The free diy home improvement guide with answers to your questions on a wide range of do it yourself projects.

Decorating on a Budget

piggy bankMost of us would love to achieve the designer looks we see in interior magazines or on the shows on television. But we don't all have endless budgets to achieve the best results. Perhaps we might be able to afford to do one room at a time and even then it never looks quite right.

Well, without having to employ an interior designer to do a makeover, it is possible to achieve the right look without spending a fortune. All it takes is a little ingenuity, creativity and a willingness to get stuck in.

DIY Stores

Raid the local DIY stores and even smaller independent shops for their seconds and marked down items. At the end of a long weekend is the best time to go. They will have had a huge number of people enter the store, knock things over, break them, open tins of paint or rip packaging. Now is the time hoover up these bargains. End of season deals and end of line discounts are also worth looking out for. But if you see something buy it. It won't hang round.

Freecycle

This a great resource for both getting rid of things you no longer need and picking up something which might fit your new scheme. Simply advertise what you want and see the offers start coming in. Many people will have half tins of paint, rolls of wallpaper or off-cuts of carpet which might make all the difference in your home – and it is all free. Don't forget to return the favour though.

Ebay

It is amazing what can be found using this favourite. Take advantage of the items which are advertised as being close to you. You can save a fortune by going to collect the item. Many people will start an auction at 99p and you may find you are the only bidder. Never go higher than the budget you have set though.

Reuse and recycle

Don't throw away old rollers and brushes unless they are really past their best. Take the time to wash them and put them away for next time. Have a good clear out of the loft and find all the old decorating bits and pieces which have been lurking for years. There may be serviceable paint, wallpaper or fabrics kicking around.

Make it yourself

Invest in a sewing machine and try making cushion covers, table cloths and sofa throws from oddments of fabric. Most sewing shops will have a box full of smaller lengths of fabric which are perfect for this purpose. You will create a designer look with just a little effort and it will be completely unique.

Finally get the family involved in the work and it will be done much quicker than you could imagine. Everyone will be able to take pride in what has been achieved and you will have saved yourselves enough to make it all worthwhile.