4 Things All DIY Home Renovators Should Plan On Doing

It’s summer, prime time for finally getting to all those neglected, long dream of home renovation projects. However, those projects can turn from dreams into nightmares if they aren’t handled properly. The best way to successfully complete a remodel is to get all your facts straight ahead of time. Here are 4 things all DIY renovators need to do.

Look At Your Whole House, Not Just One Room

This sounds opposite from the accepted knowledge that you should focus on one area of the house at a time. What this piece of advice refers to is the idea of realizing how your renovation project will fit into the house as a whole. Laura Firszt, an interior design writer, suggested, “Try to see your home as a whole, making sure that your remodeling job will result in a cohesive style for the entire home.” The idea is to avoid hyper-focusing on a single room until it doesn’t resemble or appear related to any other room in the house.

Keep Size And Scale In Mind

Another mistake DIY home designers make is overstuffing their homes with all the design details they see in magazines. Sure they look great on the cover of Home & Garden, but does it fit with your home? Do the furnishings clash with what you already have? An overstuffed room feels cluttered and confined. Better to err on the side of too little and then add a little more once all your decor is arranged, than to deal with too much.

Recognize Traffic Patterns

No, this doesn’t refer to the busy road out front, this refers to the worn paths in your carpet. Or the dirty versus clean areas you find in frequently used rooms. Traffic patterns refer to leaving space for people to maneuver through your home easily. Firszt said, “Make your doors and hallways wide and high enough to avoid congestion and stooping.” There are building codes for these types of measurements, so take the time to research what they are.

Avoid Dated Styles

Dated styles are those pink, green, and blue plaid plates selling big in the seasonal section of Target. They’re cute, but by the end of the summer they’ll be gone and you won’t be able to get replacements when your son or daughter decides to use them as anger management tools. The same goes for furnishings, carpet, and color palettes. Sure the “in” style might be fresh and attractive, but will people still think so 10 years from now? Unless you plan on redoing your entire home every 2 to 3 years, choose colors, textures, and patterns that will stand the test of time.

As Firstz explained, “Today’s trend is tomorrow’s avocado refrigerator (or next year’s subway tile?). Choose timeless styles that won’t date stamp your home,” especially if you foresee the need to move at a not-so-distant date.

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Source: myfoxphilly.com/story/25934106/8-top-home-renovation-planning-mistakes-to-avoid


Tips On Choosing And Framing Artwork For Your Home

Many homes aren’t in need of an extreme makeover, a drastic renovation, or a time-consuming remodel. Their interiors are just fine, pleasant, but often blank. How many walls in your home are bare simply because you don’t know what to put there? Sometimes, homeowners resort to tacking up a few pictures they find at a thrift store or random images they’ve been given just for lack of anything better to display. Real art is expensive, after all, and only rich people and museums can afford to buy it, right?

Of course not. There are many forms of art that are affordable and tasteful and perfect for a homeowner with refined or elegant tastes. Mark Leithauser, senior curator and director of design at the National Gallery of Art in Washington buys art for a living, and he had some tips for homeowners wondering how to tastefully display art in their homes.

Artwork Is Subjective
First of all, he urged people to remember, “Display of art is subjective,” and “There is no right or wrong way to do it.” That may come as a shock, especially from an art expert such as him. But unlike mathematics or grammar with all their rules, art in the end should be pleasing to you first, and the rest of the world second.

You May Already Own Artwork
“Most people have prints, drawings—things with mats and frames,” Leithauser said. “You start with your object, with what you own. You want the work of art to be the strongest possible thing.” So the art you hang might not be purchased at all. It might be something you already own. Pictures of family members, pictures from old books, photos of your ancestors, drawings by your children are all considered works of art.

Framing And Matting Prints
If you buy a print intending to frame it yourself, Leithauser warned that if you use a frame “that is stronger than the work of art, then you’ve detracted from the work of art.” Don’t think of a frame as a statement. Rather, it’s an enhancement of a picture. Sometimes you may choose to mat the artwork, which means there’s a border between it and the frame. Leithauser explained that you’ll want to stay away from a stark white mat. “Paintings get little cracks in them as they get older,” he said. “They look grungy, a little bit sad, a little bit dirty. They pop on a gray much better than on a stark, stark white.”

In the end, art is merely in the beholder’s eye. Don’t just buy a piece of art because someone told you it’s art. Buy things that appeal to your interests. After all, as Leithauser pointned out, “You live with what you like.”

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Source: kdhnews.com/living/home_and_garden/getting-framed-add-elegance-class-to-home-by-displaying-art/article_da6a30ce-f11c-11e3-b3b6-0017a43b2370.html

Phase Two of Renovation: Programming

There are several phases of the design process every homeowner must go through. First, they decide whether it’s worth it to renovate rather than move out. When they decide they want to stay (for a variety of reasons, including a desire to avoid breaking family rituals, a lack of homes for sale in the area, emotional ties to the current home, etc.) they enter the second phase of the design process: programming.

To Add Or Not To Add

Homeowners often jump to the conclusion that building an addition is the only solution to their problems. This is patently untrue, and can lead to far more hassle and spending than necessary. Ann Robinson and Annie Schwemmer, interior design contributors to Deseret News, said the point of programming is to make goals for your home, how you’d like it to function, and how you’d like it to support your family.

Room Utilization

One way to decide whether your home is functioning correctly is by identifying whether each room is serving a useful function. Schwemmer and Robinson said, “Every room in your house should be used at least once a day for something useful. Having square feet in your home that sit idle day after day is wasteful. Why heat, cool, clean and pay taxes on space that isn’t contributing to you or your family.”

Instead of adding on, families might find that they can repurpose space that is currently underutilized. Home offices are no longer as useful as they once were because of wireless wifi access throughout the home. If you still have an office and it isn’t frequently used, think about whether it can be changed to fit the needs of your family.

If you’re really just lacking a few feet in one room or another, you can do that—add two or three feet to a room—rather than adding a whole new area. It’s amazing what a difference a few feet can do to a kitchen, bathroom, or closet space. Schwemmer and Robinson gave the example, “Your kitchen may not have enough width to add that island you want . . . so a few feet could make all the difference.” The designers also said the best way to decide how to handle a renovation that adds space is by speaking with an architect.

Important Questions To Answer

Consider the future when you’re deciding how much room you need or how to use space you already have. Yes, the bedroom situation is tight, but how much longer do you have until the oldest leaves for college? How often do grandparents come to visit? Do you anticipate their needing to live with you in the future? What about your own health? It’s best to have the main appliances all on the main floor if you’re aging. What parts of your lifestyle are adversely affected by the current layout of your home? The answers to these and other questions will shape how your renovation should be implemented.

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Source: deseretnews.com/article/865605146/Plan-your-home-remodels-with-your-life-in-mind.html