Before: A Messy, Miscellaneous Room
Before moving into her new home, ChiWei from One Dog Woof was excited to have the chance to convert the two attic rooms into her own personal sanctuary. But while the attic did have great potential, it would take a little work to rid the space of its blue carpet and blue-and-green walls.
After: A Calm, Collected Craft Room
With the help of her handy husband Drew, ChiWei was able to turn her self-proclaimed ‘turd’ room into the ultimate crafter's workspace. After ripping up the carpet and laying down scratch-resistant hickory wood floors, they painted the walls a crisp white and equipped the room with all-new furniture and lighting.
Before: An Empty Entryway
After: A DIYed Drop Zone
Using wood planks left over from other home projects, Jenna Sue switched gears and put up a plank wall to add much-needed visual interest. The addition of a mirror at eye level as well as a floating shelf and boot tray created a spot at the entrance for family and guests to empty their pockets, drop off their shoes, and check their look as they pass by.
Before: A Pretty Standard Pantry
After: An Organization Overhaul
Before: A Bland Kitchen
Not all renters have the freedom to remodel—but if you can, small-budget redos are the only way to go, because you won't recoup your costs in selling the house. So when Lauren of Undeclared Panache moved into her rental, she knew she had her work cut out for her in the uninspiring kitchen.
After: All-Out-in-the-Open Organization
Before: A Dated Blue Bathroom
We spied this tired bathroom on Sweeten, a remodeling site that matches NYC homeowners who want to renovate with experienced contractors. Allison and Jovito hated the design and color scheme of this bathroom, but they also faced a functionality issue—at 36 square feet, the space was certifiably tiny.
Related: 20 Ways to Make a Small Bathroom Big
After: A Lighter and Brighter Bath
Before: Dim Dining Prep
After: A Can-See, Can-Do Kitchen
Before: A Country-Quilted Bath
When Sarah Brown, an interior designer in Montreal, moved into a 1950s cottage, remodeling the bathroom ranked high on her list of priorities. She was in the middle of a mini refresh when she noticed the toilet was leaking—and had been for a long time. The peel-and-stick tile floor was rotted right down to the subfloor.
After: A Cool, Classic Update
Sarah ripped out the rotted floor, along with previous layers. Then, starting from scratch, she took cues from the home’s midcentury heritage and chose a black-and-white mosaic pinwheel-pattern tile for the new flooring and a pedestal sink to replace the vanity. The end result: This cottage now feels classic.
Before: Your Usual Boys' Bedroom
After: Dreamy Built-In Bunk Beds
Michelle designed (and then hired professionals to help install) these built-in bunk beds for the brothers. Now that the beds are stacked (each with its own privacy curtain and reading light), the boys have more space to hang out, play, and do homework. Hello, floor! We meet again.
If you have the money to hire a handyman for every household woe, go ahead. But if you want to hang on to your cash and exercise some self-sufficiency, check out these clever products that solve a million and one little problems around the house. Go now!