My Top 10 DIYs of 2013

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My Top 10 DIYs of 2013

To my surprise, readers don’t stop at Snazzy to witness the more complicated DIY home remodeling stuff. You like to see smaller painted furniture projects. Even more popular are the projects where I completely failed, made big mistakes and had to start over :)
top 10 DIY of 2013

So here we go, below is the full list of what YOU were the most interested in…starting with #10.


#10 – Industrial Basement Project

industrial basement decor

We love the industrial motif, but at the time when we took the plunge on this project, we had no furniture for this space. It’s come a long way! Enjoy even more basement remodeling projects that we have done to move towards completion of this space.

#9 – T.J. Maxx Broken Table Rescue

my table transfer

I know you walked past this table in the T.J. Maxx clearance section, didn’t you?  Well I did too, until I realized it would perfectly fill a void underneath my large dining room mirror.  This table was a popular feature during the holiday home tour.  If you’re wondering how I did the image transfer…click here to read more.   To be honest, just for the sake of the picture, I snapped this before repairing the broken screw. Eventually I’ll get around to fixing that.  Just add it to the list.

#8 – DIY Wainscoting & Painting Stair Railings

Faux Wainscoting Tutorial

 Hands down, these two projects combined made the biggest impact and improved the overall aesthetic in my house.  Click here for the wainscoting project + painting the hand rail tutorials. Paying for these upgrades would have cost thousands through the builder. The DIY version was $500 or less.

#7: Upcycling a CD Tower as a Shelf

cd tower upcycle

Really?! I didn’t think of it as anything special, but here you go…the most complicated DIY you will ever witness.  I was even so excited to share, that I forgot to take the tag off of the rack.

#6 DIY Chair Reupholstery Tutorial

Here is that very moment when there’s no turning back…

diy reupholstery process 1

And just to show you that not every project is all fun and games around here…here is my old chair that I reupholstered. (Click through to see the full tutorial).  I felt I had officially “arrived” as a real DIY blogger after this project was done. I even created an entire 40-photo gallery showing you my thought process (scary!) each and every step along the way (keep in mind, I often tackle projects when I’m alone and bored, and a TV watcher…I am not). So many of my pictures are taken with one hand while trying to show you what I’m actually doing.

#5 Painting Your Front Door Black on a 90 Degree Day

diy high gloss black front door 2

Believe it or not, there is a bit of trick to using oil based, glossy black paint.  (Yay, I love surprises).  Here is the full tutorial with tricks and tips (and lessons learned) on this project. And I tell you exactly what NOT to do (based on my own experience).  In case you haven’t noticed, I kind of “jump in” on a project…because on the rare occasion that my kids aren’t home and I have T -minus 8 kid-less hours to get something done, I have to do it, like…NOW.  That doesn’t allow me a ton of time to do research. So for those DIY’ers out there like me, click the “Follow Me” button, and wait for Jeanette to mess it up first, then I’ll give you the straight scoop.

#4 My Holiday Home Tour

holiday home tour glam and vintage

Before my holiday home tour, I DIY’ed and blogged by myself, and I really hadn’t reached out to other bloggers. Because of my day job, I really don’t promote Snazzy Little Things as much as I probably could. That all changed this month when I was invited to join 29 other bloggers in the “12 Days of Christmas Home Tours”…and I realized how many friendships can come from the blogsphere.  This is also when I realized that blogging can become much more than a hobby, and that my DIY efforts were really starting to pay off.

#3 Victorian Table Upcycle & My First Chalk Paint Experience

DIY: $35 Victorian Table Upcycle

Be sure to click over to the post for the full tutorial. I found this table that had severe water damage on the top veneer, and I decided to take the plunge and use Annie Sloan Chalk Paint…this is the result from my FIRST try.  Be sure to read about the entire process here, which includes a video as well.  It is one of my most favorite projects to-date.

#2 DIY French Stenciled Kitchen Backsplash

DIY: Stenciled Kitchen Backsplash
DIY: Stenciled Kitchen Backsplash

This French stenciled backsplash made all the difference in my overall kitchen remodel. This was one of my earliest projects I tackled in the house, and it anchored the idea that I wanted a French-industrial look throughout.  More on our kitchen remodel can be found here.


here it is…

The #1 Project this Year?   My $25 Goodwill Table Upcycle (the one wrought with mistakes)

$25 Goodwill table makeover

It proves to me that you never know what resonates with people. This Goodwill table sat unfinished in my house for 6 months before I tackled it.  (Click here for the whole story). Once I did tackle it, it was a comedy of errors including poor paint and color choices, plus a mod podge disaster.  But in the end, it helped me discover my love for Annie Sloan Old Violet and learn the correct way to Mod Podge. It’s a very functional conversation piece in the house. (Also? It’s not even my most favorite project in the house…but hey, everyone else loves it…so it’s offically found it’s home).


Thanks so much to YOU for taking an interest in what I love to do here at Snazzy Little Things…and I hope you’ll stick around and play along in 2014!   The wheels are already turning with ideas for the blog next year…and I’d be honored and thrilled to have you along for the ride.

Be sure to visit my blog friends to see their “Best of 2013” posts for more ideas.
















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  1. Jeanette, that wainscoting is awesome. I would love to do that in my bathroom. Happy New Year!!

    1. Thanks so much Kathy. I love the look of wainscoting, I’m always surprised when people think it might go “out of style”…really? Every old brownstone apartment I’ve ever lived in was built circa 1920-30’s and had the old moldings throughout…thanks for stopping by! And Happy New Year!

  2. Oh my goodness! Your home and refreshes are perfect! Thanks for sharing them on your blog! I am truly inspired. Love love love your black front door!!

    1. Thanks so much Meegan for stopping by. I love the black door, too, in fact, black has become my favorite “color”…:)

    1. Thanks so much Abby…feels so good to add these upgrades after living here for 8 years. The vision is finally coming together. Happy New year to you!

  3. Jeanette, I was one that loved your little thrift shop table and the mistakes and lessons learned. Especially the lessons learned. It’s fun a take a moment and look back on all that was accomplished. Looking forward to 2014 and joining up with Snazzy Little Things. ~Jeanette

    1. Thanks so much Jeanette! I look forward to blogging with you this year!

  4. Isn’t it fascinating which posts people like the most? I’m always surprised. My own favs rarely make it, haha. Love ALL of your projects, Jeanette.

    So glad we “met” and are “touring” together. Here’s to many more in 2014!

  5. Visiting here from Yesterday on Tuesday, then selected this as my fave of your 2013 projects – probably because I am contemplating painting my front door black. Thanks for all the hints and warnings – I’ve pinned it so I can refer back.
    Happy New Year to you and yours ~ Mary

    1. Welcome Mary and I’m so glad my “warnings” will help…yes, my first lesson was maybe taking the door off would have served me well. Secondly, the extreme heat didn’t help much and using an oil based paint is very different than latex. So if you do it on a moderately warm day with a nice breeze, it will dry at a much nicer pace. I didn’t have much time to complete that project before my kids came home, so lesson learned. I hope you’ll visit often :)

  6. Jeanette! Your projects are amazing love them all but my favorite is the wainscot, I started it in my house a while back and stopped when I couldn’t get the angles right!! You have had an amazing year :) Happy New Year!!

    1. Thanks so much Dria…that wainscot was the best upgrade yet…it was done in 2 weekends. Looking forward to blogging with you in 2014!

  7. HI, Jeanette, so nice to meet you! I do believe this is my first visit to your pretty blog, but I can see you are very talented with lots of inspiring projects yourself. Feel free to copy my pit of a laundry room, I would be honored. It was so rewarding seeing that room change so drastically & it just might be “most improved” in my whole house. Thanks for joining up!

  8. Thanks so much, I’m so happy you stopped by. This year I’m adding an “Inspiration” section to my blog, and i’m sure you’ll see that laundry room pop up. It is so beautiful! Thanks again for hosting, and Happy New year.

  9. You have amazing style, Jennette! I love the CD tower as a wall shelf too, so clever! LOVE the stairwell and your backsplash and your goodwill table, really I’ll just take one of everything! I keep telling myself I cannot possibly follow one more blog, but I think I need to make an exception lol. Wishing you wonderful things in the new year! XO

  10. I love this roundup! So many great projects here! I’m tuning in to your basement reno…I might be helping someone do the same sort of thing and can’t wait to hear and see all your ideas!

  11. I love your home (and your style!). All of your top projects are fabulous! I love it all (really!)
    Happy New Year to you!! :)


  12. Jeanette you had so many GREAT projects this year! I have an old chair that I’ve been wanting to reupholster since the summer. I know it will be a big undertaking since it’s not just a basic chair. I love what you did with yours, and I’ll have to visit your post for your in-depth tutorial! I also love the Goodwill table and your kitchen backsplash. And I’m happy I’m in this great group with you! Happy New Year!

  13. Jeanette … Just LOVE your roundup … every single one! Can’t wait to see the basement. We’ve just started ours … what a mess!
    Hugs …

  14. I like that wainscoting look so much, and distressed furniture.. Looking forward to more of your posts..

  15. Happy New Year!! You are amazing at DIYS!! The things you have created are beautiful!!! I love the basement reno!

  16. I love what you done with the shelf and how high up it is. No child that would brake it can reach! Not to mention the table! oooooo lala

    1. Thank you so much….I so appreciate you stopping by my blog, I will be sure to visit as well. :)

  17. Your home is so beautiful! I love the CD rack turned shelf!! Someday when I have a home that I own, I can only hope I can decorate it enough to make it beautiful as well.

  18. These are some great posts. And I love the way how you admit your mistakes and help others to avoid them. Thank you for sharing!

  19. It looks like you’re starting off the New Year with a bang. Congrats on completing all of those projects!

  20. This is so amazing, I like what you did with the CD Tower into a Shelf. It came out perfectly. Cant wait to see more of your DIY projects

  21. You have a beautiful home! I’m loving the “vintage feel”. How I wish I could do something like this. Thanks for the share :-)

  22. The kitchen stencil got me interested! Thank you for sharing this.. Will visit that blog post of your! :)

  23. These are all awesome diy projects! I love the kitchen backsplash! Thanks for sharing!

  24. What a beautiful home and well executed projects. You have a great sense of aesthetics and your DIYs are fabulous. Kudos!

  25. thewalkingtourists says:

    Wow, all of that talent. it’s pure art. I wish I had that creativity. I may have to come back for some inspiration and perhaps tackle a small project somewhere.

  26. The stair railings one has got to be my favorite. Thanks for sharing.

  27. Your taste is fabulous! Everything looks great. That table from Goodwill came out great. Looks like you purchased it that way. I love it!

    1. Thank you so much. it all didn’t start out this way :) it’s been a long journey of DIY and making things so I could put my own “stamp” on it. I appreciate your kind words and for stopping by. :)