See How This Homeowner Makes Over Her House With Clever DIYs
Our first home wasn't necessarily a fixer-upper, but it wasn't in the shape, condition, or style I would have wanted," says homeowner Stacie Abdallah. Otherwise, it had everything she and her husband were looking for: room to raise their growing family, lots of backyard for gardening, and its location in an Atlanta suburb with an inclusive community. Stacie started with small do-it-yourself projects as a way to make budget-friendly updates—posting a few on Instagram and turning it into what's now a full-fledged blog called Stacie's Spaces. "I like to create areas that are comfortable for our family. Functionality is the top priority. Even if a room was used for something else before, I make it fit the mold for our needs. If it looks cute on top of that, we're all winning," she says. When she's not homeschooling her three young boys, this busy mom is bringing her decorating ideas to life (often with help from her self-taught handyman husband). Here, Stacie shares a few of her favorite spots in the house and her advice for beginners.
Rethink Spare Rooms
"I DIY because it allows me to be creative and make our spaces feel like home for us—not based on anyone else's requirements. Doing something yourself is also cheaper most of the time. You can save money and learn a new skill to carry you further. Our den wasn't being used well, so we converted it into an area for homeschooling [shown above and below]. My husband built the wooden desk with a designated spot for each child. They get their own chairs and places for their stuff. It helps eliminate any drama."
Disguise New Buys
"Before, we had a blank wall, so we did an Ikea hack using four of their Billy bookcases to create a reading room. The bookshelves weren't made from scratch, but the frame around them was, which gives a built-in look. The Amazon sconces aren't hardwired in; they function with remote control-operated puck lights."
Customize Online Finds
"I wanted to garden year-round, but I thought a greenhouse was out of reach due to the cost and involvement in building one. As I browsed the internet, I found a fairly inexpensive kit from Harbor Freight. We spray-painted the original silver frame a matte black and built it on a platform. My husband made shelves and tables from old wood pallets we had. There's no electricity running to it, so I found a solar-powered pendant light on Amazon to hang inside. The light itself was tiny, so I covered it with an outdoor-friendly plastic shade."
Hang Homemade Pieces
"Designing your own wall art is such an easy and beautiful way to transform a space and make it feel like it's yours—especially for kids. In my son's science-lab-themed bedroom, we made a mini gallery wall out of his creations. The look on his face when he admires his work and how proud he feels are both irreplaceable."
Ease Into Projects
"Paint makes a big difference and goes a long way. Or try something simple like flooring in a small space. Lay some tile in the bath to get the experience, and see whether it's something you like to do or a job you prefer to outsource."
Stacie's Paint Picks
Front Door: Mariner (SW 6766) by Sherwin-Williams
Entry Walls: Alabaster (SW 7008) by Sherwin-Williams
Entry Feature Wall and Reading Room Bookcase: Charcoal Blue (SW 2769) by Sherwin-Williams
Homeschool Room Walls: Chic Gray (PPU26-10) by Behr
Son's Room: Alabaster (SW 7008) by Sherwin-Williams; Improbable (PPG1011-5) by PPG; and Onyx (PPG1011-7) by PPG