DIY – is it worth the bother?

Seriously, I’ve been thinking this for a while now… in fact its a thought I get every time I go shopping…

And let me say right now, this is in no way an advertisement for Kmart (though if they’d like to throw some money my way I’d be more than happy to take it!)

Why bother making our own stuff when Kmart, The Reject Shop, Big W, Target and just about every other big store sells the stuff we pin, make from scratch or make over from curbside finds.

And (usually) for less than we can make them for!

We spend hours and often $$ making these things when we could walk into Kmart and just buy. No muss, no fuss.

I mean, I’m a fan of old, rusty, crusty and broken, so I’m not a big fan of cheap new imitations… but if you make things to sell then this is what you have to compete with. And not everyone has the same passion for old dirt as I do.

How about some examples? All items on right are from the Kmart website.

Ladder shelves are a big thing, pretty and practical. Image on left from Pinterest.
Who doesn’t love cement lamp bases? Image on left from Pinterest.
Trendy pegboard shelves… Image on left from Pinterest.
 Cement planters. Image on left from Pinterest.
 Come on, haven’t you been tempted to make one of these? Image on left from Pinterest.

Test tube bud vases… Image on left from Pinterest.

If I didn’t love old things with authentic scratches from many years of use, rust from being treated with a healthy amount of disrespect, and antique grime, I would be decorating my house with this stuff.

So what if it breaks in a year or less? Just buy a new one. Or something else. Just means you can re-decorate again!

So where does this leave us DIYers?

I don’t know.

I will still make, remake and revamp old stuff. For my own home and enjoyment. And maybe there’ll be enough people out there who appreiciate the real thing with all its not quite perfection.

But sometimes I’m tempted…

Like this faux cowhide rug. I plan to buy this soon as I have some spare cash.

So its not real… it’ll look pretty cool on my couch.
PS. Notice the new banner? Like?

8 thoughts on “DIY – is it worth the bother?

  1. Yes, like your very cool new banner. I have been noticing so many items that I either DIY or paint or… etc. can be seen in retail stores (new stuff not used stuff). I also wonder how long DIY and painted furniture (which I love to do) will be wanted by …. whom? Thanks for throwing out some thoughts.


  2. I think home made and authentic remade stuff will always be loved, its just making it harder for those of us who make things to sell them at reasonable prices given how cheap the mass produced stuff is.


  3. There's so much satisfaction in making something with my own hands. I like to make cards, but people don't want to pay $3 for handmade cards when they can get a store-bought one for $4. It doesn't make any sense. On the same thought, people will go to a “boutique” and spend scads of money on, let's say, a name brand coffee table, but they wouldn't think of spending much on one that someone local made that looks just as good. Then, there are the ones who buy cheap crap that they have to purchase again and again due to the bad quality of the item. It IS a throw-away world sometimes, and I have been at that understanding for a long time. I prefer to spend more for quality and have it last. We've had a couch that we purchased at a thrift store probably over 10 years ago. It is still standing because it was well-built. It is worth it to us to have it recovered, because it will last quite awhile longer. We are throwing away too many cheap things. Soon, we won't have the landfill space to accommodate our broken crap!


  4. Oh! Love the new banner. The way the man is looking at the woman is funny. He must be saying “Do you REALLY need to include the dog in THIS photo?”


  5. I love your new banner too!! I can only view it on my phone, so I'm not sure what the details are, but like the look of it!
    Your post makes a very valid point. The problem with having Pinterest, etsy and other online displays of handmade/diy items, is that it allows countries where the cheap imitations are made, to see exactly what is popular and turn around and market to our population of bargain shoppers! They have no integrity, so copying an original design is no big deal for them. Fortunately, there are still people who know the difference and still prefer quality craftsmanship. I love your creative artwork and hope that this doesn't stop you from coming up with more designs to share with us!
    Best to you, Andi


  6. I agree. My dad always used to say 'buy the best you can afford, buying cheap is more expensive in the long run'. But things like the stuff above is made for the current fad and the people who buy it dont expect it to last long. They just replace it with the next fad…


  7. Thanks for your nice words Andi. I will continue making things cause I just cant stop. I have an addiction. Its a real problem! 🙂 I'm pretty pleased with the new banner. I enjoy making them. Glad you like it.


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