coloured stripe

Painting, decorating and home improvement tips blog

Personalising Your First Home

Posted by admin
April 7th, 2021

Personalising Your First Home

When you own or rent your first home away from the one you grew up in, it can be both challenging and exciting. While you might be looking forward to spreading your roots independently, the responsibilities now also fall onto yourself, as opposed to your parents or guardians. The amount that you can personalise your home will depend on whether you have bought the property or are renting from a landlord. The amount of creative control that a renter has will differ, depending on the rules set down by their landlord, but that does not mean that personalisation is impossible.

Wall Art

Using pictures and frames to decorate your home can help bring a more personal touch. You could choose to use traditional photographs or even canvas prints with free hanging kit that will allow you to have more of a 3D effect on your walls. This art could feature traditional images by well known artists, or instead incorporate some of your family photos or holiday snapshots. You may need to check with your landlord if it is acceptable to hang items on the wall. If not, you could always use your canvasses and photographs on tables and sideboards, so there is no damage done to the house itself.

Wall Colouring

If you are a homeowner, you will have full jurisdiction over the colours you choose for your home. You may opt to use your favourite colours, or look into which colours are likely to be popular this year. For smaller homes or flats, you may also want to consider trying to maximise the size of your rooms. This can be achieved by letting in as much natural light as possible, as well as using lighter colours. This increases the appearance of the size of the room due to having more surface area for light to reflect off of. Once you have chosen the wall colours for your room, you could also pick out curtains or blinds that will match this theme and give the vertical surfaces more of a polished look.

Rugs and Carpeting

For homes that you own, you may be able to change the carpeting or even replace it with wood panel flooring or elegant tiles. While those living in rented accommodation may not be able to do this, that doesn’t mean that the flooring cannot be personalised. Choosing rugs that match the colour schemes of your furniture, offer you a bit of warmth under your toes, or simply take your fancy, can help to cater each room more to your tastes than simply leaving them as is.

The decoration and personalisation of your home may not seem like a big deal, especially when you have to unpack and sort out your utilities and other bills. However, this personalisation can help you to feel more at home that bit quicker within your own space, allowing you to build up your confidence and start enjoying the aspects of independent living.

Tags: , , , , , ,
Posted in Contributed | No Comments »

Making and using a water level

Posted by admin
March 31st, 2021

Making and using a water level

Water levels can come in very useful when you need to make a level line across a big expanse, such as in a room and a level simply won’t do. You can buy laser levels but they can be expensive and you may only require it once, this post describes how to make a cheap water level.

Water levels can be used for things such as dado and picture rails, wallpaper borders etc.
close up water level graphic

Making a water level

To make a water level is fairly straightforward, you will need the following items.

  • A long length of clear tubing
  • Water
  • Something to bung ends of tube (optional)
  • Funnel (optional)

You will need a length of clear tubing, long enough to reach around your work area, such as a room. The tube needs to be clear so you can see the water, so a garden hose wouldn’t be any good as it isn’t transparent.

Once you have your length of tubing you need to fill it with water. This can be done by using a funnel in one end of the tube and running water into it to fill the tube. You can also try the syphon method, but whatever you find works best for you. Make sure that there are no air bubbles in the length of tube, if there are work them out to an open end.

Don’t fill the tube fully as you will need to allow the water to move without it coming out all over the place and for it to settle to get the level.

Once the tube is filled enough you will need to stop the water coming out again, this can be done simply by placing your thumb over the end or a bung of some kind if you have one.

Using a water level

Now that you have made your water level you are ready to use it. You will need a starting point, this can be achieved by measuring and making a pencil mark, or maybe using an existing level, such as a dado rail, it could even be something in another room if the tube is long enough. For example if you want to make sure the dado rail is the same in two rooms. This will be your starting point.

You will need a second person to help you with using the level. One stays at the original level point whilst the other uses the level and marks the wall at the level.

The person holding the ‘fixed’ end, that is the original level mark stays holding the tube at this point, whilst the second person moves to a new point and holds the tube against the wall. The first person instructs the second person to move up or down until the water is level with the original mark, the second person can then mark the wall level with the water in the tube, thus giving a level line.

Continue doing this in several places as required. Remember not to lift tube too high without having end blocked as it will flow out. You can then if required draw a line and join up the marks.

water level grapgic

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Home Improvements | No Comments »

How to cut a bolt without damaging the thread

Posted by admin
February 28th, 2021

How to cut a bolt without damaging the thread

If you find yourself with a job that requires a bolt to fix something together, or maybe simply fitting a new door or drawer knob onto furniture, sometimes you may find the supplied bolt is too long for your requirements, this is often done intentionally allowing the manufacturer to supply only one bolt at the longer size allowing the end user to cut to the required length. So what do you do if you find yourself in this situation, you can cut it but but how as there is a possibility of damaging the thread making the bolt unusable.

However, this very simple tip will make cutting the bolt easy and also save the tread from damage. All you require is the bolt, a nut, a hacksaw, and something to hold the nut and bolt with, such as a vise.

Cutting the bolt

To cut the bolt simply take the bolt and a nut that fits the bolts thread (if one doesn’t come supplied), screw the nut onto the bolt just further onto the bolt than the length you want the final bolt to be. In other words the nut will need to be still left on the bolt once it has been cut.

Once the nut is in place, hold it in the vice, with the nut or the bolt head, not the thread. Then take the hacksaw and place the blade right up against the nut, on the waste side of the bolt. Then with one hand steady the bolt and with the other hand start to cut with the hacksaw. Go slowly and be careful of your hands and fingers. Keep cutting until you have gone through the bolt.

Checking the bolts thread

Once you have cut the bolt, the nut should still be on the bolt. To make sure the thread is OK simply unscrew the nut off of the bolt, if it is a little hard to do so use a spanner or adjustable spanner to ease the nut off. If it is really hard to get off unscrew the nut slightly, then screw it back on then off then on until the nut comes off of the bolt.
To finish off, and ensure any loose metal is removed from the thread brush the end with a wire brush.

Now you can use the shortened bolt to complete that job.

Cutting a bolt

Tags: , , , ,
Posted in Home Improvements | No Comments »


My Paintbrush logo