cheap DIY decor

We were named a local expert on ApartmentGuide! Read the full article here: Budget DIY Décor Ideas. (ApartmentGuide is a subsidiary of

When we got the invitation to contribute to ApartmentGuide, I didn’t even have to think about what to suggest: blocks of color painted onto cardboard.

Here’s why I love cardboard as a base for art projects:

  • It’s inexpensive and easy to find, so I can paint at almost any time.
  • It’s light, which means it’s easy to hang.
  • Because it’s physically light and light on the wallet, I have an easier time just going for it and painting.
  • And because of all that, I can really play with it, when I’m painting the cardboard and when I’m putting it up on a wall.

AND you can cut it into the right size or fun shapes!

Here’s why I love color blocks:

  • They really really really don’t need to be perfect. When I say blocks, I actually mean blobs. Color blobs. Maybe I should even call them messes.
  • Anyone can do color messes, even me!
  • Anyone can do color messes, even you!
  • A big block/blob/chunk/mess of color can add a lot to a space. Try a series of a few colors! Try super pale colors on darker walls.  a bed in front of an empty wall

The above is the work of about one hour. In this case, I used a canvas rather than cardboard, because that’s what I had within reach. It started black, and since I wanted bright colors, I painted white first, which added a bit of time. I wasn’t sure what I really wanted though, besides bright, so I just started by scribbling — or the paint equivalent of scribbling, is there a word for that? — with the pink. And then I thought, “huh? This could look okay,” so I tried it on the wall! I don’t mind it. But I was just experimenting to send to ApartmentGuide so I kept painting the same canvas, more pink and added blue, and then it looked kind of like viewing a sunset horizon over an ocean. So it’s still on the wall. I do think the wall needs more, but it’s a good start that took just about an hour, and since I was using supplies I had, cost no extra dollars.