Most popular DIY projects
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Most Popular DIY Projects of 2016

The end of year is always so bittersweet – reflecting  on all of the amazing memories, but grateful to move on from some others.

One of the best things this year was our blog. We have always loved sharing our home projects with others, but documenting them as been amazing!

We even started including some of our more crafty endeavors.

Creativity definitely inspires more creativity.

My love for organization inspired a few of Ash’s garage projects this year. While, Ash’s constant repurposing “junk” has rubbed off on me.

I love that we continue to inspire each other.

Most Popular DIYs with Full Tutorials

Here are our best DIY projects from 2016. In true New Years Eve style, here’s the countdown:

#10 – CD Tower To Pantry Shelf

This CD tower was ready to be kicked to the curb, until Ash had the brilliant idea of using it for built-in pantry storage.

He cut a hole into a pantry wall, used a cool little gadget to search inside, knocked more of the wall, and inserted the tower.

DIY Recessed Shelves in Pantry

#9 – Ice Cream Sundae Gift Box 

Wrapped in a pretty little box and adorned with ribbon, this Sundae Gift Box was a hit!

​Much cheaper (and cuter) than ordering from the store, it has everything you need to make a sundae.

​It’s a perfect gift for those who need a little happiness 🙂

How to Make an Ice Cream Sundae Gift Box - Best DIY Projects

#8 – Built-In Bookshelf With A Window Seat

Hands down, this is my absolute favorite of our DIY projects. In just a few weeks, Ash turned a boring old wall into a complete dream. ​

​Not only does this built-in beautifully store all of the books I have collected, but it’s bright, airy, and gorgeous.

Not to mention the window seat, which is aesthetically pleasing and the cabinets below are awesome storage.

DIY Built-In Bookshelves with a Window Seat

#7 – Chalk Paint Makeover

The before and after on this one is shocking! My dad’s jaw dropped, and he is usually only impressed with Ash’s projects.

​This was my first experience with chalk paint, and I am sold. 2017 will definitely be bringing more chalk paint makeovers. This was one of our DIY projects with the biggest transformation.

4 Steps to Magical Results with Chalk Paint - Easy Tutorial

#6 Picnic Table

Ash blew me away with this one too – as he built this in ONE day!

The tabletop and bench seats are made of composite decking – a durable, safe material that’s easy to clean, and is easy on the eyes.

We’ve had it in the yard for about five months now, and it looks just as great as it did on the first day. If you are looking for DIY projects that are cost-effective and simply, build a DIY picnic table.

#5 – Kitchen Cabinet Makeover

Our kitchen got a major makeover this year, as we gel stained the cabinets, painted the walls, and installed tile backsplash.

Yet as far as cost goes, you can’t beat it.

​I was hesitant to take on such a big project, but I started small (with the bathroom vanity) – and went on to completely change our kitchen’s look.

DIY Kitchen Cabinet Makeover

#4 – Building A Shed

When Ash told me that he was going to build a shed, I laughed – I thought he was joking! He only had a few DIY projects under his belt, and building a shed is like building a house!

However, his motivation, attention to detail, dedication, and love of learning resulted in this beautifully built shed.

​I am still in awe.

DIy Backyard Projects - Building a Shed from the Ground Up

#3 – Wedding Wine Basket For First Year Milestones 

This sweet wedding milestone wine basket has been on the trend this year!

It’s a creative, personal gift, and I’ve done all the work for you – as I’ve included all of the printables I used for free!

​It’s so much fun to make that I’ve been waiting for more friends and family to marry, so I can make more 🙂

Perfect wedding or shower gift! Making a milestone wedding wine basket!

#2 – Green Rain Barrel

After watching me lug gallons of water down the backyard to water my plants, Ash created an eco-friendly rain barrel.

​Using a trash can, he made a system that collects rain water to reuse. Thus, eliminating my trips back and forth and saving good water!

DIY Rain Barrel from a Trash Can

# 1 – Folding Workbench

Tired of working on the floor, Ash finally had a chance to build a workbench of his own – which was a dream of his.

Always thinking of how to save space, he came up with a floating design that doesn’t compromise any structural integrity.

​Being featured on sites such as Life Hacker and Make, it brought tons of visitors this year, thus earning our number one spot.

Well, that’s all, my friends.

Wishing you a very happy new year!


  1. These look like great projects. I love your up-cycled side table and white built in bookcases with the window seat! You both do great work!
    God bless,

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Aww thanks so much, Patty!! 🙂 Happy New Year 🙂

  2. So many great projects around here. The shed is gorgeous, and I am still in love with that bookshelf wall and reading nook. Can’t wait to see what you come up with in 2017!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Hi Leslie! Happy New Year! Thanks so much – we are too :))

  3. Lots of great projects in just 1 year -wow

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks, Gail!! It’s fun to look back on 🙂

  4. Selena, The Rambler says:

    I remember seeing the Sundae Gift Box! (Loved that!). AND LOVE LOVE LOVE your Built In Bookshelf! Off to now go check them out. #happynowlinkup

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Aww thank you for your sweet compliments, Selena!!! 🙂 Happy New Year!!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Hi Sarah, Thanks!! It’s fun to see what we’ve accomplished in a year! I love the wine basket too – so fun!! :))

  5. Wow such great ideas! I just found you on a link up party. I will have to go check all of these out now. I’m wanting to build a window seat and built ins, so I will have to read about yours. Not to forget the cd tower turned storage! great idea!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thank you so much, Renee!! We are in LOVE with the bookshelves! Def Ash’s most underrated project :))

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks, Alison:))

  6. Great ideas here. Love the bookshelves with built in window seat.

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks, Camille!! 🙂

  7. Looks like you got a lot of projects done in 2016! Happy 2017!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks, Lauren! :)) Same to you!

  8. sarah carter says:

    We are in the process of doing our cabinets in the same color gel stain. It’s taking longer than I thought, but I’m loving how it’s turning out. And yours looks gorgeous. It also makes our countertops look so much better. Great job!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Hi Sarah, Good choice!! It does take a little while, but you will be so happy with the results!! The new cabinet pulls made a big difference too 🙂

  9. Jane E. Jones says:

    I noticed from kitchen photo how the gel stained cabinets enhanced counters, pretty great results.
    Looks like you have very talented, handy hubs, so many awesome projects, love hat shed. He has great eye for detail.
    Happy New Year and good health

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Hi Jane, Thanks so much for your compliments. Yes, Ash is so talented!! I agree, the shed is awesome! 🙂 Happy New Year to you! :))

  10. Mother of 3 says:

    I’ve read most of these posts already and agree that they are wonderful but I was blown away by the idea of using composite decking to make a picnic table… ours is slowly rotting away and we’ll need to update it soon. Now I know what I want to make it out of!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks for reading so many of our posts, Mother of 3!! We LOVE the table – it still looks awesome. Yes the composite decking is beautiful and no painting required 🙂

  11. What a wonderful post, I pinned three of your posts, the kitchen resurface, the shed (swoon) and the workbench.
    Love you work. Thank you for sharing your best posts on the Home Matters Party. Leanna

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Wow – thanks so much Leanna!! 🙂 Happy New Year!

  12. These are great! I love the shelves around the window…I always have my books in different places. I need something like this! Demi ( visiting from NIfty Thrifty Sunday link party!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks, Demi!! You would love it! 🙂

  13. Helen at the Pleasures of the NW says:

    The rain barrel is awesome! And the CD holder in the pantry, and…
    Some great ideas here! Thanks for sharing on the Pleasures of the NW’s DIY party!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks, Helen! Thanks for hosting 🙂

  14. Tracy Lynn says:

    I just saw this on Share the Wealth Sunday and I am so excited! I now have 3 projects for my 2017 DIY list. I cannot wait to do the rain water system in my pasture. This will save so much time in the summer. Thanks!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks, Tracy!! 🙂 It saved a lot of time! and water 🙂

  15. I love your projects! I think we’d get along great 🙂 We’re always DIY’ing random things around here. That Sundae gift box, though! Fantastic idea!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks so much, Liz! Haha I think we wold too! :))

  16. Thanks so much for sharing this great post at the This Is How We Roll Link party. It was the most viewed post. Your post will be shared on 3 Pinterest board and across our other social media channels. You will also be featured at this week’s party! Thanks for linking up and see you on Thursday.

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Wow, Cynthia! Thanks so much!! Very excited :))

  17. Sharon@bluewillowhouse says:

    You two had some fantastic DIY projects this past year. Thank you for sharing them at Vintage Charm.

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks so much, Sharon! Looking forward to more! 🙂

  18. Brenda Young says:

    Great DIY’s Eileen, can’t wait to see what you two have up your sleeves for this year! Thanks for sharing at Fridays Furniture Fix!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks, Brenda!! 🙂

  19. I was already familiar with several of your lovely projects (the amazing built-in bookshelf wall blew me away), but I’ve just found new projects that I’m a big fan of (the CD shelf is brilliant!). Congrats on being featured at the #ThisIsHowWeRoll Link Party!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Aww thanks so much, Susan!! We are super excited about the feature 🙂 Have a great week!

  20. Wow, your best DIY projects for 2016 are all amazing. That shed is gorgeous. It reminds me of a fairy tale cottage and your kitchen makeover took my breath away. Such a big difference. Wishing you and Ash a super creative and love filled 2017. I can’t wait to see what you guys will be doing.

  21. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

    Wow, Michelle thank you so much!! What sweet compliments:)) Wishing you a very happy 2017 too! 🙂 Thanks again!

  22. Great projects!! That shed is impressive and I love your chalk paint makeover 🙂

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      We love the shed too!! It looked so pretty last week in the snow! Thanks for your sweet compliments:)

  23. Great projects! You two are very talented! I really liked the CD tower incorporated into your pantry- we can all use more storage!

    1. Anonymous says:

      Aww thanks Melony! You are too sweet!

  24. I love the wine basket. It could be the most thoughtful gift for your bestfriends wedding. Really nice article!

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Thanks so much, Athalia!:)

  25. This certainly measured up for me! What great projects you have accomplished. This is the first time I have seen your blog and thank you btw for joining TADA this week! Congrats on a fabulous year.

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Hahaha thanks so much for your compliments, Debbie!!:))

  26. Michelle - Jarrah Jungle says:

    What a great post! You guys have been busy 🙂

    1. Eileen @ Just Measuring Up says:

      Haha thanks Michelle!:)

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