There aren’t many things more satisfying than completing an artistic project or even a necessary repair around the house. Sure, you can always hire someone to do these kinds of jobs for you, but there’s a lot of value in taking them on yourself if you’re someone who likes to be in full control of your home environment.
A lot of the time, you can figure out home DIY projects as you go. Many repairs and renovations that come up will present challenges you may not have seen before, so there’s generally a lot of learning as you go. But what can you do to make yourself a more efficient and effective DIYer at home? That will always depend on the specific projects, but here are a few general tips worth keeping in mind.
Take On Some Projects You Enjoy
It’s always important to remember that “DIY” can apply to an endless range of tasks, from those you choose to do for fun to those that arise as home necessities. Literally speaking, it’s any job you “do yourself.” But one of the best ways to put yourself in position to be an effective DIYer in general is to make a hobby of those projects you simply want to try. Woo Home put together a wonderfully varied list of cool and easy DIY projects around the home that can give you some great inspiration of things to try when you next have some free time. Trying out some of these ideas is a nice way to train your mind to be creative and resourceful with jobs around the house.
Stash A Few Special Tools
It goes without saying that you’ll need a thoroughly stocked toolkit handy if you plan on taking on DIY jobs on a regular basis. However, it can also be a good idea to look beyond the basics and stash away a few tools that aren’t necessarily everyday appliances, but which can help with some bigger or more involved DIY jobs. For instance, one tool that’s not on a lot of people’s radar because it’s a little larger and more expensive than most is a bandsaw. Screwfix explains that these pieces of equipment can be ideal for unorthodox jobs such as cutting through harder materials (think metal) or carving irregular shapes that a handsaw can only manage crudely. Having a few heavy-duty tools like this on hand can prepare you for some bigger and more involved projects that may come up.
Don’t Avoid Instruction
There’s a tendency among active DIYers (and let’s be honest, particularly men) to shun instructions or guidelines in favour of more independent accomplishment. That’s perfectly fine for some smaller jobs or purely creative activities, but if you’re taking on a task that really needs to be done right, don’t avoid instructions! You’re still doing the work on your own, and all you’re doing by embracing guidelines is ensuring the job is done correctly. Plus, not all sources of help are explicitly about directions; some are merely there to offer assistance with your own creativity. For example, Autodesk’s interior design app is a great tool for planning out a room in detail, which can help you with anything from creative decoration to remodelling.
Don’t Forget Neatness & Safety
Finally, as any regular DIY’er knows, projects around the house can get messy in a hurry. Whether you’re reorganising a bookshelf or knocking out a wall, the mess can build up within five minutes of starting a job, and tidying up is all the more difficult if you’re not prepared for the mess to begin with. So this is just a simple reminder to stock up on cleaning equipment in advance of a new DIY task—and also to keep safety materials in mind. Just as these jobs can quickly get messy, they can also be unexpectedly harmful. Having some goggles, gloves, and other equipment on hand can save you from minor injuries just as having cleaning materials stocked up can help you stay on top of the mess.
Each DIY project is different, but the tips above apply to a wide spectrum of them. Practice and preparation, ultimately, can make you the best DIY’er you can be.
This is a guest post by London-based freelance writer Roger Richmond. In addition to obsessing over his latest DIY project (and article), he enjoys cooking and reading.