Help Me Help You. Help ME…Help YOU.

I’m channeling my inner Jerry Maquire this morning. 😀 More on that in a minute.

My week is off to a frustrating start. I got in my car yesterday to head to Home Depot to get the materials I need for my bathroom built-ins, and my car wouldn’t start. My neighbor came over to take a look at it. We thought it was the battery, so he brought his truck and jumper cables over. That didn’t work.

Long story short, it’s my ignition switch. He said he could replace it for me if I order the part. So last night, my mom took me to Auto Zone to order a new ignition switch, but it won’t be in for two days. Generally when my car is in the shop (which thankfully, isn’t often at all), I just borrow my mom’s or step-dad’s car, but this time my car just happened to die during the two days when they need both of their vehicles. Ugh.

So I feel a bit stranded. Fortunately my mom also took me to Home Depot last night to get the stuff I need to get started on my built-ins, so I can finally work on that today. But after my three-day weekend, and then my car drama yesterday, that means I haven’t gotten anything done on that bathroom in four days! And here so close to the end!

Anyway, my downtime has given me quite a bit of time for two things. First, to read through all of your comments and suggestions on yesterday’s post. Wow! Y’all had some great input! I think a great plan is finally starting to formulate in my mind. It’s almost there, but I want to read through the comments (all of them!) one more time to be really sure I’m not missing something really brilliant.

But I’ve also had lots of time to brainstorm another idea that’s been formulating in my mind the last couple of weeks. Recently, I’ve had an increasing number of people tell me that I should write a book, so that’s really gotten my wheels turning. I don’t really know that a book is the direction I want to go, though. Books, to me, feel as limiting as blog posts do. There’s only so much info, and so much detail, I can share in still pictures and written words.

But I’m imagining some sort of resource loaded with projects that anyone can use, with tons of step-by-step details, compiled in some sort of handy guidebook (or not a book) that a homeowner can use to DIY their way to a beautiful home, room by room.

I’m still trying to decide on the format of this handy guidebook (or handy guide-not-a-book). I have several ideas on that. But the format is probably less important than the actual projects that are included. I’ve been giving lots of thought to just what kind of projects would need to be included in such a resource, and of course, I’ve listed a lot of the basics — painting kitchen cabinets, making a headboard, reupholstering a chair, making lined draperies, sewing a Roman shade, sewing a duvet cover, etc.

I debated whether or not to put this “out there” while I’m still only in the brainstorming phase of this huge undertaking, but I decided that it’s worth it to get your invaluable input.

So tell me…if you were able to get your hands on some sort of resource, chock full of DIY projects with really in-depth step-by-step detail, arranged room by room, to help you DIY your way to your perfect home, what specific DIY projects would you want (and expect) to see in such a guidebook? I have a pretty long list that I’ve already made, but I just want to be sure I don’t leave out something really important.

Now while you think about that, hopefully I can actually get some work done on my bathroom today. 🙂



Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. Take a look at Ree Drummond’s cookbooks that are designed as a step-by-step guide to cooking. I think her books came out of her website The Pioneer Woman. Your ideas and procedures are super and I think a book could be a great idea.

  2. I’d say go with Youtube videos. You could do them along the lines of FoodWishes if you don’t want to appear in them. You would get a ton of followers and that would generate more interest in your blog and bring you more cash to use on things like getting a new car and having your dining room leveled. Win/Win. It just feels like the young set is so over books and videos are the way to go on this.

    1. Crown mouldings, general cabinet construction via You Tube videos. Before I start a project I, too, scour You Tube videos for how toos:) I would love to have your videos as a resource!!!!!
      But before you move on, my friend Kristi, please—-please- please finish your condo and get it on the market.

      1. I think a lot of people would be interested in ways to alter stock cabinets to fit your personal needs and how to make them look high-end. I think you are an expert in this area!

      2. I’m pretty sure she said just recently she’d be working on her condo when Matt’s father came to visit in the next few days/weeks.

    2. I agree. I would watch YouTube vids. And you would get sponsors and be paid. Also if you didn’t really want to ‘appear’ in them you could do voice overs.

    3. I agree videos are the way to go. A guidebook or books would be great too. I think that you will end up with several guidebooks due to your attention to detail and perfection. Also, you could do video series for the rest of your house and just attach the videos to your blog. Also, think about hiring a virtual assistant would help you focus on what is most important. We would all subscribe to your channel and you can just attach your advertisement code to it and run commercial like everyone else does. No big deal at all. Another idea take all the projects from the blog and do a book. We would buy anything you sell. We love you and want to support all your efforts. Lastly, I think you need your own t.v. show too!

  3. You mentioned wanting to do videos at one time…I think many of these projects would make great video demonstrations! Your pictures and written tutorials are really good but some things could be helped by having a real-time video attached to it. For example, installing crown moulding by yourself (since you are often a “one woman show”) would be a great one that I think many people could benefit from.

  4. Yes to your whole list, but here are a few more ideas.
    Installing crown moulding (with setting up the saw for those darn corner cuts!)
    Good how to on tiling kitchen backsplash
    How to paint/prep different types of wood/composite and how they’re different.

    I want to add drywall mudding, but I know you hate that. =)

    1. Yes, absolutely would love to learn how to cut miter cuts…without wasting too much wood in the process! Would love step by step, on electrical, laying tile flooring, and just building stuff….I’m an old newbie!!! ~grin~

  5. I would love info on the basics as well. What products you would use if you were redoing a piece of furniture, how to install wallpaper. how to change out a light fixture. I love your blog!

    1. Definitely, in your mini-how-tos for the basics, do a page on wood filler. Which brand, how much is too much/not enough, how long before sanding, tips to avoid sanding-dust in your eyes and lungs!

  6. I’ve always been fascinated by your expertise with tools and construction techniques. I wonder if you’d like to pursue a guide arranged by tools/techniques? I can see lots of useful step-by-step instruction with pictorial project ideas, all geared to women DIYers. You’d be able to feature modern materials and updated techniques of which we mere mortals may be ignorant. Just a thought. Whatever you decide, count me as part of your cheering section.

      1. I am redoing our master bath (with a bit of help from husband-we are 65+) but look each step up on you tube. So relating to your thoughts, I wish you would do videos. I don’t need to buy more books that will grow old before my eyes. I don’t need books that clutter up shelves that I want to declutter. I watch your blog every day and use many of your ideas/tools/techniques. This week we are putting up Hardiboard and having difficult time getting screws to them to countersink. Where did we go for info??? yup – Videos. I tend to believe the WOMEN firs, then DIYers second, professionals last

  7. I found your blog while searching for a relaxed Roman blind tutorial; yours is, as far as I know, the only one out there. So that definitely. What I love about your tutorials is that you meticulously include EVERY step. So many blogs skip important info–very frustrating. I would love videos of what you do, for an overview, but honestly, when I’m doing a project, it’s more helpful when I’m actually sitting down to work on it to have photocopies of instructions that I can refer to.

  8. Kristi, like you, your readers are remarkable. I read the four prior comments and I’m impressed with their input. Cheers, Ardith

  9. With the amazing blog posts and how-tos you already have, you’re half way done with a book! I love the idea and I find myself gravitating to certain blogs and teachers with unique styles and find myself wishing that all diy’ers, crafters and the like would do things the way my favorites do. You are one of those favorites. I am a beginner on the diy things, so the simple things are what I’d like to see. Maybe simple wiring for sconces and lighting. Backsplash and tiling projects. Painting techniques. I know a lot of this you’ve already done, but those are things I’d like to see done by someone like you. 🙂

  10. Whatever you do. I need TONS and TONS and TONS of pictures!!! Oh, and pocket doors! I’ve been dying to move the door to my walk-in closet and then convert it from a regular door to a pocket door! Not much out there, but I would love to be able to DIY a pocket door.

  11. Tips & tricks for your beautiful wood molding projects – choosing, installing, finishing for a seemless look, etc.

  12. We have had quite the struggle painting cupboards and moldings…with white paint. It always seems to ‘streak’, leaving areas that ‘show’ through no matter how many layers are added. Would love some deep tips on how to successfully paint!!!! Even ceilings seem to come out unevenly painted.
    I like the idea of a book and DVD to accompany it.

  13. If you wrote the “not a book” I’d definitely buy it, and I’m not one to usually purchase stuff like that. That being said, I guess my list would include floor installation (hardwoods, carpet, tile) and how to demo/prepare the existing surface before hand; dry wall repair/installation, furniture painting, simple construction of cabinets, etc; and tips on the best paint for different jobs (like reviews on which products cover well, withstand scrubbing best, etc).

  14. How to go to the lumber yard, or Home Depot, and build a custom trim from all the pieces there. I went this weekend to look at trim and was completely overwhelmed on how to put anything but the basic (cove moulding on a square piece) together.

    1. Thought of another one — how to add trim to the bottom of a wall cabinet to hide under cabinet lighting.

  15. As a total novice who has been inspired by your blog, a list of tools and what they are best used for and the best ones to have for a diyer. Maybe a graduated list for beginners to more confident. I’m not living in my home now but will be in about a year and I have lots of projects but won’t have the money thanks to having 2 kids in college, so I’ve told the hubs I want tools for Christmas but I don’t know what!
    As for projects – crown molding, tiling, I want to build shelves in one room, hanging cabinets, painting cabinets. Everything you know??!!

    1. You can find a list of her recommended tools under Learn DIY Basics at the top of the blog. 🙂

  16. I’m a visual learner, so videos would be the way to go. I’d love to watch a video on anything you do.

  17. A Beginner’s Guide to using a Dremmel! You are always using a Dremmel multimax and I am afraid of the basic Dremmel that I have had for years. I am especially intimidated by so many attachments and you need extra things to get attachments to work (what the heck is a collet).

    That specific thing aside, I don’t think you have anything to lose by contacting publishers now and letting them give you their ideas after they have looked at your blog and let them fight over you!

    It doesn’t have to be a book – you could write a wonderful regular column in Dwell, Good Housekeeping Southern Living, something like that. Or how about being syndicated for newspapers (online and print of course). Consider not only DIY but how to tell if a contractor is doing it the way you want!

    1. Whatever media you use I would love for your main title to be geared towarded women and their fear of using power tools to build by themselves. I agree on all the projects listed , all good ideas. Women need to have a woman show them how to use a power tool without intimidation . I have a workshop full that are mine and I love being able to use them. Something in the line of a list of basic tools for all your projects and how you can show them to set it up and complete. Or how to shop for the items you need. I know you have listed and photographed most of this in your blog so it will be a matter of making a video of a booklet to hold in the hand. I like the idea of both together. Do th booklet and show how it is done on video( whether it is YouTube or purchase) . I would say a lot of diyers do not have internet reception in the workshop . A booklet to actually look at could be helpful. Anyway you go you are the best I have seen on detail, detail, detail. Thanks for all your input. Product recommendtio might be a plus in the videos. I know you use what you believe in.

  18. I definitely like your idea, Kristi, and I think a large scale work you put together would be a great success. It could include various scopes – from choosing a color palette to start redoing a room on up to the type of thing you did in your kitchen rebuild. But I argue against a book format. I think that would be too limiting, and as you point out, it is fixed, and there are only so many pictures per project in a book format. I strongly urge you to consider starting your own YouTube channel, taking ads, and getting subscribers. You would be able to offer the kind of thoughtful, in depth approach that I for one find so helpful. You aren’t HGTV. You are a regular person putting out fabulous work. I think younger people love this format more than books. But even us older types love it too! There are things you can show on video that you can’t show in a book. I know this would be a quality channel if you decide to go forward, And of course, if you do this, there is the income issue. People are making a living doing what they love on YouTube. Why not you?

  19. Do a series of E-books, Kristi! Amazon has a self publishing program. A lot of people are generating income streams writing/selling short e-books most priced in the .99 to 2.99 to 4.99 range. I can instantly think of a dozen topics you’ve covered here that would translate well into the ebook format and I’d buy all of them.

    1. Only problem w/E-books is that most of the topics are already on Kristi’s blog for free. So would need to be something new. I’m hot for You Tube videos; however, as one reader mentioned above, I also like to have printed instructions as I’m working as I’m not always where I have internet to view You Tube. What i like most about Kristi is how to correct things that are out of whack (e.g., not level) or when you don’t have the exact materials on hand and you use something else. Kristi has done a lot of this. There are lots of How To videos/info on internet, but Kristi is unique in that she’s a female doing it alone, AND on a budget. This is the thing to exploit. This is the one thing that applies to me, a totally inept DIY-er who is inspired by Kristi and who keeps trying!

      1. I have to be connected to Internet to read the blog. An e book would be on my iPad and I could read in in my workshop where there is no internet.

  20. Omg brilliant. There are some many things you could do. the you tube videos will be a huge hit. Everyone searches those when trying to do a project. Plus you control it solely. No answering to editors. No dealine. And you can have these attached to your blog which would bring in more revenue.

    I think the book idea would be a great story once your house is complete. I would love to read the story not so much the “how to” in a book. Lots of before and after pictures. Lots of general stuff like how one woman rebuilt her house from that to this. More the personal journey. If that makes sense. A journey to inspire others.

    Here’s a list of videosI’d like to see…lol
    How to use different trim
    Refinishing floors
    Making floors out of plywood
    Best tools to buy and how to use them
    Diy essentials
    Easy one day projects
    Sewing anything. Esp drapes
    Product reviews
    Your house tour
    Living in a contruction zone
    Some just kristi stuff. I think people would like to know more about you and Matt.
    Making furniture
    Stain different types of wood.
    That technique you did with the round table
    Stripping and refinishing.

    Anything on your blog could a video.
    Lesley Ann

    1. Agree with the background of you personally and more about Matt . I love of when you bring your life into your diy story. It makes me feel as if I know you.

  21. The tools would be awesome- I just went to the hardware store 4 times between drills and a saw to put basic shelves in a closet. I did not notice that the wood screws I bought had a star head and the second set a square hole. 2 drill kits latter and the wrong saw,, I have 1 of 4 shelves in. The only celebration thus far is that I have pushed through the frustration that surely no one else would have missed the details and would have had the project completed days ago.I searched on the web for a comprehensive list of saws and how they are used and what blades you need to add to your collection. There is not really a great list- there are one off’s I would love stuff all in one place- saws, tools, brands recommended, when is it better to spend a little more for quality. etc.

    1. I agree. A tool list of ‘must-haves and don’t bother with’ is a must. Just like good cooking books where basic tools/supplies and terms are explained, an all in one place, how-to of basic tools, how to use them, and how to look after them would be brilliant. Including the smaller things. Sometimes something as simple as which sand paper is good for what can be confusing for the less experienced.
      I don’t know a lot about e-books, but a book that can be downloaded and also updated maybe once a year for a small extra charge would be very efficient in my mind.

  22. Definitely crown molding, how to lay a hardwood/laminate floor, basic light fixture installation, how to create a simple floor plan/furniture layout, painting tips, how to install curtain rods so they don’t pull out of the wall, how high to hang drapes, creating a color scheme/project board, project list … what to tackle first, second, third, etc. in a total room renovation. And then just decorating ideas: staging bookcases, whether to choose fabric first, furniture, or hardscapes, Creative storage ideas would be great too!

    Just remember, most of us won’t tackle all the projects that you do so easily, so I would concentrate on the money-saving DIY projects for us regular folks!

    Great idea! Video’s would be really useful. My first stop is YouTube when I’m trying something new.

  23. What a wonderful idea!!! Not sure on book vs video series.. it’s tough because the media mediums are changing so rapidly. But I would love to see a handy guide from you. This isn’t a particular project, but I would want to see a tool guide. What different tools a DIYer needs, what they can be used for, how to use them and which ones you recommend (basically a more in depth version of your My Top Picks For Essential DIY Power Tools post). I have been wishing for an air compressor forever and when I finally had some money/gift cards to spend on it, I seriously looked at the Porter Cable 6 gallon because you had recommended it. I ended up going with the Bosch which other reviews said was equivalent to/almost interchangeable with the Porter Cable because that’s what the store I had a gift card to sold. But your explanation and endorsement weighed heavily in my decision making process.

  24. Without a doubt, those doors that you made for your music room. Those are definitely on my bucket list to do. I know that sheetrock and drywall mudding are important things to know, but I’m more like you, I look forward to the “bling” work…You are such an inspiration.

  25. –Refinishing ugly oak railing
    –Framing plain windows
    –Custom cute towel racks/holders
    –Simple design rules and tips
    –difference between all different design styles
    –how to plan out a design mood board. Where to start
    –adding shelves or cupcoards to a laundry room
    –how to paint rooms different colors but make your house still seem cohesive
    –how to know what the paint swatch will REALLY look like in your house in different lights without buying 23 different samples

  26. I hope you know about/used the RetailMeNot app…it will save you a ton of money at those car parts stores (among a gagillion other places like Michaels, Hobby Lobby, clothing stores…etc.). It’s a free app, download it to your phone, search for the name of the store and viola! instant savings…at your fingertips!

    I love your blog, but I think sometimes a video showing how the words actually look in action would be immensely helpful. And I also feel like some generic “how to use power tools” tutorials would be tremendous!

  27. Kristi, if you build it, they will come… (sorry)

    Most all the topics are already covered, so you will never run out of projects to write about. I really prefer vids, but step by step is great, also! YouTube is my go-to source on lots of things (plus, don’t you get paid by the view or something?)

  28. You have so many diverse subjects and projects….if it were me…which it is not because I am not good at the assortment of diverse projects as you…and I am old..I would do a series of diy booklets or guidebooks..not a book…because the same people who want to do the lined drapes may not be the least bit interested in the cabinet projects. If you tried to put all of the kinds of projects for which you have done and can project into a guidebook….it would be a book and a very big book. Besides you are learning many new things as you go so a series of books would allow you to update in new guidebooks. And you also would become more of a household name within the diy community. It also begins on a smaller scale and gives you an idea as you progress as to how effective these guidebooks will be. I for one think you are becoming an expert in so many fields of diy that this can be a profitable future for you. Guidebooks sometimes lead into so many other fields. you have so much to offer to others in this and do not limit yourself with just one guidebook….just my opinion. As had been said here many times….you rock!!!

    1. Sandy, this is exactly what I was thinking! I think a series of books would be the way to go. I think that would be easier to organize and carry out for you, too.

  29. How to install a dimmer switch
    How to change out an outdated chandelier with a new one OR how to change out any light fixture
    How to change/replace a faucet
    How to replace ugly doorknobs
    How to replace/install a new doorbell
    Easy way to hang drapery rods
    How to build shelves (or more specifically, I’d really LOVE to build a corner curio cabinet or corner shelves WITH lighting (and probably glass shelves?) and, I’d love for it to be big enough to hold several items instead of 3 items per shelf like the ones I see everywhere)

  30. Excellent idea Kristi, so pleased you’re thinking about this direction.
    Here’s my list –
    How to install a sink – kitchen, bathroom and connect the plumbing
    How to install taps, shower heads
    How to replace and install toilets
    How to install floating shelves
    How to install new light fixtures
    How to make concrete countertops
    How to make colorful outdoor rugs – what materials/paints are best to use
    How to make your own painted drapes – what fabrics/paints are best to use
    How to do tufted upholstery and basic upholstery of chairs
    Plus as many other comments say – list of basic tools to start DIY projects
    I really love your blog and all you do and can’t wait to see what you’ve been up to each day. You’re such an inspiration to us all.

  31. I think you do amazing work. I love that you take on anything. Figure it out. Don’t give up. You are an inspiration to me. but I would only buy your book because I like you and would want to support your book writing effort not for the DIY how-tos. I get all my information for that on-line when I need it.

  32. Hi Kristi, in that book I would love to learn and understand how to decorate like a designer. From furniture setting, color palette, to matching different style and still have a great decor etc. Learning how to do it from A to Z is a plus when you know what to look for. What you are sharing here is awesome so keep up the good work. If a book is needed, it will come!

  33. I would watch your Youtube videos. I bought Anna White’s very popular book and although I like it- I forget I even have it and what projects are in it because I’m so used to searching for any type of help or tutorial online. Good luck to you!

  34. YES! Please write a book! I would love to have all your wonderful projects and instructions in one place. I will be the first on the pre-order list!

  35. First there are so many topics and much info on all of them!

    So I kind of think you need to sit down and focus on what to you are the most important decorating rules to follow and how you used them in your home!

    Many people here have many how-tos to do! But there are many how to books in simple home upgrade! Such as how to replace tile, etc.

    I have particular interest low budget, unique home decor and how to deal with obstacles to decor!

    if I wrote a book I would first teach people to find their design style!
    How to find their decor colors! About painting!
    Adding architectural detail!
    Odd rooms rules to decor and furniture placement!
    Making and faking decor items With display rules!
    it’s the details!

    I am a writer too although not a blogger! But the key if using the suggestions given here…lump them by topic into categorie….you certainly can’t cover it all…but most of it!

    Good luck!!

  36. I would like detailed information on painting furniture, cabinets, whatever. Products, tips & techniques, what to do & what not to do.

  37. I think you should have a section of “inspirational photos”, so that people can look at the images and go–“THAT! I want to do something like THAT!”, with page numbers on the picture marking where people can find the tips on that particular project. Something that would be a combination “coffee table book” with your lovely finished photos and a DIY book, with instructions as to how those unique things can be made at home. Maybe even have “levels” of difficulty–Your bathroom, for example: Tiling (beginner), Wainscoting (intermediate), Custom Vanity (veteran DIYer). One room, three levels of difficulty, all things that can be achieved and continue to inspire the beginner.

    Even though you feel limited, we all obviously enjoy your blog! Keep up the great, motivating, inspiring work!

    1. Yes I would like to see her do more of a coffee table book too! Pictures and ideas to decor she has done!

  38. I would love a book that gives the ABC’s of DIY for Women! I have the tools but have no clue how to use them. I too am a visual person and need to see someone do things, so a great hardback book with a dvd for each tool and project would be great. As someone said, you have so much of it done already, it would just be a matter of writing and filming. If you don’t want to be in the video’s (which I personally think is a mistake) you could do a voice over. However this whole thing about being “fat” should not be an issue for you. Having someone who is on the heavy side would show the world that being heavy will not stop you from doing all these great things. I think you would be an inspiration.

  39. I have to agree with all the suggestions for your list. I tend to research online and the last step in my research, say if about a tool, is the occasional video. For example, learning to use my Kreg Jig. I don’t often use video to learn. I am a step by step reader, review/draw plans, make purchase/cut lists. I love the idea of a detailed reference book that I can pull out at any time!

  40. Hi Kristy!
    If your going to do a book, please please include how to dress up stock cabinets. It’s DIY a woman could do herself with the proper information and a few good ideas. Another could be how to build columns and fancy them up with trim. Built in stock cabinets is another favourite of mine. It’s really a personal thing as everyone has their Favourite DIY projects suited to their personal abilities and skill level. Love your blog!

  41. All of the suggested items to be included in a “book” are great but as an older person (age 59), even I see that books are going by the way side with both young and older people. With that said, YouTube videos would be the most used media to go with! You are such a wonderful person with so much talent! Keep up the great work as I have to have my “daily fix” of your blog!!!!!!!! LOL

  42. Youtube channel, definitely. Something in print to accompany it would be nice too. Can your blog fill that niche?

    As for topics, all of those listed above. And one that I didn’t see listed that I personally could really use:
    how to set up a workspace. For example, I bought a saw and I don’t know what I need in order to use it safely. I’m embarrassed to say this is a true story. So something REALLY fundamental that tells about a tool, what you might use it for, and what kind of setup is needed for using it.

    Love the idea!

  43. There are endless home improvement topics that you could write, blog or video. You have many of those here on your blog (one reason I love blogs so much) but a book, e-book or just something that could be printed and put in the home owners notebook would be awesome.

    I think you do an amazing job with limited resources (the main reason I am one of your biggest fans) and I’d like to see you concentrate on sharing that info. You get amazing results for a lot less money than most people/contractors do. A huge plus for those of us on a budget.

  44. I can manage power tools but my problem is finding power tools that fit my “physical capabilities”. I’m a woman, I have small hands, I’m short and on top of that I’m disabled so heavy tools are not easy for me to use. That doesn’t decrease my need or desire to take on traditional men’s work. But I think because mostly men use tools, men develop tools and never with a woman in mind. It’s like me and my farmer husband doing a garden…I go get a spade and he goes and fires up a tractor with a plow!! I’d love it if you could find someone…like Sears/Craftsman etc. to work with you to develop a tool series made just for women. This is my number one wish!! A woman’s guide to using those tools and their accessories would be especially helpful!

    For the NOT A BOOK I’d prefer YouTube videos with you in them! Any subjects you’d decide to cover would be of interest to female DIYers IMHO.

    1. I couldn’t agree more about having a line of tools that fit women’s hands! I’m also very small and there are some tools that I just cannot use because of the size of my hands. It would be great to have power tools designed especially for smaller people that don’t cost an arm and a leg. Excellent idea!

  45. I would love to see step by step videos of how you do things. Either on DVD’s for sale or on something like YouTube. I learn better by seeing it done than by reading it in a book or a blog. Written words don’t always translate well to my brain, lol. I would like to have a book to refer to, as well, but I just learn better by seeing someone doing the project versus reading about it.

    As for what I’d like to see: Anything you do! All the projects you have done in your condo and your home from crown moulding, making your cabinets custom, moulding around your doors, building furniture, sewing drapes, drywall, planked ceiling, tiling, wood counter top, concrete counter top, mosaic lamps, your bed and headboard, artwork, etc.. etc.. etc… One other biggie, is tools and how to use them. As I said, anything and everything. There are a lot of people out there that want to do these things but need good, simple instructions on how to do them.

    I, for one, would love to see this and would definitely use them all the time!

  46. Maybe a biweekly podcast. Film yourself doing some cool project and edit out what you don’t want the audience to see, leaving the good stuff (a la HGTV). The editing would take some time, but if you do it biweekly or even monthly you may be able to squeeze it in. Or you could get some tech savvy kid to do it for a nominal fee. Either way I’d read or watch whatever you produced!

  47. How to make your own countertops; wood boards, formica/ laminate install, concrete, glass.
    Things to upcycle and re-purpose to make your home lovely and work well
    Install door knobs and keyed & Keyless entry handle systems
    Installing floor outlets for center furniture placements
    Sliding barn style door installs
    Adding feet to cabinets for furniture look

  48. Kristi, its fantastic idea writing file of DIY project! I would like (and expect) to see there a library and closet building intructions. Similar to those you built in the Condo. Thank you so much!

  49. Videos are nice sometimes, but I would rather have lots of pictures with written detailed instructions. Sometimes I notice things in your pictures that I wonder about, but then you always seem to address my questions. You are very thorough. I love Ana White’s site with detailed instructions. I also like how other people post pictures of things that they built using her plans. It would be fun to see what other people do with your instructions. I have reread many of your posts about painting, building things, and tool recommendations as I have worked on my projects. Good luck!

  50. A follow up to pantry idea- think through where the furniture will go in the sun room. I see from laundry room to dining door as sort of a long “hall”. Think about laundry, pantry, freezer spaces, maybe move or combine some functions. Also how do you best get to back yard. And is garage always going to be messy workshop and you do not want to go thru it to freezer or outside?

  51. I actually look forward to reading your blog every day. My suggestion would be a series of booklets – Design and Do …more of the basic stuff and have it directed toward women. You make me believe that I can do some of your projects as well. You are my inspiration.

  52. Kristi – my suggestion would be to specialize. Trying to do too much is too big of a task. Let the projects be either woodworking or sewing or trim molding, etc.
    Love your web site.

  53. Hi Kristi! What a great idea, and thanks for asking for our input as always.

    I think the most important thing is to find a niche that you can fit in. For you, its that you are a) a woman doing DIY b) on a budget and c) without constant help from a “handy hubby” or other man as so many other bloggers and women (including me) use.

    I even came up with a name you might want to use:

    “Girl Power (Tools & DIY)”

    typed all in one line so it says both ‘Girl Power’ and ‘Power (Tools’

    I also think you should do Youtube videos first, then a book, so that the videos, blog, and book serve different purposes:

    1) Youtube videos: showing things step-by-step, and also providing a more warm woman-to-woman encouragement and comfort. I know you’re uncomfortable with your weight but it would also be so cool to show people that a woman who doesn’t look like she runs marathons can do all these things! Maybe that helps – sometimes I can get myself to overcome my own insecurities by framing it as a “do it for the world!” mandate 🙂

    2) Blog: having written instructions and photos to refer to. People can always print out or load up blog entries to take with them to a place without good Internet. You could even put a small “Download this” button at the end of blog entries, maybe after they’re a month old and you’ve already gotten a lot of traffic to them.

    3) Book: Use “Lesley Ann”‘s great suggestion in the comments above, and make a book more of a narrative. The story of your life, how you got into DIY, struggles in learning the skills you needed, your life with Matt and learning how to make a home wheelchair-friendly, how you developed your own sense of style and color and choices.


    Also, at some point could you tell us about how you generate income with this blog? I always wonder because you say this is your sole source of income, but I never see any ads!

  54. Love your blog. You need a DYI show. A book would be interesting but a TV show, yes. Can’t wait to see your finished bathroom. Love all your projects

  55. I don’t have anything specific in mind right now, but I TOTALLY WANT the book or non-book, in any format. I also like the idea of Youtube videos.

  56. There are a lot of suggestions for youtube videos. I think Krisiti’s goal here, is not only to share her expertise, but also to make money to support her family. I know next to nothing about youtube videos so I have no idea how you make money from them. As far as that goes, I have no idea how anyone makes money on the internet. I guess I don’t know what the answer is for this day and age. I know what I need to know, and that is how to put together tools. I know how to use a drill, once the bit is in it, but for the life of me, I cannot get the bit in it. I am the same way with the dremel max, power screwdriver, hooking up the paint sprayer to the air compressor etc. I have all the stuff, but unless my husband or one of my sons or someone is here to set the tools up, I am at a loss. That’s why I need a DVD on how to use the tools. Blessings

  57. I didn’t read thru all the other comments, so this may have and probably was suggested..but my thoughts were maybe a series of videos..or DVDs…instructional..I have some wonderful art DVDs that I love..I, for one would love step by step visual instructions on how to,tile a backsplash…also. How to,tile your countertop…another thing I’d love to see is how you removed that styrofoam ceiling..we have those in our little lake cabin and I’m determined thatbtheynhave to go!!!! So many could really make an ongoing series of these instructional videos…you have a gift for teaching and explaining…along with your creative gifts!!!

  58. I found you because I was searching on DIY re upholstery and drapes. I think you could do a book on these topics alone, but I agree with others that Youtube may be better. You can convey a lot more info via video that text and a lot of people are visual learners. You could do videos on different drape types. I followed your pinch pleated lined drapes with the different panels, but I wanted to do back tabs – so I followed yours and then made the rest up towards the end. Also if you have any tips for accurately cutting huge pieces of fabric, that may be a good video as well!!

  59. Love the above ideas. I would love something to really show how to use moulding and trim. I’m going to make a built in bookshelf and I cannot find any pictures that show how you match up the moulding on the side of the bookcase that runs along the wall to the crown at the top. I don’t know what words to search for on Google so I’m stuck at this point. A detailed video would be awesome.

  60. Really, I think you would have the market for 2 books, but if you were feeling crazy, 1 big book. But you need both easy and complicated projects. 🙂

  61. I love how your use of moldings turn ordinary things into custom looking things. So, a lesson on how and where you use each type of molding. Also, sometimes when you show which molding you are using, I still don’t get exactly how it is applied. So, pictures of how and where you nail it is needed.

  62. It would help me for everything to be in one place (guidebook). I was trying to find your instructions for round tabletop process (cannot remember how to spell it) and I had to guess where you put it. Took a while to zero in on your post. A guidebook (notebook style, say) that we can add to as time goes on would be good.

  63. I have been following you for a while but this is the first time I’ve left a comment. I would love to see some kind of instructional videos or DIY series with step-by-step pictures, but please, PLEASE, don’t waste your talent on headboards and slipcovers! I follow about 20 blogs that give me that stuff on a daily basis and I only peruse the pictures for styling ideas because there’s only so many headboard tutorials you can get interested in. Your blog, however, I pour over. I read every single word and study every single picture. Why? Because your value lies in being able to deal with the “guts” of a renovation, and innovating high end looks from off-the-shelf products, not just the putting in the pretty stuff. I know that you feel the “guts” is the boring part, and I do enjoy seeing your spaces come together in the end with pretty finishes, but that is not why I follow you! I want details on framing, drywalling, electrical, plumbing, building, etc. I see you as a renovation blog, not just a decorating blog and I love you for it!! Please don’t water down your value by ignoring what you do best. I feel inspired by you because you make it all seem do-able. Keep THAT going!

  64. Kristi, you have the ability to see a project that you like and figure out how to make it cheaper, better, etc. Come up with a listing of alternative how-tos like your barn doors, making stock cabinets fit your needs, and self-made wood countertops. You have used inspiration photos and come up with methods to create the looks on your own. That is a strength of yours and you could create some type of media presentation on “how to get this look for less”.

  65. I’d love to see an “Essential Tool box list” and and and “Essential Power Tools list” – along with what and why you need them in your arsenal. What are THE MOST important items that every day fixer uppers need to get the most out of their time and work on their homes.

    And then list the Extra – fancy items/tools that you can rent or perhaps buy, and why / when is it a good idea to buy a tool over renting it etc.
    For me, going into Home Depot tool department is a blur of machines that I have no idea of what is what – yes I know what a drill /driver is, as well as a hand sander (I have a “Mouse”), but what are the more important tools to have on hand – if that makes sense 🙂

  66. A book is great idea!!!
    To have it all in one place and not have to look back through the blog for your projects would be great. From the headboards, lamps, cabinets, kitchens, ottomans, curtains, mirrors, bookshelves, back splashes, moldings…. You can add your essentials list too.
    It would be a great book!!! You would probably have to write more than one!
    You go girl, your the best!

  67. Let me start by saying I DID NOT read through these, so far, 91 comments so if this list is mentioned 82 times then forgive me. I would love to know how you do basic electrical work…add an out let. Add a light, run a light off an existing fixture. I just looked up your DIY project on how to add glass to a solid interior door. If you were to go back over everything you’ve DIY’d and put it into a “not-book-book form”…you’d sell 1000’s of copies. It is something everyone of us would want to go back and refer to over and over as our DIY needs change. I’d buy it as a e-book. I’d like to be able to take what ever form it comes in, out to the garage, in the attic, where ever and look at it as I try and accomplish the steps.

  68. I didn’t read all of the previous comments, but here’s my two cents: I have not bought a home improvement book since the advent of YouTube, blogs, Houzz, and online tutorials. Fifteen years ago, when I needed to tile my tub surround, I borrowed every book from the library, bought 5 magazines with articles about it, and bought 2 books at Barnes and Noble. Six years ago, when I designed and built my own Koi pond, I bought 1 magazine, borrowed 2 books from the library, and got all the rest of my inspiration and info from the internet. Last year, we built a brand new two car garage. I did not buy a single book/magazine for that project. I did not step foot in the library. ALL of my inspiration, ideas, and how-to information came from the internet, for free. My first course of action when I need to learn a new DIY skill is to type it into Google and search for a really good tutorial. Sometimes I find it on YouTube, sometimes on a blog (that’s how I found your blog!), but I almost always find one, no matter how obscure the topic. The only problem with this method is that it can take some time to weed out the bad information and find the good. I think there is a need for concise, informative, and WELL-PRODUCED video tutorials on a wide range of topics, even the simplest of skills (so simple that it seems silly to make a tutorial, but there will be someone out there looking for it!). I don’t know how people make money with YouTube, but I understand there are ways. Like I said, just my two cents.

  69. Great question, to which I’m not sure I have a focused answer. What makes you unique to me is that you are giving me a realistic (in terms of budget, time, effort) bird’s eye view of what it’s like to transform a space. By yourself, step-by-step, warts and all. I find it fascinating. I live in a metropolitan area, rent rather than own, and am precluded from doing anything beyond painting to my apartment — but I’m learning from you how to begin with a sow’s ear and end up with a silk purse (even though I can’t actually do most of what you do). Does that make any sense? I suppose I’m saying that it’s the big picture that I find appealing, and the nuts and bolts of how you achieve the big picture are what comes along with the ride. I may not be allowed to put in a concrete counter, but I sure do feel confident that I could do so. 🙂 And that’s a rare thing.

  70. The thing that I sometimes miss from your blog and which might be provided by a video are the tiny details – like how does a Kregjig, the Dremel Multimax, the liquid nails or your brad thingy really work? (These are the questions that I face when I try a project myself and stand there with the tool in my hand wondering how to really work it :))
    Other than that I feel that your tutorials are already rich in detail and could be transferred into a book, if you’d want to do that and want to earn money from it. Even though I agree with a comment above that I’d refer to something printed more easily while in the middle of working on a project, I would love to have videos by you to see those details/steps I mentioned. Moreover, I agree that it would be nice to get to know you even better by this medium – if you feel confortable with that. If not, don’t let people pressure you into making videos!
    Whatever you do, I would be hapy to follow it, though – probably with the exception of a TV show, as I cannot imagine that that would do you, your personality and your way to address projects and the problems arising from them, justice!

  71. I’m a book lover. That said, this is one area that I think I would prefer the information be available to me through the internet from a TRUSTED source, (yes, I would pay for that access). I want to see lots of pictures that I can enlarge to get detail (or great photos with detailed shots of every step). I want to see projects step-by-step with text explanations. Videos are also great as long as long as they are quick, to the point, and show the subject in detail. What would be ideal for me is to see a site that combined tutorials and projects in progress using pictures/text and videos, presented in a way that was easy to find by topic/problem/solution. Most of all, I would love to see videos of power tools, how to use them, safety tips and then see them in action – it is such a confidence booster when your’re facing the beast for the first time!

  72. I think you are at your best when you are explaining “basics” that no one else takes time to explain. For example, two major resources for me are your post on when to use MDF and when not to, and how to make lined curtains. I have probably looked at those posts more than any other website. If you were to write a book on stuff like that, I’d buy it in a heatbeat.

  73. Sorry if this is a repeat of others’ posts, but I couldn’t read them all. I would love to see a youtube channel, with basic tiling, say for a backsplash, crown molding, painting with different paint types and on different surfaces, 10 ways to improve stock cabinets, changing out a light fixture, replacing a toilet, decorating a mantel, decorating for holidays, sanding/staining old wood pieces, installing bamboo shades, making bookshelves look built in (favorite condo project), refinishing wood floor, replacing vinyl flooring, replacing a contractor grade door with a new one, replacing hardware on cabinets/doors, how to place furniture in a room, recovering dining room chair seats, and upholstery of other furniture. So, basically, anything that you go around the house and see the small to medium jobs that would improve the appearance of a home without fully gutting it. (Could do that too). And maybe some instruction in power tools. I would like to see you do videos, Kristi! That would be most informative.

  74. Hi Kristi,
    I was in Home Depot the other day looking at products that I wanted to use on a piece of furniture I’m refinishing. When you did your kitchen you talked about the paints and finished you tried and the ones you have used in the past and what you liked and what you didn’t like. I wanted to try one of the Rustolium products you recommended. I was in the store on my phone searching through your posts looking for that info. Could you put together a list of your favorite products to use and why and what you have used them on. I think that would be super helpful, I’m always looking to use the best working products for this project or that project. Maybe you could add that into your book or maybe just a link on your website. “My go to products”
    Thanks Katie

  75. Right now I’m working on laying laminate floors so I would love detailed instructions on that specifically. However, if you’re interested in selling guides like these I have lots of ideas! (it’s my business…) Personally I prefer well written guides with lots of good pictures over video, I always seem to need to review something to give myself confidence and listening to a long video isn’t always feasible when I’m painting or sawdust is flying.

  76. I like videos, as it is easy to follow instructions and to see exactly how something works or looks or fits together. But I also like pages (whether booklets or books), as it is much easier to study the diagrams, cutting list, dimensions, etc., than in a video that you have to go back repeatedly. Besides the other great suggestions, I would like to see

    • How to take a project plan or photo and make it your own, changing its size, trim, etc.—translating an idea to what your space requires or what you like
    • How to upholster or “sew” without a sewing machine—using glue, staples, Velcro, Stitch Witchery, etc.
    • Accessory projects like lamps, medicine cabinet, mirror, etc.
    • How to convert stock cabinets into pieces of furniture
    • How to make a home friendly to the disabled or to those with wheelchairs
    • How to “shop” for a professional when you need one—questions, references, credentials, etc.