Best of the Blog, Our 2018 Yearbook

Staying with DIY Playbook’s end of the year tradition, here is our 2018 BLOG recap …yearbook style. Think best dressed, most likely to get married, valedictorian … but for blog posts.

Our 2018 Yearbook

For the fourth year in a row (you can check out 2017 right here2016 right here and 2015 right here), we just couldn’t help capturing some of our most memorable posts while having a little fun (and poking a little fun at our own work). Here’s our 2018 yearbook!

Prom Queen – Jan’s Chicago Condo Tour

Casey has done A LOT of work helping her mom transform her Chicago condo into a gorgeous, feminine space that we are officially obsessed with. From this living room makeover, her master bedroom (with a custom built-in closet), to the dining room, the guest room, and even the kitchen. There’s been plenty of stunning before and afters throughout the year here on the DIY Playbook thanks to Jan’s new place! And in January we have another project to share from her condo…a showstopping pantry makeover!

Most Outdoorsy – Casey’s Patio + Bridget’s LandscapingCasey's chicago patio

This award is a tie between Casey’s city patio and Bridget’s full landscaping makeover.

Although our city balcony isn’t huge, we make the most of this outdoor space! We refreshed the furniture this year and spent SO much time out there throughout the spring, summer, and even into fall. It’s the perfect place to kick back and relax after a long day! Although right now it’s covered in snow and ice…

patio makeover

Bridget transformed all of her landscaping and added a patio this past summer. It was a big project, but the space looks 1000x better. You can see all of the before and afters of the entire exterior in this blog post.

Fan Favorite – Inexpensive DIY Gallery Wall

inexpensive gallery wall

We scored these frames on sale for under $10 each, making this DIY Symmetrical Gallery Wall one of our most budget-friendly projects of the year. Plus, it’s been a fan favorite for obvious reasons!

Biggest Baby – Nursery Reveal

neutral nursery for a baby boy

Welcoming Ben into the world at the start of the year was obviously the highlight for Matt and me! But before that, I loved working on his nursery as we awaited his arrival. And almost a year later, I still love everything about this neutral space.

Most Likely To Be Late To Class – Master Bedroom Reveal

Gray and blush master bedroom

This bedroom gets the most likely to be late to class award, because you’ll definitely want to sleep in if this is your bedroom! Jan’s condo allowed us to showcase a style that’s a little different than ours, which was so much fun and proved to be very popular here on the DIY Playbook! We loved injecting more blush than usual and adding feminine touches whenever we could. I mean, what’s not to love about this serene space?!

Most Inspirational – Casey’s IVF Journey

Sharing our IVF and infertility journey

Opening up about our infertility was really scary for Finn and me, but it ended up being the best decision. I’ve since connected with so many women who are also struggling, and if I can make one woman feel a little less alone…then putting our story out there is well worth it! Not to mention, having so many people all over the world cheering us on and wishing us the best is incredibly heartwarming. It makes this scary journey feel a little more manageable. We’re still in the thick of things (more updates coming in January), but we’re still hopeful that one of these days you’ll see some happy news coming from the Finn family.

Best Dressed – 1 Item, 3 Ways Series

Sometimes half the battle of buying new items is figuring how to make them versatile in your closet. The struggle is real, we get that, which is why we tried to work on showcasing some of our favorite pieces for different occasions (like with this blazer, and this suede skirt). One item, three ways is definitely a series we plan to continue to inspire all of us to mix and match your favorite pieces to make them far more versatile!

Valedictorian – Casey’s DIY Bathroom Makeover

DIY Bathroom Makeover

I would award this project the biggest troublemaker during our neverending DIY days of tiling. But seeing it all come together definitely earns this bathroom makeover valedictorian for the year! Although this transformation took A LOT longer than we originally estimated, it was well worth the wait because we love everything about our new bathroom!

Healthiest – Our Trader Joe’s Grocery List

Sharing our Trader Joe's grocery shopping listIf I only knew how many of you are as obsessed with Trader Joe’s as I am…I would have shared this post a heck of a lot sooner! It was so much fun to learn some of your favorite TJ products (the comment section has some amazing suggestions) and share what Finn and I buy on a regular basis.

Also, if you’re looking for a healthy recipe to kick off the new year this vegetable soup was a big hit in January!

Most Cheerful – Kids’ Room Makeover

Kids Room Makeover

We’ve never transformed a kids’ room before and this bright and colorful one was the perfect place to start! We had so much fun making over this space. Now Grandma’s house is officially the BEST place to sleepover for these kiddos… and we don’t blame them!

Best Bromance – Men’s Spring Fashion

We love when our husbands take over the blog for a day and this post was a fun one! It can be difficult to find the perfect gifts or wardrobe ideas for the men in your life, so our guys shared some of their fashion favorites. We’ll have to get them to post on here more often (especially because we’d much rather be behind the camera than in front of it!). We’ll let those boys model for us any day!

Voted Most Popular – Displaying Throw Blanketshow to display blankets on couches

Our Rookie Mistakes series is one of the most popular ones here on The DIY Playbook, and when we covered how to (and not to) display blankets on a couch, it was a fan favorite in 2018! If you have any rookie mistake requests, send it our way. We always love breaking down these common mistakes by creating a NON-JUDGEMENT zone we can all learn and grow from. We don’t want anyone feeling bad about these rookie decorating mistakes, but instead, want to create a place to learn. Trust us, we only know these are mistakes because WE’VE MADE THEM!

Class Clown – Family Hot Dog Costumefamily hot dog costume

I know we only have a few years where Ben will be open to dressing up with his parents on Halloween, so I took full advantage with this year’s DIY Hot Dog Halloween Costume idea. It was SO easy to throw together and the perfect way to spend our first Halloween with that little hot dog.

Most Festive – Kate Spade Dream Tree

colorful christmas tree inspired by kate spade

We shifted gears this year for the holidays by using way more color than we typically do. This Kate Spade inspired Christmas Tree was bright, colorful, and one of our favorites. We used these same bright colors in our annual gift guide and loved stepping outside of our comfort zone.

Thank You!

Sharing our 2018 yearbook

Wow, 2018 has been a really BUSY and productive year here on the DIY Playbook. Thank you for following along every step of the way, we feel so honored to share our journey with all of you. Your overwhelming support throughout a year has meant the world to us.


The Year of Casey

Hey there!

I’m Casey Finn, the voice behind The DIY Playbook. I’m a Chicago gal teaching you how to design, DIY, and maintain your home…by yourself! Learn more about me right here.

your home playbook sidebar