Not Celebrating Thanksgiving? Here Are 8 Fun DIY Projects You Can Do Instead

published Nov 22, 2021
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While many across the country are getting ready to celebrate Thanksgiving over a meal with family or friends, many others will be treating the holiday as just an extra-long weekend. If you’re in the latter camp — for any reason — you might be looking for something fun and special to do to fill your time. That’s where DIYing comes in! With a long weekend at your fingertips, it’s the perfect time to tackle a fun project that can beautify your space and fill your heart, too. These eight projects are achievable in a long weekend with minimal supplies, meaning you’ll get the satisfaction of seeing your work complete before Monday. Choose one to take on, and practice a little self care through a fun, creative home project.

Paint a mural.

This year was all about murals. They’re the ultimate paint transformation anyone can do with a little patience and creativity. Take Ashley’s office, for example. It started out as a basic, white room until she painted this breathtaking tree mural. Inspired to create your own showstopper? Ashley shares her complete step-by-step process over on her blog, The Gold Hive.

Intimidated by this intricate piece? You can start small with a simple arch or even a spin on one, both of which are super beginner-friendly.

Make a macrame wall hanging.

There’s something meditative about macrame. You can get into a steady flow once you learn the basics. Rachel created her room divider/air plant display using just five foundational knots. Alternatively, you can find a plethora of macrame patterns or macrame kits on Etsy, ranging from wall coverings to hanging shelves.

Make over old or thrifted furniture.

A long weekend is the perfect amount of time to refurbish some furniture. Rescue a thrifted piece or show some extra attention to a well loved item with new paint or upholstery. Take inspiration from Ashley of Cherished Bliss, who did both and added the perfect amount of drama to her cane dining chair set.

Build a new perch for your houseplants.

If you’ve been housing your plants on windowsills and tabletops, give them an upgrade with their own designated stand like the one Manda of The Merrythought DIYed. Her beautifully simple ladder-style stand puts plant babies front and center. A few gaps in your display? Sounds like a great excuse to buy more plants.

Make a new lumbar pillow for your bed.

An extra long lumbar pillow is the easiest way to make your bed. Throw it across your regular sleeping pillows and your bedroom instantly looks put together and cozy. These long pillows can go for quite a pretty penny, though, so for a money-saving version, follow Brittni’s DIY on her blog Paper & Stitch. In her post, she also shares tips on finding large, unique textiles to truly create a one-of-a-kind pillow. The best part? When you’re done, your bed is totally nap-ready.

Knit a luxurious blanket.

If you really want to up your nap game, though, use your extra-long weekend to knit up a blanket. While this takes more time than a scarf, using a pattern that calls for chunky yarn and large needles will help it knit up lots quicker. For something super cozy, try Lynne of Knowlton and Co.’s knit blanket. Her printable pattern is beginner-friendly and free.

Re-organize your pantry or spice rack.

Admittedly, this idea might not be conventionally fun, but organizing your pantry can be therapeutic — and it’s a great opportunity to catch up on podcasts or audiobooks. Give yourself a fresh start by getting rid of expired food and deep cleaning your shelves. Then set yourself up for a more organized year with printable pantry labels from The Merrythought that will make every mealtime feel like you’re shopping at a boutique grocer.

Go all out with a fun photoshoot.

Call it DIY glamour shots: With a little bit of decorating, you can create dreamy photos of you, your pet, your friends, your plants… or anyone or anything else you want to celebrate. Follow Lucy of Craftberry Bush’s lead and choose holiday-themed accessories, or go for another theme — moons and stars, rainbows, or anything else you can dream of. You’ll only need a phone and some creativity to pull of these photos — and later, you can print them off to hang on your walls.