If your home is a labor of love, and you're currently slogging through a DIY renovation project yourself, take heart. Others have come before you, and their work all turned out just fine. Check out these eight great projects from our house tours, along with what each homeowner had to say about the process and final results.
Above, concrete floors from Angela & Tania's Beadle Box
From Angela: [My proudest DIY project was] ripping up and dragging out rolls of baby blue shag carpet riddled with cat urine, and attempting to stain the concrete floor on my own.
Bathroom in Emily & Jonathan's Urban Homestead
From Emily: Everything but the toilet is new and done by Jonathan (he demo-ed everything, installed the window, refinished the original hardwood floors, poured the concrete sink, re-finagled the plumbing, put up all the tile, and let me boss him around in the meantime). This man is amazing.
Kitchen Cabinets from Allison Burke's Modern Mix
From Allison: Being an interior designer married to an architect, we tackle many projects together: We built our fence together, Ryan built some cabinets in our kitchen, Ryan built our bedroom doors, Ryan built our front porch, I painted our kitchen, etc...
Concrete Floors in Elena & Judd’s Cozy Amsterdam House Tour
From Elena & Judd: When we bought the place we weren’t entirely sure what was under the carpet — given it’s a newer building we assumed concrete, but we had no idea what kind of condition the floors were in. It turned out they were in great shape and completely unfinished. We spent over a month of weekends sanding, dying it with coffee as it was still porous, and then finishing it with a floor lacquer. It was a little bit of a trial and error on the dying and lacquer, but we’re really happy with the color and the results.
Karen's Micro Space in Marin's entire home
From Karen: The whole project was a DIY. I pulled the electrical, installed the wood floor, installed the cabinetry, and finished the lighting. The only things I didn’t do were the heavy lifting, plumbing connections, and the main electrical box.
From Molly: Gutting the kitchen and literally holding up a load bearing wall with my own two hands. And the hutch involved a lot of sanding and perhaps some lead inhalation… but those drawers glide now! Decorating en couple can be challenging at times. My husband wasn’t comfortable with wallpaper on walls, but gave in for the hutch and oops, it just went up on this little corner wall as well!!
Entryway in Sarah & Brian's Salvaged Stories
From Sarah & Brian: When we purchased our home, there was a wall that blocked off the entry way from the rest of the house. We took the entire wall down, put in a 10 foot header and re-braced the structure of our house down to the foundation. It was the first big project we tackled together (along with a few good friends) and it completely changed the vibe of our home. Now everything flows better and you aren't greeting by a wall upon entering our house.
Open living space in Caroline & Jose's Remarkable Nest
From Caroline and Jose: The openness we were able to achieve by removing walls and doorways between the kitchen/dining area, and living room. We were able to change the flow of the house while leaving structure in place and avoiding costly/labor intensive changes to the floors and ceilings.
Here's hoping you're inspired and heartened to finish your own project!
(Image credits: Lindsey Kay Averill; Kathryn Bacalis; Adrienne Breaux; Breanne Johnsen; Karen's Micro Space in Marin; Molly & Tyler's Classic Cool Cottage; Sarah & Brian's Salvaged Stories; Caroline & Jose's Remarkable Nest)