Dana McMahan

Louisville, Kentucky

Freelance writer Dana McMahan is a chronic adventurer, serial learner, and whiskey enthusiast based in Louisville, Kentucky.
3 Kitchen Reno Lessons I Learned the Hard Way, So You Don’t Have To
Home Projects
Learn from my mistakes to save yourself a headache.
May 21, 2023
B&A: A Blah 200-Square-Foot Studio Gets a Dreamy Travel-Inspired Makeover
Home Projects
This tiny studio’s bedroom and living area started out dingy, but with some fresh paint and furniture it’s totally unrecognizable.
May 5, 2023
B&A: A Daring Paint Job and Fresh Tile Revive This Tiny, Tired Kitchen
Home Projects
The new kitchen feels a lot more inviting.
Apr 17, 2023
The One Thing You're Probably Forgetting When Choosing a Wall Color
Home Projects
Learn from my mistake!
Apr 12, 2023
Forget Thrift Stores — This Hidden Gem Has All the Best Old-School Home Decor
Home Projects
If you want to give your home some extra character, you need to be shopping salvage. Here’s how.
Mar 29, 2023
This Hidden Feature Was the Best $100 I Spent for My Kitchen's Gut Reno
This cabinet upgrade took some patience and DIY know-how to install, but the results have been worth it.
Mar 14, 2023
An Unexpected Upgrade Helped Me Turn a Plain Staircase into a Work of Art
Plain risers are the perfect opportunity to infuse your stairs with personality.
Mar 6, 2023
B&A: A Paint-Fueled Redo Gives This Beige Box Apartment Some Much-Needed Charm
Visions of Paris inspired this cozy makeover.
Feb 27, 2023
B&A: A Worn-Down Bathroom's Makeover Decreases Its Size But Maximizes Its Style
The guest bathroom in this Victorian-era home said goodbye to its wild carpet and hello to statement-making tile.
Feb 20, 2023
B&A: This 202-Square-Foot Studio's Chic Redo Was Inspired by an Unlikely Source
Paint and peel-and-stick wallpaper played a major role in this makeover.
Feb 13, 2023
The Biggest Mistake You Can Make While Renovating Is Also the Easiest One to Fix
Take a lesson from my reno missteps.
Feb 9, 2023
B&A: A Scary 120-Year-Old Bathroom Gets a Fresh Yet Timeless Transformation
Bye, green carpet and rusted clawfoot tub.
Feb 4, 2023
One Surprising Thing I Splurged on in My Last Home Reno — and I Don't Regret It
I spent an extra couple hundred dollars, but the impact was huge.
Jan 24, 2023
6 of the Most Important Tips I've Learned from Renovating 3 Kitchens in 5 Years
Take it from this serial kitchen renovator.
Nov 7, 2022
Here's a Brilliant Chic-but-Cheap (Under-$100!) Backsplash Hack
You've probably never seen this popular DIY material used as a backsplash before, but it totally works.
Oct 21, 2022
7 Kitchen Decorating Trends Designers Can't Wait to Leave Behind in 2022
Say bye bye to these features (or keep them, if you march to the beat of your own drum).
Oct 18, 2022
Don’t Skip Out on These Photos During Your Next Home Reno
Home Projects
Taking before-and-after images helped a renovator stay grounded.
Oct 18, 2022
3 Aging in Place Renovations to Do in Order of Importance, According to the Pros
Rarely can you take on a renovation that addresses everything all at once.
Sep 20, 2022
I’ve Renovated Nearly a Dozen Kitchens and I Always Add This $10 Organizer
It's what every functional kitchen needs.
Apr 27, 2022
This Couple Decided to Put Their Washer and Dryer in the Kitchen — And It Works Perfectly
This renovation was no small undertaking, but the results are functional and beautiful.
Mar 30, 2022
You Should Pour Vinegar into Your Washing Machine — Here’s Why
Is there anything you can't handle with vinegar?
Aug 14, 2021
What Do You Do if Your Home's "Before" Is Someone Else's "After"?
Seeing big transformations is fun, but what do we owe the people whose homes we're renovating?
Apr 12, 2021
Smart Uses for Paper Towel Tubes and 11 Other Common Household Items
That tub of Crisco will save the day TWO different ways!
Apr 4, 2021
The Clever Reddit Tip for Getting a Le Creuset Dutch Oven Looking Good as New
Here's what we could find out about the hack.
Mar 1, 2021
How to Become Handy
Want to become a person who can fix it all? Here's how to start.
Jan 26, 2021
Why You Should Always Let Friends See the “Before” Version of Your Home
There’s just no way to truly appreciate the transformation for anyone who didn’t witness where you started, firsthand.
Jan 18, 2021
I’ve Renovated 4 Houses—Here Are the 5 Things I’ll Never DIY Again
They're dangerous, difficult, and expensive to do on my own—so I'll hire out every time.
Dec 14, 2020
6 Things I Learned from Buying a Fixer Upper with a Friend
I have to give my reasons for wanting certain finishes or fixes, and they can’t just be “because I like it that way.”
Nov 23, 2020
3 Appliances You Should Upgrade to Increase Your Home's Resale Value
If it’s exciting for you as a homeowner, it could also be just the thing to spark the interest of a potential buyer in the future.
Aug 9, 2020
3 Builder-Grade Things That Aren’t Worth Paying to Update After Buying a House
How do you know what’s worth it to update? A couple of experts are here to help.
Jul 12, 2020
Why You Should Start Squirting a Little Bit of Dish Soap Down the Drain
Do it at least once a week!
Jun 22, 2020
Selling a House During a Pandemic Is Weird—But Here's What I've Learned
And what you should try if you're in the same boat.
May 1, 2020
I Used a HELOC for My Fixer-Upper and It Was Great—for a Little While
Here's home equity lines of credit work.
Mar 25, 2020
Here’s What You Need to Know About Grocery Shopping During Coronavirus
You can still buy produce and, no, we are NOT going to run out of food.
Mar 21, 2020
I Love Exposed Brick So Darn Much and I Want to Shout It from the Rooftops
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
Feb 13, 2020
Why This 1970s Newsletter Should Be on Every Homeowner's Bookshelf
It's been a go-to resource for me.
Feb 11, 2020