Gen DIY-er

Upcycling framed pictures

Instead of chucking out an old water-damaged print, I’ve upcycled it into one of these:

DIY blackboard
Yep, a DIY blackboard. They’re really easy to make. Just wipe the glass clean, protect the frame with some masking tape and some newspaper and apply blackboard paint. Blackboard paint is available at Typo, Bunnings and craft stores. If you’re feeling particularly thrifty, you can probably source your blackboard paint from Freecycle or you can make your own.

I used the spray can variety as it creates an even coat and there’s no washing up afterwards. Spray paint can stray a little, however, so keep methylated spirits and or sandpaper on hand to remove any mistakes. It also performs poorly in hot or cold weather; don’t try doing this s*&^ in the height of winter/summer. And always apply spray paint in a well-ventilated area.

Once the paint is dry, sandpaper any rough bits, brush the dust off and seal your new chalkboard with a liberal layer of chalk. Wipe the chalk off with a damp rag. Your new chalkboard is ready to be used.

Dress to Impress (for Less), Gen DIY-er, Thriftster weddings

Shoe bling

Need some fancy-schmancy shoes for a special occasion? Instead of buying a new pair, why not invest in some shoe bling?

Thanks to the T-bar design, I’m able to add some sparkle to my ballroom shoes with brooches from Diva:

For T-bar-less shoes, try shoe clips from eBay or Etsy.

If brooches and shoe clips are too big an investment, make your own shoe bling. Continue reading

Gardening on a Budget, Gen DIY-er, Going Green

My dad’s mini greenhouses

Dad is a Jim’s Mowing man. He’s also one of the thriftiest gardeners I know. I don’t think he’s ever bought a bag of compost or a plant; most of his specimens come from seeds or cuttings or are castoffs from other people’s gardens.

I shared some of my seeds with him and he’s been nursing them in mini greenhouses made out of plastic food containers:

The greenhouses help maintain a warm and consistent climate for the seedlings. They also protect the seedlings from snails. Continue reading