Friday, August 30, 2013

No-spend project review

Well hello all and happy Friday! It’s time to bring this month to a close and review the big projects I completed over the past few weeks. This review is one I’m pretty excited about since it was a self-declared no-spend month for me.

I’ve done this before on the blog and this time I accomplished even more, but it was a little bit harder too. I mean, I still spent money on other stuff, just not DIY or decor. My Instagram feed was incredibly boring this month with zero shopping excursions. Lots of pictures of my cats. Very exciting.

BUT I got a ton done. The to do list is still long but I’ve made a dent.

Here’s a few of the projects I completed this month without spending any cash! I started out with a redo of an old cherry 80’s nightstand:

painting 80's furniture

I’m really happy with how that turned out – I was surprised I liked it as much as I did. ;)

Our outdoor hoses were an absolute mess and I was tired of trying to step over them when I needed to water the plants. So I downsized a bit and then created a hose holder (without digging in the ground):

DIY hose holder I’m obsessed with those hoses. Many of you mentioned they gave you problems, but we’ve used ours for about two months without any issues. Crossing my fingers they hold up!  

I started the house-wide decrapification in the guest room and cleared out a TON. I made better use of that awkward space in the closet too:

using wasted space in closet

SO much better. I can now close the doors without stuffing things back in. :)

I finally finished up a few details in the basement bathroom and called that one done:

blue green bathroom

I really love how that space came together!

I don’t have it all figured out when it comes to managing all the paper that comes in our house, but I do have a few tips that have helped a bunch. I shared them in this post:

paper cutter

I am figuring out a few things when it comes to keeping plants alive – slow but sure. I shared our tiny little garden and how we grow a lot of food in a small space:

square foot gardening

Earlier this week (wow, it’s been a LONG week!) I shared another big project I completed this month. Our guest room has needed a paint job for years now and I finally got to it, with a little ombre:

ombre painted wall

Honestly, if I hadn’t done this no-spend month I would have found five other projects to do instead. I’m SO glad I finally just got it done!

As I decluttered our craft/play/I-don’t-know-what room I got sidetracked again and decided to line the drapes that have been hanging there for years:

how to line drapes I shared a quick and dirty tutorial on lining drapes and the unexpected source I used for lining. ;) Use what you’ve got – that’s what this month was all about!

Finally, I cleaned up the front yard a bit and made our outdoor planters new again with some spray paint:

red front door

And added a teensy bit of fall. It’s time.

I did a bunch of smaller projects too, I’ll show you those some time soon. I gotta say, I’m kind of proud of myself for getting so much done this month. Usually in August (summer in general) I’m busy being sloth-like so this is pretty big for me.

Have a great Labor Day weekend folks! I’ll have the Before and After Party up on Monday – it just may go up a little later than usual. You can grab the code for the button here if you’d like to add it to your post ahead of time.


  1. I have been so inspired by your no-spend month!! I sat down and made a list of projects I needed to get done that would cost $0 and the list was long!! I'm diving in and trying my own no-spend month in September! Our budget could use the recharge, and I'm looking forward to getting things checked off my list!! Thanks for always sharing great ideas :)

  2. Wow! You got a lot done last month. We've been doing a big outside landscaping project and i'm looking forward to getting back inside and decluttering again! It's amazing how fast things can get unorganized once you stop paying attention. Paper clutter was a huge issue for me too, but I put a system in place where as soon as it comes in the door the junk mail gets recycled and other things are shredded. I only keep what needs action and then I try to scan all my receipts, etc. It has cut way down on my paper clutter. Wish I had started years ago.

    Have a great day!

  3. You have been a busy beaver haven't you. Looks wonderful. We are working on a lightening and brightening project home :-) Getting there...
    happy Holiday weekend.
    Hugs, Gee

  4. awesome I love all your stuff

  5. Gorgeous!!! I need to do a month of no-spending de-crapification myself. It would give the house a lift going into fall.

  6. Love the way your bathroom came together.

  7. The nightstand looks beautiful, LOVE the bathroom and guest bedroom!!! I need to unleash you in my home, you do amazing work! :)

  8. Can I ask where you found that adorable bath mat? Seriously....I have been on the hunt for something FOR-EVAH and that just might work!!

  9. Loving the ombre! Best feeling to get everything done!
    Happy Weekend!

  10. So inspired to try this! All of your projects turned out so well!!

  11. Very inspiring indeed! I really need two months of no-decor spending and catch up with the many projects I have going on and save some money, but I will settle for one. September is out because I have already started and October is the Round Top shopping trip planned month with family and friends, so November it shall be!

  12. That Ombre wall effect is incredible - I feel the urge to redecorate a room just so I can try it out myself :)

    What an incredible month you've had, I might try something similar for September.

  13. Hi, just discovered your blog and I'm already inspired. The no-spend concept is just brilliant! I've been wanting to spruce up my art studio and I think making it a no spend project is going to challenge me in a really good way. Thanks!

  14. It is amazing what creative and necessary things can be done by not spending any money. Great idea to use the sheets as lining. I have made tons of drapes/curtains and I always buy inexpensive sheets for the lining. Making the lining a bit smaller than the panel does make a huge difference.

  15. I had made a similar pledge to myself this last month. Unfortunately, I found 6 beaded inset cabinets at the H4H for my kitchen. I swoon for beaded inset, so into the mess they came, needing stripping, cleaning (OMG, cleaning!) and to be hung. I'm passing along the cabinets I made in favor of these 1955 models. Sadly, that put so much else on the back burner and I can hardly walk thru my construction site. But I have plans.... (best laid?)


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