DIY nursery canopy with eucalyptus garland


So it turns out I wasn’t having a baby girl but a baby boy instead!

Now that the shock of that news has settled, it’s time I remove all the pink decor and peony flowers and get cracking on a gender-neutral nursery for Alexander. (For those who have been asking, I’m equally happy to have had another baby boy, I was just convinced I was having a girl, ha ha.)

In today’s DIY I created an inexpensive, over-sized canopy for his cot that you could personalise in a range of ways to suit your child’s room or nursery.

The main items of hula hoop and white fabric cost under $30 and then I used a selection of artificial leaves from Koch & Co to decorate the top. If you were having a girl, you could use peonies or other flowers instead of leaves, if you prefer. I also considered dyeing the lower half of the canopy green to create an ombre effect but haven’t done this yet — it’s a fun idea to try for those who love colour.

You will need some basic sewing skills to create this canopy, here’s how to make it!

Items you will need:

  • Hula hoop (we got ours from Big W for $5)
  • 11m of white fabric (or whatever colour you like, our fabric cost around $2 per metre from Lincraft)
  • Artificial leaves and/or flowers for around the canopy (ours are from Koch & Co)
  • Sewing machine
  • Overlocker
  • Needle and thread
  • White spray paint (optional if hoop is not white)
  • Stanley knife (optional if you need to cut your hoop size down)

Steps:

1. If you can only find a large hula hoop, undo the staples that hold the two ends together and cut it down to your preferred size. I removed approximately 30cm of tube to make the hoop smaller. If you can find a smaller hula hoop, you won’t need to do this step.

2. Spray paint the hula hoop white. Again this is an optional step if you can only find a coloured or patterned hula hoop. As the fabric I used is quite thin, the black twirl pattern on the hula hoop would show through if I didn’t spray paint it.

3. Now it’s time to cut your fabric. You will need:

  • 4 x 2.5m lengths (my ceiling height is 2.7m so cutting the fabric at this length means it will touch the ground but if you have lower or higher ceilings, you will need to adjust the length. If you’re unsure, make the canopy a tad longer as you can always remove excess length at the end but you cannot add it!)
  • 1 x 1m diameter circle.

Sewing DIY cutting and overlocking

4. Overlock the edges of the fabric you just cut as shown in the diagram above i.e. around the circle and each side of the lengths you cut. If you do not have an overlocker, you could create a small seam or select a fabric that doesn’t fray and just leave the edges as they are.

5. Hand sew the fabric circle around the hula hoop to create the tent on top. The circumference of the fabric is larger than the circumference of the hoop so you will need to scrunch it a little as you sew — the excess fabric is important though as it will give the pitch at the top of your canopy.

Tip: I should say that I’ve seen some DIYs where people have not put the this part of the canopy on and just used rope to attach the hoop to the ceiling. You can see an example of that in this Kmart hacks for kids round up. This is another design option you may like to consider.

Sew fabric onto hoop

6. Use your sewing machine to sew the 4 lengths together as per the diagram below. Make sure all of the seams are facing the same way (so that when you hang the canopy all the seams will be on the inside).

Sewing DIY sew panels together

7. Continue using the sewing machine to pleat the top width of the strips you just sewed together. This will make it easier to hand sew it onto your hula hoop. You don’t need to be precise here, I just folded sections and sewed them as I went but you could measure and pin the pleats if you prefer.

Sewing DIY pleat

Sew pleats

8. Hand sew this fabric around your hula hoop with the pleated section at the top and the seams facing inwards.

Sewing DIY sew together

Sew canopy together

9. Now that the body of your canopy is done, it’s time to decorate. I simply hand sewed two eucalyptus garlands around the top and then added some extra gumnut stems, berry stems and eucalyptus stems around the hula hoop.

Like I mentioned above though, there are an endless number of ways you could decorate the canopy such as using artificial flowers, fairy lights, dyeing the fabric or using other decorative pieces.

Garland

10. Once your canopy is done, it’s time to hang it. I created a loop of fabric that I sewed into the centre of the top and attached it to a hook in my ceiling.

Tip: be sure to hang your canopy in a way where there is no chance it can fall onto baby. Use a hook that can more than carry the weight of your canopy and ensure it is secured into a stud in the ceiling.

Loop

If you like this DIY, you might also like to try our other nursery DIYs here!

Check out more DIYs

Pin this ↓ image ↓ to your Pinterest account so you can easily find and make this DIY when you need it!

Cot canopy pinterest

If you make this DIY, we’d love to see your photos! Tag @stylecuratorau when you post them on social media or email them to us at hello@stylecurator.com.au 🙂

Native Australian nursery

Nursery DIY

Easy cot canopy tutorial

DIY cot canopy

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DIY Home Automation Ideas From the Pros


For years, Hollywood films and television shows have imagined what the future of smart homes might look like. From the Jetsons, Back to the Future, and Wall-E, we’ve been fascinated by what the possibilities of technology, imagination and our ability to push the limits of human laziness could bring.

In 2017, we’re way past imagination. And with the combination of high-speed Wi-Fi, bluetooth, and the internet of things (IoT), you can live in a version that world, today.

The ultimate smart home optimizes our lives for comfort, convenience, and pleasure. It’s designed to make you feel like you’re floating through life with as little friction as possible. Not to mention, saving you time, energy, effort, and maybe even money in the long run.

And just for kicks, a few features to make your friends and family say “wow” at every turn.

But we don’t just want to imagine it, we’re going to show you how to build it. We’ll cover the essential smart home devices, useful apps and accessories, features to consider, and how to deck out each room for maximum comfort and convenience.

Step One: Selecting the Brain of Your Smart Home

One of the biggest challenges of building a smart home is keeping track of all of its elements. From the light switches, to the coffee pot, to turning on your holiday lights, to your home entertainment center, controlling each device through a separate app could be more of a hassle than it is useful.

That’s where the smart home automation hub comes in.

As described by PCMag’s Alex Colon, “Smart home automation hubs are a one-stop solution for unifying your connected gadgets and controlling them from one simple app.”

smart home brain google home mini

When it comes to choosing your automation hub, the choices are varied. Some of the best options on the market are the Amazon Echo, Google Home, Wink Hub 2, and Samsung SmartThings Hub. One of the perks being that all hubs come with an app that helps you connect the smart, Wi-Fi or bluetooth enabled devices in your home — all in one centralized place.

Both Amazon Echo and Google Home are voice activated and come with built-in speaker systems adding to their convenience, and serving as a constant reminder that we’ve  invited the robots into our homes.

However, not all hubs work with all devices, and not all devices are entirely compatible with one another. Although the hope is that one day they will be.

Step Two: Establish a Seamless Automated Experience

Having a strong and seamless internet connection throughout your home will be helpful with all these Wi-Fi connected products and appliances in your home. To help, you might want to consider something like the Eero Mesh Router System — especially if you have a larger home with multiple rooms.

”Mesh networks solve a particular problem: covering a relatively large area, more than about 1,000 square feet on a single floor, or a multi-floor dwelling or office, especially where there’s no ethernet already present to allow easier wired connections of non-mesh Wi-Fi routers and wireless access points,” says TechHive’s, Glenn Fleishman.

This will help alleviate the lag time that makes you feel like you could’ve just flip the lights on yourself in less time.

In addition, you’ll definitely want to sign up for IFTTT. IFTTT stands for “If This Then That”. IFTTT lets you create a series of applets or “recipes” that connect your services and devices to create automated experiences.

For example, if you have a Nest thermostat and Wink compatible lighting or door locks, you can create an IFTTT recipe that locks your doors and turns off the lights when your Nest is set to “away” mode.

Boom! You’re one step closer to living in the future.

Finally, you should probably definitely have a smartphone if you don’t already. Who are we kidding? There’s about a 53% chance you’re reading this on your phone anyways.

Step Three: Automating the Ambiance, Atmosphere, Energy, and Surveillance

Lighting

One of the most basic smart home features you can set up in your home is the lighting. It’s a feature that you’ll use everyday — and an easy one to show off when your friends or family drop by.

To get started, pick up a set of Philips Hue Smart Light Bulbs. You can use these bulbs to set the mood for the evening, time your lights to turn on when you get home, and much more. The Hue White Starter kit comes with a bridge (which you’ll need to connect to the app), and four bulbs that you can connect to different rooms in your home.

You can also add automated features to your home’s natural lighting with smart shades and blinds. First you will need to decide between motorized and retrofit shades. As CNET’s David Priest explains, ”Motorized shades are expensive but they’re also self-contained, reliable and more likely to cooperate with other smart home tech.” Retrofit devices on the other hand are cheaper, and “usually work as simple app-connected motors that you can feed certain blind strings into to make the blinds “smart.”

bright smart home room

There are plenty of brands to choose from, too. Most of the major developers products will integrate with a smart hub of your choosing, but some will only work with proprietary systems. That’s worth factoring in if you’d like your hub to be a one-stop shop for all of your devices.

Naturally moderating your home’s temperature (and reducing your utility bill) by syncing it with Nest is a compelling feature. Being able to automate the opening and closing of your blinds like you’re living in a swanky Las Vegas hotel is just a bonus.

Temperature Control

Once you have your lighting system all set up, you’re going to want to regulate the temperature in your home. As we mentioned, the Nest Learning Thermostat is a great product for that.

Not only does the product look sleek, but it’s smart, too. Within a week’s time, it will automatically program itself based your temperature preferences. For example, Nest will learn to power down when you’re away to avoid heating or cooling an empty house, ultimately save you money.

And like many smart home technologies, you can control it from anywhere using your smartphone or tablet.

Security and Surveillance

Now that you’re capable of managing your home while you’re away, let’s get you set up with monitoring it. There are numerous ways to protect and secure your home providing you peace of mind just a few touches away.

With Ring, you can monitor your home from any internet-connected device. Their video-enabled doorbells, let you see, hear or speak to anyone on the premises of your home. When integrating Ring with IFTTT, you can automate sequences to provide additional security. For example, toggling the lights on your Ring Security cam when motion is detected at the door.

Other smart home technologies with home security benefits like SimpliSafe provide features like 24/7 professional monitoring and police dispatch — all fully controllable from your smartphone, tablet, or laptop.

Cleaning

With a safe and secure, energy saving, adequately (and elegantly) lit home in the works, it only makes sense that you’ll want to keep it clean.

Smart home tech like the Roomba have been around since 2002 so it only makes sense to include a robot vacuum to keep your place tidy.

Robot vacuums have come a long way according to Consumer Reports review. The technology has only gotten better and more affordable. Depending on which product you select, you can set, schedule, start or pause a cleaning cycle right from your phone.

What’s more, this technology isn’t just for indoors either. With set-it-and-forget-it enabled technology, you can knock out your Sunday outdoor chores (like lawn mowing , power washing, and gutter cleaning) at the push of a button with robotic lawn mowers. As per Husqvarna, “Robotic lawn mowers aren’t just for tech geeks anymore – they’re for anybody who needs a little extra time on the weekend.”

And we would be remiss if we didn’t mention smart sprinkler systems that let you care for your freshly cut lawn from anywhere in the world.

Step Four: Putting the Finishing Touches on Your Smart Home — Room by Room

Now that you’ve got the foundational elements of your smart home all set up, let’s walk through some fun (albeit functional) accessories, appliances, and furniture for your smart home — room by room.

Bedroom

According to the National Sleep Foundation, regulating room temperature and sleeping on a comfortable mattress and pillows can significantly contribute to a good night sleep. And a good night’s rest naturally leads to a higher quality of life, right?

The Sleep Number Bed is one of the best beds to serve that purpose. With it’s SleepIQ technology, it measures your breathing, heart rate, and automatically adjust to your movement while you sleep. The corresponding app will give you a sleep score to help you evaluate what changes you need to make in your sleep routine for a better night’s rest.

Bathroom

Showering is one of the more wasteful and inefficient activities we do in our homes. According to the Alliance for Water Efficiency, the average American shower uses about 17 gallons of water and lasts about 8 minutes.

EvaDrop, the first smart shower and claims to save up to 50% of your water with its smart design. With the EvaDrop app, you can program a desired temperature before hand, saving water before you get in the shower, and even set a timer for the duration of your shower to keep you on track.

Kitchen / Dining Room

A 2015 study of household activities revealed that women and men spent 37% and 15% of time at home on food and drink preparation and kitchen and food clean-up. It goes without saying that we spend a lot of time in the kitchen.

white kitchen with smart appliances

Outfitting your kitchen with smart or Wi-Fi-connected appliances can make that time more efficient and enjoyable.

For starters, you may want to pick up a Mr. Coffee Smart Optimal Brew. You can start brewing a fresh cup of coffee before you get out of bed or schedule a pot the night before by powering your coffee maker with a WeMo smart plug and corresponding app.

For the other major kitchen appliances, you may want to consider LG’s series of smart, connected appliances, especially if you like consistency across your home appliances.

You can preheat your oven from the living room, check your dishwashing cycle without lifting a finger, or set your fridge to “vacation mode” when you’re away to save on energy costs. Each appliance is compatible with Amazon’s Alexa, and Google Home, for the added benefit of the hands free assistance that’s always useful in the kitchen.

Living Room / Family Room

According to Nielsen’s national TV panel, about 29% of U.S. television homes have an enabled Smart TV. For your smart home, you have plenty of quality options to choose from.

Simply connect to the internet, log-in to your streaming service, and you should be all set.

If you want to add some truly high-quality sound to your tunes, TV, or movie experience, you might want to look into a Wi-Fi or bluetooth supported speaker system.

Being able to adjust the volume because you can’t find the remote is a thing of the past given our phones are almost always within arms reach.

amazon echo diy home automation with alexa

Laundry Room

The laundry room has traditionally been a pretty low-tech space in the house. There aren’t too many significant smart automations to the process of washing and drying clothes, but convenience and efficiency have gotten upgrades.

Wi-Fi connected appliances like GE’s Connected Washer and Dryer, or Whirlpool’s Wi-Fi appliances can tell you when a load is done for maximum timing and efficiency.

You can even integrate your washer and dryer with Nest to make energy efficient choices when you’re away.

And when you run out of detergent, fabric softener or lint filters, Amazon’s Dash Button has you covered. Simply connect it to your Amazon Prime account and re-order what you’ve just run out of with a click.

Ready to tackle DIY Home Automation for yourself?

We’d love to hear from you.

The post DIY Home Automation Ideas From the Pros appeared first on Primetime.



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HOW TO WINTERIZE YOUR HOME

Winterizing Your Home: DIY Tips for Plumbing, Windows, and Pipes


If you’re looking for tips on winterizing your home windows or winterizing your entire home, you’ll find what you need in this comprehensive guide. The materials needed to winterize a house can be found at a hardware store, and some winterizing services will require a professional. Our goal is to help you keep your home warm and comfortable all winter long. Let’s get started.

How to Winterize Your Home

Air Conditioning System

air conditioner ready for winter

Winterizing your home involves protecting your condensing unit against the winter. Condensing units collects debris and dirt from the summer and fall. Here’s what to do:

Protect the Condensing Unit

  • Clean the condensing unit using a water hose. Set the spray head to the highest pressure to wipe off any dirt from the fan blades and condensing coils.
  • Condensing units are made to endure all seasons, so contrary to popular belief, they don’t need to be covered. All you need to do is cover the fan guard (the top) to protect it from falling icicles. You can use a piece of plywood and hold it down with a few bricks.

Covering the entire condensing unit can cause it to rust, and also welcomes rodents in that are searching for somewhere warm to stay. These rodents can destroy the compressor wiring and insulation.

Reverse Your Ceiling Fans

ceiling fan in reverse for winter

Did you know you can turn on your fan on during the winter to keep your house warm? Reversing your ceiling fans, and setting the speed at low will produce a gentle updraft, which pushes the heat down instead of up.

Locate the direction switch in your ceiling fan, and then flip the switch. Turn on the ceiling fan, and you’ll notice the blades will start moving in the opposite direction.

Winterize Your Gutters, Clean Downspout and Check Roof

get gutters ready for winter

On your winterizing checklist should be cleaning gutters and downspouts. However, this job requires a lot more work. When you don’t clean your gutters and downspout, leaves and debris build up inside. They freeze and create ice dams. This can prevent your drainage systems from working properly. Home winterization companies that specialize in gutter and downspout cleaning can help you with this messy and time-consuming job.

Roof

The Center for Disease and Control Prevention website advises to:

  • Check for missing or damaged shingles, or and have them replaced to avoid leaks.
  • They also advise you cut away tree branches that can fall on your home during a storm.

Doors and Windows

winterize your doors

Winterizing home windows and doors is probably the most critical when it comes to lowering your utility bill. To make sure doors and windows are airtight during the winter, here are a few things you can do:

Doors

  • Cover openings with weatherstrips that are placed around entry doors. Among some are foam flanged or vinyl bulb.
  • You can also use a door sweep to seal the bottom of the door. You can find all of these items at a hardware store.

Windows

how to get old windows ready for winter

“You can improve the energy efficiency of existing windows by adding storm windows, caulking and weatherstripping, and using window treatments or coverings,” according to the Energy.gov website.

If your window panes and storm windows have major cracks they should no doubt be replaced. If you are dealing with cold drafts seeping in along the edges of your windows you can easily fix the problem.:

  • Insulating window film. These come in kits and cost between $10-$20.
  • Weatherstrips to close any openings along the edges.  
  • Caulking along the gaps of your windows will also help stop cold air leaks from entering.
  • Another option and the most conventional method is using plastic sheeting. You can use plastic sheeting in addition to window film for best results. A good way to put up this plastic is by using double-sided 3m tape, stretching the plastic and using a blow dryer to seal them shut.
  • Putting up thick drapery will improve the energy efficiency of your home. On sunny days, open your blinds or drapes to allow the sun to come in. This helps warm up any home.
  • But, having your windows cleaned professionally will produce the best results. Make sure your windows are cleaned properly by professional window cleaners with the right equipment. Climbing very high ladders can be dangerous. Prime Time Window Cleaning has a $40 off coupon for window washing services for your home.

Wood Burning Fireplace and Chimney

getting your fireplace ready for winter

Before you light up your fireplace, make sure that it is clean and ready to use. The National Fire Protection Association, (NFPA) says that “Chimneys, fireplaces, and vents shall be inspected at least once a year for soundness, freedom from deposits, and correct clearances.”

  • Clean up the fireplace especially if it’s been more than two years. It’s recommended you hire someone to clean it.
  • Look for any open mortar joints and cracks in the brick and have them repaired. Fire can spread through the openings into the stud walls which can cause a fire.
  • Another thing you can use is a fireplace insert insulation. They are easy to install.  Just make sure you remove it before starting a fire.

Heating System

thermostat for winter

CC Image courtesy of larsjuh on Flickr

There are a few basic things you can do to make sure your home will be heated properly for the winter.

Test Thermostat

  • Turn the thermostat on and set it about 80 or 90 degrees. If you hear the furnace kick in, it means your heat is running properly. Depending on what’s wrong, you may be able to fix it yourself, (if you know what the problem is) or you may need to call a qualified service technician.

Inspect the Furnace

  • You should also hire a technician to do a seasonal check up on your furnace. This is something you can also do yourself. The energy.org website offers additional tips on properly maintaining your furnace and boiler.

Replace the Airfilter

Replace the air filter every 90 days. Sooner than 90 days if you have pets. A good idea is to buy these in packs and have them stored in your basement all year round.

Insulate the Hot Water Tank

  • Insulate your hot water tank with an insulating blanket. You can find these at hardware stores.

Inspect the Heating Vents

  • So that air flows freely through the vents, have a service technician come in and clean them every two years. Over time, heating vents can create build up from particles carried through the air.

Winterize Your Landscape and Outdoor Gear

aerate your lawn for winter

Remove any debris from your lawn. If you’ve noticed that the turf grass is not looking very good, or that water does not penetrate into your lawn, you should consider aerating your lawn. After this is done, you should applying fertilizer. This should ideally be done early fall.

Aerate and Fertilizing the Lawn

  • Water your lawn one or two days prior, or wait for a heavy rainfall.
  • Poke holes with a garden fork or a special aerator.
  • Use sand or peat moss to seat the holes. You can use a brush for this. This process prevents the holes from closing up, but still allowing air and water to pass freely into the root zone.
  • Apply fertilizer.

Protect Patio Furniture

  • Make sure you cover patio furniture with a waterproof material made of polyester.

Clean and Drain Lawn Mower

  • Clean the deck of your lawn mower to prevent rust and corrosion. You can do this with a water hose and a towel.
  • Stabilize the fuel. You can use a turkey baster or siphon to remove a lot of fuel left over, and use it for your car.

Drain Water Fountains and Hoses

  • Drain any water fountains to prevent them from freezing.
  • Drain, and store hoses.
  • Close the inside valves inside your home connected to the hose bibs outside, and open the outside hose bibs and let the water drain. Not doing so can cause the pipe to break.
  • If you have a pool, make sure you drain the water to avoid damage.

Winterizing Pipes and Plumbing

keep pipe from freezing in winter

As you ready your house for the colder months ahead, don’t forget about your water system.Look at the pipes in your home as you check off your winterizing checklist.

  • The American Red Cross advises that areas like basements, attics and crawl spaces where pipes are exposed, should be insulated.
  • Opening your kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to let heat flow in.
  • Let the water drip on severely cold nights.
  • Set the temperature to be the same in the day and at night
  • Leave the heat on to at least 50 degrees if you will be going on vacation.

Additional Tips For Winterizing Your Home

The energy.gov website offers additional many tips on how you can insulate your home for the Winter and save on energy costs too:

  • Insulate exterior outlets and switch plates with inexpensive foam sealing gasket.
  • For energy efficiency, set your refrigerator at 36 to 38 degrees F and the freezer at 0 to 5 degrees F. Setting your appliances any colder than this wastes energy.

Wrapping Things Up

Following these tips will ensure you that you stay warm, and comfortable during the cold months ahead. And don’t forget that home winterizing doesn’t have to be a burden. Many home winterizing companies are running deals and coupons to get your home ready for winter right now and offer quotes over the phone or online. Winterizing may take that extra effort, but in the long-run, you can save a lot of money and time when you invest in taking care of your home.

Note: Primetimewindowcleaning.com has been named a top 100 blog!

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The post Winterizing Your Home: DIY Tips for Plumbing, Windows, and Pipes appeared first on Primetime.



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Chris Heider takes on a DIY vinyl flooring install project to refresh his family room space. Check out the finished product featuring Lifeproof floors.

DIY Vinyl Plank Flooring Install


Chris Heider from Handy Dad TV has always been a supporter of carpet in the house; however, he recently found an ultra-clean, fast and easy alternative for the concrete floor in their family room in Lifeproof Vinyl Plank Flooring. Read the post to find out how Chris completely transformed his family room in a few easy steps.

DIY Vinyl Plank Flooring Install

Chris Heider takes on a DIY vinyl flooring install project to refresh his family room space. Check out the finished product featuring Lifeproof floors.

Materials

  • LifeProof Shadow Hickory 7.1 in. x 47.6 in. Luxury Vinyl Plank Flooring
  • Roberts Pro Pull Bar for Laminate and Wood Floors
  • Roberts 2.75 in. x 9.25 in. x 0.50 in. Black Universal Tapping Block

Family Room Remodel Inspiration

Dogs are like family. You can’t live with them, can’t live without them. Don’t get me wrong, I love dogs. I’ve had dogs all my life. But just as cats can be hard on furniture, dogs can be hard on floors.

I have always been a carpet lover and love the way it feels warm between my toes and softly catches falling objects. I love the way it dampens footsteps on my squeaky floors and makes dog paws barely imperceptible. But the quest for ultra clean, allergen-free homes has made broadloom carpeting passe.

In the 20 years I’ve lived in this house, I’ve replaced the family room carpeting three times. The primary causes of carpet wear and stains in the early years were kids and red Kool-Aid. Lately, it’s more from dogs and red wine.

My family room is a very high-traffic area. It’s the pass-through between the garage (our primary entry point) and the kitchen (the heart of the house). We were smart enough to tile the 20-square foot area inside the garage door as a drop zone for dirty shoes and snow boots.

Finding the Right Flooring

When planning the remodel of our family room in Fall 2018, my wife not only wanted to [once again] replace the carpet, but also eliminate that tiled area to make the room appear larger. Nearly every room in the house had its carpet removed to expose the original oak hardwood floors from 1970 when the house was built. But the family room shared a concrete slab with the garage. No hardwood under this carpet.

We tried a floating laminate floor in our kitchen around 15 years ago and hated it. Not only did you hear every click-click-click of the dog’s paws, it also showed every drip, drool and paw-print, and felt like we were walking on a Formica countertop. We happily replaced it with ceramic tile when we remodeled the kitchen shortly after paying off the laminate.

We definitely didn’t want laminate in the family room, and despite the fact we were installing a gas fireplace in this remodel, we felt tile would make the room feel colder. Ideally, my wife wanted hardwood.

I was working against a tight timeline to complete the remodel, primarily on weekends. I started the project in early November and wanted it done in time to hang our Christmas stockings on the chimney with care so Saint Nick could do his thing.

There were issues with putting hardwood in our family room. Given the timeline, my only choice would be a pre-finished, engineered wood floor. I couldn’t nail it to concrete; it would need to be glued. That would be more time, mess, and odor. Not ideal, but I was willing to do it if she wanted it. The main issue was liquid spills (and other doggy by-products) that sometimes aren’t discovered until the next morning. They can easily be absorbed into a wood floor causing permanent stains, de-lamination and odors.

Chris Heider takes on a DIY vinyl flooring install project to refresh his family room space. Check out the finished product featuring Lifeproof floors.

Lifeproof Vinyl Plank Flooring to the Rescue

We wanted a flooring option that resembled wood, was water resistant and could be purchased and installed quickly. Our investigation led us to The Home Depot and their Lifeproof Luxury Vinyl Plank flooring. I then took on a DIY vinyl flooring install.

We found a plethora of samples in various species, colors and looks from clean to rustic. A quick first pass yielded at least six options that we liked. That list was whittled down to two, and the final decision was made with the style that was in stock. We decided on Shadow Hickory because of its clean lines, subtle grain, and warm, reddish-brown hue. We knew it would coordinate well with the furniture that was ordered in September as well as the fireplace stone and our paint palette.

Chris Heider takes on a DIY vinyl flooring install project to refresh his family room space. Check out the finished product featuring Lifeproof floors.

I used The Home Depot’s online estimator and bought the recommended number of boxes plus a tapping block and pull bar. The estimator will account for waste, but a simple room like mine will have very little waste.

Chris Heider takes on a DIY vinyl flooring install project to refresh his family room space. Check out the finished product featuring Lifeproof floors.

This was my first time taking on a luxury vinyl plank flooring install and I would definitely do it again. My 300-square-foot room was easily completed in a day, and I had two unopened boxes leftover. Better to have too much than not enough, and The Home Depot gave me a refund without any issue.

You can watch my detailed vinyl plank flooring install video at http://handydad.tv/lpfi.

Project Observations and Recommendations

  • Take your time to determine the layout before you get started.
  • Make sure all your flooring boxes are from the same lot.

Chris Heider takes on a DIY vinyl flooring install project to refresh his family room space. Check out the finished product featuring Lifeproof floors.

  • Buy a tapping block and pull bar with the flooring. Don’t cheap out thinking you can do it without them.

Chris Heider takes on a DIY vinyl flooring install project to refresh his family room space. Check out the finished product featuring Lifeproof floors.

  • Knee pads are a must, regardless of your age.
  • A 2-person team works best: installer (kneeling) and helper (standing) to hand you the planks.

Chris Heider takes on a DIY vinyl flooring install project to refresh his family room space. Check out the finished product featuring Lifeproof floors.

  • Have 3 boxes open and randomly select planks.

Chris Heider takes on a DIY vinyl flooring install project to refresh his family room space. Check out the finished product featuring Lifeproof floors.

  • Stagger your seams by cutting the first piece in a row to a random length that is at least 8″ different than the last two rows.

Chris Heider takes on a DIY vinyl flooring install project to refresh his family room space. Check out the finished product featuring Lifeproof floors.

Whether your house has kids with red juice, adults with red wine or dogs with their messes, consider Lifeproof Luxury Vinyl Planks for a beautiful floor that is easy to install yourself.

The post DIY Vinyl Plank Flooring Install appeared first on The Home Depot Blog.



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