No-Fuss New Home: DIY Decorations on a Budget

No-Fuss New Home: DIY Decorations on a Budget

Outfitting a new home can be a real challenge when you're on a budget. DIY décor is a great option for the budget-conscious, and you don't need to be a craftsman or an expert artist to create one-of-a-kind items that showcase your style. With your PIXMA printer, some paper, and a little creativity, you can invest your time and energy - instead of your money - into some decor ideas that only look expensive.

Just Add Water

From vintage-inspired apothecary jars to custom spice bottles to antiqued dishware, you can use waterslide decal paper to create elegant, transparent embellishments that make even the most mundane look amazing. Find a design you like and use your PIXMA printer to print it in reverse on the decal paper, then trim it, soak it in water, and apply the finished decal to a non-porous item. The whole process works like magic, because the image will, quite literally, slide off the paper and adhere permanently to the object. It leaves behind a custom, transparent embellishment that's sure to delight.

Wood You?

You don't need any fancy decal paper to turn a boring piece of wood into a unique piece of artwork. All it takes is a couple sprays of clear sealant, some school glue, a bit of gel medium, and a design printed on a piece of standard printer paper. To create your own custom wood masterpiece, spray a thin layer of clear sealant on a piece of paper and let it dry thoroughly. Follow that up with a thin layer of school glue, again allowing it to dry completely. Print your design on top of that, ensuring you've set your PIXMA printer to print in reverse so the design doesn't show up backwards on the finished piece. Trim the design to fit, then apply a thin layer of gel medium on top of the print. Lay it face down on the piece of wood and smooth out any bubbles, then let dry for several hours. Soak the paper with a spray bottle or wet rag, then rub off the paper fibers to reveal the image underneath.

Hard Copies Go Soft

A few throw pillows will add pizzazz to your décor, give sofa-dwellers a soft place to rest their heads, and make great conversation starters when company visits. Design your own using a few of your favorite keepsakes - like a memorable concert ticket stub or your marriage license. Start by printing the document on iron-on transfer paper, making sure to print in reverse so it reads from left to right after you transfer it to the fabric. Tile images over multiple sheets for larger pillows. Then, to ensure the design stays flat and the corners don't lift once it's ironed, trim the edges of the decal so they are slightly rounded. If you're brave enough to make your own pillows, use scraps of material to iron on your designs, or just go for ready-made pillow cases. Follow the directions on your fabric transfer paper to turn that pillow into a permanent keepsake.

Stencil a Focal Wall

Introduce a little drama to your home by stenciling your favorite shape, letter, or design in a contrasting color on one focal wall. Print a simple design in black on heavy cardstock - the simpler the design, the easier it will be to use - and carefully cut it out using an X-Acto knife. Then, determine where you want the pattern on your wall and secure the stencil with strips of painter's tape. Carefully sponge, spray, or brush your color on, holding down the stencil as you work to ensure sharp edges. Remove the stencil carefully and repeat as many times as necessary to cover your focal wall.


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