7 DIY Home Improvement Projects That You Can Tackle In A Weekend

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Mon, Feb 27, 2017

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'Organize your garage to help find things faster and keep it neater'

Some home improvement projects take weeks or even months to plan and complete. Other DIY projects are simple and can be done in a single weekend. Here are seven DIY ideas for home improvement projects that can be done in just a couple of days.

Seven DIY Home Improvement Projects to Do on a Weekend

  1. Put in New Bathroom Tile. If the bathroom in your master bedroom or guest room needs a refreshed look, you may want to install a new tile floor. Putting down tile takes some planning, but is a relatively easy process especially if you use peel and stick tile. Peel and stick tile is available in all types of patterns and designs, so your bathroom can take on a whole new style in just a couple of days and without a complete and time-consuming overhaul!
  2. Paint the Front Entryway. Does your entryway need a lift? If the walls are beige, white or another neutral color, try painting them in a pastel. A pastel blue or green would be an appealing sight as you arrive home from work or school each day. If you have baseboards in your entryway, be sure to give them a fresh coat of white paint to complete the picture.
  3. Make a Brick Border Around a Tree. Do you have a favorite tree in your yard? If so, make a brick border to put around it. As a finishing touch, put a layer of mulch inside the brick border. This looks great and puts some distance between the tree and your lawnmower.
  4. Paint the Fence. If you have a white fence around your yard, consider giving it a fresh coat of paint. A white fence that is dusty or marked with stains can take away from and dull the curb-appeal of your property. However, a coat of bright white paint will immediately highlight your home and everything around it.
  5. Change the Handles on the Kitchen Cabinets. Putting on different handles may seem like a small thing to do, but it can transform the look of your cabinets. There are so many handles, knobs and pulls to choose from you're sure to end up with the perfect design. Brushed nickel, bronze, glass, and brushed brass are a just a few of the choices. Just for fun, I suggest you choose a cabinet handle style that is opposite from the one you have now. Your guests will wonder if you got new cabinets!
  6. Put Up a Tire Swing in the Backyard. This weekend DIY project is sure to please the young kids in your life. If you have a large tree with sturdy branches you can hang up an old tire for the little ones to use as a swing. Try it out for yourself and remember what you've been missing of those lovely sunny days outside.
  7. Add Some Organization to the Garage. Organizing your garage makes it look neater and allows you to find what you want, when you want it. Install a pegboard on a wall of your garage for storing your tools, nails, screws and more. You can label the containers to make it all the more organized. Create a special, labeled bin for your old cloths and rags to use for dirty jobs. Also, try making a screwdriver storage unit so you have all your screwdrivers stored safely and close at hand.

I hope these seven suggestions get you thinking about even more quick and creative DIY project ideas for your home. Thanks for reading! - Alan

Topics: diy home improvement projects

How to Prevent Mold In Your Home

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Tue, Feb 14, 2017

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The growth of mold inside a home can cause members of a family to experience allergies, breathing problems, headaches, and more. Mold needs a warm, moist environment to grow. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to prevent mold growth in your home.

Clean Wet Areas Right Away

Since moisture is a requirement for mold growth, drying wet spots can keep it from getting a foothold in your home. For instance, if you see water leaking in through a window and pooling on the sill, dry the spot right away. Then, take steps to seal the window with caulk or another product to prevent water from coming in. If you have a leaky pipe beneath a bathroom sink, it's important to turn off the water and dry the wet area. Then, you can fix the leak to prevent more water from ending up on the floor of your bathroom cabinet.

Maintain Proper Ventilation

Proper ventilation can prevent mold growth in many areas of the home. For instance, running a fan in your bathroom after someone takes a shower causes the air to circulate, drying moisture on tile, walls, and floors. Also, check to make sure that the vent attached to your clothes dryer is clear and moving moist air out of your home. Sometimes, it's necessary to get your dryer vent cleaned due to a buildup of lint, dust, and other debris that can block the moist air from leaving your home. Turn on the fan above your stove when boiling water or otherwise using the burners. On warm days, open a window or patio door to allow air to circulate throughout your home!

Use Mold-Resistant Products

Put some mold-resistant items in your home. For example, if you're putting down new carpeting, look for a brand that is mildew-resistant. Mold-resistant drywall is also available. Check the label on the next can of paint you buy to see if it is mold-resistant. There are many cleaning products for bathroom tile and kitchen floors that have ingredients in them that help fight mold.

Check for Proper Drainage Outside Your Home

Any moisture in a basement is an invitation for mold growth. If your basement tends to flood during big storms, you may need to create a new system of drainage in your yard that moves rainwater away from your basement. Also, repairing or replacing leaky gutters can help to efficiently direct rain or melting snow away from your home.

Check the Humidity

A humid atmosphere in your home can prompt mold growth. Running a dehumidifier can help with this problem. But don't let that moisture go to waste. I suggest you use the water collected by the dehumidifier to water your vegetable or flower garden. Installing a ceiling fan in a strategic place can increase air circulation through your home and help reduce the moisture levels.

Habits That Can Prevent Mold

One simple habit that can prevent mold growth is to leave your washer lid open after taking out a load of wet clothing. This allows the air to circulate in your washer and dry it. After showering, use a towel to dry the tile to discourage the growth of mold, and hang your wet towels outside to air-dry.

Taking a few steps to prevent mold growth can contribute to the overall health of your family. Thanks for reading! - Alan

Topics: prevent mold in home

What You Should Know Before Finishing Your Basement

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Fri, Feb 3, 2017

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The above picture of a metal building from Alan's Factory Outlet was from a customer that finished the structure.  Another option to think about would be to finish your basement.

Have you ever dreamed of relaxing in a comfortable, finished basement? Maybe you'd like to create a getaway spot you can get to in a matter of seconds. If so, there are a few things to consider before getting down to work on your basement refinishing project.

Make a Floor Plan

You don't have to be an architect to sit down and draw up a simple floor plan for your finished basement. Do you want a snack area or an area reserved just for a particularly large item, such as a pool table? Do you want to set up a home theater? If so, you won't need as much lighting in that segment of the basement. What sort of décor do you want? Answering these questions along with others allows you to end up with the finished basement of your dreams!

Conduct a Moisture Test

A basement with a moisture problem is not a good place for your favorite easy chair, television, and other valuable possessions. So before refinishing your basement, it's a good idea to conduct a moisture test. Take a two-foot-square piece of plastic sheeting and tape it to the basement floor. Tape another piece to a wall in your basement. After two weeks, check the condition of the plastic sheeting. If condensation has formed beneath the sheeting, then your basement foundation is unsealed. Alternatively, if there are drops of water on the surface of the plastic sheeting, then the basement air is too humid. Once you know more about the atmosphere of your basement, you can take steps to make it more accommodating.

Check With Your Local Municipality

Before you start work on your basement, you should check to see if you need any permits from your local municipality. You may need permission for construction, electrical, or other types of work you do in your basement. Chances are good that you will have to draw up an official plan of what you intend to do so it can be put on record.

Put in an Additional Sump Pump

An overworked sump pump can allow water to flood into your attractive finished basement. An additional sump pump also can serve as a backup in case the other fails. This is a precaution that protects you against costly damage of the items in your basement. Also, be sure to have battery power for your sump pump in case your electricity goes off.

Put in Insulation

Installing insulation in your basement is one way to maintain the warmth while keeping out the cold. In addition to helping to keep the space at a comfortable temperature, insulation with a vapor barrier can block out moisture. Do you have a lot of traffic noise around the outside of your home? Quality insulation can help to keep out some of the noise, too, so you can relax in peace.

Choose Your Lighting

Lighting is one of the most important elements of a finished basement. A well-lit space is more inviting to friends and family. Recessed lighting is a popular choice for basements because it takes up very little room. If you have a drop ceiling, this sort of lighting is especially convenient to install.

Create a Warm Atmosphere

Baseboard heating is an ideal option for a finished basement. This system gives you a steady supply of warm air that rises and flows through the room. I like the idea of baseboard heating because it fits into the space in a seamless way.

Enjoy your relaxing new basement, and thanks for reading! - Alan

Topics: Finishing Your Basement

A Garage Door For Your Personality

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Mon, Jan 30, 2017

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Does the appearance of a garage door say something about its owner's personality? Some garage door designs are simple, while others are complicated. Some are colorful, while others are monochromatic. The good news is that there are plenty of designs and colors to choose from. Which garage door best reflects your personality?

Castilian

The Castilian-style door is divided in half and made up of equally sized, long, thin panels. One thicker panel runs crosswise over each side. In addition, there are two horizontal panels on each half of the door. This is a design that looks ordinary but has a bit of a twist. It can complement a home with unique details and flourishes in its façade. If you are someone who likes to occasionally change up the routine, then this may be the door style for you!

Charleston

The Charleston garage door is divided in half with six rectangular windows at the top of each section. Three evenly spaced, recessed rectangular panels are featured beneath the windows. The small windows on this door can provide you with plenty of privacy. If you have small windows on your front door or elsewhere on the façade of your home, you may want to select this design. A person who likes balance and logic in all things is likely to appreciate this style.

Franciscan

The Franciscan door has a straightforward, plain design. This door is divided in half with three rectangular windows at the top that are equal in size. Beneath those windows are two large rectangular panels that run vertically down the length of the door. If you have a home with an ornate design, you may want to go with this simple door to balance out the overall picture. Someone with an organized, no-nonsense personality would likely be happy with this style.

Queen Anne

The Queen Anne garage door has small windows at the top that cascade down to the edge of the frame. The middle section of the door is filled with equally sized long, thin, raised panels. The bottom of the door displays two smaller sections of those same panels. Just think of a home with a white picket fence and a white Queen Anne-style garage door: I think that would make a great picture, don't you? One drawback of this door is that the windows are small and may not let much sunlight into your garage. But if you like elegant simplicity, then this style may be your best bet!

Valley Forge

The most unique thing about the Valley Forge design is its curved window at the top of the door. This stands out from the simple design of the remainder of the door. The middle section of the window is divided into three parts, while the side sections are divided into two smaller windows. Four long panels run beneath the side windows, while several long, thin panels run beneath the middle window section. The Valley Forge is an ideal choice if you have a rounded window in your front door design or rounded windows on the façade of your home. The small, high windows on this door would give you privacy while letting some sunshine into the structure. If you're someone who leads an ordered life but also enjoys a bit of whimsy, then this door would flow nicely with your personality.

Victorian

A Victorian-style garage door is divided down the middle into two sections. Each section has a large window with a gently slanting design. The large windows are divided into eight smaller windows. The door below each window is divided into two rows of four panels that are all equal in size. A Victorian garage door complements a home with the same type of even, symmetrical design features. Also, the high, small windows provide you with some privacy. However, if you're looking for a door with a strikingly interesting design, this is not the style for you. If you make a lot of to-do lists and crave order in your life, then this garage door would be a perfect reflection of your personality.

Next time you're shopping for a garage door, try choosing one that says something about you! Thanks for reading. - Alan

Topics: garage door personality

A Quick Guide For Identifying Common Lawn Pests

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Tue, Jan 10, 2017

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Alan's Factory Outlet metal carports can help protect your car from ice, hail and falling branches.  How well protected is your yard from pests?

There are many types of pests that can invade your yard. It's easy to tell when a neighborhood dog has been digging holes around your fence: You can sometimes identify the guilty canine by the dried mud on its nose and ears. But what if you see damage to your lawn but never spot the perpetrator? Here are some tips on how to identify lawn pests without ever seeing them in person. Enjoy!

Grubs

Patches of wilting grass around your lawn can be a sign that you have an invasion of grubs. After the grass wilts, the turf begins to turn brown. If you lift a piece of this brown turf, you'll find that it has a sponge-like texture. You may even be able to see a few grubs underneath the turf. An increase in crows and other birds on your lawn can be another indicator of a grub problem, since many birds feed on grubs.

Moles

Moles live in tunnels that go a couple of feet underground, but that doesn't mean your lawn is off limits. As a mole tunnels beneath your lawn, it moves the loose ground toward the surface, creating piles of dirt that look like mini-volcanoes. These piles can sometimes measure a foot across! This can turn a simple walk through your yard into a treacherous journey. Look out for mole tunnels near sidewalks and driveways.

Rabbits

Where there is one rabbit, there are many. Some signs of rabbits include chewed plant leaves and vegetables missing from your garden. Also, they leave piles of round droppings wherever they go. Rabbits like to come out early in the morning as well as in the early evening, so keep your eyes open for a visit. I suggest you plant some items in your garden or yard that are distasteful to rabbits, such as yarrow, lavender, or black-eyed Susans.

Japanese Beetles

One Japanese beetle in your yard is no problem. But these insects travel in groups. Finding plants with numerous chew holes in the leaves is one sign that you have Japanese beetles. And a large, hungry group of them can leave skeletal plants in their wake.

Cutworms

If you think you have cutworms around your lawn, look for wilting plants and plants chewed through near the bottom of the stem. These pests feed on young plants and only come out at night. A group of cutworms can make their way through a large gathering of plants in a relatively short amount of time.

Squirrels

If you think that squirrels limit their activities to the treetops, think again. Some squirrels take on pest-like behavior by digging holes in a lawn to bury nuts. They are also known to dig holes in potted plants kept outdoors. Small holes in the lawn or your garden are signs that you've had a visit from a squirrel. You may even find a nut buried in the soil of the potted plant you keep on the patio!

Once you identify the pests, you can start figuring out what you can do to dissuade them from establishing permanent residence in your yard. Thanks for reading! - Alan

Topics: common lawn pests

Caring For Houseplants During Winter

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Wed, Jan 4, 2017

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Here is an inside view of Alan's Factory Outlet 40' wide metal buildings.  You could even put a houseplant inside one of the metal garages to help make it feel like home.

Do you have any houseplants? Perhaps you have a favorite Boston fern or a tall aloe vera plant in your home. Though many houseplants are low-maintenance, there are a few things you can do to help them thrive despite the changes that come with the winter months.

Move Your Plants to the Best Location

Consider the location of the houseplants in your home. Make sure they are in a place where they receive an adequate amount of sunlight. Avoid putting your plants too close to a window: Windows may let in drafts that can harm the health of your plants. In addition, houseplants shouldn't be kept near a heat source, so if your houseplant is sitting next to a vent or above one, it should be moved so it doesn't dry out. Also, monitor the temperature of your home at night. Houseplants need to be kept in a room where the temperature stays between 60 and 70 degrees both day and night.

Monitor the Humidity Level

Boston ferns, aloe vera, and rex begonias are just a few examples of houseplants that thrive in a humid environment. But the air inside a home can become very dry during the winter months due to the heat produced by a furnace. One solution is to set up a portable humidifier near your plants to add some moisture to the air inside your home. Or you can put your houseplants in the bathroom and run the hot water in your shower for several minutes. Let your plants stay in the bathroom for an hour or so with the door closed. Doing this twice a week should give them the humid air they need to stay healthy.

Clean Your Plants

Keeping your plants clean can help them continue to flourish throughout the winter. Use a soft cloth, a small amount of warm water, and mild dish soap to clean the leaves of your houseplants. If you have a plant with prickly leaves, such as an African violet, try using a pipe cleaner or a soft-bristled toothbrush to gently remove the dust and dirt from both the upper and lower surface of each leaf. Cleaning your plants keeps their pores clear, allowing them to breathe and freely absorb sunlight. I suggest you put together a little kit containing a soft cloth, toothbrush, pipe cleaners, and a bottle of dish soap. That way, you're ready to clean every time your houseplants need a touch-up.

Give Your Plants the Proper Amount of Water

Most houseplants don't need as much water during the winter months as during the spring and summer. A good test to see if a plant needs water is to put your finger about two inches down into the soil. If the soil is dry at that depth, water your plant thoroughly. It's a smart idea to research how much water your specific types of houseplants need to survive during the cold weather months.

Don't forget about your houseplants this winter. Think of them as a constant reminder of the new growth you'll see this spring. Thanks for reading! - Alan

Topics: caring for houseplants

Maintaining Your Fireplace During Winter

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Wed, Dec 28, 2016

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Run in sheds can not only be used for horses but also for equipment or a place to stack firewood to help keep it dry.

Over the years, I've noticed that a fire crackling in a fireplace has a way of drawing people into a room. The warmth of the fire combined with its familiar fragrance is a pleasant addition to a cold, snowy evening. I love to put up my feet near the fireplace and enjoy some delicious popcorn. But it's important to make sure that you maintain your fireplace so it's ready to go during the winter months. Use these tips to keep your fireplace in safe working order.

Inspect the Chimney

This is the most important maintenance tip to remember. Creosote, soot, and ashes build up on the inside of your chimney. These elements can create blockage that can lead to a fire or smoke flowing back into your home. It's a good idea to hire a professional who has the equipment to safely inspect and clean your chimney. A professional chimney cleaner will be able to find cracks and other damage. An inspection/cleaning should be done about once a year or more frequently, depending on how often you use your fireplace.

Sweep the Fireplace

It's a smart idea to clean the ashes and partially burned logs out of the fireplace every time you use it. This prevents a buildup of flammable debris in your fireplace. A set of fireplace tools including a special broom and shovel can be helpful in getting the job done in an efficient way. Be sure to vacuum any stray ashes off the hearth of your fireplace so they don't get tracked onto the carpet.

Install a Chimney Cap

Installing a chimney cap can keep leaves, sticks, and other debris out of your chimney flue. Plus, it stops rain from running into your flue and causing damage. Squirrels and birds are notorious for trying to build nests in chimneys, and a chimney cap can also deter them from trying to take up residence in your flue. Installing a chimney cap can help you simplify some of your chimney maintenance tasks this time of year.

Inspect Your Fireplace Doors

Chances are good that you have glass doors on your fireplace. Inspect the glass on your doors to find any cracks or damage. Also, open and close the doors to make sure that the hinges and latch are in proper working order. Now is the best time to make necessary repairs to your fireplace doors.

Maintain Smoke Detectors

You may already have a smoke detector near your fireplace. If so, check the batteries and test it to make sure it is working properly. If you don't have a smoke detector near your fireplace, consider installing one. This can give you extra peace of mind, especially when you aren't in the room to monitor the fire in your fireplace.

Finally, check the condition of your firewood. Take two logs and bang them together. If you hear a crack, it means they are dry and in good condition. A thudding sound means they have taken on moisture and should not be used in your fireplace.

Enjoy your fireplace this winter, and thanks for reading! - Alan

Topics: maintaining fireplace

How to Reuse Holiday Wrapping Paper

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Thu, Dec 22, 2016

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A steel building from Alan's Factory Outlet could be just want Santa ordered for a place to store all of your Christmas supplies.

Watching loved ones open Christmas gifts is one of the most enjoyable parts of the season. But once all of the unwrapping is done, what do you do with that colorful pile of wrapping paper on your living room floor? Fortunately for you, I have some ideas for how you can give holiday wrapping paper a second lease on life. Enjoy!

Enhance Your Bulletin Board

A large piece of used wrapping paper makes the perfect background for a bulletin board in your kitchen, a child's room, or even the garage. Simply measure your bulletin board and trim a large piece of used wrapping paper to cover the cork surface. I suggest using glue dots as a neat, clean way to attach the paper to your bulletin board. However, if you plan to change your wrapping paper background from time to time, attach it to the bulletin board using push pins.

Create Some New Shelf Paper

Why have boring drawers if you don't have to? Used wrapping paper can be measured and cut to fit into the bottoms of drawers in your bathroom, kitchen, bedroom, or anywhere else in the house. This is an easy way to keep your wrapping paper out of the landfill while adding some flair to your junk drawer!

Make a Holiday Wreath

This idea can be a great project to work on with a child or grandchild. When you're making a wrapping paper wreath, you can be as creative as you want to be. For instance, you can combine different types of wrapping paper in your design or make it out of one particular type. Your wreath may have a color theme or a character theme featuring Santa Claus, Frosty, or Rudolph. Add extra interest to your wreath by attaching a bell or a large red ribbon to it. I suggest you put aside a special box for the wreath so you can bring it out as a regular part of the Christmas décor every December.

Put Some Color in Your Packages

If you're not into making shelf paper or wreaths, you can reuse your paper in a more practical way. Put all of your wrapping paper scraps and pieces in a bag and use them as packing material whenever you send a package to someone. The recipient of your package will get a thrill from seeing such colorful packing material. Plus, maybe that person will take your lead and begin to reuse their holiday wrapping paper the same way.

A Kids' Art Project

Kids can make an interesting collage out of discarded holiday wrapping paper. Begin with a large piece of white or black construction paper. Next, they can either cut or tear the wrapping paper into pieces and glue them onto the paper to make different shapes. One child may create a nighttime scene starring a family of snow people, while another kid may create an entire neighborhood of houses out of the paper scraps. Be sure to hang the collages on the refrigerator for everyone to see.

And here's one more quick idea: If you have a special occasion coming up, such as a birthday, wedding, or anniversary party, you can always tear up your used wrapping paper for confetti.

Thanks for reading! - Alan

Topics: reuse holiday wrapping paper

How to Protect Your Garage Floor From Spills

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Fri, Dec 16, 2016

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Most garage floors take a lot of abuse. They are walked on, parked on, and sometimes spilled on. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to protect your garage floor from stains and other damage that results from spills. This week, my post is all about how to keep your garage floor looking its best.

Types of Garage Floors

Most garage floors are made of concrete. Some homeowners cover their concrete garage floors with protective interlocking tiles made of vinyl or rubber. Others cover their concrete floor with a heavy-duty rubber mat cut to fit the dimensions of their garage. There are also garage floors made of granite. Granite is a popular choice for a garage floor because it's attractive as well as scratch-resistant. The type of garage floor a homeowner has depends a lot on what the space is used for.

What Kinds of Substances End Up on a Garage Floor?

One of the most common substances spilled on garage floors is water. You may think it's no big deal to spill water on your garage floor, but if you have a bare concrete floor, water can soak into its pores and freeze when the temperature drops. This can cause breaks and cracks in the floor. Oil is another common substance found on garage floors. It may leak from your car, or it can spill while you're doing an oil change. Other car-related substances that can stain your floor include anti-freeze, brake fluid, and transmission fluid. All of these things have the power to corrode a concrete floor. In addition, the garage is a common place to store paint, which can certainly lead to some colorful spills!

How to Protect Your Garage Floor

There are some simple precautions you can take to preserve the condition of your garage floor. For example, if you have a concrete floor, you can apply an epoxy coating to it that prevents water and other spills from soaking into the concrete. You can also purchase a special oil-absorbing mat to put down beneath your parked car. Parking mats are another option: They fit under each tire of your car and are great at preventing tire marks from ruining the look of your floor.

What to Do if a Spill Occurs

If you spill oil on your concrete garage floor, you can use the inexpensive kitty litter method to soak up the oil. A detergent that removes heavy grease is another solution for an oil stain in the garage. If you spill paint on your concrete floor, you can remove all or most of it with paint stripper. Be sure to take the proper safety precautions when using paint stripper. Kitty litter is helpful for cleaning up an antifreeze spill on your garage floor. After soaking up the antifreeze with the litter, sweep it away and use dish soap and water to scrub the stain off of the floor. The epoxy on granite floors makes most spills on this type of surface easy to clean up. Rubber floors are resistant to spills and can be cleaned with a mild detergent and a mop. No matter which type of garage floor you have, I suggest you clean up oil and other car fluid spills right away, as these spills have the potential to cause a fire and they're poisonous to dogs and cats.

Remember, if you take a few steps to protect your garage floor today, you won't have to be so concerned when a spill does occur. Thanks for reading! - Alan

DIY Holiday Front Yard Decorations

Posted by Alan Bernau Jr on Wed, Dec 7, 2016

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Say you'd like to dress up your front yard for the holiday season, but you don't want to spend a ton on decorations. I have good news! There are many DIY decorations that can give your front yard some holiday spirit without a big investment. Take a look!

Terra-Cotta Snowmen

A terra-cotta snowman is one of the simplest holiday decorations to make for the front yard. All you need are three terra-cotta pots (one small, one medium, and one large), white paint, black paint, two paintbrushes, a few small sticks from your yard, three large buttons, and craft glue. The first step of the project is to paint your terra-cotta pots white and let them dry. Next, turn the pots upside down and use the biggest pot as your snowman's base. The medium-sized pot should be set on top of the base, and the small pot will serve as your snowman's head. Using the black paint, create the eyes, nose, and mouth of your snowman. You can use the craft glue to carefully attach a line of buttons down the front of your creation. Also, using the glue, attach a stick arm to each side of the snowman. If you have an old red scarf or even a black top hat, these can be used to enhance the look of your DIY snowman! If you prefer, you can opt for a gathering of little snowmen instead.

Picket Fence Snow People

If you're fortunate enough to have a white picket fence around your front yard, you have the main element necessary for making picket fence snow people. You can use washable craft paint to make eyes, a nose, and a mouth on each picket of the fence. Black felt material is perfect for making top hats and buttons for your snow people. Red, blue, or purple felt are all good ideas if you want to make a colorful scarf for each of your creations. You can use removable glue dots to secure these items to each snow person. I suggest giving a funny name to each snowman or giving each one the name of someone in your family. Stringing white LED holiday lights along your picket fence is sure to draw extra attention to your family of snow people.

Luminaries

This is an example of an easy DIY holiday decoration that looks like it took a lot of time to create. You will need a package of white paper lunch bags, a selection of Christmas-themed stencils, a pencil, an X-ACTO knife, and a package of LED tea lights. Put a stencil of a Christmas tree, a snowflake, a snowman, or any other shape you want onto one of the white paper bags. Next, using the X-ACTO knife, cut around the stencil so it creates the shape in the side of the bag. Click the little switch on the bottom of an LED tea light, place it inside the open bag, and set the bag on the railing of your porch or on the steps leading up to your home. You may want to anchor it to the ground using some duct tape on the base of the bag. Make several of these bags with a variety of stencils and you'll have a collection of appealing luminaries in your front yard. Use LED tea lights that flicker for extra flair!

A Milk Jug Santa Claus

This is a DIY project your kids or grandchildren can help with. First, clean out an empty plastic gallon-sized milk jug. Next, cut off the top two inches of the bottle so you can place an LED tea light down inside it. Decorate the face of your milk jug Santa using felt material and cotton balls. Be sure to give him rosy red cheeks. Turn on your LED tealight, place it in the bottom of the jug, and put a Santa hat on the jug to cover the opening. You could make a milk jug Santa, a Mrs. Claus, some elves, and even a reindeer or two to occupy your front porch or yard.

Explore your creativity with your yard decorations this holiday season! Thanks for reading. - Alan

Topics: holiday decorations

 

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