10 easy DIY projects to try this weekend

Transform your home into a haven with these simple and practical ideas

The sun is out in force, but that’s no reason to neglect the inside of our homes. With the house likely to be busy with visitors over the summer, there’s always a good reason to make improvements.

That said, who wants to spend endless hours indoors tackling tasks when the weather is finally getting good? We want to spend a few hours, max, making changes here and there that quickly improve the quality of our home lives.

DIY wallpaperCredit: Shutterstock / nito

That’s where this round up of quick and easy DIY projects comes in – one idea will save you from scruffy wall corners forever and it won’t take you more than a few minutes if you’re handy with a screwdriver. 

Want to transform your walls all together? Then read on and try your hand at some simple but dramatic panelling, or pick up a paint brush and add height to your low-ceiling room with a simple painting trick. 

Then throw your gorgeous front door open (we’ve got this covered too) and invite the world into your home in the confidence that it’s the best it can be.


1. Paint the exterior of your door

Increase the price of your property with a lick of paint

Blue front doorCredit: Bespoke Front Door / Farrow & Ball

Your front door holds the power to make or break your property. Research even shows that a freshly painted door in the perfect crowd-pleasing hue can push up your property price. 

Door painting experts Bespoke Front Door coated this one in Farrow & Ball’s Stiffkey Blue, as it “makes an impactful statement to passersby and visitors alike”. 

  1. Start by removing the door furniture, cleaning the door of dirt and scraping away flakes of paint.  
  2. Repair any cracks with wood filler and sand the door down. 
  3. Wipe the door down with methylated spirits and let it dry. 
  4. Paint the door with primer. 
  5. If you are going from a dark to a light shade, apply an undercoat. 
  6. Apply your topcoat and replace the hardware. 

Featured product

Stiffkey Blue Modern eggshell Emulsion, Farrow & Ball'

RRP: £35 per 0.75ltrs

Stiffkey Blue Modern eggshell Emulsion, Farrow & Ball'

Want to pay less for your front door transformation? Check out ‘7 easy ways to save money on paint for your next project. 

2. Fake a window headboard

Make your bed the best place for daydreaming

Faux bedroom windowCredit: Wayfair

Dreaming of a bedroom with a marvellous vista but stuck with an uninspiring view through your window? We suggest you follow the lead of this Wayfair design and fake that bucolic scene with some graceful butterflies and birds. 

  1. Select a flora and fauna themed wallpaper with a small-scale pattern. We love the John Lewis Hummingbird Trees design.
  2. Choose a mirror with a ‘window design’. Check out Wayfair or eBay.
  3. Install a wallmounted curtain rail above your bed and hang a pair of curtains. Wayfair or Ikea have pocket-friendly options for both. 
  4. Measure up the panels and cut wallpaper pieces to size and stick them on the mirror. Alternatively you could use patterned window film. 
  5. Hang the mirror on the wall, according to instructions, between the curtains. 

Enjoy the view. 

Featured product

Hummingbird Trees Wallpaper, John Lewis

RRP: £30 for a 10m roll

Hummingbird Trees Wallpaper, John Lewis

3. Add removable vinyl decals to your stair risers

Put a spring in your step

Stair riser decalsCredit: Etsy / CrtvPrinting

Stairs and risers are often left out of the fun when it comes to decorating. If you are considering transforming your stairs, this is a project you can do in no time. And the best part? You can change your stair riser theme according to the seasons – have spring flowers in spring and opt for icicles in the winter. 

Choose stair riser decals that come in strips. Suppliers like CrtvPrinting at Etsy and Wayfair supply them in a range of style and sizes.  Make sure when you order that the height corresponds to the height of the stair risers. Trimming can be tricky, particularly on the horizontal, so it’s best to avoid it where possible.  

  1. Clean the stair riser and surrounding area to get rid of dust. 
  2. Measure the height and width of your stairs and trim away any excess from the decal using a ruler, pencil and scissors. 
  3. Peel off the back and stick into place.  
  4. If your stairs are wider  than the decal’s length, match up the pattern with the previous strip, cut the decal down and stick. 

Featured product

Stair Riser Stickers

RRP: £41.25

Stair Riser Stickers

4. Lay vinyl-sheet flooring

Make a bold statement on your floor

Carpetright Mardi Gras 516 Evora VinylCredit: Carpetright

Featured product

Evora 516 Orbit Vinyl Flooring

RRP: £9.99

Evora 516 Orbit Vinyl Flooring

Floors are the foundation of any room’s décor – if they are ho-hum, the rest of the room will follow. Vinyl flooring, with its world of pattern choices, is a perfect antidote to dull, unimaginative floors.  

You’ll find a range of style options at Carpetright and B&Q. Measure the length and width of the room before purchase. 

If approached right, vinyl sheet flooring is easy to lay and can be done in one sheet. Just remember, you will be spending time on your knees with this particular DIY task. 

  1. Once the vinyl arrives, unroll it in the room you will be laying it in for 24 hours and turn off any underfloor heating. 
  2. Pop on some knee pads. You’ll also need a utility knife with a sharp blade close at hand. 
  3. Clean your current floor and make sure it is free of any sharp objects like protruding screw heads. 
  4. Roughly lay the vinyl in the room based on how it will be laid. 
  5. Cut around any object using your sharp blade knife. 
  6. Trim any excess vinyl around the edge of the room. A vinyl cutter will come in handy for giving a clean edge. 
  7. Apply the appropriate bond to stick the vinyl down. 

5. Protect the corners of skirting or kitchen cabinets

Skiffers take the headache out of vacuuming

SkiffersCredit: Stair Rods

Vacuuming can be a bore at the best of times, but when you bang into the corners of your rooms, this task can create an additional headache. The edges of skirting boards and storage furniture are vulnerable to the most damage – scruffy nicks and scuffs can make them look raggedy over time. 

Protective corners – or skiffers are the solution to corner damage. And the hardest part of this DIY task is choosing what style and material you will select for your skiffers. Choose from anything from polished brass to pewter from suppliers such as Stairrods and Broughtons. 

All you’ll need to do is screw your skiffers in place using the screws that are provided with your selection.

6. Apply no-mess peel-and-stick wallpaper for showstopping walls

Create dramatic feature walls in an afternoon

Rebel WallsCredit: Rebel Walls

Featured product

Jungle Land Vintage Peel-And-Stick Wallpaper, Rebel Walls

RRP: From £39.60 per sq m

When it comes to easy DIY takes that combine ease and jaw-dropping results, peel-and-stick wallpaper is in a league of its own.

Once upon a time, wallpaper décor glamour came at a hefty price – and the cost of the paper was the least of it. After you factored in labour, time and mess, it was enough to put anyone off. Not any more.

Before you order your wallpaper, check what the manufacturer says about the type of wall it will adhere to – smooth generally works best. If in doubt, buy 15% more wallpaper than you think you need – you might need to factor in windows, doors, alcoves, and trimming the top and bottom.

Sponge the walls down with a damp cloth – you’ll need to allow 24 hours for the walls to dry completely.

Measure up the wallpaper as per the manufacturer’s instructions, making any necessary line marks. Peel away the wallpaper’s backing and, working from the top down, apply to the walls. You may want to use a smoothing tool from your DIY store to stop any air bubbles from forming.

If your wallpaper is patterned, make sure to line up the patterns by ever-so-slightly overlapping the piece you are applying with the previous join.

Our favourite suppliers of peel-and-stick removable wallpaper include Rebel Walls, Spoonflower and Graham & Brown.

Rebel Walls is also a great resource for handy step-by-step videos of how to apply your stick-and-paste wallpaper.

7. Put up a window film for extra privacy

Patterned film looks beautiful and keeps our bird friends alive

PurlfrostCredit: Purlfrost

Featured product

William Morris Window Film, Purlfrost

RRP: From £12.50

Have a less than stellar view out of your window? Have an overly zealous neighbour who can’t help nosing into your private space? Sunlight streaming through your window with fabric fading fast?

Decorative glazing films can be the answer to all these problems – and they are easy to apply and look great to boot. Quickly apply them to your windows and doors and ramp up that kerb appeal in minutes.

  1. Start by cleaning your glazing using a few drops of washing-up liquid mixed with water, using a spray bottle to squirt the solution onto your glazing. Use a glass scraper to get rid of any flecks of paint or other debris.
  2. You can order film cut to size. Otherwise, trim to the size you need.
  3. Wet the glass and remove the film backing. Apply to the window and trim any excess film with a credit card or knife blade.

Decorative window films in a range of patterns are available from brands like Purlfrost and Lustalux.

Purlfrost again gives you more detailed information on how to apply your film, along with handy illustrations.

Discover the one window film tip that helps to save the billions of birds that die every year due to glazing collisions. Suppliers like Fruugo supply film that is designed to be used externally to prevent bird collisions. Purlfrost decorative films may be used externally, though this may reduce the life of the product. 

8. Take advantage of easy-install panelling

Get a smart effect without calling a carpenter

The Library Ladder CompanyCredit: The Library Ladder Company

Featured product

Wall panels, The Library Ladder Company

RRP: From £34.40

Want your walls to go from ‘Plain Jane’ to ‘Lord of the Manor’ in an afternoon? Easy DIY panelling might just be the sophisticated answer you seek.

You’ll need to store your panels and adhesives at room temperature for 24 hours before applying to your wall. Walls will need to be clean and flat – sand down any imperfections, remove any dust, then wipe down the surface with a damp cloth.

  1. Once you’ve planned where you want your panels, mark up the walls using a spirit level to make sure the lines are straight. If your panelling includes skirting boards, start there. Panels are installed from the bottom up.
  2. You’ll need a fresh-bladed saw for cutting the panels after you’ve finished measuring.
  3. Apply adhesive to the back of the panel, running a bead of adhesive along the length. Line the panel against the wall and press down firmly. Use a cloth to remove any excess glue.
  4. A wide array of panel designs and patterns are available from suppliers like The Library Ladder Company and DIY Wall Panelling.

Your panel supplier is always on hand to supply more details on how to apply the specific product you have chosen.

9. Install a clever clothes rail to deal with clutter

Make better use of awkward spaces

Zebedee Any Angle RailsCredit: Zebedee Any Angle Rails Ltd

Featured product

Original Any Angle clothes Rail, Zebedee

RRP: from £55

A bank holiday offers the perfect opportunity for a good declutter. Once you’ve sorted through your belongings, it makes sense to reorganise what remains.

Thankfully, there are plenty of innovative products that make the most of even the most awkward areas of your home. Take this ‘Any Angles’ rail, which is, according to designer Diane Challender, “no harder than fitting a curtain rail” when attaching to wood.

If fitting into plasterboard, then ideally you need to surface mount a strip of wood first and then fit to that.

  1. Start by choosing the size rail you need – there are currently five lengths, between 500mm and 900mm.
  2. Fix the brackets to a wooden lath – this is especially important if the bracket is going into a void ceiling as it helps to support the weight.
  3. Leave at least half a coat hanger’s width between the rail and the back wall.
  4. Fit the bottom bracket to the lath or directly into a wooden rafter support. Rest the end nut of the hanging rail into the round section the bottom bracket and, holding the rail in place, position and mark the top bracket.
  5. Remove the rail and loosely fit the top bracket.

For a more complete overview of hanging the rails, along with illustrations, view the Zebedee guide to measuring and installing the rail.

10. Paint a striped feature wall

Add a sweet detail inspired by candy-shop stripes

StripesCredit: Annie Sloan

Featured product

Wall paint by Annie Sloan

RRP: from £55.95 per 2.5ltrs

Vertical lines are just dandy for making walls seem taller, so if you have a low bedroom ceiling, this easy DIY project could be just the visual remedy.

  1. Note the width of your wall and do a quick calculation for how many stripes you want to fit in and how wide they will need to be if you want all the stripes to be the same width.
  2. Use a wall level to mark straight vertical lines with a pencil. Apply painter’s tape along the lines – we recommend FrogTape, £6.99, Amazon. A good tip is to tape very close to the pencil line but not over it, so that when you paint, the line is then covered over.
  3. Use a putty knife to press down the tape so no paint will seep underneath.
  4. Use a brush or roller to apply the paint – go over the area lightly to avoid paint seepage.

Before the paint fully dries you will need to remove the tape carefully, to avoid chipping.


Written by Joy Archer she/her