As anyone who has ever clicked on the cheery red and white “Pin This” button will tell you, Pinterest is one of the coolest and most addictive social media sites to ever hit the Internet. Beyond offering a place to save all of the recipes, craft ideas and dream vacation spots, though, Pinterest is actually a useful tool when you want to makeover your home. From inspiration to instructions, you can turn your Pinterest boards into the central organizer for all of your home improvement projects.
Are you new to Pinterest? Since Pinterest is still open by invitation only, to get started, you’ll need to request an invite from the site administrators or from a friend who uses the site; the friend option is generally quicker, since you won’t have to wait weeks or months to get a spot.
Once you sign up, download the tool to allow you to pin items as you find them online. The “Pin It” tool can be added to your browser toolbar; when you see something you like, click that button, choose the photo you want to pin and the board to pin it on. You’ll get several boards to start with, but you can rename them or make your own boards, as many as you want.
You can also “repin” images from other user’s boards to yours. Simply click on the image, click repin and choose a board. When you click on any image on your boards, it will take you to the original source of the photo and idea – making it easy to find information about tools, instructions and sources.
Once you’re set up, browse some other boards from inspiration. Pinterest allows users to search, either by category from a drop-down menu or using keywords. For example, if you’re looking for kitchen ideas, type in “kitchen” and browse through the thousands of images that come back. Use specific terms to narrow the results: search “vanity sinks” instead of just “sinks.”
You can also pin from outside resources. If you’re perusing the online version of your favorite decorating magazine or design blog, you can pin directly from there as well. Make a note on the picture detailing what you like, so you keep track of your inspiration.
What Makes Pinterest So Great
Pinterest is like the ultimate design organizer. It used to be that when you were working on a project, you had to tear pictures out of catalogs and magazines, and carry around a binder full of ideas. Pinterest does it all for you. For example, if you’re comparing light fixtures, you can pin multiple pictures of fixtures to your boards, and then compare them side by side, eliminating choices that you don’t like. Need a second opinion? Share your pins on Facebook, Twitter or via e-mail – your friends and followers can make comments and tell you what they really think.
And not every project on Pinterest is a major overhaul. Browse the home décor boards for ideas on how to spruce up your home on a budget – you might find an unexpected color combination you love, or an idea for a new headboard that will change the whole feeling of your bedroom. Need to reorganize? Head to Pinterest, where you’ll find ideas for organizing every room in your home, including clever ways to recycle and repurpose new and old items to keep your home organized. Pinterest is also a resource for holiday decorating ideas; you can find ideas for decorating both indoors and out that will make any holiday feel more festive.
And remember, Pinterest isn’t just for images. If you find a how-to video or tutorial for a project you want to complete, you can pin that. When it comes time to complete the project, you can easily find the instructions on your board, instead of wracking your brain trying to remember exactly where you saw it.
A Word of Warning
Ask any Pinterest user to describe the site in one word and it will probably be “addicting.” It’s so easy to pin and save ideas that you could spend hours just browsing and pinning, and end up with thousands of ideas – and never complete them. Be judicious in your pinning, delete pins you’re no longer interested in and limit the amount of time you spend looking for inspiration. You can always go back for more when you finish one project!
This article was written by Ryan Tupper, a DIY consultant for DecorPlanet.com. Ryan has over 10 years of experience working as a plumber and contractor.