The REAL Cost of DIY

Hi, Nancy here! My sister Susan and I have loved doing crafts since we were kids. You’re definitely getting old when you get excited only for kitchen gadgets and furniture. We have Pottery Barn / Crate & Barrel / west elm tastes on IKEA / Target budgets. Thanks to Pinterest and various interior design blogs, we decided to take the plunge and start learning how to design and build our own furniture.

You know what REALLY grinds my gears? I hate when people claim that they built a piece of furniture “for only $20!” It’s so incredibly misleading because it doesn’t factor in the cost of their fancy power tools. As someone who is very intimated by using power tools, I gotta suck it up because I’ve learned the hard way that trying to make things completely by hand (cutting wood, using a screwdriver, etc.) takes FOREVER.

We decided that we should invest in power tools that will at least last a few years’ worth of projects. Plus, quality tools will make it easier for us to build furniture as we don’t want to spend 2 hours sanding down a project (for example).

Our power tool starter pack:

  • Cordless drill with drill bit set: $100
  • Cat sander: $25
  • Miter saw: $120
  • Circular saw: $150
  • Carpenter square: $10
  • Safety precautions: $10


Total cost, roughly: $415 USD

Keep in mind that the average price is $500 for a coffee table from those higher end furniture shops. Please enjoy our numerous mishaps while we attempt to master the art of woodworking and furniture design.


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