The Handy Mano


A subtle blend of Japanese delicacy and Scandinavian ingenuity, Japandi is the modern, soothing style you don’t want to miss. At the heart of this design trend? Minimalism and sophistication. So if you like functional and warm interiors, this Nordic-Japanese movement is definitely for you. Between the choice of colours, materials and decoration, your interiors will evolve into a calming, functional and chic space.

A combination of minimalism and subtlety for a Japandi look

Japandi design
Japandi design

Born from the mixing of the words “Japanese” and “Scandinavian”, Japandi is also the visual reflection of this. Pure and sober, this design trend brings an elegant and functional touch to your interiors. In addition to the subtle harmony of colours, furniture and materials, this hybrid style also brings well-being and harmony to your daily life. 100% winning then! If minimalism is at the heart of this decorative movement, the comfort and quality of the materials are not to be neglected. Ah, cocooning when you like it! With a few key design principles and tips in your pocket, this trend will soon be your new favourite.

A Nordic-Japanese movement with rich colours 

Deeper colours mixed with lighter neutrals
Deeper colours mixed with lighter neutrals

A real invitation to relax, the colour palette ranges from neutral, pastel tones to darker shades. While white, black and grey are characteristic of the Scandinavian style, Japandi goes further by opting for neutral but deep colours. Taupe, green, dark grey and mauve are particularly popular. However, the result, sober and refined, will be no less bright. It is the harmony with the materials and objects that create the magic with a light yet calming glow. 

In Japandi, quality is more important than quantity! 

After the preparations, it’s time to personalise and to sort out the essentials. The culture of minimalism enjoys a refined interior as a reflection of clarity of mind. This makes objects which are beautiful decorative accessories and those with sentimental value stand out all the more. Focus on creating an uncluttered but functional space! In the Nordic-Japanese movement, utility takes precedence over the purely decorative. To create a harmonious home, you should also choose soft, clear lines rather than complex shapes, as these can make your rooms look heavy and untidy. 

Natural materials at the heart of Japandi design

Natural materials are key to the Japandi look
Natural materials are key to the Japandi look

Natural materials are very much in vogue. Oak, beech or pine – wood is the star. Often dark and raw, it gives depth and character to a room. With its artisanal and sometimes rustic touch, it enhances your living spaces. In parallel, stone and metal are also popular, the latter for its minimalist aspect. For a lighter touch, opt for cork or paper. Vegetable fibres fit in very well with this trend. Wooden floors, stone bathtubs and marble basins fit perfectly into open rooms that let in light. The key to a successful design? Think “Wabi-sabi”, of course! In other words, a beauty that can also be seen in the imperfections and patina of time. Simplicity and authenticity transport you into the world of spirituality and contemplation. 

From furniture to decoration, this decorative style focuses on the essentials

Essential furniture comprising a variety of natural materials
Essential furniture comprising a variety of natural materials

Beyond its usefulness, Japandi furniture also promotes well-being and spirituality, which are important in Japanese culture. Several types of furniture can coexist perfectly, such as a futon in the bedroom, a designer coffee table in the living room and a chest of drawers in the hall. The important thing is to keep the balance between minimalism and refinement. Beautiful lighting completes this very special atmosphere, where lamps fulfil their decorative and useful role perfectly. They can be made from natural materials such as paper or bamboo, or from metallic materials which are darker in colour. Ceramic or wooden tableware also leaves a lasting impression. Finally, adding a few candles and teapots will make your interior even warmer. 

A modern and soothing look: Home sweet home

Japandi is not just a decorative style but a state of mind and a way of life. It emphasises nature and authenticity, for a return to the essentials. Both indoors and outdoors, extend your Zen garden with a few plants, herbs or branches to recall the alliance of the raw and the delicate. Everything goes in the same direction to offer yourself well-being and peace of mind on a daily basis. And creating a soothing and functional interior is not a bad idea, is it?

Did you enjoy this article on Japandi design? Why not read our article on small space design ideas on a budget or our room divider buying guide!

Are you decorating your home with the Japandi trend? Share your finished results with us on Instagram using the #mymanomanoway#manomanouk and #youvegotthis hashtags!

Did you know that sliding doors are a great way to save space in any room of your home? This DIY sliding door tutorial will show you how to convert a regular hinged door into a sliding door

Switching from a hinged door to a sliding one can save you a great amount of space at home, especially in small kitchens and bathrooms. And you don’t even need to buy a new door, you can turn your old door into a sliding one, saving a lot of money in the process.

DIY sliding door project
DIY sliding door project

This tutorial will show you how to get this done so that you can make the best out of the available space in your home.

DIY sliding door: Tools and materials

Tools you'll need for the door project
Tools you’ll need for the door project

Cost, duration and difficulty

If you already have most of the necessary tools, the total cost of the materials is approximately £90. 

The level of difficulty is medium, as you will need to have some experience using power tools and assembling furniture. If you would prefer an easier option, you can always purchase indoor and sliding doors, ready for installation, on

This project will take about 8 or 10 hours from beginning to end, so you will need a full day for your DIY sliding door project.

DIY sliding door from a hinged door tutorial

When turning a door into a DIY sliding door, we have to bear in mind that a hinged door fits right inside the door frame, while a sliding door rests outside the frame. It is for this reason that the sliding door needs to be at least 2 cm wider than the hinged door.

In this particular case, the door opening was bigger than the hinged door that we were recycling (15 cm wider). In addition, the door had glass panels that we wanted to remove. The following are the steps that we followed to make the door wider and give it the look of a barn door.

Upcycle an old door into a functional sliding door
Upcycle an old door into a functional sliding door

Step 1 – Remove the door’s glass panels

Remove the glass panels of the original hinged door
Remove the glass panels of the original hinged door

First, we removed the door’s mouldings around the glass panels. We cut it with a sabre saw and used a chisel and hammer to remove the mouldings.

You can also use a handsaw rather than the sabre saw, but it will require more strength and time.

Step 2 – Make the door wider

You can widen the sliding door
You can widen the door

In the next step we made the hinged door wider and covered the central opening with wood.

We cut a few wooden boards measuring 50 x 7 x 2.2 cm with the mitre saw, and then we fixed them with screws onto the inner side of the frame. For this we used a dowelling jig as it allows you to drill oblique holes.In order to widen the door, we screwed a few slats measuring 220 x 3.4 x 3.4 cm to one of its sides, until we reached the desired width. It had to be wide enough to fit the door opening and to prevent the light from coming through. Bear in mind that the screw heads must be flush with the slats to avoid gaps in between them.  

Step 3 – Finish the door with wood panelling

Stick panelling to the sliding door
Stick panelling to the sliding door

Next, we covered the door with wood panelling. This was a good way to hide the different materials that had been used and give it a more uniform look. Plus, we wanted the door to have a distinct and decorative style, that of an old barn door. We applied grab adhesive over the entire surface and then fixed the wood planks to it one by one.  

Step 4 – Protect and decorate the wood

In the following step we stained the wood. We used lasur in different tones in order to give it a vintage look. Lasur is not only decorative, it also waterproofs the wood and protects it from UV rays.

For the exterior frame, we used a black water-based enamel matching the sliding door guide that we were going to install.

Step 5 – Install the sliding guide

Install the sliding guide
Install the sliding guide

The last step was to install the sliding guide. These guides are usually made up of the following pieces:

  • A bar or rail
  • Nuts, stoppers and bolts
  • Sliding rollers
  • Side stoppers
  • Lower guiding rail

Follow the below installation steps for your DIY sliding door:

  1. Level the sliding guide and mark the spots where the holes are to be drilled on the wall.
  2. Drill the holes and insert the plugs with the help of a hammer.
  3. Screw in the rear stoppers of the guide. This will ensure that it is not flush to the wall. Next, tighten the front nuts with a hex socket or a wrench.
  4. Mark, drill and screw the sliding rollers to the door. Bear in mind that the rollers then have to be inserted into the rail, so you might need a helping hand at this stage to lift the door if it is too heavy.
  5. Insert the side stoppers and tighten them to prevent the door from sliding out of the rail.  
  6. Screw the upper stoppers and the lower guiding rail to the floor to keep the door from swaying when you open or close it.  
DIY sliding door
DIY sliding door

If you follow all the steps above, your new sliding door will be done and ready. It is a far cry from the hinged door that we started with. We have managed to recycle the door and transform it into a great looking sliding door that is both practical and decorative.

Did you enjoy this article on a DIY sliding door? Why not read our tutorial on a DIY solar lamp made from pallets or even our sliding door buying guide!Are you converting a hinged door into a sliding door too? Share your finished results with us on Instagram using the #mymanomanoway, #manomanouk and #youvegotthis hashtags!

Shelfies have become increasingly popular recently, and you can have them in the kitchen, holding your stylish coffee sets, in the bedroom, or even as a perfume display. Shelves are both useful and versatile, and have evolved to such an extent that, combining functionality and design, they have become key pieces in the decoration of any room. We have put together some top shelfie styling tips so your shelves are both organised and Instagrammable.

Shelfie styling tips

1. Keep a visual order

Boxes are practical to tidy things away on the shelfie
Boxes are practical to tidy things away on the shelfie

We all have decorative objects in our homes that we like looking at and showing off, but we also need space to store them and put away the more practical and less beautiful things. For this we can use boxes or baskets, which are both practical and stylish, and place them on different shelves alongside the rest of the decorative objects. This can help us hide routers, cables or remote controls, easily and effectively. It is a very useful solution, and others won’t even realise where you’ve hidden these unsightly gadgets.

2. Open shelves to visually expand the space

Do you remember those old mammoth furniture pieces that covered the whole wall from one end to the other and visually engulfed the whole living room? Today, we can simply put shelves from wall to wall. This gives us the same storage space and capacity, and at the same time, it doesn’t visually overwhelm the space. Your living room will look twice as big. 

3. Don’t fill your shelfie with things

Leave a distance between your shelves
Leave a distance between your shelves

We always start placing objects on the shelves and almost inadvertently, never stop adding more. To be brutally honest, in this case as in many others, the saying is true: less is more. Use your shelves to stylishly stack objects in different sections, always leaving a good distance between them, in order to have enough space in-between and avoid visual saturation. This also allows you to draw attention to that beautiful wallpaper in the background, and make it part of the room’s decoration.

4. Use bookshelves as space dividers

You don’t have to live in an open plan loft to do this. If your front door is in the living room, you can place a shelf right next to it. It will function as a space divider, providing privacy and at the same time, helping you keep everything you need when you leave the house or come back in at hand: keys, bags, slippers. Use trays, boxes, baskets or stacks of books both to decorate and to partially or fully cover the gaps in each shelf, to provide you with the privacy you need.

5. Choose the ideal decorative objects for your home

Your shelfie should reflect your personality & style
Your shelfie should reflect your personality & style

When thinking about what to put on your shelves and make it the focus of attention, remember that it should reflect your personality as well as fit into your home’s decorative style. If you love nature, put pots with real plants on the shelves. And if your home is, for example, decorated Nordic style, you cannot fail to include natural fibres, objects with simple lines and a chromatic palette in neutral or soft tones.

6. Apply these infallible decoration rules

Group the objects into 3 on your shelf
Group the objects into 3 on your shelf

If you hesitate when it comes to grouping objects together, use this useful and age-old architecture and painting trick: make it an odd number, ideally 3. Group the objects according to their visual weight, placing the largest ones in different sections of each shelf, always seeking visual harmony within the whole piece. This will help you effectively distribute the volume along the shelves, and prevents them from looking heavy or overburdened. Choose a colour range in line with the room where the shelves are, and introduce small doses of colour with different objects. Turn around some of them for a creative touch. For example, you can choose to stack some books horizontally with the cover facing out and at the top, place a decorative object.

7. Indulge your creative side and make your own shelfie

DIY your own shelfie with some wooden planks and rope
DIY your own shelfie with some wooden planks and rope

Pinterest and Instagram are full of DIY ideas to help create your own shelves, and can be a great source of inspiration. Did you know that just with a few simple wooden planks and ropes, or even with fruit boxes, you can make very original shelves? All you have to do is give them a coat of colour (or leave the wood intact) and hang them to create a fun and cheerful design. You can use them for your urban vegetable garden in the kitchen, or to place your favourite cups. Not only will they be cheaper, but also, having made them with your own two hands, you will want to proudly show them off.

Did you enjoy this article on shelfie styling tips? Why not read our article on small space design ideas on a budget or our room divider buying guide!

Are you organising and styling your shelfies? Share your finished results with us on Instagram using the #mymanomanoway, #manomanouk and #youvegotthis hashtags!

You finally get home after a few well-deserved days off and rush to check how your plants are doing. Have any of them dried out? Has the home watering system not worked as you expected? Wait, before you throw them away, Ester Casanovas, gardening expert at ManoMano, has compiled some top tips on how to revive your plants that might have suffered during your holidays.

How to revive your plants step-by-step

Before we get down to work, check what went wrong: did you use a home method to keep your plants moist or did the person who was supposed to water them not do it properly? Make a mental note so that you can solve these problems on your next trip. Remember that you can always automate the watering of your pots with a drip irrigation system or solutions for less prolonged absences.

1. Cut off all dried leaves and flowers

Help revive your plants by cutting off dried leaves and flowers
Help revive your plants by cutting off dried leaves and flowers

What has dried out is dead and will not recover. The plant will thank you for it, as it will avoid sending nutrients to those unsalvageable parts during the hydration process. 

Use sharp pruning shears and clean them with alcohol between plants. If they have fallen ill during your absence, you will avoid possible contagion.

2. Check plants for pests

A weakened plant is often an easy target for different types of pests. Check the tops and undersides of leaves and stems, and use the most appropriate insecticide for the problem detected. If possible, remove the topsoil and throw it away: this will eliminate the possibility of some insect eggs hatching and will speed up subsequent hydration.

3. Water your plants

A dehydrated plant requires careful watering, and we often make the mistake of putting it in a bucket for hours until it is waterlogged. It is true, a bucket will help, but so will a little patience and the knowledge that just because it is submerged for a long time, it will not recover quickly.

If your dry plant is planted in the ground, use a rake to create furrows in the soil: this will make it easier for the watering to penetrate deeply. If you have only recently repotted it, you can try removing it and the root ball: dip it in a bucket and wait until air bubbles no longer appear on the surface. 

Use lukewarm water to rehydrate the plants: most substrates absorb it better than cold water, and in this way, in addition to the plant, the dry soil will also be rehydrated, regaining its permeability.

If the plant is in a pot, proceed in the same way, but remove the plant from the pot.

4. Spray the leaves

Spray the leaves to gently rehydrate the plant
Spray the leaves to gently rehydrate the plant

Spray the leaves of the plant with a spray bottle, and take the opportunity to clean them if they are dusty. If so, then spray again and let it dry on its own. 

If its size allows, you can also put it in the bath or shower, spraying it generously.

5. Observe for a few days

Observe your plant
Observe your plant

Keep the soil moist for the next few days and watch closely for small changes. If the limp leaves stand upright again and the stems remain firm, it is very likely that the recovery process has been successful. 

A change of location can also help, especially if it is an outdoor plant that was in full sun: it will recover much more easily if it is in shade or semi-shade for a few days.

The leaves of plants can dry out due to both over- and under-watering.

Finally, we would like to add a note that may be useful in some cases: over-watering can cause similar symptoms to under-watering. The leaves of the plants also become limp and may turn yellow, which can lead to confusion. In this case, you will need to check the humidity of the soil and proceed in the same way but suspend any watering.

Observe your plant and its soil
Indoor plant revival

Remove the plant from the pot or soil with as much soil as possible in the root ball. Use kitchen paper to absorb as much moisture as possible and let it air dry for a whole day. 

Put the plant back in place and wait for the soil to dry out before watering again.

Did you enjoy this article on how to revive your plants after the summer holidays? Why not read our tips on how to care for your Monstera plant or even our house plant buying guide!

Are you going to try reviving your plants after your holidays? Share your results with us on Instagram using the #mymanomanoway, #manomanouk and #youvegotthis hashtags!

Would you like to set up your own bar on your terrace or in your garden? A DIY Tiki Bar or outdoor bar is the perfect place to enjoy an aperitif with the family or have a refreshing drink with friends. This tutorial will show you how to build a tiki bar step by step so you can enjoy it in the nice weather.

The sun and warm days are conducive to spending more time outdoors. Being able to do so while enjoying refreshing drinks makes it even better! So, we have put together this tutorial to show you step by step how to build a tiki bar to be your family meeting point after work, or to enjoy it with friends on weekends.

DIY Tiki Bar: tools and materials

Materials for the DIY tiki bar project

Cost, time & difficulty

The approximate cost of the materials is £80, whilst the execution time is a full day and its level of difficulty is medium, as you need to have experience in handling power tools. 

DIY Tiki Bar step-by-step

To build this tiki bar or outdoor bar, we have mainly used wood and reed. This way, we get a very natural and warm result, which goes with most outdoor environments.

Its dimensions are ideal for 2 to 4 people, but if more space is needed, several can be built and joined together.

In addition, it has a tropical style design that will bring freshness to your terrace or garden. The steps for this DIY tiki bar are detailed below.

Step 1 – Cutting the pieces

First of all, cut the wooden strips and boards with a mitre saw or a jigsaw. The pieces we will need are:

  • 3.2 cm x 3.2 cm pine laths: 2 x 200 cm long for the rear vertical posts, 2 x 180 cm long for the front vertical posts, 4 x 120 cm, 1 x 113 cm and 4 x 39 cm long to join the posts horizontally.
  • Pine wood strips 2.2 cm x 1.8 cm: 6 x 120 cm long and 12 x 39 cm long.
  • Pine boards: 11 x 11 x 45 x 1 cm for the roof, 10 x 12 x 40 x 1.8 cm for the bar top and 2 x 15 x 46 x 1.8 cm cut at an angle of 33º to join the top of the posts.

Step 2 – Building the Tiki Bar structure

To build the structure, the vertical slats of 200 and 180 cm will be screwed to the horizontal slats of 120, 113 and 39 cm long, so that the vertical slats of 180 cm will be placed at the front and the vertical slats of 200 cm at the back:

  • The 180 cm vertical slats will be placed at the front and the 200 cm vertical slats at the back.
  • One 120 cm horizontal batten at the front and two 39 cm horizontal battens at the sides shall be screwed flush with the floor.
  • At a height of 90 cm, a 120 cm front horizontal batten, a 113 cm rear horizontal batten and two 39 cm side battens shall be screwed to the front and two 39 cm side battens shall be screwed to the rear.
  • The top of the vertical front battens shall be connected to 2 horizontal battens of 120 cm. 
  • The next step is to nail the 2.2 x 1.8 cm battens horizontally, leaving a distance of 10 cm between them. Then, the 15 x 46 x 1.8 cm boards cut at an angle of 33° are screwed to the inside of the upper battens.
  • Finally, the 11 x 45 x 1.8 cm boards are nailed to the upper horizontal battens to form the roof and the 12 x 40 x 1.8 cm boards are nailed to the battens at 90 cm high.

Step 3 – Varnish it up

Next, apply a stained varnish for exteriors. It is recommended to apply a couple of coats to achieve a better protection of the wood, leaving the drying time recommended by the manufacturer between coats. This will create a weather-resistant construction.

Varnish the tiki bar so it lasts longer

Step 4 – Stapling the cane

The last step is to staple the cane around the bottom of the Tiki Bar so that it is securely attached to the slats and can withstand wind and rain.

The reed is not only decorative and gives a tropical look, but also allows you to hide a small fridge or whatever you want to store behind the tiki bar.

Finally, after you have followed all the above steps, your DIY Tiki Bar is ready for use.

Hang some outdoor LED lanterns to set the ambiance and personalise your Tiki Bar with a sign or some bunting.

Add some accessories to your DIY tiki bar

Of course, don’t forget to celebrate with a few refreshing drinks and a toast that you have succeeded in making this beautiful and functional DIY Tiki Bar for your terrace or garden.

DIY tiki bar

Did you enjoy this article on how to DIY a Tiki Bar for your garden or terrace in 4 key steps? Why not read our tutorial on a DIY solar lamp made from pallets or even our fairy light buying guide to deck out your new tiki bar!

Are you making your own Tiki Bar too? Share your finished results with us on Instagram using the #mymanomanoway, #manomanouk and #youvegotthis hashtags!