Top 5 DIY Projects of 2019 at Fletcher Creek Cottage

Top 5 DIY Projects of 2019

This past year has been nothing short of incredible! Fletcher Creek Cottage underwent a lot of improvements as we tackled small and large DIY projects and fairly quickly transitioned into a family business! CRAZY and yet SO COOL at the same time!



Welcome to Fletcher Creek Cottage

I am super humbled and grateful that I’m able to do what I love and to finally be an owner of a small business is a dream come true! With all the DIY projects I’ve done, I can honestly say my blood, sweat, and tears went into Flecher Creek Cottage! I hope that my passion for what I do shows through and that my posts inspire you to get out there and tackle whatever DIY projects you’ve been dreaming of completing in your home!

As you may have noticed Fletcher Creek Cottage the Blog has recently undergone a major transformation thanks to my amazing friend @gilliansarah. I am so glad this DIY girl finally bit the bullet and hired a professional for once! I am thrilled with how my website looks and can’t wait to start the year fresh with all kinds of fun blog posts! I thought it only fitting that my first post on my new website would be a recap of my top 5 favorite DIY projects that we’ve tackled over the past year!!!

If your new here…WELCOME! I’m so glad you’ve joined us! Fletcher Creek Cottage is a DIY/Home Decor blog that I started one year ago. After years of renovating homes with my husband and tackling countless home renovations projects (DIY style), my family and I built our entire home from the ground up all DIY for 70k!  You can read more about that HERE! 

Now, who’s ready for a trip down memory lane? I know I am! Let’s dive right in!

DIY Deconstructed Chair

My birthday is the first week of January so I usually want to start some kind of fun DIY project as a gift to myself!  It may sound strange to ask for a project as a birthday gift… but I LOVE trying my hand at new things and a small project to work on in the winter months makes me oh so happy! I started 2019 off by refurbishing and deconstructing a vintage chair!

You can read more about this project HERE! I learned so much and I would defiantly try this again! I use this chair as my desk chair and after a full year, it’s still my favorite chair in the house! It’s held up so well and it’s still super comfy!

Although I would make sure to wear gloves before I remove one million trillion staples again! Some DIY projects definitely are harder on the old hands than others and this project definitely was.

Trip To Magnolia Silos

Okay, I know this is a recap of my favorite DIY projects from 2019, but I can’t talk about awesome projects without mentioning our trip. I’m including our trip to Magnolia Silos, Magnolia Table, and our stay in Chip and Joanna Gaines real Fixer+Upper house “The German Schmeer” house because The Silos, the restaurant, and the house were some incredible projects to see!

Obviously I had no part in any of those renovations…but it was a huge highlight of my year to see Chip and Joannas work up close! I left there so inspired and encouraged to continue building and creating!


You can read all about our trip to Waco and Magnolia HERE and HERE. You can read all about our stay in HGTVs Fixer+Upper home right HERE.

Laying Herringbone Tile DIY

When we build our home we installed heated floors in a slab. To save money we stained the concrete instead of laying flooring. After living here for a year, the stain was wearing off making the floor look like it was dirty all the time and I was ready to invest in flooring!

I originally wanted to lay brick in a herringbone pattern and take it throughout the entire main floor (just under 1000 sq ft.) however that was way out of our budget!

I settled on this 7×20 faux wood, ceramic tile from Home Depot and embarked on laying nearly 1000 sq ft of tile myself in a herringbone pattern….for the first time ever! I had installed a lot of tile on walls before and helped my husband install tile floors before. BUT…I had never laid tile floors myself not to mention in a herringbone pattern!

It took me weeks, my knees were killing me, but I DID IT!!!! I love the way the floors turned out and I am so glad I decided on the herringbone pattern, but more than that, I am so glad I didn’t hold myself back from the challenge! Was I scared? YEP! Was I worried I would mess it up? Of course, I was! I just wasn’t going to let that stop me from getting the floors I wanted for the price I was willing to pay!

I am pretty certain I will never ever regret this DIY project!!!

If you have a DIY project you’ve been wanting to tackle and you think you could maybe do it, but you’re scared…I hope you’ll go for it anyway!!!! Do your research, plan, prep and GET IT DONE!

DIY Wallpaper

After 18 years of renovating all kinds of homes, I had removed more wallpaper than I’d have liked. Somehow I had never ever added wallpaper to space and I really wanted to add wallpaper to our bathroom in hopes to give it some character.

We’ve all heard horror stories about wallpaper installation and to be honest I was more curious than anything about how hard it really was to hang wallpaper!

I have a blog post all about how I transformed our bathroom using wallpaper so you can read all about that HERE!

I will give you a little hint on how I feel about DIY wallpaper projects and how it’s held up all these months…I’m itching to try my hand at it again! Lookout Master bedroom…you may be next!

DIY Pavilion Build

Okay, guys! You know I saved my favorite project for last! I mean, you can’t build a custom-designed 24′ x 40′ DIY pavilion in your backyard and not include it in the TOP 5…right?!

After building our new home, we desperately needed shade. Our cottage sits on top of a huge hill overlooking our 65 acres and Fletcher Creek. It’s breathtaking, but we have NO shade trees to speak of and even though this is Northern Michigan and our summers only average the mid-80s…we still needed shade!

diy projects

My son spent a week interning with our architect to design just what we wanted! We spent the summer and fall months constructing an outdoor oasis (all DIY)! I had a blast learning to operate a dozer, lay concrete block columns and frame up our pavilion with my hubby (and kids helping all they could)! It was so incredible for my (14year old) son to see the design he worked on come to life!

diy projects

This project was also a HUGE deal for me professionally because it was my first project working with The Home Depot (which had been on my goals list for over a year)! You can see that post HERE. I have quite a few posts on the build of the Pavilion you can find under blog in the category “construction”.

diy projects

diy projects

We had an early snowstorm that forced us to press pause on this project. We weren’t able to finish the brickwork, the fireplace or finish the steel roof before winter hit, but no worries, we can tackle that this spring as soon as the weather warms up a bit!

diy projects

This past year was nothing short of amazing! Thank you for joining me and I can’t wait to share all the exciting DIY fun and all the goings-on that will take place here at Fletcher Creek Cottage in this upcoming year!


Welcome 2020…we’re ready for you!


  1. […] « Top 5 DIY Projects of 2019 at Fletcher Creek Cottage […]

  2. Deborah Shaw says:

    wow dana…my first glimpse of your wonderful work. Amazing!

    • Dena says:

      Hi Deborah! Thank you so much! We had a great time checking out your son and daughter in laws newest project! WOW what a beautiful long home that is! I can’t wait to see all they do with it!
      Hope you’re doing well!

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