Quality time with your significant other can be priceless, but there are alternatives to spending money going out to dinner and a movie, paying for a local “stay-cation”, or attempting to take dance lessons together. Michelle Sanchez, in-house designer for Renovation Realty, recommends taking on a DIY project at home with your companion. Showing someone you care doesn’t have to include an expensive night out. Spending quality time and being creative together can be a much more personal, relationship-building experience.
The team at Renovation Realty has prepared a list of four simple DIY home projects that will have you falling in love with that special someone, and your home, all over again:
1. Paint an accent wall: Transform the rooms of your home by adding a little color and painting accent walls in different rooms. Relatively inexpensive, a new shade of paint can dramatically revitalize a space. An accent wall is painted with a color that stands out from, but complements the other walls and ceiling. Accent walls can also complement the furnishings, rugs and carpet in a room. You can visit local hardware stores like Home Depot to browse paint samples and different shades of colors. Once you’ve decided on color, count on most single wall paint jobs taking two coats of paint, or roughly two gallons, depending on wall size. Give the wall dimensions to your paint store expert to ensure proper planning.
Set the mood with romantic music, pour some champagne and start painting!
2. Create a gallery wall: Adding a gallery wall to the home is the perfect way to make a personal statement, and serves as a conversation piece when guests come over. First, decide on a space to showcase the gallery wall. It can go on any wall in any room, whether kitchen, living room, dining room, or bathroom, that has a large blank space. Browse your home for artwork, mirrors and knickknacks that you already have, and mix with new pieces. Print out black-and-white and/or color photos of you and your special someone, loved ones, and memorable experiences, and mix them together with other artwork. Ikea has a large selection of affordable frames in a variety of colors to choose from.
Pay attention to shapes and sizes of frames and artwork. You want to balance the larger pieces with the smaller pieces. Pinterest has great examples of layouts and color schemes, so explore some online images to decide on the look you are trying to achieve. Layout your scheme on the ground before hanging it on the wall, and play around with the layouts to decide what looks best for the designated space. You can use painters tape to outline the size of the wall and help visualize the setup, and take pictures of different arrangements to choose what you like prior to hanging. Be sure not to hang the images too high. Typically, eye level is best.
3. Grow a small garden: Add a little love and color to your home and grow a small garden filled with beautiful flowers, succulents, delicious vegetables, herbs and fruits. Planting and growing a garden can be a great way to spend time together, and gives you the pleasure of savoring things that you grow while adding visual appeal to your home. Take a look at sites like Better Homes and Gardens and Sunset to decide what will grow best in your climate. You can grow a small garden without even having a lot of back or front yard space. All you need is one or a few large containers, potting soil and a sunny spot, like a patio or deck that gets about six hours of light. Choose decorative containers (or even paint them yourself!) for added charm. Surround the large vegetable pots with smaller pots filled with your favorite vibrant plants and flowers.
A small, manageable garden with vegetables and flowers in containers or pots will brighten up your landscape, and keep the love growing all year long.
4. Install new light fixtures: Set the mood by updating light fixtures and creating a cozier atmosphere. We recommend drum pendant fixtures. They are easy to install, affordable, and you can buy them in a number of colors or fabric choices. Drum lights are trendy fixtures, and will make a refined statement in any space. You can replace a lackluster bedroom ceiling fixture with a drum pendant fixture to create softer light, while also adding stylish flair to the room.
Before installing, be sure to turn off the power in the circuit breaker in the room you will be working in. Remove the old fixture, and check the electrical box in the ceiling where the fixture is attached to see if it’s tight enough. If not, tighten the screws, but don’t over tighten. Connect the wires on the new fixture to the existing wires. Secure the base or canopy to the electrical box with the included hardware. Then, install the bulbs with correct wattage for the fixture. Attach the trim and cover to your light fixture, and make necessary adjustments to the length of the chain.
Once you’re finished, spread candles throughout the room to add even more warm light. New lighting will create a comfortable, inviting atmosphere, helping you and your companion to relax and enjoy your home.