Dressing Up Your Home

Written by Posted On Friday, 17 February 2023 00:00

How long ago did you buy that IKEA kitchen because it was cool and affordable? 

Now, the cupboards look tired and you don’t feel like paying a fortune to have someone gut the kitchen which is otherwise fine.

The internet is useful for more than shopping on Amazon and watching Netflix. There are ingenious creative alternatives out there if you just dig a bit and resist the urge to dump the old for something new, but perhaps, to fit your budget, of lesser quality.

If it’s just the cupboard doors of your IKEA kitchen that need an overhaul, John McDonald is a step ahead of you.

His Seattle-based company, Semihandmade and its site semihandmade.com, address the need to update, upgrade, or even customize IKEA base cabinets with new doors. Backed by inspiring showrooms in Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York City, and Chicago, Semihandmade has contributed cupboard doors to thousands of kitchen do-overs. 

Now, many people buy brand-new IKEA base cabinets, so they can cost-effectively use Semihandmade.com to create that custom-made cabinet look!

Improve one main element in any room and you have a new room!

Using the Semihandmade estimator and design support, you can transform your kitchen cabinets from traditional to sleek modern or anything in between. 

Today’s stuck-at-home reality, combined with work-from-home pressures, has gone beyond shining a spotlight on decor and functionality. Now, every corner of home is scrutinized with a magnifying glass! What simple-yet-stunning, on-budget transformation have you added to your home recently? Or, do you have something in mind, but are not sure where to start?

Considering a Move?

  • If you are in limbo, for whatever reasons, an extensive and expensive renovation may not be the answer right now. Want more choice for your next home? Homeowners who are waiting until they can find something affordable that they’d love to move into, still want to love where they live now. 
  • If you are positive selling is just months away, tackle presentation preparation by decluttering and sort-of packing. If you’ll want your home staged to draw out every purchasing dollar, there may be little value in spending on decor right now. A thorough cleaning—great prep for listing and staging—can make your place feel and smell brand new. 

Here’s a few thoughts to get your creativity rolling:

A touch of decor refreshening may be uplifting. Identify the drab, tired rooms and much-used corners that need attention. Select and prioritize your projects. Start and finish one project at a time, so you don't feel overwhelmed by mess and disorganization.

Paint is ingenious—a fast, cheap, and easily adjustable solution to almost anything. I had a white dining room wall that was a backdrop for a large colorful piece of art. I wondered for a while what the wall would look like in the artwork’s darkest shade of purple which I loved. After I plunged in and painted, all I could say was, “Why didn’t I do this sooner?” If I’d hated it, a paint-over would have set things straight quickly. What paint experiments await you? My advice: Go crazy with an accent color you love.

Pinterest.com as a creative resource can be too much! Wonderful, but you can end up clicking or swiping for hours. That site has taught us all that a little inspiration goes a long way. Sometimes seeing a lot of ideas at once overloads us, which leads to inaction.

Select the drab-est corner of your home and then visit one site, read one design book, and flip through a few magazines. Let your “copying genius” roam through the pages. Consider an idea or two to refresh your dullest corner. Then, don’t be shy about searching through other books, magazines, or designer’s sites for that fresh color to apply, a whimsical idea to incorporate, a striking plant to add, cozy carpet to spread, or an easy design effect to adapt. It’s just one corner, so take a few chances.

Go shopping in your own home to find the right accessories or new furniture. What’s in the attic, garage, or basement that can be dusted off or repainted to become the perfect centerpiece for your mini-make over? Or, is there something in those unopened boxes from your move-in a few years ago? You’ll discover in-home art, furniture, and accessories in other rooms the same way. The prices are unbeatable!

Have a perfect blank wall for a large art piece, but only a small budget? Create your own mural. Make it as wild and wonderful as you like. Step back and see what you have. That should have been fun even if it isn’t a work of art. Does it improve the room? If not, paint over it and have another go. Large colorful or graphic rugs or blankets are great wall art. They also have sound baffling benefits.

Plants can warm a space, adding color and texture. The cut-leaf philodendron—the mid-century modern emblem—is a stunner. Jade plants and other succulents are hardy and beautiful. Whatever you choose, buy as large a plant as possible, but make sure its needs match light levels and humidity in your home. Or, do something eccentric, like suspending a large avocado pit over a dramatic decorative glass jar full of water, so you can watch the pit (seed) grow into a small tree.

Do-it-yourself is a valuable alternative when you’re good at it, you love it, and the small project is a short-term fix. Simple projects can have a big impact if you choose carefully.

Talk to your real estate professional to make sure these minor changes are useful if you’ll sell soon. Also keep track of real estate markets you’d like to move to, so you’ll be ready to act quickly when the time is right.

Measure twice, cut once remains the best DIY advice.

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PJ Wade —       Decisions & Communities

Futurist and Achievement Strategist PJ WADE is “The Catalyst”—intent on Challenging The Best to Become Even Better. A dynamic problem solver and author of 8 books and more than 2800 published articles, PJ concentrates on the knowledge, insight, communication prowess, and special decision-making skills essential for professionals and their clients who are determined to thrive in the 21st-Century vortex of change.

PJ Wade's latest business bookWhat's Your Point? Cut The Crap, Hit The Mark & Stick!—further proves PJ's forward-thinking expertise and her on-point ability to explain technical, even non-verbal, communication details in practical, actionable terms. Print publication: Fall 2022.

PJ: “What's Your Point?the pivotal 21st-Century business question—must be answered before you open your mouth, hit a key, tap anything or swipe. Too often 'Your Point' is not clear to you and communication remains an expensive illusion.”

As The Catalyst, PJ concentrates on enhancing communication ROI for experienced advisors, executives, entrepreneurs, business owners, and other savvy professionals, who may not have received as much formal training in communication as they have in their own field.

Onward & Upward—The directions that really matter! Reach PJ at pjwade@TheCatalyst.com and visit her What's Your Point? Blog. Keep up-to-date with PJ's popular column  Decisions & Communities


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