How it all started by Aboli Mutha

“Isn’t woodworking a man’s job? Can you even handle those tools?” vented my worried parents, seeing me build a simple stool. I wouldn’t wrong them. As someone raised in India, I can say this for many of us - we are culturally backward being handy or working on DIY projects involving wood working.  After moving to US, I struggled with even hanging a frame on the wall. Fast forward today, I have educated myself to build fancy walls and furniture. Progress, don’t you think?!


How did it all start? I get this asked ALL the time! Being an IT professional, I work in a stressful day (and night 😉) job. I had a creative side to me since I was young. My mom enrolled me in all sorts of art classes, but my work schedule and business trips permitted me no bandwidth.


After my second child, I was diagnosed with major Post-Partum Depression. That dark phase reunited me to my creative side. To divert my mind, I started working on small projects – like painting, making wreaths etc. After COVID hit, all business travels were on hold. I found myself with so much free time over the weekends. After seeing couple of HGTV fixer uppers and getting inspired by women DIYers on Instagram, I took the leap and started small. Last year I learnt using power tools and added so many upgrades to our builder grade home. We introduced many accent walls, built some furniture, beams and small upgrades throughout! It feels so content walking around our house knowing that I built this!


Want to DIY, don’t know where to begin? Here are some tips..

  1. Start small, pick something inexpensive that will give you instant contentment – like paint a wall, make a wreath..

  2. Take risks, make mistakes, you may mess up. But no biggie!

  3. Explore your strengths, if you like painting learn different techniques, if enjoy sewing, sew a dress. There is always something for everyone!

  4. Don’t expect to know it all, make Google, Youtube and incredible DIYers on IG your friend!

  5. Create things you wish existed!

I don’t know who needs to hear this, but we can do hard things. Just wrap it up with a lot of perseverance and smile! YOU will surprise yourself!! If you enjoy learning new skills or just curious on how to change your buildergrade homes, I am documenting my learning process and failures making those mistakes, so you don’t make them!! Until then, Keep calm and Do it yourself!

Follow Aboli’s DIY, design and decor on a budget @spruce_n_spice.

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