Walking into your first apartment truly feels great, and there’s nothing like pimping it out and making it your own. But what do you do when everything in your Urban Outfitters cart is super expensive and you’re not exactly down to drop hundreds of dollars on room décor? In come DIYs.
Turn your apartment into a paradise with these fun DIY projects.
1. A Welcome Mat
What’s the first thing anyone sees when they first get to your apartment? You can spot trendy welcome mats all over Pinterest feeds but when you click on those super cute pictures they direct you to a website that sells them for $50. That’s insane. With this DIY you’ll see how cheap and easy it is to make one of your very own. All you need is a plain welcome mat, a stencil and outdoor spray paint.
2. Pressed Flower Frame
To create this beautiful little masterpiece you literally just need a frame, a couple of your favorite flowers and a thick book. Pressing flowers is fairly simple—you just stick the flowers in between pages of a book and leave them there for a couple of days or weeks (depending on the flower). When they’re all dried up you stick the flower in between the two plates of glass and voila.
Total: around $5-$15 depending on the frame
3. Moon Phase Banner
You don’t have to spend an entire paycheck’s worth to incorporate this cute trend into your apartment. To make this moon phase banner you’ll need glitter paper, scissors, hot glue, a ruler and thin black string. If you can’t find glitter paper then find thick card stock and finely milled gold glitter. Draw out the moon phases, cut them out and then measure how long you want your banner to be. Measure how far apart you want your moon cutouts to be from each other and tie another piece of string to hang your moons. Finally, hot glue the moons the other end of the pieces of string.
Total: around $16
4. Babe Cave Sign
One thing I wish I could buy from Brandy Melville? Their Babe Cave sign. Head over to your nearest craft or hardware store and buy a block of wood in any size you want. Buy any paint colors to make the sign completely your own, and while you’re at it buy some paint brushes, big letter stickers, painter’s tape, a pencil, wire and a hot glue gun. First, place thin pieces of tape to create a border around the piece of wood and then place the stickers lined up across the wood. You can paint over the tape and the stickers or trace them with a pencil and paint inside the lines you’ve traced, depending on the look you want. When it’s all dry get your wire and hot glue gun and glue the wire on the back of the piece of wood to allow you to hang your Babe Cave sign anywhere you please.
Total: around $30
5. Neon Sign
Sometimes DIY’s are harder to make, but the time it takes is totally worth it after seeing something you’ve created. “My ideal DIY is anything that is simple yet creative. For tailgate season my best friends and I are making skirts and tops! I also really love making decor DIYs for my room,” said Florida International University junior Ashley Sondon. Neon signs are the coolest things ever, but trying to find a cheap one online or in stores is not as cool. But yes, you can even DIY this. Above you’ll find a video that will show you exactly how to deck out your space with a little shine and flair. To start just buy a battery operated neon light cord in any color you want.
Total: around $20
6. Gold Desk Organizer
You’re very busy, and we know that. We also know that you’ll spend a lot of time at your desk. To make a really cute pencil and desk accessory organizer you just need a couple of tin cans or glass jars (any size is fine). Next buy a bottle of spray paint in the color you want your DIY to be and also buy a wooden base. Spray paint absolutely everything and hot glue the jars or cans to the base and there you go, you’ve got a customized desk organizer.
Total: around $12
7. EAT Marque sign
Your kitchen can use a little bit of a makeover, am I right? Good thing it doesn’t need to cost very much thanks to us. To create this industrial “EAT” sign, quickly visit your local craft store and buy metallic paint or spray paint, brushes and wooden letters (any size you want). Paint the letters and give each side a good amount of time to dry before painting the other side. Once they’re dry they’re ready to go.
Total: $15- $27 depending on what paint and letter size
8. Pompom wall hanging
If you want a (literal) burst of color for your living room then this is the DIY for you. Buy some wool yarn, a round piece of wood (or any shape that you’d like), a hammer, small nails, a picture hanger attachment, scissors, hot glue, a pompom kit or a small piece of cardboard. Once you’ve created all your different colored and shaped pompoms all that’s left to do is nail the picture hanger attachment to the back of the wooden piece you bought and hot glue all the colorful pompoms you bought or made.
Total: around $30
9. Face Pillow
This pillow doubles as one of Urban Outfitter’s best sellers. To recreate this face pillow all you need is a pillow insert, a white canvas pillowcase, brushes and some black paint. If you don’t trust your artistic abilities to recreate the smooth lines on this face pillow, grab a pencil and sketch it out until you feel it looks right on the pillow case. Finally, trace it with black paint slowly and there you go.
Total: around $11
10. Cinema Box
You can see these all over Instagram, Twitter, and Tumblr so if you don’t know what these are you’ve probably been living under a rock (thank goodness you’re finally moving to an apartment!). With this DIY video you can snag this popular décor item for a lot cheaper. All you need is a frame, a printer, a ruler, a pencil and some scissors to create this super stylish apartment décor piece.
Total: $15 depending on the frame
Why We Love DIYs
“For me DIY’s are my low-cost, high reward way of getting cool hipster and trendy accessories, home decor and more at less than half the price,” said Florida State University sophomore Lauren Hayes.
“I think DIYs are fun especially with friends because they make your creative side shine even if you thought you never had one,” said FSU junior Brittany Diaz.
“I love art and creating things so even if a DIY isn’t a lot cheaper than the actual thing I still like to make my own décor,” said School of the Art Institute of Chicago junior Nicole Garcia.
“I like DIY’s because I like being able to use something that I made myself. There’s something satisfying about making something that’s useful to you,” said University of Florida junior Gabby Khawly.