How to DIY on a Budget

When I think of DIY, I naturally assume that doing it myself means the final product will be more tailored to my needs, creative or fun to produce and most importantly: cheaper.

However, often I have all of the materials I need for a project except for one or two things, which I go out and buy, and then never use again. Whether you are doing a lot of DIYs or just love to be creative, it can be a bit of a drain on your wallet. In one of my university classes we talked about constraints being the catalyst for creativity- when you have barriers, budgets or limitations it often causes a more creative answer – even more so than when you have absolutely no barriers or limitations! So here’s my tips for keeping the costs down and creativity high when it comes to DIY, whatever it is you want to make!

How to DIY on a budget

Revamp things you already have. Instead of buying new things to revamp, take a look around your home at what could do with a restyle. Maybe your cutlery is kind of boring or your shelves too plain. Start with things you already have rather than buying new projects to do.

Look around at what bothers you. If there’s a problem, you can create a solution! I was sick of having ugly red matchboxes out on display, but I liked to keep them near my candles so they didn’t get lost. So, I looked into making them part of the aesthetics rather than simply being a practical item. That’s how I came up with the matchbox makeover project. It was simple, easy, and I didn’t have to buy anything. Similarly, I’ve now come up with a few different ways to display my Instax instant photos – here and here.

easy diy photo wall hanging make your own photo cube display

Look at the supplies you already have. Pool together all your crafts and DIY materials (easier if you already keep them in the one place). Sometimes looking through things will spark an idea and it also helps me use items I already have and maybe have only used once or twice before.

Visit DIY heaven aka the recycle centre. Most towns will have at least one or more thrift shops and recycle centres. The goods here are cheap and sometimes require a makeover upon purchasing. If you can find things here rather than paying retail, you are winning. It’s also a great place to go to spark some ideas and creativity!

Visit the dollar store before the craft store. I am often amazed when I visit dollar stores with the range of stock they have! They often have a great crafts and home wares section, and have what I’m looking for when I thought it would be more of a boutique craft store product. I can almost guarantee it will be cheaper at a dollar store than picking it up from somewhere else.

Have a couple of ways to use something before buying. If you need to buy a material, have a list of a few projects you could use it for so that you get the use out of it and it isn’t wasted. When I bought a bag of concrete from Bunnings, I knew I was going to use it for my Polaroid cube stands and my hexagon coasters (plus a couple other projects down the line!) This helped justify the purchase (even if it was under $10).

Tea and concrete coasters

Ask around for re-usable materials and tools. Since Julian and I have only been married for a few years, we don’t really have a build-up of tools and supplies I can call on for projects. Items like tools that don’t really get ‘used up’ or aren’t disposable are usually easy to borrow from friends and family. I may not own them myself, but I definitely know people like my parents that have a truckload of hardware and items just longing to be pulled out of the dark and put to use!

So there you have it! Steer clear of the hardware store and put away your credit cards, there are ways to be creative on the cheap. What tips do you have for how to DIY on a budget? Do you have a list of go-to projects that don’t break the bank? I would love to hear about them! If this post was helpful, don’t forget to pin it xx

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