With the start of Spring, we find ourselves motivated to clean out our homes and to do some sprucing up. No wonder because we just find ourselves ready to refresh our living spaces after a winter of being cooped up and cold. Spring and Summer are the best times for home improvement projects.
It also helps that most of the stores are carrying new Spring decor in bright colors and patterns. It makes us want to throw out our old pillows, vases, and decor objects and replace them with new patterns, trendy items, and new potted flowers.
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Decorating your home in new colors and patterns just makes you feel more alive and vibrant.
So where do you get started? How to you make and stick to a plan to brighten up your home with items that enhance the home and don’t necessarily break the bank either.
Whether you are just replacing some items in your home or going for a full makeover with paint and furniture, you will have more success if you start with a plan. A list of what you want to change, where to shop and what items you are looking for. Even better if you create an inspiration board – I prefer a notebook or folder – with photos, paint chips, and sales papers with current trendy items.
Making a plan, a list, or inspiration board means you are more likely to finish the project.
If you are like me, you have a whole list of projects you want to get done around the house. Not just one room or space. So how do you tackle any project at all or even decide which one gets the most attention?
That answer comes down to priorities, desires, and making a plan. A plan that I believe can be accomplished by following four simple steps. Four simple steps that will help you create a design plan, work that plan, complete a finished project, and enjoy the benefits of a new updated space.
Four Simple Steps to Plan and Complete a Room Makeover
Recently my husband and I met with a service to have our kitchen cabinets updated and resurfaced. It is a big, and expensive, undertaking so we needed to know the cost and best time frame for such a project. At the same time, we have several windows rotting out on the exterior of our home and we need almost the exact same amount of money to replace all of our windows.
When a house reaches the 40 year mark you have to consider updating things like windows and doors and kitchens.
Which project are we going to choose for next year? We are not sure yet. We need to consider both the budget, the time frame, and our own desires for this one. Me personally, I want the kitchen updated before family arrives from out of town next year for our daughter’s wedding. Vanity desire for me of course. But the practical side of me knows the windows make more sense in the long run.
Stay tuned for what we decide to do.
I mention all this because making a plan for any project is key to your success. If you go shopping without a clear idea of what you need and want to update your room, such as new pillows and lamps, there is high chance that you will get distracted by all the pretty things in the store and come home with impulse buys that don’t really have a place to go. Hence, more clutter and more frustration for you because the room will never feel right or finished.
I’ve done it more times than I care to admit.
Step One is to establish your budget, the work required, and when the work will be done.
So, the first step is to start out with a list of what you want to update, what needs to be fixed, what items you need to purchase, and what stores you want to visit and of course the strict budget you have available.
This part of the project is not the most fun but it is the most critical to success. You will have to make yourself sit down to create a realistic budget, shop online for options, research what needs to be done, decide what you can do yourself or what needs to be hired out, who do you need to hire, and how much time can you dedicate to finishing the project.
The available budget usually runs the entire project planning phase.
The second phase of planning your Spring refresh projects will be to break down each step of the project in to weeks, days, and hourly time frames of when the work will be done or when you plan to have the money available. Step two is basically taking your working plan from step one, and deciding how you are going to get there.
You need to be brutally honest about how much time you can dedicate each week to work on the project, when the money will be available, when hired help will be working, and what is the projected end date. I can’t stress enough of how having an end date will help to actually get the project done.
Without a clear idea of when you can work on a specific project, how many hours a week you can dedicate to it, or even if you will need to take a break during the process, you may find yourself overwhelmed, frustrated, or totally stuck with a half finished project. This is especially true if you don’t budget the money accordingly as well.
Once you have figured out your plan, come up with a budget, and blocked off the available times you will work on the project, then the next phase of the project is to get take action.
Step Three – Work your plan.
Without actively working on your plan, the project doesn’t stand a chance of ever becoming a reality. You have to dedicate your time to achieving your home improvement project every small step of the way. Even when you don’t feel like it. Eventually the small steps will get you to a finished project.
This is when time blocking or setting a timer can help. If you know you don’t have enough time in one afternoon to finish the project but you do have a little bit of time each day, then block that time out. Set of timer for 30 minutes, you can do anything for 30 minutes, and just focus on the project. You might be surprised how far along the project gets in those short burst of activity and how motivating it can be.
Step Four -Pull it all together and enjoy your updated space.
Every project will have it’s hiccups and set backs, and that is okay. The important thing is that you see it through to the end. You still have to finish the project. Don’t call it done until you have hung the last shelf or put the last accessory in place. Stick with it until every detail of your original vision for your room makeover is complete.
Just four steps to follow and you can complete any home improvement project.
First, make a master plan including budget, project details, and time frame. Second, break that plan down in to blocks of time on your calendar and for your budget. Third, work the plan. The project won’t get done unless you do the work. And last, stay focused and pull all of the little details together to cross the finish line of this project.
Believe me, I totally understand how hard it can be to stay focused and finish up a project. Even as an Interior Designer I still struggle with budget issues, time constraints, and overwhelm. I needed these reminder just as much as anyone else.
Good luck on your next project.
“Let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.”