Do-it-yourself projects for the home

Around the House: Read on for a couple of how-to ideas to get you started

Here’s two projects to brighten up your home:

FLOOR MAT

Create works of art for your floor with a canvas drop sheet and paint.

Materials:

  • One 5×12-foot canvas drop sheet
  • No-Sew Glue
  • Painter’s tape
  • Beauti-Tone Designer Series Paint in chosen colours
  • Beauti-Tone Designer Series Silk in a clear untinted base

Instructions:

Cut the size of carpet you desire from the canvas drop sheet. With an iron, fold under a hem and press. Apply No-Sew Glue under hem and press to secure. With painter’s tape, mark and mask out a design on your carpet. Paint desired colours. Once dry, coat the entire carpet with three coats of Beauti-Tone Designer Series Silk in an untinted clear base to make the carpet stain resistant.

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Add your own unique flair with stencils, lettering or free-form art. Co-ordinate your chosen colours with other colours in your room. Add unexpected bursts of colour to your floor mat for added interest. A black border will make the colours pop. Another great twist on this project is to make small floor mats to sit under pet dishes to catch spills and drips. Stencil your pet’s name and paw prints onto their own mat for extra fun.

HALL TREE

Personalize your entryway with a hall tree that’s as much beautiful as functional.

Materials:

  • One 4×8-foot panel of 5/8-inch Good One Side (G1S) plywood
  • One 1×48-inch hardwood dowel
  • One 911-ml container Beauti-Tone cabinet and furniture white base interior acrylic paint
  • Approx. six plastic anchors with screws 1-5/8 inches longer than the depth of the anchors

Tools:

  • Jigsaw
  • Driver drill
  • Mitre saw or hand saw
  • Drill press (or a clamp and a steady hand)

Instructions:

Begin by tracing the shape you want for your tree on the plywood panel. Next, position some blocks of wood beneath the panel to raise it off your work surface and accommodate the jigsaw blade cutting through the wood. Now, start working around your outline with the jigsaw until you have your tree cut out. You’ll want your tree to sit off the wall a bit, so cut the wood dowel into six 1.0- to 1.5-inch pieces. Then, using a drill press (or a clamp and drill) drill a hole just slightly larger than your screws through the centre of each.

Stand your tree up against the wall you’re going to mount it on and drill pilot holes through to the wall, marking where you’ll need to install your anchors. Once the anchors are in, set each of your screws into the tree so that just a bit of the tip is sticking out the back. Line them up with their respective dowels, and one by one, screw them through the dowel and into the wall anchors. You may want to cover the screw holes with wood roundhead plugs.

Last, apply two coats of Beauti-Tone’s cabinet and furniture paint — it’s self-priming, and cures quickly to a tough finish.

This idea can also work in a child’s room, a playroom or a nursery. Paint the tree in fun colours to brighten up these spaces. Add dowels or hooks to the front of the tree on which to hang additional lightweight items like umbrellas, baseball caps and light jackets. You could even paint a growth chart on the tree trunk to make it multi-functional.

New colours and project ideas are an inspiration for change. Let’s have some fun updating our décor!

About the author

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Connie Oliver is an interior designer from Gimli, Manitoba.

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