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Easy Decorating Ideas

10 DIY Home Decor Tricks

Designer Michael Garvey, known for his sophisticated interiors, happens to be a scrappy DIY genius at home. Real Simple popped in for a peek—and for the secrets to his 10 most inventive upgrades.  

Wall with gallery style framed art
Dean Kaufman

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Add Architecture

See the molding on the walls at right? It was glued on, nailed in place, and painted to look as if it’s been there for a hundred years. “Just go to Lowe’s and ask for trimboard. It comes already primed and ready for application,” says Garvey, who is also a master of Ikea hacks. He added those old-timey V-grooved doors to the Ikea Expedit (formerly open-shelved) cabinet.

Make a Pro-Style Gallery
Buy frames with precut mats first, then print out favorite images to fill them at whatever size you need. “Look at the wall. It has only two kinds of frames: black frames with white paper mats and silver frames with linen mats,” says Garvey. “No matter what you put inside, it feels cohesive.” Target and West Elm are Garvey’s sources for inexpensive narrow frames like these. He warmed up his arrangement with a dash of Americana: two lanterns that hang on hooks and plug in below.

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