Category Archives: Home Improvement

Decorating Drop Ceiling Tiles

Decorating your drop ceiling tiles will enhance your ceiling and show off your space from top to bottom. Drop ceilings are an excellent way to hide many defects your regular ceiling may have. Even though they are several styles of drop ceilings available, some are much more decorative than others. The basic drop ceiling is plain and sometimes very unattractive. There are many ways to improve the look of your plain ceiling tiles without breaking the bank. When decorating your ceiling tile, it’s easier to take them down individually to decorate; always make sure your design is completed and dry before putting them back up.


Use paint as a primary decorative element for your ceiling tiles. Choose latex or gloss paint in a color that compliments your space. To add spice to your ceiling, use metallic paints to create the faux tin look. Stencils can also be used over a solid paint finish or directly on the plain ceiling tile for added style. If you prefer wood, try using a wood stain to paint your tiles (in the dark/light wood tones) then drag a dry brush or a wood grain rocker through the wet stain to achieve a faux wood finish.


Create a decorative, ornate ceiling by pasting wallpaper on each tile. Placing printed, textured or paintable textured wallpaper on your ceiling tile can achieve a stunning designer look. Wallpaper borders can also be used horizontally and vertically to create a patchwork design on your ceiling.


Fabric will add depth to your ceiling. Staple or glue fabric onto each tile or run fabric through the tile frames for a soft, flowing look. Upholstering each tile with padding and fabric adds dimension and style to your space. Cut the padding (batting) to the size of the tile then cut the fabric one or two inches larger than the tile and staple it onto the back of the tile.

For added interest, create a tufted look on your ceiling by stapling down small areas on the front of your tile to create a triangle or square design, or just staple one area down in the middle. Use upholstery buttons (cover the buttons with the same fabric) and sew or hot glue them into the tufted spots to cover the staple. Regular buttons can also be used.


Gluing wood, tin or plastic medallions or moldings to a drop ceiling will bring it to life. Place medallions onto the center of the ceiling tile and paint it in one color or in monochromatic colors for added depth and style. Paint or stain lightweight wood or plastic moldings and glue them onto the tile. Frame each tile like a picture. If you want a designer look, add additional frames to the tile and build a descending frame design. Painting the tile a slightly different hue from the molding will add an extra touch of style.

If you’re not happy with the appearance of your ceiling tiles look, they can be easily changed without having to remove the hardware that’s attached to the ceiling. Simply remove the tiles, get the exact measurements and replace them with the tiles of your choice.

VIDEO: Drop Ceiling Tiles – How to Reface

Article Source:

Home Improvement & Remodeling Ideas that Increase Home Value (And What to Avoid)

Remodeling the Kitchen

Most people consider the kitchen to be the heart of the home, and because of this, updates in this room pay off. According to HGTV, you can expect to recoup 60%-120% of your investment on a kitchen remodel, as long as you don’t go overboard. You should never make your kitchen fancier than the rest of the house, or the neighborhood.

Why You Shouldn’t Invest in a Deluxe Kitchen

For example, a historic home in my neighborhood has been on the market for more than two years. During the owner’s last open house, I went in to check it out, and immediately saw why the house hasn’t sold. The quaint Arts and Crafts style home was built in 1900 and has a lot of charm. Unfortunately, the homeowners had invested over $60,000 upgrading the kitchen.

The enormous kitchen, easily the size of the living room, features appliances and countertops that might look more at home in a fancy restaurant kitchen. The style, size, and quality of the kitchen don’t fit in with the rest of the house, or the neighborhood. If you plan on selling your home within the next five years, keep potential buyers in mind before you start on any major remodel; many people won’t pay for a fancy, deluxe kitchen.

A Little Paint Goes a Long Way

When it comes to how much you spend on a kitchen remodel, prices can run the gamut, from $5,000 to $75,000, or more. Get the biggest bang for your buck on a kitchen remodel by looking at color. Fresh paint, in modern colors, can go a long way towards updating the look of your kitchen. Plus, paint is relatively cheap.

You might want to consider using low-VOC paint; this makes your kitchen more eco-friendly, and helps your family avoid breathing in dangerous chemicals, like benzene, that off-gas from regular fresh paint.

Energy-Efficient Appliances

Replace old appliances with energy-efficient models. Energy Star-rated appliances are better for the environment, and they also help you save money, because they use less energy. Potential buyers often look for ways to save money when shopping for a new home. Learn More Here:

VIDEO: DIY Home Repairs – How to Survive a Kitchen Remodel

The (Don’t Get Burned) Kitchen Remodeling Guide

Avoiding the Most Common Mistakes

In a perfect world, demolition starts on time, deliveries arrive on schedule, installation takes place without a hitch, and cleanup is quick and easy. Chances of all that happening are slim enough; don’t shrink the odds by falling prey to these common pitfalls.

1. Trying to be your own GC. Trust us: This is one job you don’t want to undertake. A kitchen remodel is one of the most costly, complicated, and time-consuming projects imaginable, and the input of qualified professionals is not only valuable, in most parts of the country it’s mandated by law.

2. Hiring the wrong GC. Never hire a contractor who makes you uncomfortable, no matter how highly recommended or how low the estimate. If you feel like the contractor is someone you can’t trust, keep looking.

3. Putting the job out for bid without clear enough specs. Unless you account for every detail of the project up front, you won’t be comparing apples to apples when you solicit bids. That means specifying the type of flooring, countertop material, lighting, even cabinet hardware. If you don’t, a contractor might assume higher-end choices (which may be more difficult to install), and you could end up overpaying. Learn More Here:,,1102023-5,00.html