DIY http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/13/all en-US How to Turn Your Backyard Into a Moneymaker http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-turn-your-backyard-into-a-moneymaker <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-turn-your-backyard-into-a-moneymaker" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/in_gardening_business.jpg" alt="In gardening business" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Having a backyard costs money. Not only do you pay to own that space, but you also have to shell out for upkeep and maintenance. Regardless, your little plot of land could actually be the answer to your financial woes. Don't just spend money on your yard &mdash; make some money with it. Here are several clever ways to monetize your outdoor space.</p> <h2>Build a tiny rental house</h2> <p>Due to the housing crunch in major metropolitan areas, cities around the United States are relaxing zoning codes or creating new housing laws to deal with the shortage of rental properties. In Los Angeles, it is now legal to turn your garage into an apartment or build a &quot;granny flat&quot; in your backyard. Given that the average monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Los Angeles in July 2017 was $2,209, according to Rent Jungle, converting an existing outdoor building into a living space, or even building one from scratch, is a real estate investment worth consideration.</p> <h2>Turn your property into a private campground</h2> <p>Do you live within walking distance of a convention center, major hospital, or historic center? My friend MaryAnn has been renting out tricked-out vintage trailers in her backyard since before online rentals were even a thing. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-easy-ways-to-make-good-money-from-airbnb?Ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Easy Ways to Make Good Money From Airbnb</a>)</p> <p>But even if you don't have a prefab shelter, don't let that stop you. If you live close to a natural wonder, a killer surf break, or a unique trailhead, you can rent out your backyard as a private campground to backpackers and glampers via <a href="https://www.hipcamp.com" target="_blank">Hip Camp</a>.</p> <h2>Sell your surplus backyard produce</h2> <p>I have a gigantic Mission fig tree in my backyard. Although I personally hate figs, I love this tree. Every year, I make several hundred dollars selling ripe figs and my award-winning fig jam to my neighbors, from the comfort of my front porch. People will pay a premium for organic, seasonal produce, especially rare varieties that are hard to find in stores.</p> <h2>Sell your trees</h2> <p>My neighbor just chopped down the 70-year-old Canary Island date palm tree in his front yard because he was tired of cleaning up palm fronds. Alas, he could have saved himself the hard work and made hundreds of dollars <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/money-in-your-yard-how-to-sell-palm-trees-for-cash" target="_blank">selling this tree</a> to a commercial landscaper. Before you chop mature trees, check with your local arborist about your tree's potential resale value.</p> <h2>Raise bees or rent your yard to a beekeeper</h2> <p>As a backyard beekeeper, I am on track to make about $4,000 this year selling honey to my urban neighbors and selling bees to local farmers. And, because Los Angeles limits me to keeping just two hives on my property, I am always on the hunt for people willing to keep two hives on their property in exchange for a percentage of the honey harvest.</p> <h2>Keep city chickens</h2> <p>In an effort to keep food waste out of the landfill, the city of Austin, Texas is offering a <a href="http://www.kvue.com/news/local/city-giving-free-classes-cash-to-austinites-who-plan-on-keeping-chickens/431009868?fb_comment_id=1097551370349084_1097597210344500#f31b6d9f013fb8c" target="_blank">$75 rebate</a> to Austinites who keep backyard chickens.</p> <p>Beyond the green street cred you will gain from chicken-based recycling, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-raise-backyard-chickens" target="_blank">raising your own chickens</a> comes with a host of benefits. The chickens can eat your food scraps and create healthy soil, all while giving you free eggs. That said, be sure to do the math before investing in a backyard chicken empire. In urban areas like Los Angeles, where fresh, organic chickens sell for $20 and no one blinks an eye at paying $1 per backyard egg, it's easier to make money raising chickens than in some other places. Check your local poultry economy to accurately assess your return on investment.</p> <h2>Grow vegetable seedlings</h2> <p>Lora, my gardener, discovered that she could make more profit growing and selling heirloom vegetable seedlings (with less effort) than she could by growing landscaping plants. Heirloom vegetable seeds cost a few bucks per package, but she sells seedlings for $1 each at her the local farmers market a &mdash; 1,400 percent markup!</p> <h2>Sell your garden space or expertise</h2> <p>Most community gardens are on the lottery system. Only a fraction of the people who want to grow their own food have access to arable land. If you have space to spare in your backyard, try renting out your land to local greenthumbs.</p> <p>If you're creative with your own garden and landscaping, you might be able to market that expertise. My friend Judy accidentally launched her career as a garden designer after fixing up her own backyard.</p> <h2>Offer your yard as a wedding and party venue</h2> <p>Is your garden or farmland picturesque? Rustic weddings are all the rage these days. Connect with local wedding and event planners in your area to find out how much you can make renting out your pristine lawn or barn.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-turn-your-backyard-into-a-moneymaker&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Turn%2520Your%2520Backyard%2520Into%2520a%2520Moneymaker.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Turn%20Your%20Backyard%20Into%20a%20Moneymaker"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Turn%20Your%20Backyard%20Into%20a%20Moneymaker.jpg" alt="How to Turn Your Backyard Into a Moneymaker" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-turn-your-backyard-into-a-moneymaker">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-decorative-plants-you-can-eat-too">6 Decorative Plants You Can Eat, Too</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-make-amazon-pay-you">7 Ways to Make Amazon Pay YOU!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-ways-to-make-money-outside-your-day-job">15 Ways to Make Money Outside Your Day Job</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-make-passive-income-online">5 Ways to Make Passive Income Online</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/clear-out-that-clutter-15-places-to-sell-your-stuff">Clear Out That Clutter: 15 Places to Sell Your Stuff</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income backyard beekeeper camping chickens DIY gardening home and garden plants renting selling vegetables Mon, 28 Aug 2017 08:30:15 +0000 Max Wong 2010037 at http://www.wisebread.com Colorstrology and 3 Modern Décor Trends That Will Fit Any Budget http://www.wisebread.com/colorstrology-and-3-modern-d-cor-trends-that-will-fit-any-budget <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/colorstrology-and-3-modern-d-cor-trends-that-will-fit-any-budget" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_and_woman_dreaming.jpg" alt="Man and woman dreaming" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Changing the look of your home doesn't need to cost much. You can clear the clutter and use items you already own to completely change the feel of your space. Here's how you can breathe new life into your casa with these affordable modern décor trends.</p> <h2>Colorstrology</h2> <p>Colorstrology is a hybrid of astrology, numerology, and <a href="https://www.pantone.com/colorstrology" target="_blank">Pantone colors</a>. Astrologist Michele Bernhardt created a calendar and corresponding book, <a href="http://amzn.to/2tWZWs8" target="_blank">Colorstrology: What Your Birthday Color Says about You</a>, with a different Pantone color assigned to each day of the year, as well as one for each month. The colors are chosen based on ruling planets, sun signs, and other important dates and numbers. While there is quite a bit of science and success backing the new colorful trend, a lot of it is psychological.</p> <p>As an example, <a href="http://goop.com/better-than-a-horoscope-what-your-colorstrology-profile-says-about-you/" target="_blank">Bernhardt told Goop</a> that if you're looking for help with your relationship, &quot;You might go to October's color, which is a light blue that is very peaceful and gentle; it helps bring harmony and balance. Or February &mdash; a high vibration purple &mdash; is a great color for people who are intense, and trying to learn how to be more detached and collaborative. Lilac and lavender can help us love without being too clingy.&quot;</p> <h3>How to use the colors</h3> <p>Incorporating these colors into your décor can help bring about positive energy. For instance, you can add a splash of color to any room by painting the trims or one accent wall with a shade in your birthday month color. You can also move certain items into different rooms so they are more color-coordinated, based on the shades you select.</p> <p>Along with using these colors throughout your décor, you can also wear these power colors throughout your clothing, accessories, or makeup each day to capitalize on the positive vibes. Mindful color selection like this might require some time to get organized, but it should cost you very little money to execute.</p> <h2>Minimalism</h2> <p>Minimalism is about more than just cleaning and decluttering the house. It's about focusing on clean design, neutral or muted colors, sharp lines, and simple furnishings and décor. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ease-into-minimalism-with-some-simple-steps?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Ease Into Minimalism With Some Simple Steps</a>)</p> <h3>Choose quality over quantity</h3> <p>Create a cohesive look by concentrating on one simple design and complementary accent decorations. This can be accomplished by paring down to one or two accessories per room, and you can you use things you already own. Also, be sure to keep and utilize furniture that serves double duty as storage or that takes up minimal space.</p> <h3>Keep it simple</h3> <p>Once you have gotten rid of anything that you aren't excited about and narrowed your items down to just the essentials, it's time to concentrate on your personal style. Simplify your color scheme and choose textures in similar tones. Adopting a minimalist style also means easier cleanup (less to dust), and you might even make some money selling those excess items that you no longer want.</p> <h2>Maximalism</h2> <p>While minimalism is about &quot;less is more,&quot; maximalism is about &quot;more is more.&quot; Maximalism has no set rules; you can even layer different colors, textures, and styles. Things like bold wallpaper and clashing patterns are acceptable with this affordable trend. This means that you can show off your latest vintage finds or eclectic paintings with pride.</p> <h3>Use mirrors</h3> <p>If a room appears small, add a mirror to make it appear larger. If you don't want to hang a mirror, consider propping a large framed mirror against a wall. It can create drama and brighten the space instantly.</p> <h3>Display everyday items</h3> <p>Take a look around for posters or cards you already own that can be framed, unique items of clothing or shoes that can be displayed, or antique pieces that can serve as the focal point of a room.</p> <p>And if a room doesn't feel cozy, Better Homes and Gardens recommends adding a colorful throw and pillows.</p> <h2>Natural elements</h2> <p>Use items you find outside your home in nature to decorate your space. Birch tree limbs and pine cones can be spray painted in white or gold for decor. Rocks, shells, and leaves can also create beautiful (and free) art pieces or table scapes.</p> <p>This trend also encourages adding lots of greenery. If you don't have any greens of your own, pick up some inexpensive seeds to plant, or ask a friend to divide up one of their plants for you. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-surprising-ways-a-houseplant-can-save-you-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Surprising Ways a Houseplant Can Save You Money</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fcolorstrology-and-3-modern-d-cor-trends-that-will-fit-any-budget&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FColorstrology%2520and%25203%2520Modern%2520D%25C3%25A9cor%2520Trends%2520That%2520Will%2520Fit%2520Any%2520Budget.jpg&amp;description=Colorstrology%20and%203%20Modern%20Decor%20Trends%20That%20Will%20Fit%20Any%20Budget"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Colorstrology%20and%203%20Modern%20D%C3%A9cor%20Trends%20That%20Will%20Fit%20Any%20Budget.jpg" alt="Colorstrology and 3 Modern Décor Trends That Will Fit Any Budget" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/colorstrology-and-3-modern-d-cor-trends-that-will-fit-any-budget">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-home-diy-projects-you-can-do-in-one-day">10 Home DIY Projects You Can Do in One Day</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-problems-you-can-solve-with-duct-tape">13 Problems You Can Solve With Duct Tape</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/19-fun-cheap-projects-to-try-this-weekend">19 Fun, Cheap Projects to Try This Weekend</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/18-amazing-diy-decorating-projects-that-are-easier-than-you-think">18 Amazing DIY Decorating Projects That Are Easier Than You Think</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ideas-for-cheap-festive-fall-decor">12 Ideas for Cheap, Festive, Fall Decor</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> DIY Home colorstrology decor trends DIY home decor home goods how to maximalism minimalism Tue, 11 Jul 2017 08:30:12 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1981391 at http://www.wisebread.com 4 Paint Colors That Can Boost Your Home's Value http://www.wisebread.com/4-paint-colors-that-can-boost-your-homes-value <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-paint-colors-that-can-boost-your-homes-value" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/blue_paint_portrait.jpg" alt="Blue paint portrait" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you want to sell your home, the right paint color can make a huge difference. No matter what Pantone's color of the year might be, a recent report found that certain colors boost a home's value. Blues and neutrals, in particular, can increase the amount you're able to get for your home.</p> <p>Zillow, the home-listing app of choice for thousands of people who want to sell or buy a home, recently released its 2017 <a href="http://zillow.mediaroom.com/2017-06-01-Homes-with-Blue-Bathrooms-Sell-for-5-400-More-than-Expected" target="_blank">analysis of paint colors and home values</a>. It's pretty interesting. Turns out that the right paint color in the right room can boost the selling price by several thousand dollars. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-questions-to-ask-before-selling-your-house?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Questions to Ask Before Selling Your House</a>)</p> <h2>Greige</h2> <p>You and I and every homeowner out there may have long grown tired of that grayish beige, the go-to neutral for the modern home. But homebuyers aren't tired of it. Zillow reports that as an exterior house color, a lovely shade of greige can boost the sale price by more than $3,000.</p> <p>It's not just about the neutral, though; it's this particular neutral that makes buyers go batty, apparently. Homes with dark brown or taupe exteriors sold for less than their greige counterparts. All neutrals are not created equal when it comes to home sales. Taupe is out. Greige is in.</p> <h2>Navy blue</h2> <p>Navy blue is a perennial in home decor, a classic color that can work with a multitude of design styles. Perhaps its depth renders a solid, enduring feel to a home. Perhaps it's just everybody's secret favorite color. Either way, it turns out a front door painted in navy blue can garner an additional $1,500 in the home sale. Considering that you can paint a door for around $20, this is an update well worth the investment.</p> <p>Navy blue can serve you well in other areas of the home, too. Dining rooms painted navy and sporting white trim can bring almost $2,000 more to the selling price. Go ahead and buy a gallon of interior paint in navy when you pick up that quart of exterior paint for the front door. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beginners-guide-to-finding-your-interior-design-style?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Beginner's Guide to Finding Your Interior Design Style</a>)</p> <h2>Other blues</h2> <p>Here is a short list of interior colors that homebuyers <em>do not like</em>: pink, red, and yellow. Why so much hate for these warm colors? There's plenty of room for speculation (a psychological hive-mind? An innate response to global warming?). Motivations are mysterious; money is easier to count. A pink bedroom will reduce selling price by $200 in some areas, and a red dining room will bring the price down by $2,000. So apparently people literally see red when they see red.</p> <p>Here's a short list of interior colors that homebuyers really do like: blue. Make your world a blue world. Bedroom? Paint in light cerulean for potential $1,800 increase. Bathrooms in light powder blue or periwinkle are very popular, and those home prices got a boost of about $5,000. Kitchens are popular in light blue or soft grayish blue tones, and can add almost $2,000 to your home's value.</p> <h2>Oatmeal</h2> <p>There's one exception to the blue rule, and that's the living room. A living room in blue can reduce a home's value by $800. A living room painted in a light taupe or beige, however, can increase by $1,800.</p> <p>And white is a major negative when it's in the bathroom. Homes with white bathrooms saw a decrease in value of around $4,000. Buyers seem to place a very high value on the bathroom being the right color. Keep your bathrooms blue and your living rooms the color of oatmeal, and everybody's happy.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F4-paint-colors-that-can-boost-your-homes-value&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F4%2520Paint%2520Colors%2520That%2520Can%2520Boost%2520Your%2520Homes%2520Value.jpg&amp;description=4%20Paint%20Colors%20That%20Can%20Boost%20Your%20Homes%20Value"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/4%20Paint%20Colors%20That%20Can%20Boost%20Your%20Homes%20Value.jpg" alt="4 Paint Colors That Can Boost Your Home's Value" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/annie-mueller">Annie Mueller</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-paint-colors-that-can-boost-your-homes-value">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/40-ways-to-use-spray-paint-for-cheap-and-easy-decorating">40 Ways to Use Spray Paint for Cheap and Easy Decorating</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ideas-for-cheap-festive-fall-decor">12 Ideas for Cheap, Festive, Fall Decor</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-improve-your-curb-appeal-for-next-to-nothing">6 Ways to Improve Your Curb Appeal for Next to Nothing</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-problems-you-can-solve-with-duct-tape">13 Problems You Can Solve With Duct Tape</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-create-your-dream-backyard-on-a-budget">How to Create Your Dream Backyard on a Budget</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home Real Estate and Housing decor DIY home projects home value paint paint color paint project painting selling your home Mon, 03 Jul 2017 08:30:15 +0000 Annie Mueller 1975526 at http://www.wisebread.com 13 Problems You Can Solve With Duct Tape http://www.wisebread.com/13-problems-you-can-solve-with-duct-tape <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/13-problems-you-can-solve-with-duct-tape" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/recycling_wellington_boots_and_duct_tape_dog_sculpture.jpg" alt="Recycling Wellington boots and duct tape dog sculpture" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When Johnson &amp; Johnson first developed duct tape in the early 1940s, it was used in the military to keep boxes of weapons sealed. It would later be used by soldiers to repair just about everything, before becoming commercially available and marketed for household repairs postwar. Today, the miracle adhesive has innumerable uses, but here are a baker's dozen that save money, time, and even lives. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/27-things-you-should-have-in-your-utility-drawer?ref=seealso" target="_blank">27 Things You Should Have in Your Utility Drawer</a>)</p> <h2>1. Hide holes in your porch or mobile home skirting</h2> <p>Duct tape comes in a rainbow of colors and patterns these days, but you'll most likely require the white version to hide holes or cracks in the skirting around your porch or mobile home. This quick fix is a much cheaper alternative to replacing the damaged panels, especially since the skirting never gets a close look by anyone.</p> <h2>2. Reattach side-view mirrors if they get knocked off</h2> <p>City dwellers know all too well how easy it is to have a side-view mirror knocked off overnight. Sure, you can call your insurance company when it happens, but then you're faced with paying the high deductible and a potential fee increase to your policy. If you don't have the money to handle the situation yourself, consider reattaching the mirror with duct tape. The hack won't pass inspection in all states, so if you encounter this crisis, investigate with your state motor vehicle department before making the fix a long-term solution.</p> <h2>3. Help senior citizens navigate stairs better</h2> <p>A strip of duct tape on the stairs can potentially save a life, according to the caregivers at SYNERGY HomeCare, who use the technique in clients' homes.</p> <p>&quot;A simple strip of colorful duct tape on the edges of stair steps makes it easier for seniors to judge the depth and distance to keep from tripping and falling,&quot; says a spokesperson for the organization.</p> <p>Staircases and stairway accidents are one of the leading causes of accidental injuries &mdash; second only to motor vehicle accidents. Each year 12,000 people die from stairway accidental deaths, many of whom are seniors. This is an easy, cheap way to prevent accidents and possibly save lives.</p> <h2>4. Keep strips of sandpaper from tearing</h2> <p>To keep strips of sandpaper from tearing when sanding rounded surfaces, apply duct tape to the back of the sandpaper before cutting it into strips.</p> <h2>5. Ward off scuff marks on your floors</h2> <p>If you have chairs or other furniture scratching your floors, wrap the feet in small strips of duct tape. This works particularly well for furniture on wheels, since you can't buy pads for these items like you can for your flat-footed furniture.</p> <h2>6. Open tightly closed jars</h2> <p>If you have a stubborn jar whose lid won't open easily, create a simple solution with about a foot of duct tape. Fold three or four inches of it around half of the lid then use the remaining eight inches to pull the lid counterclockwise. The gripping action of the duct tape should open it right up.</p> <h2>7. Clean up pet hair with a paint roller</h2> <p>I have a hypoallergenic dog specifically because I can't stand pet hair. It's bad enough when it's on my clothes, but it really grosses me out when it's all over my bed. If you have either of these problems, an easy way to remove the pet hair quickly and efficiently is to apply duct tape to a paint roller with the sticky side facing out. It's bigger than a regular lint roller, so it's great for large surfaces. Of course, you can spot clean the pet hair by hand with duct tape, but you'll cover much more surface area in less time with the roller.</p> <h2>8. Stop a hose leak</h2> <p>Small leaks in hoses &mdash; indoor and outdoor &mdash; can be stopped with duct tape. Don't, however, take this advice to mean that you can solve all plumbing problems with duct tape. That's not a good idea. If you have a major leak or other plumbing issue, contact a professional.</p> <h2>9. Close a hole in an air duct</h2> <p>Unlike repairing plumbing pipes, you can probably successfully plug a hole in your ductwork with duct tape. At least in this case, you have the advantage of only spilling air, whereas a water leak can become a real disaster.</p> <h2>10. Repair a cracked trash can</h2> <p>Why buy a new trash can if all you're putting in it is rubbish? Granted, duct tape probably won't prevent squirrels from getting into your trash bins &mdash; they've eaten holes straight through the very hard plastic my garbage cans are made of. I'm all ears to your solutions to that problem.</p> <h2>11. Waterproof your tennis shoes</h2> <p>A friend of mine does a lot of walks for cancer research &mdash; often dozens of miles over the course of a few days &mdash; and she told me that she covers her shoes in duct tape, around the sides and over the top &ndash; to keep them from getting wet and uncomfortable in inclement weather. Smart idea.</p> <h2>12. Pick up shards of glass or metal</h2> <p>Small shards of glass and metal are hard to see and sweep. To ensure the complete cleanup of the debris, do a thorough sweep or vacuum then pick up any remaining bits with a strip of duct tape.</p> <h2>13. Save your life or someone else's</h2> <p>Out of all duct tape's problem-solving uses, first-aid is the most important. Duct tape can <a href="http://www.rd.com/health/conditions/duct-tape-first-aid/" target="_blank">stop bleeding, clean wounds</a>, close wounds, keep wounds dry, and even prevent a collapsed lung. Certainly it's not the ideal method of care, but if it's the only thing you have on hand in a life-or-death situation, you'd better reach for it.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-problems-you-can-solve-with-duct-tape">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-diy-projects-to-make-your-home-look-amazing-and-3-you-shouldnt-try">17 DIY Projects to Make Your Home Look Amazing (and 3 You Shouldn&#039;t Try)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-already-own-that-can-be-turned-into-a-tote-bag">10 Things You Already Own That Can Be Turned Into a Tote Bag</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-create-your-dream-backyard-on-a-budget">How to Create Your Dream Backyard on a Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/colorstrology-and-3-modern-d-cor-trends-that-will-fit-any-budget">Colorstrology and 3 Modern Décor Trends That Will Fit Any Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-really-easy-ways-to-unclog-drains">10 Really Easy Ways to Unclog Drains</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> DIY Home DIY diy projects duct tape home goods home projects Home repair solving problems Wed, 31 May 2017 08:00:12 +0000 Mikey Rox 1955701 at http://www.wisebread.com 23 Recipes for Slime Your Kids Can Make — and Even Sell! http://www.wisebread.com/23-recipes-for-slime-your-kids-can-make-and-even-sell <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/23-recipes-for-slime-your-kids-can-make-and-even-sell" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-543333194.jpg" alt="Kid making and selling slime with slime recipes" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>At a Girl Scout retreat last weekend, I watched a middle school girl knead and roll a cerulean ball of pliable, shiny, stretchy &hellip; stuff &hellip; as she chatted with friends. The other girls at the table couldn't take their eyes off it.</p> <p><em>&quot;</em>What slime recipe did you use?&quot;</p> <p>&quot;Can I touch it?&quot;</p> <p>At an age where interests lean toward Snapchat and heavy eye makeup, it was refreshing to see the childlike wonder that a plastic bag of slime brought out in these young teens.</p> <p>That's why the trend of making, Instagramming, and even selling various types of slime in middle schools all over the country warms my heart. It's hands-on. As a non-Newtonian fluid with properties that change with ingredient variations, it's also science-y. It appeals to kids' senses, not just their eyeballs. And since it's made with just a few dollars' worth of household materials, it's frugal fun, too. It can even be a source of spending money for kids who get so good at slime-making that other kids want to buy it. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-businesses-your-tween-can-start?ref=seealso" target="_blank">13 Businesses Your Tween Can Start</a>)</p> <p>If your child wants to get in on the slime trend but needs some instructions to get started, here are some winning recipes.</p> <h2>1. Opaque slime</h2> <p>The <a href="http://www.hometrainingtools.com/learning-center/how-to-make-slime/" target="_blank">original slime recipe</a> has been around for a generation. It calls for just three ingredients: school glue, borax, and water. The result is a whitish, flexible putty. Note that slimes containing borax are not edible; the powdery substance can be toxic in large doses.</p> <p>For extra fun, try <a href="https://sciencebob.com/make-your-own-bouncy-ball/" target="_blank">molding your slime into a ball</a> and bouncing it. It will lose its bounce gradually, but keeping it moist in a plastic bag will help.</p> <h2>2. Clear slime</h2> <p>This is the same recipe as above, but <a href="https://www.stevespanglerscience.com/lab/experiments/glue-borax-gak/" target="_blank">with clear glue</a>. The difference is striking!</p> <h2>3. Liquid starch slime</h2> <p>Just as borax does, liquid starch can cross-link the polymers in glue, creating that moldable blobbiness that's fun to knead. If you hate mixing powders with your hands, like I do, you might prefer <a href="https://sciencebob.com/make-some-starch-slime-today/" target="_blank">this recipe</a> to the borax version. The resulting slime is the kind that kids can use to make rude noises when moving it in and out of a plastic container. If you don't get it, just ask your tween.</p> <h2>4. Fake snot</h2> <p>Younger kids might enjoy this <a href="http://littlebinsforlittlehands.com/fake-snot-edible-gelatin-slime-science-activity/" target="_blank">gross-out snot version</a> more than the middle school set. The recipe includes gelatin, corn syrup, and water.</p> <h2>5. Flavored edible slime</h2> <p>Perhaps disturbingly, the fake snot recipe listed above is an edible slime. To make it more palatable, you can take the same recipe and <a href="http://littlebinsforlittlehands.com/taste-science-with-edible-gelatin-slime-activity/" target="_blank">add flavored extracts</a> or small amounts of fruit juice. (Giving it a different name would probably help, too.)</p> <h2>6. Nickelodeon slime</h2> <p>Gen-Xers will remember the early cable Nickelodeon show <em>You Can't Do That on Television,</em>&nbsp;on which the young actors (including Alanis Morissette) were doused with buckets of gross green gook. This <a href="http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Nickelodeon-Slime" target="_blank">reverse-engineered recipe</a> calls for Jell-O, flour, Johnson's Baby Shampoo, water, and food coloring.</p> <h2>7. Sticky kitchen slime</h2> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/OAe0jEW0RHo" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>Dish soap, water, and flour. This is a <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAe0jEW0RHo" target="_blank">convenient slime recipe</a> to whip up on a snow day, since you probably already have all the ingredients in your kitchen. Only make this one if the idea of slime that adheres to your hands doesn't revolt you.</p> <h2>8. Soapy slime</h2> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/idkWcHYnqjA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>For some good clean fun, mix <a href="http://www.playbasedlearning.com.au/2009/11/slippery-slime/" target="_blank">soap flakes</a> or a <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=idkWcHYnqjA" target="_blank">microwaved bar of Ivory</a> with water. This slime is ideal for keeping in a large container and running your hands through it, since the consistency can be soupy.</p> <h2>9. Sticky edible slime</h2> <p>Cook sweetened condensed milk with cornstarch on the stovetop for a <a href="http://childcentralstation.com/2011/05/super-stove-top-slime-off.html" target="_blank">slime that you will have to lick off</a> your fingers. Flavor this with chocolate syrup to make <a href="http://chemistry.about.com/od/slimerecipes/a/chocolate-slime-recipe.htm" target="_blank">chocolate slime</a>.</p> <h2>10. Cookie cutter slime</h2> <p>Using soluble fiber such as Metamucil, you can <a href="http://chemistry.about.com/cs/howtos/ht/flubber.htm" target="_blank">make this slime that is easily sliced</a> with a knife or shaped with a cookie cutter without sticking.</p> <h2>11. Bathroom slime</h2> <p>Mix a thick <a href="http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Slime-with-Just-Shampoo-and-Toothpaste" target="_blank">shampoo one-to-one with toothpaste</a>, then freeze to take out the sticky factor. You'll end up with a translucent putty that's easy to make without a trip to the store.</p> <h2>12. Colored slime</h2> <p>To any of the above recipes, add a few drops of food coloring or liquid watercolor paint. If you add green color to the clear slime, it looks like the ectoplasm in <em>Ghostbusters</em>.</p> <h2>13. Glitter slime</h2> <p>Replace the glue in any of the basic recipes with clear glitter glue, or use clear glue and pour in glitter from a jar, and you will have a sparkly slime that's perfect for glam party favors.</p> <h2>14. Galaxy slime</h2> <p>This twist calls for three batches of glitter slime in different colors &mdash; using colored <a href="http://diyjoy.com/kids-crafts-diy-galaxy-slime-recipe" target="_blank">glitter glue, food coloring, or acrylic paint</a>. Lay them side by side and twist them together to get a streaky, Milky Way effect.</p> <h2>15. Black light slime</h2> <p>Use diet tonic water in the Metamucil slime recipe, and you've got a goop that glows under a black light.</p> <h2>16. Attraction slime</h2> <p><a href="http://chemistry.about.com/od/slimerecipes/fl/How-To-Make-Magnetic-Slime.htm" target="_blank">Mixing iron oxide powder</a> into a classic slime recipe will make goop that is attracted to strong magnets. This one is not safe for really little kids who might put the slime or the magnets in their mouths. Watch out for pets around this one, too.</p> <h2>17. Mood ring slime</h2> <p>Color any slime recipe with <a href="http://amzn.to/2mVoFsf" target="_blank">thermochromatic pigment</a>, available on Amazon, and you'll get a <a href="https://www.thoughtco.com/color-changing-slime-recipe-609157" target="_blank">substance that changes color</a> when you press your palm into it, touch it to a cold drink, or heat it with a hair dryer. This one should drive the middle school kiddos wild.</p> <h2>18. Slime with mix-ins</h2> <p>Once the novelty of kneading a polymer gets old, you can crank up the sensory factor of your slime by adding mix-ins, as if you're working at Cold Stone Creamery. You can pretty much add anything you want: <a href="http://www.theidearoom.net/halloween-monster-slime-recipe/" target="_blank">Small toys</a> or &quot;<a href="https://www.stevespanglerscience.com/store/jelly-marbles-clear-spheres.html" target="_blank">alien eggs</a>&quot; add pleasant textural and visual surprises as you knead.</p> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/FXrfoudPos4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>This is a great way to make holiday-themed slime, such as <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXrfoudPos4" target="_blank">eyeball slime</a> for Halloween or star-spangled slime for Independence Day.</p> <h2>19. Sandy slime</h2> <p><a href="http://frugalfun4boys.com/2015/04/07/how-to-make-sand-slime/" target="_blank">Glue, detergent, and smooth sand</a> make this product that stretches like regular slime but has a nice grainy texture. <a href="http://amzn.to/2n4GZj2" target="_blank">Colored sand</a> would be a fun twist.</p> <h2>20. Fluffy slime</h2> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Q6qxULdP5UE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>Adding shaving cream and foaming soap to typical slime ingredients yields a <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q6qxULdP5UE" target="_blank">slime with a lot of air</a> in it, which makes for bubbles to pop and the ability to create pretty swirly shapes.</p> <p>&quot;Adding shaving cream makes it fluffy, which is something that many middle schoolers like. You can also make it more stretchy by putting in a little bit of lotion, which is also something middle schoolers like,&quot; explained a middle school source who agreed to speak with me on the condition of anonymity.</p> <p>Adding in scented personal care products also create a pleasant feel on the fingers.</p> <h2>21. Homemade &quot;Floam&quot;</h2> <p>Take a standard slime recipe and <a href="http://www.growingajeweledrose.com/2013/12/homemade-floam-recipe-for-play.html" target="_blank">add polystyrene beads</a>, the kind that fill a bean bag chair. You can buy them at a craft store, or upcycle Styrofoam packaging by crumbling it up. The result is a more moldable slime, sold commercially as Floam.</p> <h2>22. Iceberg slime</h2> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ID37N1O0Jmg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>Start with fluffy slime. Set it out to <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ID37N1O0Jmg" target="_blank">dry uncovered for two days</a> to achieve a crunchy crust on the top, for the sheer pleasure of breaking holes in the top and watching &mdash; and listening to &mdash; the surface crack.</p> <h2>23. Avalanche slime</h2> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/hyXO09Lj7IM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>This project involves <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hyXO09Lj7IM" target="_blank">combining white slime in a container with colored transparent slime</a> to create a whirled, multicolored effect.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-recipes-for-slime-your-kids-can-make-and-even-sell">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-amazing-board-games-you-can-diy">8 Amazing Board Games You Can DIY</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-awesomely-fun-toys-you-can-diy">15 Awesomely Fun Toys You Can DIY</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/frugal-ways-to-help-your-child-get-the-best-education">Frugal Ways to Help Your Child Get the Best Education</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-free-or-cheap-toys-that-will-make-your-kid-smarter">14 Free or Cheap Toys That Will Make Your Kid Smarter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/three-kids-diy-projects-in-your-pantry">Three Kids&#039; DIY Projects In Your Pantry</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> DIY Family DIY kids kids toys shopping trends side hustle slime slime recipes toy trends Tue, 21 Mar 2017 11:01:05 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1911508 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Things You Already Own That Can Be Turned Into a Tote Bag http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-already-own-that-can-be-turned-into-a-tote-bag <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-things-you-already-own-that-can-be-turned-into-a-tote-bag" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-544716754.jpg" alt="Woman using things she already owns to make a tote bag" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Need a bag to carry your stuff around, but don't want to head to the store to buy one? No problem. You can make a sturdy tote by upcycling things you already own. It's possible to make a pretty awesome tote bag without spending any money at all. Here are 10 items that you can easily transform into a tote.</p> <h2>1. T-shirt</h2> <p>If you have an old T-shirt in your closet, try <a href="http://www.mommypotamus.com/no-sew-t-shirt-tote-bag-tutorial/" target="_blank">turning it into a tote bag</a>. This no-sew tutorial takes just 10 minutes to complete. You'll need some sharp scissors and a washable marker. Cut the sleeves and neckline area off your shirt. Then figure out how deep you want your bag to be. Cut fringe at the base of your to-be bag, turn it inside out, and tie the fringe.</p> <p>Alternatively, you can leave the fringe out for a more stylish look.</p> <h2>2. Wool sweater</h2> <p>You can make a <a href="http://shabbynest.blogspot.com/2009/09/how-to-make-green-tote.html" target="_blank">felted tote bag using an old wool sweater</a>. Just wash the sweater using hot water and dry on high heat. This will make the fibers shrink and ultimately add strength to your bag. Cut the arms and neckline out of the shrunken sweater. Turn it inside out and then stitch along the bottom to close.</p> <p>You can also fold over the edges of the strap and hem if you like, but felted wool likely won't fray much if at all.</p> <h2>3. Jeans</h2> <p>Maybe you've recently lost some weight and are looking for ways to use your discarded roomy jeans. Make a tote out of 'em.<a href="http://www.craftymisadventures.com/2012/10/upcycled-denim-purse.html" target="_blank"> Upcycled denim</a> makes a particularly ingenious tote that has built-in pockets. What about a handle? Use the leg seams! It's super simple and will stand up to heavy loads. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-new-things-you-can-make-with-old-denim-jeans?ref=seealso" target="_blank">20 New Things You Can Make With Old Blue Jeans</a>)</p> <h2>4. Rice bag</h2> <p>Do you buy your rice in bulk? Keep the bag! Once you slice and dice it a bit, you can sew around the edges and <a href="http://www.instructables.com/id/Reusable-Grocery-Bag-Made-From-a-Rice-Bag/" target="_blank">make a durable grocery bag</a> that will last for years. You only need a few tools: scissors, a needle, and nylon thread. The rest is in the magic of folding it into the classic grocery bag shape and sewing it up.</p> <p>You can follow this exact same process using any stiff bag. <a href="http://www.fresheggsdaily.com/2012/01/make-your-own-feed-bag-tote.html" target="_blank">Feed bags for chickens</a> and other livestock make great choices as well. This type of bag is exceptionally easy to clean. That's great news if you plan to use it to pick up produce at the farmers market.</p> <h2>5. Place mats</h2> <p>Use place mats for this<a href="http://www.papernstitchblog.stfi.re/2016/06/01/budget-friendly-diy-crossbody-bag/" target="_blank"> DIY cross-body bag</a>. To make it, lay the place mats atop one another, inside out. Start at the bottom seam and thread with an embroidery needle. Stitch along three sides of the mats, leaving the top open. Turn bag right-side out. To add a strap, pull a loop from the inside of the bag. The tutorial says to then thread a purse strap through the loop on both sides.</p> <p>If you don't have a purse strap to use, consider braiding a thick rope using old T-shirts to your desired length.</p> <h2>6. Rag rug</h2> <p>You can complete a very similar project using an<a href="http://atticlace.blogspot.com/2013/06/diy-rag-bag-i-recently-picked-up-some.html" target="_blank"> old rag rug</a>. Fold your rug in half and pick up one of the corners to invert it slightly. (This will give the bag a nicer shape.) From there, you stitch both sides using an embroidery needle and floss. The author of this project used a yard of burlap to create a strap. Divide the yard in half and then sew onto the inside of the bag by hand. Yes, by hand. As you can imagine, the rug is likely too thick to run through a sewing machine.</p> <h2>7. Bed sheet</h2> <p>Here's a tote bag that will also transform<a href="http://www.brit.co/tote-blanket/" target="_blank"> into a picnic blanket</a> for those on-the-fly gatherings. What do you upcycle in this case? A full-size cotton bed sheet! This project may take you an entire weekend to complete, but it's well worth the effort.</p> <p>Lay out the sheet horizontally. You'll first cut out a square of fabric that will serve as the blanket. Then you'll use what's left over to make the tote. You eventually attach the two pieces so it's all connected and handy. The strap for this bag is made from the thicker piece at the top of the sheet.</p> <h2>8. Beach towel</h2> <p>This<a href="http://www.morelikehome.net/2015/09/beach-towel-tote-tutorial.html" target="_blank"> beach towel tote</a> helps you carry stuff to the beach and then soak up sun without getting sandy. You just need two towels. To sew the tote, start by making a comfortable pillow that you fill with stuffing. I think this project could also work if you leave the whole pillow portion out. Either way, you'll end up folding in the sides of the pillow to roll into the bag form. Then you sew a fabric pocket on the outside and make your straps. Boom. Beach bag.</p> <p>For the pocket and straps, it's helpful if you have a stronger fabric. Duck cloth works well, but you may also use old jeans.</p> <h2>9. Broken umbrella</h2> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/VcQS27AnM1M" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>We all have a wonky umbrella somewhere in a closet just waiting to be turned into this <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VcQS27AnM1M" target="_blank">DIY tote bag</a>. The bonus here is that the bag will be so compact that you can stash it almost anywhere. To make this bag, you'll need some thread, pins, and a needle. You'll also need to create a rough pattern and find a patch to cover the hole where the fabric used to attach to the umbrella.</p> <p>To detach the umbrella fabric from its frame, carefully snip the thread that attaches it. Check for any holes and patch them. Fold the fabric in half, trace and cut to your pattern. Then sew along all the edges by hand or using a sewing machine.</p> <h2>10. Plastic bags</h2> <p>Plarn is yarn made from discarded plastic bags. You make it by simply laying a plastic bag out flat, removing the handle portion, and cutting the rest into strips. You then tie two strips together, then three, and so on, before rolling your upcycled yarn into a ball to use as you like.</p> <p>Once you've made a ball of your own plarn, you can knit or crochet up dozens of cool things. Here's a tutorial for a<a href="http://www.myrecycledbags.com/2007/07/03/crocheted-plarn-tote-bag/" target="_blank"> plastic yarn tote bag</a> that will long outlive all your individual plastic bags. You'll need a size 9-mm metal hook and crochet skills. When you've completed the project, your bag will measure approximately 12 inches wide by 12 inches long with a 4-inch bottom that expands. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/18-clever-ways-to-reuse-your-plastic-shopping-bags?ref=seealso" target="_blank">18 Clever Ways to Reuse Your Plastic Shopping Bags</a>)</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-already-own-that-can-be-turned-into-a-tote-bag">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-amazing-diy-lamps-you-want-in-your-house">9 Amazing DIY Lamps You Want in Your House</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ideas-for-cheap-festive-fall-decor">12 Ideas for Cheap, Festive, Fall Decor</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/18-clever-ways-to-reuse-your-plastic-shopping-bags">18 Clever Ways to Reuse Your Plastic Shopping Bags</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-surprising-uses-for-empty-beer-and-soda-cans">9 Surprising Uses for Empty Beer and Soda Cans</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-create-your-dream-backyard-on-a-budget">How to Create Your Dream Backyard on a Budget</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> DIY Home crafts DIY diy projects diy tote bag recycle tote bag tote bags upcycle Mon, 20 Mar 2017 10:30:21 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1911157 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: 128 Creative Ways to Upcycle Your Trash http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-128-creative-ways-to-upcycle-your-trash <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-128-creative-ways-to-upcycle-your-trash" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/little_girl_box_528717000.jpg" alt="Little girl upcycling her trash" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Before you head over to the trash can, take a moment to consider if that empty can or citrus peel in your hand can be put to good use. Believe it or not, you might be able to save tons of cash by upcycling your garbage and turning it into something useful. Here are 128 creative ways to make your trash work for you.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/paint_sample_cards_7253325.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-beautiful-things-you-can-make-with-paint-sample-cards?ref=fbf">25 Beautiful Things You Can Make With Paint Sample Cards</a> &mdash; Once you've chosen the right color paint for your office, you no longer need the paint sample cards you were using, right? Wrong! Those colorful swatches can actually turn into beautiful home decor.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-reuse-clothes-that-no-longer-fit?ref=fbf">7 Ways to Reuse Clothes That No Longer Fit</a> &mdash; Rather than tossing or donating those clothes you know you won't wear, see if you can use them in other ways. You could make that pile of t-shirts into a stellar quilt! Or turn an old sweater into a pair of cozy mittens.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/iStock-596059078.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-surprising-uses-for-empty-beer-and-soda-cans?ref=fbf">9 Surprising Uses for Empty Beer and Soda Cans</a> &mdash; Upon first glance, an empty soda or beer can might only seem like a piece of trash, but look again and you will see a container with a endless potential. Turn it into a mini planter, a Wi-Fi booster, jewelry supplies, and more!</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/18-clever-ways-to-reuse-your-plastic-shopping-bags?ref=fbf">18 Clever Ways to Reuse Your Plastic Shopping Bags</a> &mdash; Beyond a backup poop bag for your pup, an empty plastic bag can easily be turned into something amazing. An emergency rain hat is just one option of many.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_orange_face_509346224.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/egg-pan-sugar-softener-and-50-other-uses-for-citrus-peels?ref=fbf">Egg Pan, Sugar Softener, and 50 Other Uses for Citrus Peels</a> &mdash; Hold your peels! That citrus skin has more value than you could possibly imagine. Turn it into essential oil, a household cleaner, or a bird feeder. Oh, and there are 49 other brilliant uses here for you.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-ways-to-use-old-newspaper?ref=fbf">17 Ways to Use Old Newspaper</a> &mdash; Since many people don't even read newspapers anymore, when you have some lying around, what are you supposed to do with them? Before you toss them out, consider upcycling them into book covers, gift wrap, disposable tablecloths, or something else you need!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-128-creative-ways-to-upcycle-your-trash">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-surprising-uses-for-empty-beer-and-soda-cans">9 Surprising Uses for Empty Beer and Soda Cans</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-122-no-fuss-dinner-ideas-thatll-save-you-money">Flashback Friday: 122 No-Fuss Dinner Ideas That&#039;ll Save You Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/18-clever-ways-to-reuse-your-plastic-shopping-bags">18 Clever Ways to Reuse Your Plastic Shopping Bags</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-already-own-that-can-be-turned-into-a-tote-bag">10 Things You Already Own That Can Be Turned Into a Tote Bag</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/37-brilliant-ways-to-reuse-an-empty-milk-jug">37 Brilliant Ways to Reuse an Empty Milk Jug</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> DIY Food and Drink compost DIY fbf flashback friday recycle reuse saving money Spending Money trash upcycle Fri, 03 Mar 2017 10:30:32 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1901986 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Surprising Uses for Empty Beer and Soda Cans http://www.wisebread.com/9-surprising-uses-for-empty-beer-and-soda-cans <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-surprising-uses-for-empty-beer-and-soda-cans" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-596059078.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="142" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you enjoy a can or two of beer or soda, you may want to think twice before throwing your empties into the trash or recycling bin. The humble aluminum can has a multitude of uses, and can save you money on the most surprising things. All it takes is a little imagination, and a few basic tools. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beer-donuts-and-11-other-recipes-you-can-make-with-beer?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Beer Donuts and 11 Other Recipes You Can Make With Beer</a>)</p> <h2>1. Make Friendship Bracelets</h2> <p>An empty can has a great shape to turn into a bracelet that easily fits on a wrist. Of course, you'll have to do a little work to make it safe to wear, but the results can be stunning. Simply use a box cutter or pair of kitchen shears to cut off the top and bottom of the can, and then cut it into segments that work for you. You may want a <a href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/148970700153802524/" target="_blank">very wide bracelet</a>, or a bunch of smaller widths. About an inch is good for starters though. Make sure there are no sharp edges, and then decorate it by wrapping ribbon or cloth around it. If you have someone with a particularly large wrist, you can cut it, but make sure you wrap those edges carefully, or round them off. If the can already has a really great design, you don't need to wrap it at all!</p> <h2>2. Make a Beer Can Stove</h2> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ui8t3pivqtk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>If you do a lot of camping, or like cooking in the outdoors, you don't have to buy a portable stove. You can make one out of an <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ui8t3pivqtk" target="_blank">empty beer or soda can</a>, and it works incredibly well. All you need is something to cut the can with, and some fuel (rubbing alcohol works beautifully). The best part is, if you leave it behind, or it gets thrown in the trash, it costs nothing to replace.</p> <h2>3. Organize Your Stuff</h2> <p>Pens. Pencils. Screws. Hair Ties. Batteries. Cutlery. There are hundreds of different items at home that can be <a href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/444660163179816887/" target="_blank">organized inside empty cans</a>. You just have to cut the top off the can at the height that works best for you. If you have a junk drawer, cut them just below that height, and you can quickly organize all those little bits and pieces that clutter it up. For the garage or workshop, you can make them different sizes for different items. You could even screw them to the wall.</p> <h2>4. Create a Beer or Soda Can Lantern</h2> <p>Creating a <a href="http://www.instructables.com/id/Beer-Can-Lantern-DIY-Tutorial/" target="_blank">lantern out of a beverage can</a> takes a little skill and dexterity, but if you can follow a pattern, and work with a few basic household tools, you shouldn't have any problems. Simply cut an oval in your can, and spray paint it any color you want. Then, create a stencil of your favorite subject matter, and use it to cut a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil. Put the two together, add a light, and you have something very fun and decorative. You could even use these at Halloween in place of pumpkins&hellip; and they don't wither and die.</p> <h2>5. Make Your Own Jewelry</h2> <p>If you have the time and the patience, <a href="http://www.instructables.com/id/Aluminum-Can-Flower-Jewelry/" target="_blank">beer can jewelry</a> can really set those tongues wagging. It will be unique, unusual, and not available in any stores. Some people simply cut out parts of the empty can's design into interesting shapes, like teardrops or ovals. Others go the extra step, adding imitation gemstones, glitters, and other adornments. Take some inspiration from these <a href="https://www.etsy.com/listing/154087553/craft-beer-can-earrings?utm_source=Pinterest&amp;utm_medium=PageTools&amp;utm_campaign=Share" target="_blank">earrings selling on Etsy</a> (yeah&hellip; you could make money!).</p> <h2>6. Plant Seeds and Cuttings</h2> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/-QGBGe7kjJ8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>An empty beer or soda can is a great vessel for <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-QGBGe7kjJ8" target="_blank">starting your garden's plants</a>, flowers, and herbs. All you need to do is remove the top of the can with a can opener to give it a clean, safe edge. Then, spray it your favorite color. Add soil, seeds or cuttings, and a little water, and you can save serious money on planters you would buy at a home improvement store or garden center.</p> <h2>7. Boost Your Wi-Fi Signal</h2> <p>Do you have a poor Wi-Fi signal in your home? You could fork out a lot of cash on a signal booster, or a Wi-Fi router upgrade. Or, you could take one of your empty cans and <a href="http://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Wi-Fi-Booster-Using-Only-a-Can" target="_blank">make a booster</a> that will take you from two bars to four. It should take you less than 10 minutes from start to finish. Just make sure all the edges are safe, especially if you have kids in the house.</p> <h2>8. Make Some Impressive Chainmail</h2> <p>If you are into historical re-enactments, attending Renaissance Fairs, or want to make some extra cash on the side, you can use the pull-tabs from your <a href="http://www.instructables.com/id/Genuine-chainmaille-from-pop-tabs/" target="_blank">beer and soda cans to create chain mail</a>. Not only does it look really authentic, it can be done with just the pull-tabs and a few simple tools. If chain mail isn't your thing, you can use the same techniques to make <a href="https://www.pinterest.com/explore/soda-tab-crafts/" target="_blank">lampshades, belts, bowls</a>, and several other creative ideas.</p> <h2>9. Create Unique Gifts for Friends and Family</h2> <p>The material used to make a beverage can is not as thick as it used to be. While this means you don't get a lot for the scrap, it means you can do some very cool things using tools you will find around the house. The material is so soft that you could actually draw into it with an empty ballpoint pen, and punch through it with a nail and create some beautiful <a href="https://snapguide.com/guides/make-hole-punch-signs-with-pepsi-tins/" target="_blank">personalized punch designs</a> Just make sure you clean out the can thoroughly, and find something suitable on which to mount your finished piece of art.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-surprising-uses-for-empty-beer-and-soda-cans">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-128-creative-ways-to-upcycle-your-trash">Flashback Friday: 128 Creative Ways to Upcycle Your Trash</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-already-own-that-can-be-turned-into-a-tote-bag">10 Things You Already Own That Can Be Turned Into a Tote Bag</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chill-out-with-these-6-simple-diy-freezer-treats">Chill Out With These 6 Simple DIY Freezer Treats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/getting-by-without-a-job-part-4-get-free-stuff">Getting by without a job, part 4--get free stuff</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/eight-natural-ways-to-make-water-more-flavorful">Eight Natural Ways to Make Water More Flavorful</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> DIY Food and Drink beer beer can DIY empty cans diy projects home home decor recycle soda can upcycle Fri, 24 Feb 2017 11:00:10 +0000 Paul Michael 1898050 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Costly Mistakes DIY Investors Make http://www.wisebread.com/9-costly-mistakes-diy-investors-make <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-costly-mistakes-diy-investors-make" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_ripping_paper_69469761.jpg" alt="Man making costly mistakes DIY investors make" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>With the right approach and education, it's possible for people to handle their own investments. But it's also easy to make mistakes that could cost you large sums of money in the long run.</p> <p>If you're a do-it-yourselfer, ask yourself whether you're making any of these mistakes below. If so, it may be worth seeking professional advice from a certified financial planner.</p> <h2>1. Trading Without Considering Fees and Taxes</h2> <p>For many investors, it's fun to trade stocks. The actual buying and selling can be a bit of a rush, especially when things are going well. But all of that activity can come with a cost, in the form of transaction fees and capital gains taxes. If you are finding that the returns on your portfolio seem a bit lackluster, it may be because you're investing without taking these costs into account. More experienced investors and financial advisers understand how to avoid extra fees and maximize returns as a result.</p> <h2>2. Getting Emotional</h2> <p>Investing your own money can sometimes be hard on the psyche. You may go through stretches where you see your portfolio shrink. Stocks that you personally selected may not always perform the way you predicted. Markets can be volatile, and not everyone can stomach it. If you find yourself getting stressed out by the investing process or buying and selling based on emotion, you may want to consider having a financial adviser take over the reigns.</p> <h2>3. Not Investing Enough</h2> <p>When you invest on your own, you may only be guessing as to how much you need to save. And it's common for investors to feel a little skittish and invest too little if the market is down. A financial adviser may be more tuned into the appropriate level of risk an investor can take on, and will usually advise a more aggressive approach for someone far out from retirement.</p> <h2>4. Not Diversifying Enough</h2> <p>Most do-it-yourselfers understand the basics of diversification, and will invest in index funds that track the S&amp;P 500 or broader stock markets. And that's perfectly fine. But often, these funds are heavily weighted toward larger companies or certain industries. If you are investing only in basic index funds, you may not have good exposure to international markets or smaller companies, for example. There may be entire industries that will be underrepresented in your portfolio.</p> <p>To achieve true diversification, you can have an S&amp;P Index fund as a base, but should also look for funds and stocks that fill in the gaps.</p> <h2>5. Failing to Rebalance</h2> <p>You may think you're creating a diverse portfolio based on the investments you've selected. But have you checked the balances recently? Over time, portfolios can get out of whack if certain investments are performing better than others. For example, you may think you're investing in 50% large cap, 25% small cap, and 25% mid cap stocks. Until one day, you check your account and realize that small cap stocks make up 40% of the portfolio. Financial advisers will recommend when to rebalance, and offer advice on how to avoid taxes in the process.</p> <h2>6. Trying to Beat the Market</h2> <p>Some investors insist on doing things themselves, because they believe they are expert stock pickers and can beat the performance of the overall stock market. In most cases, they are wrong. Numerous studies have shown that even professional investment managers can't beat the market on a regular basis, and that most investors would be best off with a portfolio of index funds.</p> <h2>7. Falling in Love With Shiny New Things</h2> <p>Do-it-yourselfers can become enamored with whatever the hot stock is at the moment. They go for name brands and flash rather than looking closely at a balance sheet. They also tend to go with what's familiar, rather than doing some research and finding investments that are less well known but of sound quality.</p> <h2>8. Having No Backup Plan</h2> <p>If you are an older DIY investor, do you have a plan for what happens to your investments if you are incapacitated? Are you sharing your investment accounts with your spouse or other loved ones? Many DIY investors are too stubborn to seek help from anyone, and thus run into problems when they are no longer in a position to manage things themselves. It's fine to handle your own investments if you're confident enough to do so, but it's wise to have a plan for how things will be dealt with if you're no longer in charge.</p> <h2>9. Becoming Too Consumed</h2> <p>Realistically, the average person can handle their own investments while checking in only periodically each week. A properly balanced portfolio does not need a lot of maintenance. But investing can be like an addiction to some people, and it's possible to spend hours a day buying and selling and becoming obsessed with the movement of the markets. If you're finding that your investing is having a negative impact on your relationships and other aspects of your life, it may be best to back off and let someone else handle things.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-costly-mistakes-diy-investors-make">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-too-much-investment-diversity-can-cost-you">How Too Much Investment Diversity Can Cost You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/bookmark-this-a-step-by-step-guide-to-choosing-401k-investments">Bookmark This: A Step-by-Step Guide to Choosing 401(k) Investments</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-3-rules-every-mediocre-investor-must-know">The 3 Rules Every Mediocre Investor Must Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-questions-financial-advisers-hear-most-often">8 Questions Financial Advisers Hear Most Often</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-essentials-for-building-a-profitable-portfolio">5 Essentials for Building a Profitable Portfolio</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Investment beat the market diversification DIY emotional investing fees financial advisers financial planning portfolio rebalancing stock market taxes Wed, 05 Oct 2016 10:30:08 +0000 Tim Lemke 1805247 at http://www.wisebread.com How Much Are Pricey Home Upgrades Really Worth? http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-are-pricey-home-upgrades-really-worth <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-much-are-pricey-home-upgrades-really-worth" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/modern_house_ocean_93000781.jpg" alt="Learning how much pricey home upgrades are worth" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>&quot;Real estate investing, even on a very small scale, remains a tried and true means of building an individual's cash flow and wealth,&quot; writes Robert Kiyosaki author of <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1612680011/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=1612680011&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=NPDRUSEI6ILRUE7S">Rich Dad, Poor Dad</a>. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-classic-personal-finance-books-you-must-read">The 8 Classic Personal Finance Books You Must Read</a>)</p> <p>But like with any other type of investment, you need to know what you're doing, or you'll end up eating your shirt. For example, you may think that some high-end projects, such as adding a deck that offers a majestic view or doing an upscale bathroom remodel, may provide you a great return on your real estate investment. However, the evidence from the <a href="http://www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/2016/trends">2016 Remodeling Cost vs. Value report from the National Association of Realtors</a> (NAR) shows the contrary.</p> <p>By taking a look at the project costs in 102 U.S. real estate markets, the NAR report provides a comprehensive review of what features provide you the best bang for your real estate buck. Let's round up a handful of &quot;features&quot; that can really boost the cost of a home, but may not actually deliver a lot of value. And we'll look at the projects you should take on, instead.</p> <h2>1. Bathroom Addition</h2> <p>The idea of having an extra bathroom so that your family members don't have to sit around for others to get ready for the day may sound like a great idea. But adding a full 6-by-8-foot midrange bathroom to your home only recoups just <a href="http://www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/bathroom-addition?y=2016">under 60%</a> of your total cost, on average. In 2016, the national average cost for a midrange bathroom addition was $42,333, but offers only $23,727 in actual value &mdash; in other words, a net loss. Even worse, the NAR reported that only one out of the 102 U.S. markets provided a 100% return on this project on that year.</p> <p>Going &quot;upscale&quot; on a bathroom addition doesn't fare well either. In 2016, the national average resale value for an upscale bathroom addition was only 0.5% better than that for a midrange bathroom addition.</p> <p><strong>What to Do Instead:</strong> Keep it simple and midrange. A bathroom remodel provides a better resale value than an addition. A midrange bathroom addition and a midrange bathroom remodel recoup 56.2% and 65.7%, respectively. Doing an upscale bathroom remodel only improves the resale value by 1% over the one offered by an upscale bathroom addition. Also, the cost advantage of midrange bathroom remodel ($24,000) over an addition allows you to pay back any financing more quickly.</p> <h2>2. Composite Deck Addition</h2> <p>Enjoying a hot cup of coffee by a bonfire during the fall, or reading an intriguing novel while getting a tan during the summer out on your deck sounds like it's worth every penny. But, the financial math doesn't add up.</p> <p>Adding a 16-by-20-foot deck using pressure-treated joists supported by 4x4 posts anchored to concrete piers would run you a national average between <a href="http://www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/2016/west-south-central/">$16,798 to $37,943</a>, depending on the scope of your project. The resale value of a composite deck addition would only recoup $10,819 to $21,877, according to national averages.</p> <p><strong>What to Do Instead: </strong>If you really want to have that deck, go with wood instead of composite. Adding a midrange deck made out of wood provides a resale value over 10% higher than that of composite.</p> <h2>3. Backup Power Generator</h2> <p>We all want to be prepared for disaster, but the addition of backup power generator runs at $12,712, according to national averages. Worse, this project only recouped an average of <a href="http://www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/backup-power-generator?y=2016">59.4%</a> of its cost in 2016.</p> <p><strong>What to Do Instead: </strong>Forget about backing up your power and focus on replacing your entry door. Replacing the entry door to your home is a good idea because it can improve the security and ability to withstand the elements (and zombies!) from your home. Additionally, the right door can enhance the look of your home. While the in 2016, the cost of a midrange entry door replacement recouped <a href="http://www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/entry-door-replacement-steel?y=2016">91.1%</a> of its cost, in past years this project has recouped up to 128.9% of its cost! In the 2015 edition of the NAR report, entry door replacement received the top rank nationally in terms of cost recouped (<a href="http://realtormag.realtor.org/home-and-design/cost-vs-value/article/2015/01/2015-remodeling-cost-vs-value-less-more">101.8%</a>). That year' survey revealed that a new steel door was the least expensive project and provided the best payback out of all projects across the nation.</p> <p>Additionally, eligible ENERGY STAR doors can qualify you for up<a href="http://www.energystar.gov/products/building_products/residential_windows_doors_and_skylights/tax_credit"> to $500 in energy efficiency tax credits</a>.</p> <h2>The Bottom Line: The Simpler the Project, the Bigger the Return</h2> <p>Currently in its tenth year, the <a href="http://www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/2016/trends">2016 NAR report</a> indicates that &quot;the simpler and lower-cost the project, the bigger its cost-value ratio.&quot;</p> <p>In 2016, four out of the top five projects that ranked best for cost recouped had a total cost under $5,000. These costs estimates were made assuming that you hired a professional contractor to complete the projects. Regardless of your budget, you'd be better off tackling two or more affordable projects that recoup at least 90% of their value, than just one high-end one with a recoup value under 60%. If you have great DIY handyman or negotiation skills, you could improve your investment return even further. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-times-you-should-splurge-and-hire-a-pro">4 Times You Should Splurge and Hire a Pro</a>)</p> <p>As you can see from these sample projects, replacements cost less than alternative home renovation projects, such as a kitchen or bathroom renovation, and provide the best bang for your buck. Another home renovation project that can be completed within three days and that provides a high return on investment is garage door replacement. In 2016, a midrange garage door replacement would recoup about 91.5% of its cost.</p> <p><em>How are you improving the market value of your property?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/damian-davila">Damian Davila</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-are-pricey-home-upgrades-really-worth">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-paying-off-your-mortgage-early-costing-you-money">Is Paying Off Your Mortgage Early Costing You Money?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/real-estate-investing-is-cheaper-and-easier-than-you-think">Real Estate Investing Is Cheaper and Easier Than You Think</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/watch-7-diy-fails-that-will-inspire-you-to-call-an-expert">WATCH: 7 DIY Fails That Will Inspire You to Call an Expert</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/its-time-to-purchase-like-its-1999">It&#039;s Time to Purchase Like It&#039;s 1999</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/selling-your-home-17-ways-to-prepare-your-house-for-inspection-success">Selling Your Home: 17 Ways to Prepare Your House for Inspection Success</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Real Estate and Housing DIY home renovation Home repair investing real estate Mon, 03 Oct 2016 10:30:06 +0000 Damian Davila 1802138 at http://www.wisebread.com Start Now: You Can Make These 23 Delicious Holiday Gifts http://www.wisebread.com/start-now-you-can-make-these-23-delicious-holiday-gifts <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/start-now-you-can-make-these-23-delicious-holiday-gifts" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/christmas_baked_goods_77270193.jpg" alt="Making delicious holiday gifts now" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I have had no time to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-easy-to-make-deluxe-gifts-for-under-15">get my craft on</a> and no money to spend on thrift store gifts, because I am hellbent on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-why-i-need-to-find-31k-this-year">making an extra $31,000</a> by the end of the year.</p> <p>However, my insane work schedule and budget have not stopped me from completing my holiday DIY gift list early. It's not even October, I have made 100% of my gifts from scratch, and I barely had to leave my house.</p> <p>What's my holiday gift hack? Make ahead edible gifts.</p> <h2>1. Surplus Fruit Jam</h2> <p>I have a gigantic mission fig tree in my backyard. Even after I invited all of my fig-crazed neighbors over to pick as many figs as they could eat, I was still left with 50 pounds of fresh figs that I turned into 130 eight-ounce jars of fig jam. Total cost: $100 for jars and a 10-pound sack of cane sugar. (I traded figs for lemons and oranges with neighbors in order to keep my ingredient cost to a minimum).</p> <p>Figs might seem like an exotic and rare fruit, but in southern California, there are feral fig trees that pop up in vacant lots. They are everywhere. Also, figs are like zucchinis, you only need one plant to supply an entire neighborhood.</p> <h2>2. Marmalade</h2> <p>I never liked marmalade until I figured out <a href="http://www.myromanapartment.com/jam-session-master-lemon-marmalade-recipe/">my own recipe</a> for lemon marmalade. The basic recipe is made with just three ingredients: lemons, cane sugar, and water.</p> <h2>3. Preserved Lemons</h2> <p><a href="http://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1016212-preserved-lemons">Salt preserved lemons</a> are one of my secret weapons in the kitchen. I use preserved lemons to perk up everything from traditional North African <a href="http://allrecipes.com/recipe/105044/lamb-tagine/">tagines</a> to store-bought salad dressing. They are delicious as a garnish for fish or poultry. My favorite way to eat them is as a flavoring for thick, Greek-style yogurt that I then use as a savory topping for flat bread.</p> <h2>4. Limoncello</h2> <p>Limoncello, or Limoncino as it's know in Florence, is the classic Italian after-dinner drink made from grain alcohol, sugar, and lemon peel. Although most American recipes call for vodka, every Italian mixologist I know uses a high-proof spirit like Everclear as the base. For people who love kitchen science, I prefer to use the <a href="http://gizmodo.com/how-to-make-the-best-limoncello-youve-ever-had-1533528095">vapor method</a> of infusion because I think it results in a smoother tasting drink.</p> <h2>5. Citrus Salts</h2> <p><a href="http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/citrus-salt-recipe.html">Citrus salts</a> are elegant food gifts that are super simple to make. All you need is citrus zest and flaky sea salt. Packed into small glass jars, citrus salts are great stocking stuffers, but they would also make beautiful wedding favors.</p> <h2>6. Canned Peaches</h2> <p>Eating a summer peach that was picked and canned at peak ripeness in the dead of winter is such a pleasure. Anyone who puts up food knows that preserving surplus food is a great way to save money and enjoy out-of-season flavors. Now is your last chance until next year to capture summer in a jar.</p> <h2>7. Blackberry Syrup</h2> <p>I grew up in Oregon, so I know that it is totally possible to eat too many blackberries. Since Marionberries grow everywhere, wild, my family never spent a dime to enjoy this summer fruit. As an adult, I now spend $8 per pound for a substandard blackberry experience.</p> <p>For the love of all that is good and beautiful, if you have access to free, feral berry bushes, don't take that for granted. Stretch the last harvest of the season by making <a href="http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/blackberry-syrup-108407">blackberry syrup</a> instead of blackberry jam. It's amazing on everything from pancakes to ice cream.</p> <h2>8. Pickled Okra</h2> <p>Okra gets a bad rap. It's slimy. It's like eating a tiny luffa. But even haters will enjoy spicy, garlicky <a href="http://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_06/pickled_dill_okra.html">pickled okra</a>, especially if it's served in a bloody mary as an edible stir stick.</p> <h2>9. Ketchup</h2> <p>Ever wonder why there are so many varieties of mustard and so few varieties of ketchup? Answer: Ketchup is a pain in the butt to make. Five years ago, I lost eight hours of my life making homemade ketchup from the sad, leftover tomatoes in my garden. It took that long for the tomato puree to cook down. <a href="http://www.saveur.com/article/Recipes/Ketchup">This recipe</a> makes ketchup that is so delicious, that my friends are still begging me to make it again to this day. To avoid my lengthy ketchup odyssey, use paste tomatoes that have more meat and less juice. (If you don't grow your own San Marzano tomatoes, buy the canned version when they go on sale.)</p> <p>Unlike store-bought ketchup that has a shelf life of &hellip; forever, homemade ketchup needs to be refrigerated and has a life span of just a few weeks. If you want to make ketchup in advance, be sure to follow <a href="http://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_03/tomato_ketchup.html">these instructions</a> on how to can it properly.</p> <h2>10. Mustard</h2> <p>Mustard is a handmade food that requires advance preparation. Mustard needs time to marinate and mellow out, as freshly made mustard is very bitter. I use <a href="http://honest-food.net/2015/05/08/how-to-make-mustard-2/">this versatile recipe</a> as a jumping-off point because I can make it with a mortar and pestle and live out my wizard fantasies, and because it has a shelf life of 12 months in the refrigerator.</p> <h2>11. Fermented Tabasco-Style Hot Sauce</h2> <p>The secret ingredient of Tabasco sauce is time. It's aged in oak barrels for over three years! My food snob friends are suitably impressed by the <a href="http://honest-food.net/2014/08/21/fermented-hot-sauce-recipe/">artisanal version</a>, even though I can never wait longer than 100 days for my hot sauce to ferment.</p> <h2>12. Cranberry Sauce</h2> <p>True story: I learned how to can because I wanted to be able to eat my homemade cranberry sauce year-round. As it turns out, I am not the only person who craves that sweet/tart flavor in the offseason. <a href="http://www.motherearthnews.com/real-food/canning/homemade-cranberry-sauce-zbcz1511.aspx">Cranberry sauce</a> and peanut butter sandwiches are so yummy.</p> <h2>13. Cured Olives</h2> <p>When I was a starving student, I made <a href="http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/recipe/marinated-olives-rosemary-and-orange-peel">marinated olives</a> as the fancy holiday gift I gave everyone. Because olives are expensive and I was poor, I brined my own olives that I had foraged for free from my local park. Because I live in Los Angeles &mdash; where it's ridiculously hot until the end of November &mdash; I have subsequently switched to <a href="http://www.motherearthnews.com/real-food/curing/how-to-cure-olives-zmaz76zhar.aspx?pageid=1#PageContent1">salt curing olives</a> because I'm lazy.</p> <h2>14. Dried Persimmons</h2> <p>I was never a fan of persimmons until I tasted the dried persimmons sold by Korean and Japanese fruit vendors at my local farmers market. Luckily, I didn't have to look far to find a recipe to make my own. My superstar, homesteading neighbors not only own an over-productive persimmon tree, they also wrote this <a href="http://www.rootsimple.com/2012/11/how-to-make-hoshigaki-dried-persimmons/">bang-up tutorial</a> on how to make Hoshigaki (dried persimmons). These fruits are gorgeous when dried, and look great on a holiday cheese plate.</p> <h2>15. Prickly Pear Jelly</h2> <p>Nopal, aka prickly pear cactus, grows like a weed all over my neighborhood, so it's a free produce for the taking. Prickly pear cactus fruit season runs from September through January, but the cactus pads can be harvested and eaten year around. Fair warning: unless you love getting repeatedly stabbed with cactus needles, I highly recommend that Nopal newbs take the time to <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-yR3pYw9fM">learn how to prepare</a> the spiny fruits and pads before harvesting any part of the plant.</p> <p>I find most prickly pear jams to be revoltingly sweet, but my neighbors developed a <a href="http://www.rootsimple.com/2010/08/low-sugar-prickly-pear-jelly-recipe/">low-sugar prickly pear jelly</a> that highlights the subtle taste of the fruit.</p> <h2>16. Pickle Prickle</h2> <p>My favorite way to eat prickly pear cactus is to <a href="http://foodpreservation.about.com/od/Pickles/r/Pickled-Nopales.htm">pickle the cactus</a> pads. My Mexican neighbor makes a spicy nopalitos salad that is my all-time favorite taco topping, but if you can't handle the heat of Mexican recipes, you can substitute cactus pads for okra in pickled okra recipes.</p> <h2>17. Pine Cone Syrup</h2> <p>Yes, I have a foraging instructor. (Insert pretentious hipster joke here.) Pascal Baudar regularly publishes free recipes for the budget-minded on Facebook, which is where I found this recipe for <a href="https://www.facebook.com/pascal.baudar/posts/10154236824069759">Pinyon pine cone syrup</a>. Made from a 50/50 mix of brown sugar and unripe pine cones, Pascal's sun-cooked syrup is based on an old French recipe. Pretty much every European country has their own version of pine syrup, so if Pinyon pine cones are not available in your area, <a href="http://sparxmind.com/maple-syrup-vs-pine-syrup/">check out the comments section</a> of this food blog for instructions on how to make Italian Mugolio, Romanian Sirop Muguri de pin, and Polish Syrop z Sosny.</p> <h2>18. Homemade Vanilla Extracts</h2> <p>Most flavored liqueurs are just infused spirits. If you can make flavored vinegar, you can make your own specialty cocktail supplies. One liter of bargain vodka can be turned into 20 fancy gifts.</p> <p>One of the easiest make-ahead gifts from the kitchen is <a href="http://www.myromanapartment.com/homemade-vanilla-extract-cheap-vodka/">vanilla extract</a>. We use vodka in our personal recipe for a pure vanilla taste, but you can use rum if you want a richer flavor. For home use, we decant our homemade extract into a huge bottle. For gift giving, we decant the extract into tiny bottles that we <a href="http://kirbiecravings.com/2015/12/homemade-diy-extracts.html">seal with wax</a> for extra glamour.</p> <h2>19. Bathtub(less) Gin</h2> <p>Celebrity mixologist and food blogger Jeffrey Morgenthaler created a step-by-step tutorial on how to <a href="http://www.jeffreymorgenthaler.com/2007/how-to-make-your-own-gin-without-a-still/">make your own gin without a still</a>. All the street cred without the risk of blindness!</p> <h2>20. Dried Blenheim Apricot Liqueur</h2> <p>This recipe is a twofer. Make an <a href="http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/blenheim-apricot-liqueur">apricot flavored liqueur</a> by infusing brandy with dried fruit. The soused apricots can then be dipped in chocolate and turned into <a href="http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/chocolate-dipped-apricots">boozy candy</a>.</p> <h2>21. Vermouth-Soaked Cocktail Olives</h2> <p>Fact: An excellent martini cannot be made with a mediocre olive. For those hard core gin drinkers who think a proper martini involves waving their bottle of gin in the general direction of France, <a href="http://imbibemagazine.com/homemade-cocktail-olives/">these olives</a> will provide all the vermouth required for the driest martini.</p> <h2>22. Offseason Maraschino Cherries</h2> <p>It's early autumn, and I want homemade maraschino cherries in time for Christmas in December, so I can be that girl who serves the totally from scratch Shirley Temple punch at her Chinese takeout Christmas dinner party. Shirley Temples are the perfect drink accompaniment for salty stir-fry! Source: I grew up in my grandparent's Chinese restaurant. So, to ensure I have maraschino cherries on my schedule, I am <a href="http://www.thisgirlwalksintoabar.com/2014/04/how-to-make-homemade-maraschino-cherries-from-frozen-cherries/">making my own cocktail accessories</a> out of frozen cherries.</p> <h2>23. Metheglin</h2> <p>Metheglin sounds like the name of Bilbo Baggins' lady friend, but it's actually flavored mead. Although there are 3,000 years of metheglin recipes available, I've been meaning to try <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/wordofmouth/2012/feb/15/how-to-make-metheglin">this recipe</a> because it is flavored with lemons and herbs that are already growing in my backyard (and I am lazy and cheap).</p> <h3>On Wrapping and Packing</h3> <p>Good labels and presentation can make the humblest recipe look incredibly elegant and costly. Pinterest and Etsy are full of gorgeous labels and gift tags to buy or recreate. When is a gift not a gift? When the box arrives and it's full of broken glass and spoiled food. Pack food gifts carefully or hire a professional shipper to help you.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/start-now-you-can-make-these-23-delicious-holiday-gifts">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-128-creative-ways-to-upcycle-your-trash">Flashback Friday: 128 Creative Ways to Upcycle Your Trash</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/getting-by-without-a-job-part-4-get-free-stuff">Getting by without a job, part 4--get free stuff</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chill-out-with-these-6-simple-diy-freezer-treats">Chill Out With These 6 Simple DIY Freezer Treats</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-delicious-uses-for-leftover-hot-dogs">7 Delicious Uses for Leftover Hot Dogs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/eight-natural-ways-to-make-water-more-flavorful">Eight Natural Ways to Make Water More Flavorful</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> DIY Food and Drink Christmas Christmas gifts DIY DIY christmas gifts frugal living holiday saving money Thu, 29 Sep 2016 10:30:07 +0000 Max Wong 1802000 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Ways to Reuse Clothes That No Longer Fit http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-reuse-clothes-that-no-longer-fit <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-ways-to-reuse-clothes-that-no-longer-fit" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_30762826_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="repurposing clothes that no longer fit" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>A recent Marie Kondo-inspired purge of my closet revealed the awful truth that I hadn't wanted to admit to myself: I own a lot of clothes that do not fit me.</p> <p>These ill-fitting clothes found their way into my closet and dresser through a variety of paths. There are the wishful thinking clothes that I'm sure I'll be able to fit back into once I get down to my pre-pregnancy weight (even though the &quot;babies&quot; are currently five and two years old). There are the gifts I received that never quite fit, but I felt guilty disposing of. And then there are the &quot;insurance&quot; clothes that are too big but I hold onto just in case.</p> <p>It's time to get rid of these clothes that are doing nothing more than making my closet look like it's about to pop. Rather than trash or donate my old duds, though, I'm going to reuse them. Here are seven clever ways you can reuse old clothes. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-high-cost-of-cheap-clothes?ref=seealso">The High Cost of Cheap Clothes</a>)</p> <h2>1. The T-Shirt Quilt</h2> <p>If you have a vast collection of concert, vacation, or superhero T-shirts, making a T-shirt quilt can be a great way to keep the shirts you no longer wear but can't bear to part with.</p> <p>Creating the quilt top is simple. Determine the size you want each T-shirt square to be, and cut out a cardboard template in the correct size. Once you have a pile of T-shirt squares, lay them out to figure out what order you want them in, and start sewing them together. If you have access to a sewing machine and can sew a straight line, you will have no trouble putting together the quilt top. You can finish the edges as is (turn under the edges of the quilt and sew them to prevent fraying), or you can add batting and backing to make it a true &quot;quilt.&quot;</p> <p>If all of this sounds like too much DIY sewing to you, there are several inexpensive <a href="http://www.projectrepat.com">T-shirt quilt companies</a> that will take your ill-fitting shirts and make you a beautiful quilt for a reasonable price.</p> <h2>2. No-Sew Braided Rag Rug</h2> <p>Braided rugs used to be an old-fashioned way of adding decoration to a home without spending any money. They are still a fun way to repurpose old clothes into something new and beautiful.</p> <p>For this craft, you will need a variety of jersey cotton shirts or tanks and scissors. You'll cut the clothes into 1.5 inch-long strips along the width of the shirt, making sure to cut one end so you have a pile of strips rather than loops of fabric.</p> <p>Start with three strips, tie a knot, and begin braiding the strips together. Once you have braided about four inches, start coiling the braid into a circle, and loop the closest strand through the already-braided section. This is what will keep your braided rug together.</p> <p>You continue braiding (adding new strands using the no-sew method outlined <a href="http://www.thewonderforest.com/2015/01/how-to-make-no-sew-round-braided-rug.html?m=1">here</a>) until the rug is as big as you'd like it. You can finish your rug with iron-on fusible interfacing, polycrylic spray, or spray-on starch.</p> <h2>3. Make a T-Shirt Pillowcase or Pillow</h2> <p>Using a T-shirt as a pillowcase is an old trick I learned back when I was in college with a long-distance boyfriend, but it's still a great way to reuse an old T-shirt. You could do what I did as a lovesick young freshman and just throw your pillow in the tee as is &mdash; or you could actually cut off the sleeves and sew them and the collar closed in order to make a more traditional looking pillow case.</p> <p>You can also take the T-shirt pillow idea one step further and make a pillow from the old shirt. Cut off the sleeves, fill the tee with pillow stuffing and sew up the bottom, collar, and sleeves for an instant pillow.</p> <h2>4. Turn a Tank Top Into a Shopping Bag</h2> <p>Tank tops are already shopping-bag shaped &mdash; they just need to have the bottom sewn shut. It's a reusable shopping tote that looks far more stylish than any shopping bag you can buy.</p> <h2>5. Use Old Jeans to Patch Up Your Favorite Pairs</h2> <p>It is a truth universally acknowledged that your favorite pair of jeans will eventually wear out and holes will form. That's when you whip out the jeans that don't fit and cannibalize some denim as a patch for your favorite pair.</p> <p>Patching denim might be beyond the skill set of the average DIY crafter &mdash; as denim is thick and tough to work with. However, hiring a tailor to patch your favorites should not be expensive, and it will keep your jeans looking great.</p> <h2>6. Make Mittens Out of an Old Sweater</h2> <p>Old wool sweaters are the perfect material for creating a new pair of mittens. The simple method for making repurposed mittens is to widely trace your hands on the bottom of the sweater so that your wrists hang off the bottom edge of the original shirt. When you cut out the traced shapes, you will have four mitten shaped pieces which you'll sew together to make a pair.</p> <p>If you'd like your repurposed mittens to be a little heartier (with a little more range of thumb movement), <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5714457/turn-your-ugly-christmas-sweaters-into-warm-winter-mittens">this tutorial</a> will show you how to make fleece-lined, cuffed, and perfectly shaped mittens out of some old sweaters.</p> <h2>7. Cover a Corkboard With an Old Blouse</h2> <p>Fabric-covered corkboards are all the rage, but you don't need to buy one pre-made. With some cork squares, an old item of clothing with a fun pattern, and a hot-glue gun, you can <a href="http://sewmuchsunshine.blogspot.com/2011/10/ikea-hack-fabric-covered-cork-board.html">create one of your own</a> on the cheap.</p> <p>All you need to do is trace the cork square on your fabric, leaving about an inch of room all the way around. Once you've cut your fabric, you'll spread a strip of hot glue all along the edge of the cork and start pulling up the fabric and pushing it into the glue until it sets. Attach your beautiful new corkboard to your wall, and enjoy the envy of all your office mates.</p> <p><em>How do you salvage clothes that no longer fit? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-reuse-clothes-that-no-longer-fit">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-in-your-closet-you-can-throw-out-today">15 Things in Your Closet You Can Throw Out Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-denim-expert-reveals-why-you-only-need-3-pairs-of-jeans">A Denim Expert Reveals Why You Only Need 3 Pairs of Jeans</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-ways-to-organize-a-messy-closet">14 Ways to Organize a Messy Closet</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-only-5-words-you-need-to-declutter-your-life">The Only 5 Words You Need to Declutter Your Life</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-this-one-thing-a-day-to-defeat-clutter-forever">Do This One Thing a Day to Defeat Clutter Forever</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization Style closet clothes clothes that don't fit clutter de-clutter DIY organization recycling reuse reuse clothes upcycle Fri, 29 Jul 2016 10:00:17 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 1761378 at http://www.wisebread.com Flashback Friday: 55 Brilliant Ways to Turn Your Junk Into Cash http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-55-brilliant-ways-to-turn-your-junk-into-cash <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-55-brilliant-ways-to-turn-your-junk-into-cash" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_clothes_couch_94291343.jpg" alt="Woman finding brilliant ways to turn her junk into cash" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>In every house, on every street, there is too much junk. We all have things we don't need. So rather than letting those unwanted items collect dust and cause clutter-induced anxiety, why not sell them for some extra cash?</p> <p>Here are 55 brilliant ways to turn your junk into cash.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_shoe_collection_000039290234.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-always-buy-and-sell-on-ebay?ref=fbf">10 Things You Should Always Buy and Sell on eBay</a> &mdash; Before you drop off bags of clothes and old toys at your local Goodwill, try selling them on eBay! You never know what people on the Internet are willing to pay a premium for, so give it a go and see what you get.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-unusual-ways-to-sell-your-stuff?ref=fbf">11 Unusual Ways to Sell Your Stuff</a> &mdash; If you've got clutter to sell, go beyond the classic Craigslist sale and sell your stuff on Facebook, specialty forums, and through several easy-to-use apps on your phone!</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_holding_pinecone_69865273.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-totally-free-things-you-can-sell-on-ebay?ref=fbf">8 Totally Free Things You Can Sell on eBay</a> &mdash; Who knew you could sell things like pine cones, driftwood, and empty perfume bottles for actual cold-hard cash? You can! And here are five other things you might have around the house (that you definitely don't need) that you can sell on eBay.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/clear-out-that-clutter-15-places-to-sell-your-stuff?ref=fbf">Clear Out That Clutter: 15 Places to Sell Your Stuff</a> &mdash; Clutter can lead to unnecessary stress, and who needs more of that in their lives? If you're sick of looking at unwanted jewelry, textbooks, car parts, and more, then you should really consider selling it on one of these sites!</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/three_coffee_mugs_75581393.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-money-and-declutter-by-selling-these-5-unlikely-treasures?ref=fbf">Make Money and Declutter by Selling These 5 Unlikely Treasures</a> &mdash; Surprisingly, you can make a good chunk of change from selling old coffee mugs and smartphones. So the next time you're short on cash, look in your kitchen cabinet and junk drawer for items to sell.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-weird-things-to-sell-on-ebay-for-extra-cash?ref=fbf">6 Weird Things to Sell on eBay for Extra Cash</a> &mdash; I'm not entirely sure why anyone would pay for things like empty makeup containers, someone's unwanted magazines, or toilet paper rolls, but there's a market for them on eBay! So before you toss any of these things, try to unload them in exchange for cash, instead.</p> <p><em>What are some other ways to sell your old stuff? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-55-brilliant-ways-to-turn-your-junk-into-cash">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-smart-and-frugal-uses-for-epsom-salt">10 Smart and Frugal Uses for Epsom Salt</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-45-life-lessons-youd-give-to-your-younger-self">Flashback Friday: 45 Life Lessons You&#039;d Give to Your Younger Self</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-51-easy-ways-to-live-a-happier-life">Flashback Friday: 51 Easy Ways to Live a Happier Life</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-68-best-ways-to-make-money-that-are-actually-fun">Flashback Friday: 68 Best Ways to Make Money That Are Actually Fun</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-70-brilliant-ways-to-beat-the-heat-this-summer">Flashback Friday: 70 Brilliant Ways to Beat the Heat This Summer</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Extra Income DIY DIY hacks DIY items to sell etsy fbf flashback friday life hacks make money sell your stuff Fri, 01 Jul 2016 10:00:08 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1742991 at http://www.wisebread.com 12 Frugal New Twists on Classic Lemonade http://www.wisebread.com/12-frugal-new-twists-on-classic-lemonade <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/12-frugal-new-twists-on-classic-lemonade" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_83295939_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="frugal twists on a classic lemonade" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I have a photo of myself, at age seven, sitting behind a lemonade stand on our front lawn. I was selling a cup for a nickel. It seems like my parents should have told me to raise the price, but maybe my lemonade-making skills weren't that great, yet.</p> <p>Lemonade's popularity hasn't waned since my childhood. In fact, we're in the middle of a lemonade renaissance. Creative people have taken a delicious, refreshing drink, and made it better. Here are 12 frugal fix-ups for your favorite summer beverage. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-frugal-and-refreshing-popsicles-to-make-this-summer?ref=seealso">8 Frugal and Refreshing Popsicles to Make This Summer</a>)</p> <h2>Basic Lemonade</h2> <p><iframe width="420" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/nlsHB3c3fCw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>Personally, I think the <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlsHB3c3fCw">best lemonade</a> is made with a simple syrup. The syrup eliminates trying to dissolve sugar into your water, and you won't get a grainy texture, or sludge on the bottom of your pitcher.</p> <h2>1. Berry Delicious</h2> <p>Frozen berries &mdash; especially raspberries, blueberries, or blackberries &mdash; make great &quot;ice cubes&quot; and, when thawed, give a great flavor and an extra treat in a glass of lemonade. Watch for frozen berries to go on sale, as they are often cheaper than fresh.</p> <h2>2. Add a Puree</h2> <p>Don't waste that leftover fruit! Puree a cup of fruit with a tablespoon of water, strain out solids, and add to lemonade for a new taste sensation. Fruits that work particularly well are peaches, watermelon, nectarines, blackberries, and raspberries.</p> <h2>3. Half-and-Half</h2> <p>Substitute some limes for lemons in the recipe above for an even tangier lemonade. For grown-ups, add a shot of vodka or tequila and hit the porch swing.</p> <h2>4. Jam Time</h2> <p>You know that last spoonful of jam or jelly in the jar? Stir it into a glass of lemonade for a little extra pizzazz. You won't be wasting food, and you'll free up space in your fridge!</p> <h2>5. Herbaceous</h2> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Cu6Cda37Us4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <p>Toss in a sprig of rosemary or thyme into your glass, or a few mint or basil leaves. Rather than spend money on herbs at the grocery store, start a <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cu6Cda37Us4">kitchen herb garden</a> and experiment with flavors.</p> <h2>6. Get a Brazilian</h2> <p>Err lemonade, that is. The goofy thing about this &quot;<a href="http://www.delish.com/cooking/videos/a42587/brazilian-lemonade/">lemonade</a>&quot; is that it is made with limes. Once you make this, you'll be hooked so watch for sweetened, condensed milk to go on sale. The best prices I have found for it are at big-box stores. Try it with graham crackers and it'll taste just like key lime pie.</p> <h2>7. Coconut-Lavender Lemonade</h2> <p>This is the <a href="http://www.confectionalism.com/home/coconut-lavender-lemonade-recipe/">prettiest lemonade ever</a>. And freeze any leftovers into ice cubes. Coconut water is pricey, so if you live where you can get your hands on fresh coconut, try <a href="http://theculturedcook.com/2012/08/diy-coconut-water/">making your own</a>.</p> <h2>8. Carrot Lemonade</h2> <p>Don't you love <a href="http://www.bhg.com/recipe/drinks/carrot-lemonade/?socsrc=bhgtr081813carrotlemonade">carrot juice</a>? Plus, how about getting a little extra vitamins A and C added to your lemonade? This will keep for up to a week in your refrigerator. Buy carrots in bulk &mdash; not the baby carrots &mdash; to keep this drink on the cheap.</p> <h2>9. Sugar Substitute</h2> <p>I have recently started experimenting with agave nectar, and while I find it to be extremely sweet, it does work in a lemonade like this one. I'd advise starting with a quarter cup, and then taste. You can always add more. This <a href="http://macrobiotic.about.com/od/drinksandsmoothies/r/Agave-Lemonade-Recipes-And-Variations.htm">fancy lemonade</a> recipe is particularly nice because it also contains freshly grated ginger. It's a nice drink when you need to replace fluids or have an upset stomach.</p> <h2>10. Spa Treatment</h2> <p>I'm a little tired of cucumbers in water, but in lemonade? Yes, please! Now all I need's a pedicure while I sip one of these <a href="http://allrecipes.com/recipe/147904/cucumber-lemonade/?internalSource=staff%20pick&amp;referringId=2817&amp;referringContentType=recipe%20hub">cucumber lemonades</a>. Ahhhh.</p> <h2>11. Cran-Lemonade</h2> <p>Add cranberry juice to your lemonade for a pretty drink. I like mine with a ratio of ⅔ lemonade to ⅓ cranberry juice.</p> <h2>12. Green-ade</h2> <p>I dug out my tin of <a href="http://www.spoonforkbacon.com/2014/07/matcha-lemonade/">matcha tea powder</a> for this one. Be careful, as it contains caffeine. On hot days, this is nice to sip at the office instead of your a.m. coffee.</p> <p><em>Any other yummy frugal lemonade twists? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/marla-walters">Marla Walters</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-frugal-new-twists-on-classic-lemonade">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-frugal-and-refreshing-popsicles-to-make-this-summer">8 Frugal and Refreshing Popsicles to Make This Summer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-surefire-ways-to-save-on-grilling">7 Surefire Ways to Save on Grilling</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-delicious-dishes-you-can-make-with-a-can-of-tomato-soup">11 Delicious Dishes You Can Make With a Can of Tomato Soup</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-ways-to-save-money-when-getting-your-drink-on">15 Ways to Save Money When Getting Your Drink On</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/eight-natural-ways-to-make-water-more-flavorful">Eight Natural Ways to Make Water More Flavorful</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Food and Drink DIY drinks frugal food lemonade summer summer drinks Thu, 30 Jun 2016 09:00:05 +0000 Marla Walters 1741538 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Create Your Dream Backyard on a Budget http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-create-your-dream-backyard-on-a-budget <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-create-your-dream-backyard-on-a-budget" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/backyard_party_78624345.jpg" alt="Family creating a dream backyard on a budget" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Summer has arrived, and your number one priority might be giving your backyard or other outdoor space a party-perfect makeover.&nbsp;We chatted with DIY and design experts Ben and Erin Napier&nbsp;to provide brilliant tips on how to make a dreamy outdoor space on the cheap. Ben and Erin approach their projects with a realistic and relatable point of view, because they want you to succeed without having to sacrifice. All of their projects are attainable &mdash; even by the newbiest of newbies. And what's better than that?</p> <p>Here are some of their best pearls of outdoor DIY wisdom.</p> <h2>Start With Seating and Lighting</h2> <p>If you're planning on hosting a summer soiree, you need the right seating and the right ambience to make it memorable. Erin Napier told us that she and Ben prefer to entertain at night, since it gets so hot during the day where they live. She also suggested stringing party lights around the yard to create a magical setting. For additional seating and decor, &quot;pull things from inside the house into the backyard. Bring rugs and lamps and the dinner table outside, and it makes great décor. Just make sure to bring them back inside before it rains!&quot; Erin said.</p> <p>Unfortunately, since mosquitoes and summer typically go hand in hand, do what you can to keep those pests away. Erin suggests going with citronella plants over the typical candles and sprays.&quot; If you can find citronella plants, buy all they have! Put them in pots and they keep away mosquitoes and bugs. Plants do an awesome job keeping bugs away naturally, and they are just as good as candles. You just need to have them strategically placed around your yard,&quot; she said. You can find these at Home Depot, or any major garden center.</p> <p>Just be careful if you're a dog owner, as they can be <a href="https://bonnieplants.com/growing/growing-mosquito-plants/">toxic to dogs</a>.</p> <h2>3 Yard Decor Choices Even the Pros Worry About</h2> <p>When it comes to DIYing, mistakes are part of the journey. But to avoid any missteps that can easily destroy your budget, Ben and Erin recommend being cautious in three areas: Lawn furniture, paint for your porch, and flowers.</p> <p>When asked what people typically overspend on, Ben told us, &quot;Lawn furniture that&rsquo;s not going to hold up and be durable. Be sure to look for metal that can be used year after year with a metal-bonding paint.&quot;&nbsp;</p> <p>Speaking of paint, don't waste your money on latex paint for your porch. Erin said, &quot;Painting a porch with latex paint is a bad idea. You'll need to redo it because it doesn't hide scratches. Only use old-ace enamel paint because will hold up for a few years.&quot;</p> <p>As for flowers, Erin is all about perennials. &quot;They bloom all year long, even in colder months, whereas annuals need to be replanted.&quot;</p> <p>When it comes to lawn care, Ben reminds us that timing is everything. &quot;It gets so hot in Mississippi, people water and mow their yards in brutal heat during the afternoon, which does more harm than good. Do the mowing and watering in the early morning, and cut your yard a little taller in order to create shade for the roots and allow for more water to be absorbed.&quot;</p> <p><iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/WaYqp0rHhBA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <h2>Must-Have Tools</h2> <p>Not all tools are created equal, so make sure you have the right ones in your toolbox before you start redecorating. Ben's three must-haves are a drill, a hammer, and a pair of pliers. Erin added, &quot;And a caulk gun. That's worth spending money on. Tape measures are a must, too. We seem to have thousands of them.&quot;&nbsp;</p> <p>And in terms of splurging on the right tools, if you have a little wiggle room in your budget, and plan to do more DIY projects in the future, Ben recommends getting a skill saw, a miter saw, and a table saw.</p> <p>For more of Ben and Erin's home improvement tips, and some brilliant how-to videos, be sure to check out their blog at <a href="https://erinandben.co/">https://erinandben.co/</a>. They update it every day with more fun and creative ideas.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-create-your-dream-backyard-on-a-budget">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ideas-for-cheap-festive-fall-decor">12 Ideas for Cheap, Festive, Fall Decor</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-beautiful-things-you-can-make-with-paint-sample-cards">25 Beautiful Things You Can Make With Paint Sample Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-already-own-that-can-be-turned-into-a-tote-bag">10 Things You Already Own That Can Be Turned Into a Tote Bag</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-problems-you-can-solve-with-duct-tape">13 Problems You Can Solve With Duct Tape</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-cool-diy-home-improvements-for-20-or-less">10 Cool DIY Home Improvements for $20 or Less</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting DIY Home decor design DIY diy projects gardening home improvement interview lifestyle outdoor decor party tips Thu, 23 Jun 2016 10:30:09 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 1737243 at http://www.wisebread.com