Category: How To’s & Quick Tips

DIY Door Upcycled Headboard

An inexpensive thrift store find gets a classy upgrade.

French doors are one of those charming classics that we think never goes out of style. And so that’s why we thought this French door DIY headboard was such an amazing idea. Lindsay from The White Buffalo Styling Co.—along with her family—changed this $20 Goodwill find into a brand new focal point in her master bedroom. Because Lindsay is a professional home stylist, it’s no wonder that her matching bedding and complementary drapes made this old door looks right at home at the head of her bed. Want to see how she transformed an ordinary door into a one-of-a-kind headboard? Read on.

DIY Door Upcycled Headboard


- old French door
- saw (depends on size of bed)
- (4) 2×4 wood pieces
- power drill and screws
- clamps
- palm sander
- sand paper
- paint


DIY Door Headboard Goodwill Door 

I found this old french door at Goodwill for $20. I will admit, my first thought when I saw it was not “Oh a headboard!”. But it was just too good of a deal to pass up. I paid for it, brought my sweet husband back with me to lift it into the car (it was seriously that heavy), and brought it home to decide how to use it. Chris had the great idea of somehow turning this door into a headboard! I had the vision for how to finish it out. Chris and my dad had the know-how to build the frame and make it happen.



DIY Door Headboard Sawed Ends


First, we had to saw a little off of each side. It was so much wider than our Queen bed!


Then, they started building the frame.

DIY Door Headboard Frame

They put a 2×4 on each side and then two running horizontally to connect them.


DIY Door Headboard Measuring

Here they are checking to make sure the frame fits the bed. Once we knew it fit, we lugged it back downstairs for painting and finishing.


Sanding DIY Door Headboard

Next, we sanded off the old stained finish with our handy palm sander.


Painted DIY Door Headboard

Then, it was time for the paint. I thought it would need at least two coats, but since I wanted a more rustic feel and was planning to sand some paint off anyway, one coat did the trick!


After the paint was dry, I sanded all of the edges by hand to let a little of the natural wood shine through.  And here she sits today:

Finished DIY Door Headboard

Thanks, Lindsay! To see even more home DIY projects or check out Lindsay’s home styling services, visit her site.





DIY Reclaimed Barn Door Headboard

Using reclaimed barn doors in the bedroom is well worth the effort.

At we like resourcefulness. And we love reclaimed wood. So when we saw this salvaged barn door headboard from Sabrina at Sweet French Toast, we wanted it to give it a big Bob Vila Thumbs Up. What started out as a fortuitous Craigslist find was transformed into an incredible DIY headboard. And for anyone afraid of the potential pests, dirt, or splinters that could come from using reclaimed wood, read on to see how Sabrina breaks down the process of making perfectly good materials look perfectly at home in a bedroom.

DIY Reclaimed Barn Door Headboard


- two barn doors, reclaimed
- (2) 5-gallon buckets
- 20-inch gong brush
- soapy water
- Borax and water mixture
- sponge
- latex gloves
- plastic drop cloth
- face mask
- stain (optional)


After communicating with the listing owner, RH and I made the trek out to what I would call “the country” in Gainesville, north of the metro Atlanta area. The barn was an honest-to-goodness barn, complete with the charming stench of horse manure.

DIY Barn Headboard Picking Up Wood

If you’re crazy to try this yourself, remember to determine how many doors you need, wear proper shoes, make sure the doors will fit in your car, and bring a friend—these doors are frequently solid wood, so they can be very heavy!


DIY Barn Headboard Cleaning

I waited to clean the doors so I could work outside during daylight. Because I live in a loft-condo, I’m very limited in the options I have for cleaning large items like these doors. Some of the info I read suggested using a pressure washer to wash barn wood clean. That might have worked, but I would have been worried about damaging the wood and metal hinges. I didn’t even access to a hose, much less a pressure washer. Instead, I used two 5-gallon buckets and a 20″ gong brush out on my little patio. I would have preferred to have had a hose and nozzle sprayer to wash down the doors. I’m sure the people walking by my place that day wondered what the heck I was up to!

I filled the first bucket with warm water and a mild detergent and the second bucket with clean warm water. I dipped the brush into the soapy water and began scrubbing the doors down, alternating every now and then with clean water to rinse off the soap and dirt. It took me a couple of hours to scrub down the barn wood board and both doors, front and back. I replaced the water in both buckets halfway through when it became too dirty.

Then, I propped them up outside to let them dry. After a few hours of drying, I brought them inside overnight.


Treating DIY Barn Door Headboard Wood

While I’m sure Timmy Termite and Paul the Powder Post Beetle would love to join us for dinner sometime, I knew I had to do something to make sure a host of creepy crawlies didn’t infiltrate our place. This is the subject that I spent the most time reading about.

There are many options for treating unfinished wood, including commercial products like Boracare and Timbor, but I didn’t feel comfortable using them on a headboard—which would be very close to our heads every night—especially since the homebrew version of Boracare contains antifreeze. Besides that, Boracare is pretty pricey.

The day after scrubbing the doors and board clean, I decided to treat the wood using a Borax solution.

I mixed 3 cups of Borax into 1 gallon of warm water and stirred to dissolve as much of it as possible. Using latex gloves and a sponge, I coated the surface of the wood, making sure to cover every exposed piece of the doors I could reach—front, back, top and bottom. Theoretically, any pests in the wood will either dry out or eat the borate in the wood and die. I am counting on this working!


After treating the wood with the Borax solution, I let the doors and board dry all day outside and then for another six days inside since I had to wait for another weekend to continue the process. I figured this was plenty of time for the wood to dry thoroughly and also to acclimate to the temperature/humidity inside our place.


DIY Barn Door Headboard Plastic Tarp

As the wood dried, little crystals of Borax began to form on the surface. My plan was to lay out a huge plastic drop cloth on my patio, move the doors back outside, and brush the crystals off. This weekend was insanely windy though, and I was worried about the crystals flying into my hair and my eyes, even though I am a safety nerd and wear the oh-so-stylish safety goggles and dust mask while I work.

So, I covered the guest bathroom with the plastic drop cloth and brushed down the wood board in the tub. Then I realized that there was no way the barn doors were going to make it into the guest bath tub gracefully, so I moved the drop cloth and set up a little work area in the living room. I don’t have any photos of that, but it seriously looked like a HazMat area with everything covered in plastic and me waving around my gong brush while decked out in goggles and a face mask.

I brushed down the doors, with the key word being brushed down. Downward strokes ensured that the crystals and any remaining dirt fell down onto the drop cloth instead of flying through the air. I vacuumed the drop cloth with my DustBuster a few times while I was working, and when every surface of the doors had been brushed, I rolled up the drop cloth and stuffed it into a garbage bag.


If I wanted to stain the wood, I would have done that after thoroughly cleaning the wood from the Borax treatment. I decided to leave the wood natural and unfinished though.

With the doors in good shape, it was time to assemble the headboard! I tried various configurations (the “Z” facing the wall, facing out, hinges open, hinges closed) before RH helped me find the winning look. The doors are a little crooked, so I placed a single barn wood board behind the middle of the headboard, where the two doors should meet and instead leave a rather large gap.


DIY Barn Door Headboard with Pillow

The true test came when I moved the decorative pillows that were leaning up against the doors. Since they are white, I honestly expected them to show at least a little red dirt, but they were spotless!
Thanks, Sabrina! To see even more details from her DIY barn door headboard, or check out her other DIY projects, visit Sweet French Toast.

Weekend Projects: 5 Easy Ways to Build an Outdoor Movie Screen

Turn your backyard into the neighborhood drive-in this weekend with inspiration from five easy-to-make outdoor projector screens.

Like fireflies and fireworks, movies under the stars make for magically memorable summer nights. But if your town or city doesn’t already host nighttime screenings, you can bring the drive-in to your own backyard—minus the Hollywood budget. To inspire your DIY outdoor movie screen, scroll down to see five of our favorite designs, any of which you can build in one weekend. Get the popcorn ready, lay a blanket on the grass, and enjoy the double feature!




“And the Oscar goes to” white bed sheets for being the least demanding of all DIY outdoor movie screen materials. If you’ve got spare linens, follow the lead of We Lived Happily Ever After. Hannah can show you how she simply clipped a queen-sized, ironed-flat sheet to sturdy bamboo sticks set in the ground.




For a larger, sturdier screen, build a pair of wooden posts with help from the step-by-step directions available at Instructables. To stabilize the posts, secure each one with ropes and stakes. Finally, stretch a white tarp (or a blackout cloth) between the two, before locking the material in position with either staples or nails.




In a woodsy backyard, use the trees to create a wonderfully whimsical DIY outdoor movie screen. First, suspend a rope from one tree to its most conveniently positioned neighbor. Next, hang the “screen” from the rope. The 2 Seasons then took it step further, framing the projection area between wine-colored drapes.




Structural elements of your home may provide all the support needed for a DIY outdoor movie screen. Here’s a look at what Sam (from My Barefoot Farm) managed to build in her backyard. She attached her screen (a 10′ x 20′ tarp with steel pipe framing) to the vertical supports beneath the second-story deck.




Avid movie-goers, take note: A DIY outdoor movie screen like this one would last long beyond this summer. Just paint one side of a plywood panel and support it from behind with a framework of pipe (galvanized steel or PVC). At the end of the season, disassemble it and store the parts in your basement, garage, or shed.

IKEA Headboard Gets a DIY Makeover

An IKEA shelf gets reinvented as a DIY tufted headboard in this bedroom makeover.

Who doesn’t love IKEA? It’s affordable, flat packs make it easy to transport, and a breeze to assemble (well, usually). But when your IKEA furniture’s charm no longer suits your style, Aniko at Place of My Taste proves that there’s no need to throw it out if you can reinvent it. And she definitely reinvented her IKEA furniture into a whole new DIY headboard that blew us away—completed in a few hours and for $28, no less. Take a look to see how she got from her IKEA before to her custom-made after.

Before and After IKEA Hack DIY Headboard


- IKEA shelving unit (or piece of plywood)
- (2) 2×4 wood pieces (4-feet tall)
- drill and screws
- staple gun and staples
- batting (2-inches thick)
- fabric (to cover headboard)
- buttons
- hot glue gun

Materials for IKEA hack DIY headboard


IKEA Hack DIY Headboard step 1

First of all, we took apart our shelving unit. 


Using the drill, we screwed the 2 x 4 wood pieces onto the back of the bed. We put one piece of long wood on each side of the bed.

IKEA DIY Headboard Step 2

Eww—it doesn’t look very pretty, but this is the back of the bed and it won’t be visible. 


Then we lifted the bigger piece and attached it together with 6-8 screws on each side. This is how it looked after the two pieces were screwed together. Nice and tall.

IKEA DIY Headboard tall


We wrapped the batting around the headboard, and stapled it to the back of the huge piece. If you would like to have nice and thick tufted headboard, double the batting. Make sure you pull the batting out completely straight on each side. 


Once this step is done, you can add your fabric.

I chose white for my project. I am not sure what is with me and white  lately, but lots of times I am leaning towards white when it comes to color choices…

The nice thing  about this headboard is that if I ever want to change the look of it, I could take off the fabric and staple a new one on.

I wrapped the fabric over the batting , pulled the fabric out on each corner to make sure it is not wrinkled, and as a final step I stapled it to the back of the board.

Staple Gun Upholstering DIY Headboard


We measured 9 spots for the buttons, using a tape measure, counting equal distance from each side.

Then using a staple gun, we stapled each spot (9) for the buttons.

IKEA DIY headboard with stapled buttons


We glued each button to the headboard with a hot glue gun. I was hesitant to glue with a hot glue gun, but I was hoping to see the buttons stay on. They did!

DIY Headboard Tufted Buttons

I think it turned out just beautiful.

IKEA DIY Headboard Final

Thanks for sharing, Aniko! To see how she made the herringbone lampshade or sunburst mirror pictured here, or to see even more DIY inspiration, visit Place of My Taste.

How To: Mix Concrete

Even if your only experience with the stuff has been to walk upon it, you can mix concrete successfully on your first attempt by following these simple, fool-proof steps.

How to Mix Concrete


Everyone knows how concrete looks and that it lasts for years and years. What you may not have realized is that preparing a batch of the stuff is basically a “just add water” affair. Even if you’ve never done it before, you can mix concrete in under an hour. Of course, there’s more to working with concrete than simply mixing the material. But being able to do successfully is the first step towards building something to stand the test of time. Once you’re familiar with the technique, a bevy of DIY projects in and around the home fall squarely within your range of capabilities. These include creating a walkway, a durable countertop, or a stylish weather-resistant planter. To be on your way toward such rewarding home improvements, follow the simple steps to learn how to mix concrete like a pro.

- Concrete mix
- Wheelbarrow
- Watering can
- Plastic cup
- Shovel (or garden hoe)

Concrete mix usually comes in a paper bag, on the front of which you’ll find the yield of the package listed in cubic feet. Know that for smaller DIY projects, you are going to need the entire bag. For larger projects (e.g., patios), you’ll need all that and then some. Several full bags are likely to be in order, though depending on the task at hand, you may choose not to mix all the concrete needed at one time. If you’re confused about how much concrete to buy, use a quantity calculator like this one from Quikrete. Whether you need the entire bag or only a portion of it, place the package into your wheelbarrow, cut it open, and by lifting the bag gently upwards, empty out as much of its contents as called for by the job. On a windy day, do this step indoors, perhaps in the garage, to avoid making a mess.

How to Mix Concrete - Texture


Having filled up your watering can in preparation for the project, pour a little of the liquid into the center of the mounded concrete mix. Continue pouring in water little by little until you’ve added the amount specified in the manufacturer’s instructions. Be careful not to put in too much water; you can always add more, but you can’t take any out. And remember that if you only need a portion of the concrete mix—half, for instance, or a quarter—then you must adjust the “recipe” accordingly. Worried about using too much or too little? Allay your uncertainty by employing a kitchen measuring cup to fill the watering can with a carefully pre-measured volume of water.

Combine the concrete and water, working the material in a back-and-forth motion, using either a shovel or garden hoe. The goal here is to evenly distribute the water across the powder. If you’ve used water conservatively, you may find that as the mixture stiffens, it appears dry and crumbly. In that case, add more water until you’ve achieved a relatively smooth, moldable consistency, with no standing puddles.

Test your concrete with the “slump” test. Here’s an easy way to do it. First, cut the bottom off a plastic or paper cup. Next, shape the container into a cone. Scoop up enough concrete to fill the cone, then empty the cone onto a flat surface. If the concrete collapses to about half the height of the cone, perfect—you’re ready to go. If the concrete loses none of its height—that is, if it doesn’t slump at all—go back and add some more water. If the concrete collapses considerably farther than half the height of the cone, you’ve added too much water and must compensate with additional mix (or in a pinch, dry sand can be used).

Your wheelbarrow should now be filled with usable concrete. Move it to wherever you’re going to be working. Meanwhile, leave any tools that have touched concrete (e.g., your shovel) in a bucket of water. That way, the concrete won’t set on the tool, and you’ll have the opportunity to clean it properly later on. To keep your wheelbarrow spic and span, aim to empty empty and clean it as soon as possible. Once the concrete sets, it’s going to be mighty difficult, if not impossible, to remove. Of course, strength and durability are selling points for concrete, but now that you’re working with the stuff, you are likely to find that you see concrete and its characteristics from a fresh perspective.

How To: Tie Dye

Brighten any basic white T-shirt with one of three tie-dye techniques using our step-by-step guide.

How to Tie Dye


A staple of summer camp (and of America in the late ’60s), tie dye entertains and engages the young and young-at-heart. Whether you’re leading an activity for kids at a slumber party or making a batch of matching shirts for the family reunion, you’ll enjoy not only the kaleidoscopic colors of the final result, but also the process itself—this is fun stuff! And perhaps the best part is that in tie dyeing, you can’t really make a mistake. Anything goes (just about). Now how ’60s is that?

Step 1: Gather the materials.
White T-shirts are best for beginners. For better dyeing quality, work with 100 percent cotton. You will also need a fabric dye kit, soda ash (if not included in the kit), rubber gloves, tubs, spoon, plastic table cloth, rubber bands and glass marbles. You’ll also need squeeze bottles with nozzles, if you plan to jump head first into multicolor dye projects—and we wholeheartedly recommend that you do!

Step 2: Set up your station.
Minimize mess by covering your work station in plastic—a disposable plastic tablecloth would work nicely. Meanwhile, gear up in clothes you wouldn’t mind getting splashed. Wearing rubber gloves, mix one cup of soda ash and one gallon of warm water in a bucket. (This should be enough to pre-treat up to 12 adult shirts.) In separate buckets, mix up each of the colors, according to the instructions on the dye packaging. Bear in mind that the dye can stain a plastic bucket, so you may wish to use an enamel or glass container. For a lighter, somewhat faded end result, add more water than the amount stipulated in the instructions.

Step 3: Pick your pattern.
Using rubber bands, you can experiment and achieve several designs on your shirt. Of course, there’s a degree of randomness and chance to these designs. For many, that’s the appeal of tie dyeing. But if you’d like more control over the look of your shirt, skip to Step 4. Otherwise, keep the following techniques in mind:

How to Tie Dye - Spiral


Lay your wet shirt on a smooth, flat surface. Pinch the cloth where you’d want the center of the circle to be, then slip a marble behind the shirt to that point. Tie a rubber band to secure the cloth around it. Add another marble behind the first, wrap a rubber band around it, and continue to do so until you have a string of marbles separated by rubber bands. When dyed, the bands will leave large white circles on the newly colored background. For smaller circles scattered on your T-shirt, tie marbles in clusters side-by-side rather than one beside the other.

Roll a wet shirt tightly into a tube. If you want horizontal stripes, roll the shirt side to side; for vertical stripes, roll from bottom to top. Place rubber bands around the wrap, spacing the bands at equal intervals. Once the shirt has been dyed, these bands will produce white stripes.

Place your finger in the center of the flat, wet T-shirt. Rotate the shirt clockwise, keeping your finger still so that the shirt twists around it like a pinwheel. When the whole shirt is tightly spiraled into a disc shape, remove your finger and carefully wrap three to four rubber bands over the shirt so that they cross like a starburst in the center.

Step 4: Soak your shirt.
Wearing gloves, stick your shirt into the solution of soda ash and warm water and let it soak for ten to 15 minutes. Doing so helps the dye cling to the fibers. After you remove the shirt, wring out any excess water, so it’s damp but not dripping.

Step 5: Get colorful.
If you are dyeing a shirt with a single color, the easiest method is to dip dye it. Fill a bucket with the dye you’ve mixed, then dunk the shirt in, making sure the fabric is completely submerged. Leave the shirt in the bucket for as long as the instructions specify, anywhere from ten to 30 minutes. The longer the shirt soaks, the deeper the color is going to be.

If you are creating a multicolored pattern, take the colors you’ve mixed and pour them into squeeze bottles. Place your white shirt on the plastic-covered work station, then squirt colors from the different bottles onto different parts of the shirt (flip the shirt over and add color to the back, too). When you’re finished, cover the garment in plastic wrap to keep it moist for as long as the instructions recommend.

Step 6: Rinse and roll out.
When soak time is up, rinse the cloth of excess dye, first in warm water, then gradually in cool water. Repeat until the water runs clear. Finally, unveil your masterpiece (if you used rubber bands, now is the time to take them off). The first time you wash the shirt, remember to put it in the machine on its own. That way, you can avoid any accidents. Dry the shirt on the dryer’s coolest setting. Or opt to air dry—somehow that seems most appropriate, no?

DIY Repurposed Window Headboard

These thrift store windows bring new life to a guest bedroom as a simple repurposed headboard.

At, we love an old window. No, really. And this repurposed window headboard from Liz Marie puts one of our favorite materials on full display. By letting their natural window-ness shine through (see what we did there?), she ended up with a headboard that elevates a potentially ordinary guest bedroom to cottage chic.  So if you have some spare windows left over from a remodel or are lucky enough to find some at the local thrift store, read on and get ready to be inspired.

DIY Repurposed Window Headboard


- (4) antique windows
- painter’s tape
- picture hangers
- tape measure
- level
- screws
- nails
- drill/driver
- hammer
- polyurethane
- caulk and caulk gun

I found these windows at a local thrift store for a price that I could not pass up. I loved that they were all similar and knew right away what I wanted to do with them. I also loved all of the flaws in the windows & didn’t want to change them in any way.

This headboard was quite simple to hang & only required a few steps to make sure it was secure & ready for guests. I am not going to lie, having windows hanging above a bed wasn’t my safest idea ever so I wanted to make sure things were as secure as possible.


Tape off wall for diy window headboard

We taped off the wall in sections the size of the windows to see how we wanted the windows hung and how we wanted them to be spaced on the wall.


We then secured any loose parts on the windows, we wanted them to be shabby, but not fall apart on our guests. Different steps for each window. We polyurethaned the windows so that the paint would not chip off of the window. It would also be wise to caulk the glass in your windows if you find that any are loose.


We attached picture hangers on the back of all of the windows that were appropriate for the weight of the windows. One picture frame holder for each window.


Screw in DIY Window Headboard

Using a tape measure, level, and screws we hung the windows as level and straight as possible. This is hard when you are working with rustic materials because there are flaws as you can see, but we tried to keep them as similar as possible.


We put nails in the wall behind the windows to secure them from being able to move back and forth if anyone were to bump them. Also this step straightens out your windows if they are hanging a little crooked.

DIY Window Headboard

We have actually had guests stay in this room already and I was so excited to ask them the morning after they slept in the room if the windows bothered them at all or if anything. They said they were perfect and didn’t effect them at all.

Thanks to Liz Marie Blog for sharing! To check out more of her DIY projects and get the home tour, visit her site.

Genius! DIY Citronella Candles

You mean you can make your own citronella candles? Now, that’s genius! Mother and daughter team Vicki and Jennifer at 2 Bees in a Pod can show you how it’s done. Inspired by an upcoming lake vacation (and a free set of canning jars), they used their inventiveness to hack humble mason jars into useful, bug-repelling luminaries. 

These two have been blogging together for one year, but they’ve being DIYing together for decades. In fact, they’ve tackled projects of all sizes. When the pair teamed up with family to renovate Jennifer’s kitchen, they did everything from tiling the floor to creating custom drapes (and when it comes to furniture, they’re repurposing gurus). So when they spotted a mason jar lamp for sale—with a hefty price tag—they knew it’d be a cinch to make their own. With the addition of citronella oil, these are not only a source of illumination, but a serious bug-repellant as well.

“Our oil lamps are still burning,” they tell us. “We have used them all summer long and there is plenty of citronella oil left.” But that’s not the last from these home inventors. “We’ve been toying with the idea of creating outdoor solar lights on a pedestal to line the sidewalk. It may be fun to “stain” them orange for the fall,” says the mother-daughter duo.

Read on to see how Vicki and Jennifer created these affordable, wow-worthy DIY citronella candles.

DIY Citronella Candles - Flames


- Mason jars
- 100% cotton rope
- Citronella oil
- Hammer
- Screwdriver

DIY Citronella Candle - Citronella


Hammer a hole in the center insert of the jar top. TipYou can hammer two lids at one time. 

DIY Citronella Candle - Lids


DIY Citronella Candle - Punctured Lid


Use three strand rope for your wick. TipUse 100% cotton rope. Nylon will melt, sizzle and quit burning.

DIY Citronella Candle - Rope

Tip Wrap the tip of the rope with tape. This will keep the rope from unraveling when you place it in the jar lid.

DIY Citronella Candle - Wick


Pour citronella oil into the jar, anywhere from a quarter- to a third-full.

DIY Citronella Candle - Oil


Screw the lid into place. Snip the taped end off of the rope.

DIY Citronella Candle - Snip


Let the rope soak up the citronella oil for about 10-15 minutes before lighting.

DIY Citronella Candle - Finished Pair


Stand back and light it up.

DIY Citronella Candle - Lit


When the rope wicks are first lit, they will burn high. After a few minutes the flame will be more like a candle burning. Take them outdoors and let them work their magic on keeping the mosquitos away.

Thanks to our genius DIY bloggers Vicki and Jennifer from 2 Bees in a Pod for sharing their tutorial for the perfect DIY citronella candles! To catch up with their latest hacks and projects, check out their blog.

5 Things to Do with… Old Window Screens

Turn a torn screen into a window of opportunity with these practical projects involving repurposed mesh.

If that window screen is torn beyond repair, don’t take the entire panel out to the trash. Rather, look for ways to reuse the screen in and around your house. That meshy material can do much more than simply block out bugs. Scroll down to see five of our favorite ways to give screens a second life.



Sift old paint


Before you embark on a touch-up project that involves leftover paint, take the time to filter out debris (for example, dust or brush bristles) or any film that has formed. Cut out a patch of window screen large enough to fit over the can, then hold it in place as you pour the liquid into the paint tray you plan to use in your day’s work.



Stop Sidewalk Infestations


To keep cracks in driveways or walkways from becoming prime real estate for critters, use crumpled window screening to fill any gaps you encounter in surfaces meant to be continuously paved. The mesh works to discourage small animals from making themselves a permanent home on your property.



Shield Gutters


Improper storm drainage can lead to serious damage, so get your game plan together. Cleaning gutters annually or twice per year is a no-brainer, but with gutter guards you can keep leaves and other debris from reaching your gutters in the first place. But as gutter guards don’t come cheap, repurposed window screens work almost as well, and at a fraction of the cost.



Preventing Clogged Drains


A long, hot shower should be nothing but relaxing. You certainly don’t want the stress and mess of a slow drain ruining your bathing ritual. Drain grates go only so far to trap hair and other pipe-clogging debris from entering your plumbing system. Add a further layer of protection by placing a small square of window screen under the grid.



Protect New Grass


Whether you’re planting a new lawn or reseeding a failed patch, anchor a swath of screening over the area. That way, the grass seed won’t become dinner for the neighborhood birds. Once the grass has sprouted, pull the screen back, roll it up, and store it in the garage or basement until next time you need it.

Genius! World’s Most Amazing DIY Slip ‘N Slide

In the DIY world, there are great projects, and then there are the truly genius projects that make life a little more exciting. Jennifer at Hope Studios is not just a cool mom, she also creates genius projects worth celebrating.

Some of Jennifer’s kid-friendly work includes a small hockey court made with a sheet of plywood and 2x4s. Yes, please! Or how about the time she hacked curtain sheers for an epic game of glow-in-the-dark flag football. Incredible!

But it’s her DIY slip ‘n slide that’s caught our eye. With a little ingenuity and a lot of plastic sheeting she created the ultimate end-of-summer water slide. And the best part is it that it only takes about 20 minutes to set up, so just about anyone can recreate it.

So where does Jennifer get her inspiration? “I love to browse Pinterest and other blogs,” she says. Even a trip to the hardware store can inspire her next great idea.

Read on to inspire your next epic project—and learn how to create a DIY slip ‘n slide in your own backyard.

DIY Slip n Slide


- Heavy-duty plastic sheeting
- Landscape anchor pins
- Hammer
- Garden hose
- Baby soap (optional)

Is it possible to do this in a flat yard? Jennifer says yes, but she was lucky enough to be able to run her 65 feet of plastic sheeting downhill for the ultimate DIY slip ‘n slide.

DIY Slip n Slide - Step 1


Jennifer folded her sheeting in half lengthwise to provide an extra layer between the kids and the ground for a sliding surface of 4 x 65 feet.

She anchored the sides of sheeting—making sure they didn’t stick out so little arms and legs were safe on the way down.

DIY Slip n Slide - Step 3


Now the fun part. Turn on the hose to wet the slide. Or use Jennifer’s extra fun idea: add some baby soap to make the plastic extra slippery.

She says, “You can leave the hose at the top of the slide for lubrication, or you can attach a sprinkler head like I did so the kids slide through a nice, cooling shower on the way down.”

Admire your hard work. You’ll know it’s paid off by how many times the kids use the slide.

“My kids (and all the kids in the neighborhood) played on it for hours for days,” said Jennifer. “We finally had to pull it up so we didn’t kill the grass.” She recommends moving it around the yard to avoid dead patches on your lawn.

DIY Slip n Slide - Step 5


DIY Slip n Slide - Playing


Jennifer says, “The baby soap/inner tube combo is SUPER FAST!”

DIY Slip n Slide - Inner Tube


DIY Slip n Slide - Racing


Thanks to our Genius! DIYer Jennifer at Hope Studios for sharing with us! For more on this project and to learn how she safely anchored her plastic sheeting to the lawn, check out her blog.