10 easy, affordable DIY design ideas under $10

Cathy Hobbs
Tribune News Service

What’s wonderful about design is it doesn’t always have to be expensive to look expensive. If you’re looking for affordable ways to spruce up your pad this winter or get a jump start on a spring redesign, here are some affordable Design Recipes ideas, all under $10:

1. A reclaimed wood door as a headboard: Full slab doors make great, inexpensive headboards. Pre-painted door slabs are also perfect for those seeking a minimalist and modern look, while those looking for a look that is more country chic may want to try using a reclaimed wood door.

2. Fabric lampshade made from wallpaper and ribbon: From wallpaper to sturdy wrapping paper, color and bold graphic patterns are a great way to introduce color and interest. Why not create a new lampshade for your favorite lamp? This project is quick and easy, and best of all, you can make your new shade right over an existing one.

3.Make your own mirror with an ornate picture frame: From large to small, metal to wood, the possibilities are endless. Grab a paintbrush or a can of spray paint, and you can truly make the mirror your own. Looking for a bit more glam? You can always add elements such as decorative buttons, rhinestones or sea shells.

4.Curtains made from drop cloths: Drop cloths are the perfect weight of cotton for a curtain, especially for those looking for privacy. Grab some drapery pins and attach them to a rod, add grommets, and you’re good to go.

5. Glass hurricane filled with a candle on a bed of coffee beans: A simple glass hurricane filled with fragrant chocolate coffee beans and a candle on top can be an elegant centerpiece for a coffee or dining table.

6. Succulents in sand: Tiny succulents are hearty enough to be around for weeks, if not months. Pair them with plain white sand in a glass jar or vessel and you have a beautiful accent piece for your home.

7. Affordable toss pillows: Toss pillows are relatively affordable, and the right pattern and/or color can add impact to a space. If you want a budget-friendly, idea, why not make toss pillows from affordable scarves?

8. Treasured items placed in shadow boxes: Shadow boxes are such a beautiful way to display mementos and even items you may have thought about packing away for good. Postcards, treasured photos and ticket stubs all work well with multidimensional items such as buttons, coins, souvenirs and mementos.

9. Wine glasses as candle holders: This is my new “it” idea. Just take wine glasses, flip them over, and place a small votive on the bottom, which now serves as the base for your candle. Put something decorative under the mouth of the glass for an even more creative look.

10. Affordable art ideas: Try framing wallpaper. Wallpaper isn’t what you might remember as a child! Today’s prints are bold, colorful and in many cases, textured. Nearly all retailers that sell wallpaper allow potential buyers to take home free samples. These sample sizes are usually substantial in size and perfect for framing.

Another affordable art idea that tops my list is to frame pieces of fabric. The beauty of fabric is you can buy it by the yard. All you have to do is buy a few yards of printed fabric and stretch it over a frame made of plywood.

Cathy Hobbs, based in New York City, is an Emmy Award-winning television host and a nationally known interior design and home staging expert with offices in New York City, Boston and Washington, D.C. Contact her at info@cathyhobbs.com or visit her website at cathyhobbs.com.