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Furniture Hacks for Every Room in your Home

Furniture Hacks for Every Room in your Home

When I was growing up, my mother scoured secondhand stores for imperfect treasures that she could turn into unique pieces of furniture. To a stunning inlaid wood tabletop, she added wrought iron legs. She turned an antique display case into a coffee table for holding family photos. With a good eye for design and functionality, my mother created furniture you could not find in any store.

In today’s world, we call what my mother did furniture hacking: transforming existing furniture into customized and repurposed pieces. With furniture hacks you can exercise your creativity, get the exact piece of furniture you want, and save money. Let’s look at some great furniture hacks for your home.

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Murphy Bed Hack with Sliding Doors and Storage

Bedroom hack - Murphy bed with sliding doors

    A Murphy bed, or wall bed, is an ideal solution for a multi-purpose extra bedroom. When you have company you pull the bed down from its vertical storage position against the wall. The rest of the time the bed is hidden behind cabinet facades or sliding doors. Murphy beds can be expensive, however, especially if you want a custom fit with extra storage space. One clever furniture hacker, named newfangled (you can find him on Instructables) installed two wardrobes at either end of the wall and assembled the wall bed (from a kit) between the wardrobes. Sliding doors and lighting rounded out the project. Results: a custom bed, storage space, and lighting unit at half the cost of retail.

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    Dining Table Hack

    Dining Room Hack

      If you’ve ever looked at your dining room table and thought, “I am so tired of this table, but I can’t get replace it because it’s in perfectly good shape,” this hack is for you. One do-it-yourselfer, Gina, who runs the Acute Designs blog, turned a traditional looking table into a contemporary design in just a few steps. She removed the legs, trimmed the wood around the top, and replaced the wooden legs with metal hairpin legs. She then sanded and stained the tabletop. But beware: you will probably want to replace the chairs, because the old ones won’t go with your sleek “new” table.

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      Bathroom Sink Hack

      Bathroom sink hack

        You can create the bathroom you want with a bathroom sink hack just like Jenna from the Suburban Urbanist did. The first step is to find the sink and faucet you want. There are lots of great designs out there, so don’t settle for what you find in local stores if it’s not exactly what you want. The next step is to make a vanity to fit the sink and faucet. This project starts with an inexpensive accent table. A few coats of paint and polyurethane and well-placed holes turn the accent table into a vanity. Then follow the installation instructions that come with the sink, and you’re done.

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        Hack your Television

        Living Room Hack - Hack your Television

          Early television sets were more than screens; they were important pieces of furniture, the focal point of the living room. You can still find an occasional wooden television console in second-hand stores—or better yet discarded on the street. The television won’t do you much good, but that solid console—with its fine decorative touches—just screams for a hack. All you need to do is remove the television (with its huge tube), add a couple of vertical dividers or horizontal shelves, and give it a good paint job. Now you have a terrific hutch for your living room—unique, repurposed, and beautiful just like the one we saw on Home Hinges.

          Simple Hacks

          The good thing about hacking is you can adapt your project to the skills and time you have. There’s no right or wrong hack. And, as one hacker put it, “It makes the furniture originally yours!”

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          Last Updated on January 21, 2020

          The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

          The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

          Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

          your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

            Why You Need a Vision

            Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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            How to Create Your Life Vision

            Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

            What Do You Want?

            The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

            It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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            Some tips to guide you:

            • Remember to ask why you want certain things
            • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
            • Give yourself permission to dream.
            • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
            • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

            Some questions to start your exploration:

            • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
            • What would you like to have more of in your life?
            • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
            • What are your secret passions and dreams?
            • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
            • What do you want your relationships to be like?
            • What qualities would you like to develop?
            • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
            • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
            • What would you most like to accomplish?
            • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

            It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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            What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

            Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

            A few prompts to get you started:

            • What will you have accomplished already?
            • How will you feel about yourself?
            • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
            • What does your ideal day look like?
            • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
            • What would you be doing?
            • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
            • How are you dressed?
            • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
            • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
            • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

            It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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            Plan Backwards

            It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

            • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
            • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
            • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
            • What important actions would you have had to take?
            • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
            • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
            • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
            • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
            • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

            Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

            It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

            Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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