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Is your pinterest profile full of gorgeous DIY ideas that you would LOVE to have in your home, but you have yet to try even one of them?
If you are, I promise you are not alone!
Before I became the amazing DIYer and blogger I am today, I was a Chemist. I prided myself on my ability to think logically an solve a problem.
But creativity? Not so much.
In fact, I used to joke that I was the only woman in my family who didn’t get the creative gene. It seemed that they all were into painting, crafting, cooking, crocheting…
And so I spent a lot of time ooohing and aaahing on pinterest, filling my boards with projects and ideas from amazingly talented bloggers and influencers that I figured I would never be able to accomplish myself.
But once I left Chemistry to stay home with Little Grasshopper the creativity urge hit me hard.
And so I started to play around with different projects, and slowly I realized that I can be creative and do projects, I just had to do it, practice it, hone it.
And in my opinion, there’s nothing quite so rewarding as making something with your own two hands!
Nonetheless, I wish there were a few things I knew before I started DIYing. If you’re on the edge, here’s what you should consider before you learn to DIY:
1-) The investment
Any DIY hobby will require some investment, although some DIY hobbies will be more expensive than others. Have you ever seen that adorable farmhouse project (table, storage, etc) that claims it only costs $10 to make? Yea…it’s only $10 if you already have all the necessary tools. Once you have to go out and buy a circular saw, a kreg jig, special drill bits, etc the cost of the DIY project can easily match what you would pay to buy the project already built.
So consider how much you’ll spend total and whether you’ll use your investments on a regular basis. After several projects, that awesome kreg jig WILL pay for itself. But if you’re only going to use it once? Not so much.
2-) Your space
DIY hobbies require stuff, and you’re going to need a place for that stuff. Since we live in a condo, the garage space that we would normally put all of the tools we have acquired is nonexistent. Fortunately, I’m not super into a lot of makeup/toiletries, so the linen closet in our bathroom is making do for now.
So if you want to get into DIY make sure you know where you’ll put everything for it in advance. You don’t want a lot of clutter building!
3-) Your patience
Some of the mistakes Ted and I have made in our DIY journey have been, well, embarrassing. And fixing those mistakes can take seemingly FOREVER.
For example, before we moved into our condo I was so sick of boring beiges on the walls in the apartments we had lived in. So I wanted to paint our walls bold. I wanted personality in our house!
And then the color I picked for our room turned out to be poop brown. You guys…POOP BROWN!
And the cheap edgers that Ted and my stepdad insisted on using left thick paint marks that were visible from a mile away.
Once I finally convinced Ted to get on board with repainting the room, I decided I had to get rid of those edging marks. I literally spent days sanding down those marks, and that was before we even got to the painting.
So here’s the lesson: whatever your DIY journey, I promise that you will make mistakes. The question is whether you can laugh it off and take the (often long) time to fix those mistakes, or whether you are hard on yourself and let it bother you.
4-) Your time
Mistakes or not, DIY projects almost always take longer than you expect them to take. If you constantly feel swamped as is, consider whether you really have the time to work on DIY projects before you go out and start buying materials.
5-) Your math skills
Almost any DIY hobby requires at least some math. No, you don’t have to be a PhD mathematician to do DIY, but you do have to be comfortable with basic algebra and/or measuring. Do you know how to calculate area for the amount of paint you’ll need? How would you scale a knitting swatch to a full project? Make sure you freshen up those skills before you get started on any project!
6-) Whether you are a “finisher”
Are you one of those people who has to finish something once you start it? Or do you tend to start projects and then give up half way through?
If you’re the former then DIYing may be great for you! However, if you tend to give up on projects, then you may end up with more messes floating around then finished projects.
Many people may even fall in the middle here. For example, I often get bored half way through a knitting or crocheting project, so I normally end up with 3-5 projects floating around at any given time. However, I get really annoyed when unfinished projects start to get in the way so I always end up finishing them at some point. Consider your personality. If you’re unsure you can start with smaller/shorter projects and see how it goes.
So that’s what you should consider before you learn to DIY! Are you a DIYer? What do you wish you knew before you started? Let us know in the comments!
For more DIY ideas, check out my farmhouse style mug and measuring spoon holder and inexpensive tricks to make your old home look new again.