The Top 10 Most Popular DIY Projects

Filed Under: Crafts, DIY Outdoor, Do it yourself, Featured, Gardens, Home repair, Kitchen, Redecorating, Remodeling    by: ITC

We’ve looked around a little to find some of the coolest and most popular DIY projects out there, and these are our favorites. Click the links to get to the original how-to guides, if you see something you like.

10. Mailing Tube Wine Rack

Re-purpose sturdy mailing tubes to create a stylish wine rack. This project is flat out simple: just stack the mailing tubes under a shelf. If you like, you can add a quick coat of colorful enamel. The end result is quite handsome, too. Use the money you save to expand your collection of vino.

9. CD Stack Lamp

This clever lamp takes some effort, but is well within the DIY reach of most of us. It’s the perfect way to transform all those AOL CDs into an awesome accessory. This quirky lamp is an eye-catcher best suited for the basement rec room, game room or family room.

8. Wall-mounted Magnetic Knife Block

Kitchen knives shouldn’t be left to bang around in a drawer, but who has the counter space for a chunky knife block? This wall-mounted magnetic knife holder is a happy solution. Carve slots into the backside of a wood block, then glue heavy duty magnets into the slots. Mount the wood block, and slap your knives on it. Check out the video when you click the link! This baby is way stickier than it looks.

7. Auto-on Watch Holder Pantry Light

Take a plastic wristwatch holder and mix in a dash of ingenuity, and put an end to fumbling in a dark cupboard, pantry or closet. This light works like the one in the fridge. Hook up a reverse switch to rope lights inside the closet or cupboard door. Mount the switch in a watch holder. Open the door and the light comes on; close the door, which opens the switch and turns off the light.

6. Hands-free Flusher

While this gizmo would probably fare best in a frat house, it works if you want hands-free flushing. A foot pedal is fashioned from a wire clothes hanger, shoe polish and some paper towel rolls.

5. Wall Outlet Safe

Your Own Secret Hidden Safe! For Under $2More amazing videos are a click away

Watch the video to see how this one works and for details to make one of your own. A thief probably won’t think to look behind an outlet plate for your valuables, making it the perfect spot to hide jewelry and small treasures.

4. Secret Bookshelf Door

If you’ve ever dreamed of a secret door that is activated by taking a book off the shelf, this project grants your wish. Avid DIYer Simon Shea offers this outstanding project, –or, he used to, but you’ll find an alternative method on Instructables if you follow the link. It takes time and dedication, but it’s really cool.

3. Automated Garden Watering Drip System

DIYer and Green Thumb Matt Haughey explains how to construct an automated water drip system to keep plants properly hydrated, even if you’re away for several days. A parched lawn and garden become things of the past.

2. Homebrew $30 Air Conditioner

When you can’t bear another sultry summer day without air conditioning, this project offers some relief. You can build an effective air cooling unit for about $30. Necessity was the mother of invention for this one, brought to you by college summer schoolers stuck in a dorm with no AC. It’s a bit clunky, but it works. And there’s a closed circuit version that eliminates the water run off.

1. Remote Control Deadbolt

This project isn’t easy, but it gets loads of points for being clever as well as utilitarian. Watch the video for the demonstration, and click the link for instructions on how to build a remote control device to unlock the deadbolt in the garage or tool shed.

Quality Home Improvement Ideas For You to Consider

Filed Under: Do it yourself, Home repair, Kitchen, Redecorating, Remodeling    by: ITC

Today, there are countless home improvement ideas and projects that you can do yourself or hire a contractor for. However, it is crucial to make sure that you are able to decide which of them are quality home improvement ideas and which ones are not. Knowing which ones would give you the most of your money and which ones would just be a waste of your money is important especially in the present economic situation.

One quality home improvement project would be kitchen remodeling. If you have been living in your home for half a decade or longer, your kitchen may already be outdated or may be showing some signs that it needs to be repaired or renovated. You can consider installing new cabinets for more storage space or just repairing the existing ones. You can also replace the sink or faucets or even the countertops. You might also want to install new lighting.

Another quality home improvement idea would be a bathroom remodel. Many contractors say that remodeling a bathroom can always help you get a good return on our investment, even when you get high quality upgrades. Buyers usually check the bathroom and use it to determine the value of a particular home so it would really help you get more if you are planning to sell soon. However, if you would just be upgrading to make your bathroom more functional or to improve its present condition, remodeling can still pretty much give you the added value you want for your money.

Although there are many quality home improvement projects that you can do, you should also be able to know whether a project is a worthy investment or not. A project which might be a good idea to skip would be window and roofing replacement. If you are thinking that replacing your windows and roofs could increase your home value, you need to think again. Replacing windows and roofs are usually quite expensive and are only necessary if they are already in bad shape. If they are still in good condition, you might want to look into other home improvement projects instead.

In order to know which home improvement projects would give you a good return on your investment, there are several things that you need to consider. First, check what the other homes in your area have. You might want to do home improvements or home additions which would make your home up to par with the other homes in your neighborhood. You should also think of how long you would be staying in your present home. If you are planning to stay five years or more in it, making upgrades and improvements could be worth it. If you are planning to sell soon, you need to calculate what the return on your investment would be if ever you would be remodeling. You should also determine how much the upgrade or home addition is worth to you. For instance, installing a pool might not be a very appealing idea to others but to you and your family, a pool could be something that you have always wanted. If that is the case, then having it constructed would definitely be worth it.

Also, you need to keep in mind that in any home improvement project you are planning to have done, you would need to make sure that the money you would be spending would be worth the added value you would be getting. Choose quality and durable materials that would be able to withstand the elements. Finally, conduct plenty of research and do a lot of comparison shopping before purchasing any building materials.

Tips on mixing utility with decoration in your home

Filed Under: Do it yourself, Kitchen, Redecorating, Remodeling    by: ITC

A well-stocked kitchen dresser is full of everyday items, anything from jugs and plates to graters and wire salad baskets. People who choose to keep their kitchen equipment on view are usually very particular about what they buy, and will look for things they like or consider to be well designed so that the dresser is an exhibition area as well as a work unit. In the same way, a simple, narrow kitchen shelving unit allows the packaging and labeling of tins, jars and bottles to create their own entertaining and decorative display.

Another example of mixing the practical with the decorative is to intersperse shelves of humdrum objects (folded towels or the family’s toys and games) with one or two shelves in the middle set aside for a display of pretty china. The eye will be drawn to this collection and will ignore the rest, particularly if the display shelves are lit from the back by concealed strip lights so that the china stands out in a warm glow. Other possibilities are to use the central shelf or shelves for a vase of flowers or a collection of intriguing objects.

Shelves in themselves can be a source of interest, particularly if they are asymmetrical and thereby add a shape of their own. Modular shelving systems, which can be built up in various ways, will fit into almost any space. Another way of combining utility and decoration is to place small sets of shelves at random on walls between pictures or prints. Here they will provide space for those small objects which are always difficult to display but which it is a shame to have to relegate to the permanent darkness of chests-of-drawers or the backs of cupboards.

Small, awkwardly shaped alcoves provide a good balance between the useful and the decorative. A tiny alcove can become a highly personal showcase fitted with just two shelves, comparatively wide apart, so that the top shelf can house the music centre (out of reach of young children) while the lower shelf can hold a selection of small prized possessions and perhaps a painting tucked in at the back.

Some restaurants make a feature of their wine collections by fitting wine-racks all around the walls, up the stairs and over the doors. Wine connoisseurs could take a leaf out of their book and use wine-racks as decorative additions to the room. They can be fitted into the alcoves made by a chimneybreast or the alcoves created by building a deep-arched division between one room and another. The simplest wine-rack, filled with bottles, looks exotic.

Some things are awkwardly shaped for storage— umbrellas, walking sticks, ladders, hats, tennis rackets, and so on. Yet all these things together, perhaps with some purely decorative additions such as hand-carved decoy ducks, can look picturesque. It helps if you hang them from something with more character than the normal nails or screws—try small brass or china cupboard door handles, or colored cup hooks, coming practicality and interest.

DIY – Kitchen Home Improvement Project

Filed Under: Do it yourself, Home repair, Kitchen, Remodeling    by: ITC

Due to today’s declining economy a lot of people are turning to do it yourself home improvement projects which includes their kitchen. Do it yourself kitchen home improvement has slowly became a popular trend over hiring those expensive kitchen experts. Most people have discovered that when they undergo a kitchen home improvement project themselves it is saving them upwards to 60% which is a great savings.

However just like any do it yourself home improvement you need to begin with careful planning. During the planning stages of your kitchen remodel you may want to be sure to put some extra effort because you need to be sure that you think through each and every step of the overall process. You need to be sure that even before you begin you can handle all the tasks and have all of the necessary supplies and tools on hand. If you fail this step you can end up not being able to finish the project due to the lack of supplies or becoming discouraged due to lack of skills.

Some of the most recommended areas that you can do research is the internet and the do it yourself home improvement shows on your local television channels. These are considered great areas because you will have actually experts willing to walk you step by step through each and every phase of your project. You will also have the ability to see the latest designs and trends that are found in many of the kitchens of today’s world.

The next most important thing that you want to make sure of is that you create an overall kitchen design layout. This is where you may have to swallow your pride a little and consult a kitchen expert. They may be able to give you a few ideas that you may not have originally considered. They can also help you put your ideas and designs together to help you weigh the pros and cons of the overall design that you have in mind. Although this may cost you some money the finished project will be well worth it and it will be the only part of the phase that they will be included in.

You will need to be able to draw out your overall kitchen plan yourself. The best way to do this is through the use of graph paper. You should be sure to come up with several different versions and then choose the best one among them.

Once you have all of the above steps done you need to be sure to set up an overall time schedule. Once you have this in place you need to try and follow it as closely as possible. This will help you become discouraged by spending too much time on the overall project.

Do it yourself kitchen home improvements can be fun and rewarding but you need to set a few things in place before you even consider beginning. The more time you take the better the ending project will be.

Fix Those Leaky Faucets By Following These Simple Steps

Filed Under: Bathroom, Do it yourself, Home repair, Kitchen, Plumbing    by: ITC

Have you ever had that annoying leaky faucet that seems to drip even louder while you are trying to sleep? This can not only disrupt your sleep but also cause you to worry excessively because you are wondering if you are going to wake up to a flooded room the next morning. Well there is hope to solving your leaky faucet woes. All you need to do is follow a series of simple steps and you will have a great faucet in no time and as a result you will be able to sleep in peace.

You can even do this without the added problem of hiring those overpriced plumbers. All you will have to basically do is inspect the O-Ring of your faucet as well as the rubber washing as well. When these two pieces are worn out they are the number one cause of your leaky faucet.

After you have inspected and determined that your washer and ring are worn out you will need to then determine the type of faucet that you have. The two types that are available are the compression type faucet which has both hot and cold handles or the non compression faucet which will only have a lever or knob. The non compression faucets are the more common types and are the easiest to repair just by following these simple steps.

1.First of all you are going to want to shut off the water through the shut off valve. This valve is normally located under your sink. You will also need to make sure that you determine if either the hot or cold is leaking so that you will be able to determine which pipe is actually damaged.

2.Now you are going to want to remove the drain. Once you have done this you will want to remove the screw that holds the handle to the faucet. There are some faucets available that you will be able to remove by either a screwdriver or just by basically applying some force.

3.Now that you have the handle removed you are going to want to remove both the nut and the stem. You will be able to do this easier by using a either an adjustable wrench or a pair of pliers to unlock the nut. After you have finished this you will want to carefully remove the stem from the faucet itself. The packing nut as well as the valve stem itself is easily removed by turning them counter clockwise.

4.You will now want to remove the washer by slowly removing the washer in place. Once you have done this your local hardware store will be able to assist you in finding the right parts that you are going to need to fix the problem.

5.Once you have done all the above steps and your replacement parts are purchased the final step is actually easy. All you need to do now is put everything back together. Once you have done this your done and you didn’t even have to pay for those expensive plumbers.

Fitting the new taps

Filed Under: Bathroom, Do it yourself, Home repair, Kitchen, Plumbing, Remodeling    by: ITC

When fitting the new taps or mixer, unscrew the back-nuts, press some plumber’s putt round the tail directly below the tap body a fit a plastic washer onto the top.

Push the tails through the holes in the base. Slip flat plastic washers over the tails where they protrude from beneath the basin. screw on the back-nuts and tighten them up. Make sure that the taps or mixer are secure, but don’t overtighten them. To make tightening easier, (and undoing, if ever necessary) use top-hat washers.

All that remains to be done is to conned the swivel tap connectors to the tails of the new taps or mixer. You will see that a tap connector consists of a lining — with a flange — that is inserted into the tap tail and is then secured by the coupling nut. This nut provided with a washer to ensure a watertight connection. When renewing taps you may well need to renew this small washer.

It is possible that when you come to connect the water supply pipes to the taps you will get an unpleasant surprise. The tails of modern taps are slightly shorter than those of older ones and the tap connectors may not reach. If the water supply pipes are of lead or of copper it is quite likely that they will have enough ‘give’ to enable you to make the connection but, if not, there are extension pieces specially made to bridge the gap.

If you’re replacing existing bib taps with those of a more modern design. it’s a relatively simple matter of disconnecting and unscrewing the old ones and fitting the new taps in their place. However, it’s quite possible that you’ll want to remove the bib taps altogether and fit a new sink with some pillar taps. This will involve a little more plumbing work. To start with, turn off the water supply and remove the taps and old sink.

If the pipework comes up from the floor, you’ll need to uncover the run in the wall to below where the new sink will go. You should then be able to ease the pipes away from the wall and cut off the exposed sections. This will allow you to join short lengths of new pipe, bent slightly “if necessary, to link the pipe ends and the tap tails.

Alternatively. if the pipes come down the wall you’ll have to extend the run to be,row the level of the new sink and use elbow fittings to link the pipe to the tap tails. In either case it’s a good idea to fit the taps to the new sink first and to make up the pipe- work runs slightly overlong, so that when the new sink is offered up to the wall you can measure up accurately and avoid the risk of. cutting off too much pipe.

Rather than having to make difficult bends you can use lengths of corrugated copper pipe. One end of the pipe is plain so that it can be fitted to the 15mm supply pipes with either a soldered capillary or compression fitting: the other end has a swivel tap connector.

Taking out old basin taps

Filed Under: Bathroom, Do it yourself, Home repair, Kitchen, Plumbing, Remodeling    by: ITC

When replacing old taps with new ones the most difficult part of the job is likely to be— with so many plumbing operations removing the old fittings. Let’s first consider wash basin taps.

You must, of course, cut off the hot and cold water supplies to the basin. The best way of doing this will usually be to tie up the float arm of the ball valve supplying the cold water storage cistern so as to prevent water flowing in. Then run the bathroom cold taps until water ceases to flow. Only then open up the hot taps. 1 his will conserve most of the expensively heated water in the hot water storage cylinder.

If you look under the basin you will find that the tails of the taps are connected to the water supply pipes with small. fent/ accessible nuts, and that a larger — often inaccessible pack-nut secures the tap to the basin. The nuts of the swivel tap connectors joining the pipes to the taps are usually easily undone with a wrench or spanner of the appropriate size. The back- nuts can be extremely difficult – even for professional plumbers!

There are special wrenches and basin or ‘crows foot’ spanners that may help, but they won’t perform miracles and ceramic basins can be very easily damaged by heavy handedness. The best course of action is to disconnect the swivel tap connectors and to disconnect the trap from the waste outlet.

These are secured be undone. Then lift the basin off its brackets of hanger and place it upside down on 1:4-* floor. Apply some penetrating oil to the tag tails and, after allowing a few minutes for it tir soak in, tackle the nuts with your wrench a crowsfoot spanner. You’ll find they arc much more accessible. Hold the tap when you do this to stop it swivelling and damaging the basin.

Replacing Taps

Filed Under: Bathroom, Do it yourself, Home repair, Kitchen, Plumbing, Remodeling    by: ITC

There may be a number of reasons why you wish to replace the taps supplying your sink, basin or bath. They may continually drip or leak, where new taps would give efficient, trouble-free service. Perhaps you want the advantages that mixers have over individual taps or perhaps it is simply that the chromium’ plating has worn off leaving the taps looking incurably shabby.

It is more likely, however, that appearance, rather than malfunction, will be your reason for changing. There are fashions in plumbing fittings as in clothing and furniture. Taps of the 1950s or 60s are instantly recognisable as out-of-date in a bathroom or kitchen of the 1980s. Fortunately, fashions in sinks, basins and baths have changed rather less dramatically over the past three decades. There is probably no more cost-effective way of improving bathroom and kitchen appearance than by the provision of sparkling new taps or mixers.

When you come to select your new taps you may feel that you are faced with a bewildering choice. Tap size, appearance, the material of which the tap is made, whether to choose individual taps or mixers and for the bath — whether to provide for an over-bath shower by fitting a bath/shower mixer: all these things need to be considered.

Size is easily enough dealt with. Taps and mixers are still in imperial sizes. Bath tap tails are Sin in diameter. and basin and sink taps ‘/ in in diameter. There are, however, a few suppliers who are beginning to designate taps by the metric size, not of the taps themselves, but of the copper supply pipes to which they will probably be connected. Such a supplier might refer to bath taps as 22rnm and sink and basin laps as 15mm.

Most taps are made of chromium-plated brass, though there are also ranges of enamelled and even gold-plated taps and mixers. Although taps and mixers are still manufactured with conventional crutch or capstan handles, most people nowadays prefer to choose taps with ‘shrouded’ heads made of acrylic or other plastic.

In effect, these combine the functions of handle and easy-clean cover. completely concealing the tap’s headgear. A still popular alternative is the functional `Supatap’, nowadays provided with plastic rather than metal ‘ears’ for quick and comfortable turning on and off.

There is also a very competitively priced range of all plastic taps. These usually give satisfactory enough service in the home, but they cannot be regarded as being as sturdy as conventional metal taps, and they can be damaged by very hot water.

So far as design is concerned the big difference is between ‘bib laps’ and ‘pillar taps’. Bib taps have a horizontal inlet and are usually wail-mounted while pillar taps have a vertical inlet and are mounted on the bath, basin or-sink they serve.

How to Build Your Own Tiki Bar

Filed Under: Crafts, Do it yourself, Kitchen, Redecorating, Remodeling    by: ITC

Build Your Own Tiki Bar

If you are planning a luau or a tiki party, the best option would be to build your own tiki bar and transform a part of your home into a paradise. To follow the following techniques on creating a tiki bar, it doesn’t matter if you haven’t built anything in your life before. All you need to do is tag along these tips for adding a feel to your home atmosphere.

The first thing you need is a table, that is, the bar itself. Any old or sturdy table would do. Cover it with an external design such as a counter top or something. If you wish to build your own table, you can go ahead. You will find most of the requirements for this at your own place. However, always remember that the cost of the home-made table is determined by its size. So larger the size of the table, the more expensive it is.

A table cloth having an attractive design is appropriate for the counter top. If your house is located in a tropical location, then using disposable table cloth can be a good idea. One of the most striking techniques is using the table cloth and party items according to the theme of your party.

There are various ways you can work on the roof part. Bamboos for the roof structure of your tiki bar are best to suit your party theme. However, if you don’t find good ones, you can also go for wooden posts. To add a touch of authenticity to your tiki bar, you can purchase well-designed, well-carved, and well-shaped tiki moldings.

Simplest method is by using straws. Many home depots as well as plant places have the straw you require for the tiki bar roof. You can also go for large palm fronds or large leaves, if you find it easier to get hold of them. Have them attached to a light piece of plywood. Another option is purchasing thatched glass panels.

It is best to fix your tiki bar all together after getting your tiki hut roof joint on the ground. Once you are done with fixing your tiki hut structure, you can start decorating it with frangipani candles, straw mats stuck on sand, spooky god statues, and other several ideas offered by your imagination.

Certain important points to remember while working on your tiki bar project:

The toughest part in building your own tiki bar is finding decent roof material. However, this is not much of a problem if you stay near a coast or in a large city. If ever there’s any such problem, you can turn to transaction sites for inexpensive and attractive roof materials.

It is not compulsory to have a countertop. Using cheap table clothes can also do, provided, they go well with the party theme.

The cost of constructing a tiki bar increases with its size.

A profitable and fun-based business is building tiki bars and then, selling them at large amounts. Ready made tiki bars usually range from $800 to thousands of dollars. There are many who have the building and selling of their tiki bars as their main source of income.

Jewish Kosher Kitchen Design

Filed Under: Do it yourself, Home repair, Kitchen, Redecorating, Remodeling    by: ITC

Take the steps needed to create a Jewish kosher kitchen design in your home…

A Jewish kosher kitchen design starts by understanding what living kosher means. To be kosher you will want to practice the ritualized separation of meat and dairy in your kitchen and your meals. This means that you will need to have one set of dishes, cookware, appliances and serving ware for parve Jewish recipes, one set of dishes, cookware, appliances and serving ware for dairy Jewish recipes and one set of these items for Jewish Passover recipes. As you can see, being kosher isn’t a practical way of life, but it is a spiritual way of life that has benefits that far outweigh its drawbacks.

The construction of the ideal Jewish kosher kitchen design needs to include a double triangle. One triangle will include a sink, refrigerator and range for dairy and the other triangle will include a sink, refrigerator and range for meat. The perfect kosher kitchen design will also include separate counter tops for dairy and meat. Finally, it will also include separate sets of dishes, cookware, serving ware, utensils, table clothes, napkins dish towels, cleaning products and hand held appliances for meat, dairy and Passover.

If you are a Jew that lives on a budget, or in a small apartment or house, then creating an ideal Jewish kosher kitchen is most likely not possible. However, just because you can’t afford all of the items just mentioned, you can still set up a kosher kitchen that you can afford. To do this all you have to do is make a few adjustments to how you organize your kitchen. That way you will enjoy making your favorite Jewish food recipes.

To create a modest Jewish kosher kitchen you can start by installing a double sink instead of installing two separate sinks. This will allow you to clean up after meat and dairy preparations without cross-contaminating the water. If you have a single sink then you will need to select a sink that is made from a non-porous material like stainless steel and you will need to thoroughly clean the sink between meat item cleansing and dairy item cleansing.

To create a single kosher refrigerator you will want to use one shelf for dairy and one shelf for meat. You will also want to allow hot dishes to cool before putting them into a single refrigerator. This will prevent dairy steam or meat steam from contaminating the other.

If you have a single dishwasher you can still have a kosher kitchen as long as it has a stainless steel interior that can be sterilized between uses and as long as you don’t wash meat and dairy dishes together. You can also make your dishwasher more kosher by buying a second set of removable racks for your single dishwasher. Use one for meat and one for dairy.

To set up your kosher kitchen you will need to buy items that will help you keep your meat and dairy items separate. Labels can be used to identify which cabinets contain meat items, which cabinets contain dairy items and which cabinets contain Passover items.

To keep your utensils, cookware and serving ware separated you can buy sets that have a distinct color, pattern or design. For example you can buy a green set for dairy items, a red set for meat items and a white set for Passover. Wire baskets can also be a great addition to a kosher kitchen. You can use these containers to utilize spaces in your kitchen that would otherwise be wasted.

After you set up you design and install your kosher kitchen you can enjoy your favorite Jewish recipes such as beef brisket and coffee cake.