Budget Living
Page 19
Get Smart: How To Avoid the Top 3 Online Shopping Scams
More and more transactions are being carried out online and over a wider array of sites — Craigslist, Etsy, Cars.com, eBay, etc. Unfortunately, when money is involved there’s someone out trying to take advantage. Click past the break for some of the top online scams, and learn what to look for so you don’t fall prey to their tricky tactics.Scams benefit from our human nature — we want that good deal to come fly in our laps, and we want to trust people.
Feb 2, 2012
Before & After: A Target Lamp Redo
I’ve had this old quirky elephant lamp from Target for several years, and although I loved its silly charm, I felt like it was in need of an update. Using some fabric, and new shade, and some spray paint, I managed to change the look of my old friend.As for the shade, I used an old Urban Outfitters lampshade that I had from another lamp and covered it with sheets of brocade fabric. Read more about that process in this earlier post.
Feb 2, 2012
How To Hand Wash a Cashmere Sweater
As part of my ongoing effort to streamline my life, I’ve begun investing in (paying more for) high quality, classic clothing that will look nicer and last longer, reducing my cost-per-wear ratio. This attempt at functional adulthood means more careful upkeep to maintain my investment (splurge), and, for cashmere, that means hand washing. Here’s what I do. • Fill the sink basin with tepid water.
Feb 1, 2012
PANYL: Easy & Affordable IKEA Customization
Many of us are IKEA fans but do you ever wish there were more finishes and colors to choose from? Sure, some DIY IKEA hackmasters may be able to put orange cabinets on their Expedit shelves but for the rest of us IKEA is a universe dominated by white and birch. Until now. A new company called Panyl is giving IKEA lovers a way to personalize and customize their favorite flat-pack pieces.
Jan 31, 2012
15 Non-Edible Uses For Coconut Oil
Coconut oil’s been getting a lot of press lately for its amazing health benefits. It’s great to cook with, adding a subtle richness to foods and doesn’t break down at high temperatures meaning that it’s perfect for frying. And, it’s also great outside the kitchen! Here are some of the ways you can use it around the house. As a body lotion and moisturizer: Smooth on the room temperature oil and watch it melt into your skin!
Jan 30, 2012
Before & After: Trash to Treasure Table in Just an Hour
Katie bought this table 4 years ago for $30 at a yard sale, and has been using it in all its scratched glory in her master bedroom ever since. Now that she is redoing that room, she knew the time had come for the table to receive a little TLC as well. Unwilling to go through the time consuming process of a full refinish, Katie was able to transform the look of this table with just an hour of work.
Jan 27, 2012
Pros and Cons of Custom Closets
Every fashion-addict dreams about it: a custom-designed closet, preferably walk-in, with all your clothing, footwear and accessories in sight and at arms’ reach. The kind of space which makes getting dressed in the morning feel like shopping on Madison Avenue. It can be yours with a custom closet, but it doesn’t come cheap. If your’e thinking of taking the plunge and going custom, here are some things you might want to keep in mind.Pros1. They’re designed for your stuff.
Jan 27, 2012
Matt Makes His Tiny Rental into a Home
Name: Matt DeLeva Location: Silver Lake neighborhood, Los Angeles, California Size: 400 square feet Years lived in: 1 1/2 years, renting When Matt measured his home to give me the exact square footage, we both couldn’t believe that his place was only 400 square feet. Even though his house is small and a rental, he took the time to customize it to fit his needs. He is so proud of his small home and it shows!
Jan 20, 2012
Jen & Nate’s Upcycled Mix
Name: Jen Selk & Nathan Kalman-LambLocation: Midtown — Toronto, CanadaSize: 2 bedrooms, 800 square feetYears lived in: 2.5 years together, Nate for 5 — Rented Jen and Nate’s two bedroom Toronto apartment proves yet again that you needn’t spend buckets of money to make a home function well, look beautiful, and reflect the unique personalities of its inhabitants.
Jan 17, 2012
10 Tech Tasks Everyone Should Know How To Do
Certain life milestones signal the inauguration of adult life. Among them: filing taxes, buying a home… and of course, finally figuring out how to read your electric meter. It’s a skill you should know, along with these 9 other household tech fixes and troubleshoots.There’s no need to call an overpriced computer expert when you need to backup your computer.
Jan 17, 2012
You Can Do It: 100% Realistic Budgeting Tips & Resources
Budgeting is one my least favorite subjects. One, because I am one of those right brained people who avoids math and numbers at all costs and two, because I was never taught how to make a proper and realistic budget. But, whether or not it’s in our comfort zone, we inevitably hunker down and try to crunch numbers and make a plan.
Jan 13, 2012
Before & After: Revamping A Hand-Me-Down Dresser
When Jennifer and her husband inherited this dresser from her mom and dad, she was thrilled with the extra storage but not with the look of the piece itself. The piece, which Jennifer’s parents bought back in the 1970s was dark and dated, but Jennifer knew with just a little work she could create a more modern piece for her home.Jennifer removed the handles, painted the frame, and replaced the legs in her quest to give this dresser a new lease on life.
Jan 13, 2012
Before & After: From Trash to Silk Screened Style
Walking by this mess is what I suspect most people would do if they saw this sadly torn up chair (myself included). It takes a confident upholsterer who knows their stuff to see its potential.
Jan 12, 2012
Flat Cushion Fix: Replacing Your Feathers With Foam
Feather cushioned sofas are oh so soft and comfy — for awhile anyway. Like anything else they can get a little squished and flat. Foam can easily be replaced, but feathers… well that’s a whole different story. So we’re turning to our favorite upholstery pro Shelly Leer.Do you have a feather sofa? Does it need a little love? The good news is there’s something you can do and then there’s what will work in the end.
Jan 11, 2012
Hot Tip! Coffee & Tea: A Coffee Maker Two-fer
Use this tip and you’ll save space, money and time. This tip is great for small spaces, but even if your kitchen is large enough to make Martha Stewart envious, owning fewer appliances means less to buy, less to clean, and less hassle to organize and store away. An added bonus? All of this translates into a convenient way of being a bit more eco-friendly…People who love tea swear by electric kettles because they boil water faster than conventional stovetop kettles.
Jan 11, 2012
10 Ways to Save Energy in the Laundry Room
Washing and drying clothes uses a lot of energy and water in a typical house. Here are 10 ways you can reduce your consumption of water and energy while doing laundry.Move the dryer closer to an outside wall The farther exhaust air has to travel from your dryer to get outside, the more energy your dryer will use on every cycle. If you can, move the dryer as close to its exhaust port as possible. Can you reduce the number of elbow bends in the exhaust pipe?
Jan 10, 2012
Out of the Closet: How To Make a Rope Wrapped Hanging Clothes Bar
Tired of pulling my shirts, all wrinkled and creased, out of my over-stuffed closet, I decided to come out of the closet completely and create a hanging clothes bar in the corner of my bedroom. Say goodbye to these colorful (but useless) drawers-turned-shelves and hello to my new rope wrapped hanging clothes bar…This is actually a project I’ve had in mind for a couple of months.
Jan 10, 2012
Clever Green Solutions to Everyday Issues
Some of my favorite Re-Nest posts are the ones that share clever solutions to everyday issues (you know, the kind that make you think “huh, how did I not know about this?”). From removing pesky stains to keeping pests at bay and everything in between, here’s a roundup of our favorites from 2011!TOP ROW• 1 Use Citrus Peels To Start Your Seedlings• 2 Hot Tip: Wrinkles? Forget the Iron. Use a Spray Bottle.
Dec 23, 2011
Before & After: Painted Furniture & Cabinetry Projects
The power of paint can’t be denied – we all know how it can transform a room, but the effect is also powerful when it comes to projects that involve the application of paint to furniture and cabinetry. Here are ten examples from the archives (including one where the “furniture” didn’t even exist prior to the paintjob!); check out the befores in this gallery and then click through on each for the always-fun-to-see afters.
Dec 19, 2011
Before & After: 15 Creative Kitchen Renovations
There’s a big misconception in the renovating and real estate world that kitchen remodeling needs to be flashy and expensive to be good. That’s simply not true! We’ve found that with a little creativity, some reuse, a new coat of paint — and sometimes not even that much work, kitchen renovations can be not only eco-friendly, but also inexpensive. Here are our 15 best before and after kitchen posts of the year!
Dec 19, 2011
Before & After: Daniel’s Scary to Stylish Window
Security gates can be a necessity for city living, but, man, they can be ugly. For a little makeover inspiration, check out how much better this window looks with added salvaged molding.Daniel Kanter of Manhattan Nest is no stranger to DIY, but the fearlessness and skill evidenced in this project are especially impressive. When he saw that another resident of his building was discarding a pile of original moldings, he took them into his apartment, nails and all.
Oct 13, 2011
9 Things I Wish I’d Known About Decorating a First Home
I was talking to a friend who’s about to decorate her first home. She asked me if there was anything I wish I’d known when I went to decorate my first place that would have saved me time or money. There are a few things…1. Buy your big pieces of furniture secondhand: This is not just about saving money, it’s also about how your style will change as you learn what you like and don’t like.
Oct 5, 2011
Before &amp After: Andi &amp Dean’s Master Bath on a Budget
Budget is the name of the game, but you’d never know after taking a peek at Andi and Dean’s newly renovated bathroom. Following the purchase of their San Francisco Victorian last year, the couple has taken on the remodel room by room. Check out the amazing transformation of their master bath!After falling in love with an Anne Sacks tile that was slightly over budget, the couple did some research and found a similar Italian porcelain for less.
Sep 30, 2011
Display Inspiration: Art In The Bathroom
Sure the bath isn’t the most practical room in the house for art, but adding even a little can bring cheerfulness to the most functional — and often uninviting — space. And in a rental it can help set the style tone when the landlord’s tile choice does not.
Sep 26, 2011
Before & After: Andrea & Cliff’s Updated Floating Stairs
The stairs in Andrea and Cliff’s house were looking a bit dated. Wrapped in berber carpet, they looked more like a giant cat scratcher than the beautiful floating stairs the couple hand in mind. With some hard work and a lot of sanding, the crafty couple updated the stairs while also creating a more open, airy feel to the space.Andrea and Cliff emailed in to share their stair makeover and the minute we saw what an undertaking it was (and what a difference they made!), we had to share it.
Sep 8, 2011
Before & After: From Breakfast Bar to Storage Space
Remember when every home we saw on HGTV was being renovated with a breakfast bar? They have their place for sure, but they don’t really lend much in the way of design as far as storage or even looks go. Many homes, rentals, and apartments have them, but did you know that overhang of countertop can be doing more for you? Want to see what this space looks like now? Should I keep asking silly questions?
Aug 18, 2011
Daniel’s Brilliant IKEA Fräck Hack
At left, the affordable and handy Fräck mirror from IKEA. I’ve had one hanging in my bathroom for a few years and, now that I’ve seen what Daniel was able to do with his, I’m looking at mine in a whole new light… A whole new light! See what I did there? Daniel, from Manhattan Nest, is responsible for this brilliant IKEA hack. He was also kind enough to give us step-by-step directions on his blog so we can make one for ourselves!
Aug 12, 2011
Top 10 Items to Buy with a Craft Store Coupon
Between Hobby Lobby, Joann Fabrics, and Michaels, I pretty much always have a 40% or 50% off coupon burning a hole in my pocket. If you’re lucky enough to live close to one or more of these stores, get on the mailing list. It’s worth it! I’ve honed my couponing skills and have determined the absolute best items to buy (nursery-related, of course!).
Aug 10, 2011
How To Turn a Tapered Lamp Shade into a Drum Shade
I recently bought a set of five cheap lamps from a big box store. The price was right, but I wasn’t loving the tapered shades. Purchase five new drum shades? Not on my budget. Then it hit me. A tapered shade is pretty much half a drum shade, isn’t it? Chop off the top ring, extend the spokes, flip it upside down, and for 3 bucks plus the cost of fabric, you have a drum shade!
Mar 31, 2011
Corina’s Hollywood Glamour on a Budget
Name: Corina Kramer ( and her three kitties: Mojo, Mr. Pants & Snuggles)Location: Thai Town / Los Feliz — Los Angeles, CaliforniaSize: 600 square feetYears lived in: 8 months — rent Corina — an Emmy award winning hair and makeup artist — lives in a quintessential Spanish casita which she first shared in a House Call: Corina’s Starlet Bungalow.
Mar 30, 2011
DIY Home Decor: How To Make a Sliding Door for Under $40
Do you know what kind of looks you get when you go to the hardware store and tell the clerk you want to DIY a sliding door? When they point in the direction of “Doors & Windows,” you know it’s time to take matters into your own hands. I needed a door for a lofted space above our living room, and wanted the sliding effect. However, since it was a temporary solution, its construction needed to be simple and easy to do.
Feb 22, 2011
Before & After: Budget Galvanized Shower Surround
Jarrett and Catherine of Bungalow Bungahigh have tackled DIY projects that make mere mortals shy away, like rehabbing an outdated basement bathroom on a super tight budget. They got creative with their choice of materials and were able to get a whole new look for under $200 – $158 to be exact……and the After!Here is what Jarrett and Catherine tell us about the project: We recently rehabbed our tired basement bathroom.
Feb 22, 2011
Before & After: Adding Style to an IKEA Karlstad Sofa
Whit and Rachael Gardner of Our Mid Century are savvy stylists, whether we are about talking vintage or contemporary furnishings— the post that they shared with us for Home Project month proves it. When the search for an affordable mid century sofa kept coming up dry, they did a complete makeover of an affordable IKEA basic to help it fit in smoothly with their vintage style home. The “after” looks like a totally different sofa!…and the After!
Feb 7, 2011
Before & After: Kitchen Reno on a Near Zero Budget
Late last year, Edgaroso shared his “Brave Bathroom Renovation” with Apartment Therapy. Well, he’s back with another room makeover in the small home he inherited from his grandmother — this time he tackled the sweetly retro kitchen on a truly miniscule budget.
Jan 25, 2011
Budget Basics: Cheap Closet Systems
image:85d565f3f04669ec0d0d5dd6257d12d4642427cd w:540 s:"fit" class_name:"mt-image-center" show_pin_button:"true" show_image_credits:"true" With the popularity of high-end California Closets and mid-range Elfa systems, the more basic underdogs are often overlooked — here are 5 sources for CHEAP closet and shelving systems to get you started organizing on a budget.
Jan 14, 2011
What’s the Difference Between “Vintage,” “Antique,” and “Retro”?
Ah, the joys of aging. Those jarring little moments in life when you learn that what (seems like) recent history for you is ancient history for others. Everything you buy for your home can be plotted on a timeline based on when it was manufactured and affixed with a generational label like “contemporary,” “antique,” “vintage,” or “retro.” An item’s age is a key facet of its value, along with its condition, quality, and relative rarity.
Oct 26, 2010
How To Make Scented Linen Powder
Don’t pay for extra packaging and products when you can make your own scented linen powder in a few easy steps. Your sheets will thank you. And if you like this, try a laundry booster and stain fighter, or a vinegar rinse to replace your fabric softener. Materials: 2 cups Baking Soda 1 bunch Fresh Herbs or Citrus Peel Oven or Microwave Blender, Electric Spice Grinder or Mortar and Pestle 1 Pint Glass Jar with screw on lid Awl or Hammer and Nail 1.
Feb 23, 2010