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AIBU to ask for ideas how to decorate on zero budget?

(79 Posts)
coily Sat 26-Mar-16 10:10:28

Maybe this is impossible, just wondering if anybody has any ideas I haven't thought of yet

I have MH problems that are currently making some things easier to do than others,

The ideal solution to this is to get a well paid job and pay decorators but right now that is not going to happen

I'm doing Konmari right now and I think that's helpful to my MH.... But

It's making my council flat even more obviously a wreck (always was, but the clutter isn't hiding it anymore) although having OCD I do spot the details others might not fret over

So with a budget that almost doesn't exist, and very little confidence in my ability not to fuck the place up even more, (I don't know how to DIY and hyperventilate at the idea of trying to change a light fitting) Is there a way to fix my place up?

I get so down and panicky noticing all the things that need fixing or painting and feel ashamed to invite people in right at a time in my life I know I really actually need people around me for support

I don't even feel like I can really ask family or friends, they've seen me struggle with my home for a few years and helped me get it to look more like a home than a building site people were beyond shocked at the state the council handed it over in it is liveable in now, but the sheer amount of things that I think need doing I'm finding overwhelming and it's contributing to me feeling pretty shit about my life and trapped

I think Iv just written out that I'm being U to think a solution other than cope with it exists...? confused

NancyDecca Sat 26-Mar-16 10:37:14

Can you break it down a bit first so it is not so overwhelming and prioritise.

So e.g. if something is broken / not working properly and it affects you everyday it can go on the list.

Or, look at the room you relax in and where you might go if you want to invite people round what e.g. about the sitting room looks worst.

Just put the top half dozen things and see if they might be doable. I am sure people here would have suggestions. I think it is quite common for a house to be overwhelming when a lot needs doing and if a complete one off overhaul isn't possible, which it very very often isn't, you need to pick out manageable chunks.
Start with one room maybe as Phase 1 and resolutely ignore the rest. That's not particularly rocket science advice smile but - I am sure many of us have been there. flowers

elmersfud Sat 26-Mar-16 10:47:41

There are loads of videos on YouTube showing you how to do stuff. I would concentrate on the thing that annoys you most an take small steps

thatstoast Sat 26-Mar-16 10:52:58

You can learn loads from YouTube. If you follow channels by dulux etc they put up how to videos

Fyaral Sat 26-Mar-16 11:40:21

Do you have a birthday or something coming up? You could ask for paint from one person, brushes from another etc.


ClarenceTheLion Sat 26-Mar-16 11:43:30

Op, it's a flat, not a stately home. You will get it how you like it sooner or later!

Go through the flat and make a master list of everything you want to change. Go ceiling to floor, left to right. Then make a top three of what bothers you most in each room, and make a start. Prep work for painting, researching cookers, etc.

Remember with KonMari to get discarded stuff out asap - clothing banks for clothes, book buying sites that collect for free, eBay, etc.

Feel free to share your list and maybe we can offer some virtual help?

MrsSteptoe Sat 26-Mar-16 11:46:17

Yes, tiny steps, list everything, prioritise, don't look at the whole project but just at doing one thing at a time.

Think about what depresses you most as one list, and what doesn't work properly and needs to as a separate list. You could also think about what's easy to do as a third list.

<goes to happy place at prospect of list porn grin >

Would you be comfortable asking family/friends if they've got any reasonable quantities of unused paint knocking about? Careful, because you may end up being the repository for two dozen all-but-empty paint cans with one scrape of vile blue left at the bottom of the can, but I had 10 litres of beige paint in my cupboard for years because I went off the colour and never got round to getting rid.

specialsubject Sat 26-Mar-16 12:27:48

you can get paint on freecycle; I had a lot leftover and it went within hours! Brushes etc can come from Wilkinson or Poundland.

applying emulsion is not rocket-science but there are ways to get it wrong, and if you do that things will look worse. Time for some reading/video watching.

EssentialHummus Sat 26-Mar-16 12:30:45

Another vote for freecycle for paint, and maybe even some furniture if there's something specific you're after/you need more storage.

Can you skill swap with someone? I.e. offer them a cooking lesson in exchange for some carpentry or whatever? I think there's a website for this too.

coily Sat 26-Mar-16 13:07:10

Thanks all, I will do a list - started and got panicky so will revert to doing it later

Just off to charity shop with 9 bags of Konmari'd crap

Skillswapping sounds most do-able, in my current state

It's not so much getting the stuff as much as doing it - the. £ shop even sells some stuff

Qwebec Sat 26-Mar-16 23:53:20

If lists are a tough one for you how about spotting the one thing that distubs you the most or one thing that you feel you can tackle and build up confidence?

Qwebec Sat 26-Mar-16 23:54:14

And congratulations for sorting your things!!

veneeroftheweek Sun 27-Mar-16 09:37:33

Well done on KMing your stuff. I'm still in the process and it's taking ages.
Near us there's a paint recycle centre where you can pick up cans of used paint for free. There may be something like that near you.

Things like small cracks can easily be filled and painted over. What other kinds of things need doing?

coily Sun 27-Mar-16 10:37:24

There's just so much, in the bathroom alone before even making a list - the walls are uneven where old fittings were removed by the council and they've "filled" the holes unevenly and not sanded over so uneven plaster

The wall is also differing thicknesses where fittings have been painted around in the past and now those fittings are removed so thicker and thinner painted areas

One old fitting has simply been disabled rather than actually removed - an electric fan heater

The door is functional (opens and closes and fire door thickness) but the hooks that were once installed on the back have come out pulling parts of the chipboard away

Bath needs caulking again and bath panel smells suspiciously mouldy but as bath panel may have asbestos can't remove to check it

Flooring is warped and lifting from water damage I think

They re tiled but it's wonky - i actually think I could have done better as they literally just stuck tiles above the sink without spacing or making it even to the tiles over the bath right next to the sink

Holes in the floor where they gave the sink a pedestal and new taps - they left the old actual basin though so it doesn't actually match

They also installed a mixer tap shower that doesn't work - scalds. I was told they can disable it but not fix it to work as they don't supply showers if there's a bath.

That's probably not even half of it and that's in a tiny tiny room

8FencingWire Sun 27-Mar-16 10:47:06

Always start from the top down.
Clean light fixtures and make a note if they could do with a replacement. The paper ones in Ikea/Homebase are a couple of quid each.
Then the walls. Nevermind uneven, just put a lick of paint over them, paint the door too.
Rip the floor and put down some self adhesive sqares.

Once it has a lick of paint, you'll have time to sort the tap.

Same with the bedrooms.

Give yourself a 6 week timescale for each room. smile

insancerre Sun 27-Mar-16 11:02:46

Can you buy a box of filler and some sandpaper and fill in the most obvious areas?
Then paint it a nice relaxing colour, but not white as it will show every bump

If you suspect there is asbestos in your house can you not get it removed? Surely it can't be safe?

Can you buy a coat rack and screw it to the door to hide the holes? Our local timber shop gives away free off cuts of wood that could be used and painted with a couple of hooks screwed on
The shower is probably easy to fix, you can ask a couple of plumbers to give you a free quote, then at least you know what you are dealing with
Like other posters have said, take it in small steps
Also look on Pinterest for ideas and free cycle for freebies

Sunnyshores Sun 27-Mar-16 14:35:18

It sounds as if you would like to invite friends over, so Id make the sitting room a priority. Thats prob where you spend most of your time aswell?

Im sure your family wouldnt mind helping you again, especially if theyre specifically asked to ie help paint sitting room this weekend. Just having it decluttered, sparkly clean and painted a relaxing shade will help so much and inspire more work.

Katymac Sun 27-Mar-16 14:45:28

Ask for left over paint/wallpaper on Freecycle, Streetlife and facebook - you will be surprised how many people want to get rid of stuff

You might not get enough of one colour but mixed with white it's go further or think about accent walls (coloured paint or wall paper)

bushtailadventures Sun 27-Mar-16 15:37:27

Do you have a Poundland near you? They do very cheap self-adhesive floor tiles, £1 a box of 6 I think, about a foot square each. They would do for a little while, I put some similar cheap ones down in my kitchen a few years ago, they're still there cos they do the job smile

Poundland do basic decorating equipment too, would last well enough to do one room anyway. Any of the big D.I.Y stores/Wilko etc do basic paints too, white and magnolia usually, £10 for 10 litres sort of thing. I confess I bought big tubs of white paint, then mixed in a small tub of a dark colour I liked, to make the paint go a bit further.

Sgtmajormummy Sun 27-Mar-16 16:11:41

I'm a big fan of Polycell, a great all-round product for filling holes and cracks (your bathroom tiles, the holes in the door where the hooks came off, old screw holes before painting over them). It dries hard and you can just apply it with a kitchen knife. Or buy a cheap scraper knife and chip off nasty leftover cement before you paint, too.
Lots of inspiring videos here
Wilko (or Argos) are cheap and cheerful for homeware.

Catvsworld Sun 27-Mar-16 16:19:19

I would also have q look on the selling sites before you buy anything from the shops full price

I just had my kitchen done I got a Belfast sink for £30 off eBay they are usually £150

Also we're selling grout and left over tiles on gumtree for half the price of what they would cost at the shop even paint ect

kimsnannies Sun 27-Mar-16 16:53:10

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

EssentialHummus Sun 27-Mar-16 16:59:19

kim, given that you're trying to promote a personal, specialist service where trust is key, do you really think spamming random threads is going to bring you business? Hmm? hmm


Dixiechickonhols Sun 27-Mar-16 17:21:05

Is it worth speaking your landlord and seeing if they will do some of the work, some of the things on the list sound more like landlords responsibility.

If you are painting the big DIY chains do 10 L of dulux/crown white or cream paint cheaply, B and Q has it for £12.

JT05 Sun 27-Mar-16 18:25:30

Lots of helpful advice given by others. I would add that light coloured paint covers uneven walls better than a darker colour. Look for colour co ordinated decor items or mirrors in charity shops.
Try to use water based paints, saves on cleaning products and makes brushes easier to clean
I suspect you will find the challenge fun rather than a chore, good luck.

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