moved out, or to put it less graciously, get rid of all the junk, because we had our house on the market for nearly 3 years. All our stuff we needed to get out of the house to improve the look while it was on the market went into boxes and were piled up in the garage. We had to put on the "face." You know the, "Come look at our house - we are perfect, tidy and don't really live here, we have a show home everyone dreams of," kind of face. To sell Continue reading

Welcome to Love My DIY Home!

Welcome to Love My DIY Home!

  We are Mark and Val Frania, and because we love our DIY home, we are here to share with you some of the things we've learned along the way. We're just normal people trying to be good stewards of our money while we create a home that not only is comfortable, and inviting, but affordable as well. There is no reason to re-invent the wheel if someone else has already done it. Sharing ideas is how many of us improve our homes and enjoy some of the better things in life - and it doesn't have to cost us a ton of money! They say that necessity is the mother of invention, and imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. We have found this to be true and hope to pass along some great DIY ideas and share with you some home decorating products through interviews, tutorials and articles, both by myself and Continue reading