7 DIY Home Improvements You Can Carry Out With Limited Materials

tools laid out on wood
Photo by Eugen Str on Unsplash

As the weeks draw on and you find yourself spending more time than ever in your home and garden, it’s hardly surprising that you’re getting tired of looking at the same interior day in and day out. But with many retailers closing their physical stores and online demand so high that it can take weeks to get your hands on any tools and materials, how can you treat your home to a touch of TLC during lockdown?

Here, we’re bringing you 7 DIY home improvement ideas, exploring ways you can breathe life back into your home, using the limited materials you likely already have to hand. From your walls and floors to your staircase and furniture, we’re bringing you bags of interior inspiration to encourage you to use this spare time at home creatively.

1. Create your own stair runners

If you’re keen to get creative, you probably won’t need to look too far to get your hands on some spare materials from your last DIY project. If you have any leftover carpet, this could be a great time to create a unique stair runner. You’ll need to measure the carpet to check you have enough spare before you get started, and you’ll need a staple gun to keep it in place.

If there’s not quite enough carpet for a stair runner, you could use it to create door mats instead. All you’ll need is a utility knife, some cardboard to protect the floor as you cut and a tape measure to measure the area you want the rug to sit. If you don’t have spare background carpet or binding tape to hand, you can manage without these for now.

2. Use leftover tiles to decorate

If you have leftover tiles hiding away in the garage from your last DIY project, this could be the perfect time to put them to good use. With a little creative thinking, you could use your tiles to add a bespoke touch to your furniture, ensuring that you’re left with a truly unique interior that you know no one else will have.

From updating your fireplace borders to improving outdoor table tops, tiles come in all kinds of shapes, designs and styles, so if you find yourself with some to hand, this is a great excuse to get creative. If you’re willing to get a little messy, you can use a small hammer to smash your tiles into mosaic sized pieces and, along with some glue, use these to decorate plant pots or create unique wall art.

3. Buff up your floor tiles

If you’re tired of looking at the same outdated or worn flooring, a polish might be all you need to restore the tiles to their former glory. Buffing the tiles will get rid of unsightly marks and leave your flooring looking shiny and new. So, work your way from room to room and consider if your flooring could benefit from a refresh.

Your garden tiles might welcome this, too. Weather-damaged patio tiles can be brought back to life with some simple tricks. Firstly, use a hard brush to clean away any surface dirt. Then you’ll want to use a jet wash or a bucket of warm water and brush to scrub away any stains. After this, take a look at your grout and make sure this has been done properly. If not, it’s easy to do and you can order all the tiling accessories you need right here from Tiles Direct!

4. Make your own furniture

blocks of wood in the garden
Photo by Meritt Thomas on Unsplash

If you’re already somewhat of a DIY lover, you’re probably no stranger to getting your hands dirty – and if you’ve had a go at something like building your own fence, you probably have plenty of wood left over. This can be used for anything from small items like DIY coasters and cutting boards right up to floating shelves and side tables.

If you don’t have any wood to hand, or at least not enough for your next project, don’t worry! You can often pick up wooden pallets for free from supermarkets or hardware stores, so it’s well worth a ring around to see if anyone has any going spare. Alternatively, you could always chop up old furniture and have a go at building something completely new.

5. Recover your furniture

DIY home improvements can also involve updating upholstery – and this might not be as difficult as you think, although you will need plenty of fabric and a staple gun as a minimum. Beyond that, if you have them to hand, upholstery tack strips and glue for securing the fabric and batting to cushion under the material will be helpful.

With your tools ready, next is to decide what to tackle! From benches and chairs to cushions and tablecloths, as long as you have the materials, you can let your creativity run free. This is an especially useful way of turning tired, old furniture items into seemingly brand new products. With chairs for example, as well as upholstering, you can sand down the legs, repaint and be left with an item of furniture that bears no resemblance to what you started with.

6. Polish your brass

From letterboxes and lamps to doorknobs and taps, if your home features any brass fixtures or accessories, a simple clean and polish could really bring these back to life and completely alter their appearance. If you have something like Brasso under the kitchen sink, great – if not, you can make your own version!

Simply mix a pinch of salt into half a cup of vinegar and then keep adding flour until a paste has formed. Use a cloth to rub the mixture onto any brass and then leave it for around 10 minutes. After this, rinse off the mixture and use a polishing cloth or mitt to buff the brass until it’s dry and shiny.

7. Refresh the finer details with paint

Most households have at least a couple of paint tins leftover from when they painted the living room or updated the doors – but it’s usually not enough to tackle another big project or allow you to completely paint a room. So, if you have scrap bits of paint leftover, get them all out and assess what colours you have and how you could use them up.

From updating wooden picture frames with paint left over from the fence to sprucing up cabinets with the remnants of paint used in your last bedroom update, there are so many ways to get creative with leftover paint. Take a look around your home and garden and make a list of items you’d like to give a little refresh, grab your paint brushes and get to work!

Armed with these 7 ideas for DIY home improvement updates, we hope you’re brimming with creative ways to show your home some love.

If you need some extra tiles to finalise your fireplace design or after seeing your floorboards you fancy splashing out on some new floors tiles, we’re open for business! You can order samples online from as little as 99p and get excited about your next DIY home improvement project.

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