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Anika Gandhi

00:02 all right so Annika Gandhi really happy 00:05 to have you as our work guest on the 00:06 everyday enthusiast we've actually 00:08 featured you as an everyday enthusiast 00:10 previously on our homepage so yeah I'm 00:12 very happy to have you 00:13 we're really happy to have you um so you 00:16 are a DIY enthusiast a blogger through 00:19 the woman behind 00:20 Anika's DIY life a really successful 00:21 blog with thousands of followers once 00:24 you share the audience I know you kind 00:25 of stumbled upon DIY he like tell us a 00:28 little bit that little bit about that 00:30 story and so yeah about almost nine 00:35 years ago now I I before that previously 00:41 I had no absolutely zero exposure to DIY 00:44 I grew up in India and we don't really 00:46 do any of that stuff there the most I 00:49 did was you know crochet and embroidery 00:53 and paper crafts and stuff like that so 00:56 when we came here I was actually looking 01:00 for some cool table and chair set for my 01:04 daughter who was just about 18 months at 01:07 that time and I couldn't find anything 01:10 all I found was like primary colors or 01:14 just really boring things and I really 01:16 wanted something with some character to 01:19 it so I went online to kind of research 01:23 and then I found that you know I could 01:26 actually paint IKEA furniture 01:28 interestingly I had not thought about 01:30 that myself 01:34 I realized I could paint it and it kind 01:38 of led me down the rabbit hole of 01:39 discovering all the things that you 01:42 could do the world of DIY and I actually 01:45 discovered that I could actually build 01:47 my own furniture and it wasn't that hard 01:49 at all so it's just kind of being down 01:54 you know down that path of making stuff 01:58 now when you were starting where you did 02:01 you research like bloggers kind of like 02:02 what you eventually became like is that 02:04 how you kind of learned the tricks of 02:06 the trade yes I mean I I had discovered 02:10 blogs and my search for all 02:13 the things that you could make and do 02:14 and I really really enjoyed and I was 02:19 really in awe of all the bloggers who 02:21 were out there that were sharing all the 02:23 things that they were doing they were 02:25 giving so freely and that was so nice 02:28 and I just in my mind I guess but as I 02:33 was doing projects I always pretended to 02:35 be a blogger you know like in their mind 02:37 if you're doing things and stuff and it 02:40 just kind of yeah I just kind of went 02:45 down it and then there was a time when I 02:47 had quit my job we had moved moved moved 02:51 cities and I had my second kid and I was 02:55 kind of taking a little break to enjoy 02:56 the kids lives and I but then you know 03:01 I'm a workaholic I can't not do anything 03:03 so I decided to start a blog I mean it 03:07 was always meant to be a site this site 03:09 hustle I was always going to go back to 03:12 work full-time but then I enjoyed doing 03:14 this so much and it just kind of worked 03:17 out so I never went back to work back so 03:22 when he first started the blog did it 03:24 how long did it take you to kind of take 03:26 off and get some followers like was it 03:29 hard in the beginning to get people to 03:31 be interested in your work yes I mean 03:34 the first few months it's kind of really 03:37 I mean right now and it already feels 03:39 like it's been it's only been four years 03:41 like it's just about over four years and 03:44 it was four years in January and it it 03:47 already feels like it was a long time 03:48 ago and things have changed so much 03:50 because when I started out I had to 03:53 really struggle to find information on 03:56 how to do stuff and figure out how to do 03:58 now there's all these people with all 04:00 these courses and all this information 04:02 out there 04:04 so in blog blog years I'm already 04:07 ancient but yeah it's it took about a 04:13 few months for me to actually figure out 04:15 what I was doing like it wasn't just as 04:17 simple as starting a blog like setting 04:19 up a site and just start writing stuff 04:21 yeah all the background the SEO and all 04:24 of that stuff that goes into it 04:26 it took me some time to kind of figure 04:28 it all out I want to say at least six 04:31 seven months I add the first six seven 04:34 months I didn't really know what I was 04:36 doing I guess yeah I mean I was learning 04:42 that's you know it that was a very 04:44 crucial phase for me to learn and to 04:46 figure out what I wanted to be what I 04:48 wanted my blog to be what I wanted to 04:50 teach the audience and I mean on my 04:54 originally I was doing a lot of crafts 04:57 as well a lot of painting and things 04:59 like that 04:59 so it it took me a while to figure out 05:02 what really what what it was that I 05:05 really had to give to my audience that 05:08 they would they would enjoy and I would 05:11 be helpful to them so yeah and then took 05:15 me out but so yeah so it kind of took me 05:18 a while to figure that out but then once 05:20 I figured that out I just had to kind of 05:23 mold myself to that and there's like a 05:27 like collaboration is really big with a 05:30 lot of a DIY enthusiasts like did you 05:32 find help along the way to people share 05:34 your blog like kind of bringing you up 05:37 you know absolutely yes yes it is it is 05:40 a really really supportive community and 05:42 I'm really thankful for that and I have 05:44 actually become friends with a lot of 05:47 the bloggers that were originally you 05:49 know I looked like I I watched and 05:53 learned stuff from so it's and 05:56 everybody's supportive and everybody 05:59 helps you and you know works with you 06:03 collaborates shares your projects and 06:06 that's everything we all help each other 06:09 grow and that's the amazing part of it 06:12 and I know you so it's only been a short 06:14 period of time like four years since you 06:16 started but what would Jesus changed 06:18 like what would you say is the biggest 06:20 change since you started like what's the 06:22 biggest difference between now and then 06:24 I think there's a lot more clarity on 06:27 things so you mean what's the biggest 06:29 difference in my love like approach yeah 06:34 yeah I approached the blogging exactly 06:35 yes yeah I have a lot more clarity or 06:38 what I want to do are for the blog and 06:40 what I don't want to do and how I wanted 06:43 to grow so I have obviously a lot more 06:46 clarity on that yeah and then I know you 06:50 spoke a little bit about growing up 06:52 overseas now was there like a earning 06:55 when you were a child to start building 06:57 things like what you play with Legos or 06:59 anything like what was there anything 07:01 like I mean I know is a there's cultural 07:03 differences so maybe a woman wasn't 07:05 allowed to do something like that but 07:06 was there a yearning even as a child for 07:09 you to want to build and create I mean I 07:13 was always creative I was always into 07:16 making things and doing things whatever 07:21 opportunities I had I I've done some 07:24 pottery I've done you know so I always 07:28 loved working with my hands even as you 07:32 know even at school I loved all the lab 07:36 work you know like doing things and 07:39 stuff with my hands and I mean I sew in 07:45 grad school to a lot of my Abbas and 07:47 experimental physics so I had a lot of 07:49 things like we were building furnaces 07:52 and we were designing things I didn't do 07:55 the very Co hard core building but I did 08:00 you know put together things and stuff 08:02 like that so I did have some sort of 08:05 exposure I would say in my later years 08:07 as a grad student to building stuff but 08:11 it was not in relation to anything that 08:16 I'm doing now you've really done every 08:21 element of DIY pottery fabric arts 08:24 woodworking you really don't everything 08:26 yeah like is there one DIY activity 08:32 that's like haunted you or like that 08:33 you're too scared to try or maybe you 08:35 tried and failed and wasn't easy to pick 08:37 up like everything else or you just a 08:39 pro oh no I mean funny enough like I 08:43 hate sewing and I'm not going going and 08:47 I cannot sew a straight line so I really 08:51 don't care for sewing 08:52 at all sewing's a no-go well hey you're 08:56 better than me because I can't do any of 08:57 that and you know but you know there's a 08:59 pottery in place like down the street 09:00 where I always walk by and see people 09:02 doing it I'm like I should try that'd be 09:04 fun you know why not what would you say 09:08 is like the hardest creation I've ever 09:11 done be a woodworking pottery or 09:13 anything like what was the project that 09:15 you know when he completed it you were 09:17 most proud of I want to say well that's 09:21 kind of a hard one I have a couple of 09:24 them but I want to say the dining-table 09:25 that I built recently it was now that 09:31 I've built it I'm like that was not that 09:32 bad but as I was building it because it 09:34 was the first time I was actually using 09:37 hardwood 09:38 I used maple to make the top and getting 09:42 it plane making you know and I did 09:45 mitered cuts and beveled edges and to 09:49 get like a nice seam on the corners and 09:51 stuff like that so that really haunted 09:54 me and I took a really long time between 09:56 each step to kind of take my time to 10:00 figure out and make sure I did 10:02 everything right and also because I had 10:04 that was the most money I had spent on 10:06 lumber ever like well hundred dollars on 10:11 the top for the dining table 10:13 it's like yeah I'm sure even then no 10:16 spending even if that was like your 10:18 biggest spend at the time you were 10:19 probably saving money I you know doing 10:22 it yourself I mean oh yes yes no yeah I 10:25 mean for that kind of quality if you 10:27 went and bought something that was that 10:29 looked that for that size of course yes 10:32 yes but I just wanted to get a good 10:35 quality wood for you know cause it's a 10:38 dining table it's gonna be get used 10:39 every day so do you have any tips for 10:45 bloggers di wires just kind of starting 10:48 to get into the game you know any tips 10:51 for them to maybe be for what working 10:53 because that seems to be what you say 10:54 woodworking is your expertise I I guess 10:59 so yeah you're an expert in many fields 11:01 Oh 11:03 no I'm not but I think yeah I would say 11:06 60 70 percent of what I do is what 11:09 breaking and I really enjoy it a lot 11:11 yeah yeah well it must be so satisfying 11:14 and then and also you know when I talk 11:16 to stamp collectors coin collectors and 11:19 you know you know why people it's like 11:21 you know it's really that tactile 11:22 feeling of having it in your hands via 11:25 the stamp you've been looking for 11:27 forever or a coin or just being able to 11:29 see like this is something that I 11:31 created and you're looking at it that 11:33 must be like the most complete feeling 11:37 you know when you see something that 11:38 you're created and people are eating 11:39 dinner on it and enjoying it it's like 11:41 it must give you a feeling of pride 11:43 right yes that's exactly that yes when 11:47 you walk into a room and you see almost 11:49 everything is something that you made 11:52 specifically because you wanted it that 11:54 way and it's what you love and that's 11:58 it's just an amazing feeling you have 12:01 your fans contacted you for like 12:03 schematics or anything so they can kind 12:05 of copy your designs oh yeah I actually 12:09 provide them on my website i dont rek 12:12 sai had for almost all my builds I have 12:15 plans available for people to use in 12:18 Vienna and a lot of people build it and 12:21 I love you know of course making things 12:24 for myself is one of one of the exciting 12:27 parts but also every time I see a user 12:30 sorry a reader project I love I mean it 12:34 just makes my heart mouths to see 12:35 someone who picks up your idea and makes 12:39 one for themselves is really it's 12:41 amazing to see that and we'll start to 12:45 wrap things up what do you see for the 12:48 future of DIY like obviously in the past 12:51 four years it's gone really digital I 12:53 mean YouTube channels are really blowing 12:55 up I mean I always see DIY stuff on like 12:58 the trending tab so you know that 13:00 they're choosing this stuff cuz people 13:01 are watching it like in five years how 13:03 do you see it transforming well I think 13:07 of course it's going to be a really huge 13:09 thing especially because a people 13:12 especially with the current situation 13:13 people realizing that there are things 13:15 that they can do themselves they can 13:17 save money there it is definitely going 13:20 to be a really huge thing and there is 13:25 DIY there are projects available for 13:27 every design style I think it's just 13:31 going to expand on that I think I also 13:34 see DIY getting larger and larger you 13:37 know people are doing more complicated 13:42 projects like like the what's that 13:46 called 13:46 the mini house what's that called Oh I 13:48 know your time now where people just 13:50 building little mini homes everything 13:52 yeah yeah I just don't remember that 13:54 word right now but it's you know that's 13:56 a big thing right now yeah people are 13:58 transforming school buses into living 14:01 Wow 14:03 so that's a huge thing right now so it's 14:06 it's just going to get bigger and 14:07 abstract and I think it's yeah in the 14:12 future were creative and more fun yes 14:15 yes 14:17 now with this you know current pandemic 14:19 it seems like more people spending time 14:21 at home so they're picking up these 14:23 crafts and stuff learning how to sew 14:25 learning how to do different fiber arts 14:27 and whatnot have you noticed uptick in 14:30 the people you know inquiring about DIY 14:32 stuff have you seen more interest in the 14:34 last couple months absolutely yes a lot 14:38 more now would you say that you think 14:41 that that's gonna last do you think that 14:42 people will stick with these hobbies or 14:44 maybe once we finally are able to go out 14:46 of our houses that maybe wants to drown 14:48 but it's it's interesting it's a time 14:49 like unlike any other in history or a 14:51 really long time where people were 14:53 spending so much time on their board so 14:54 I you know people are making bread at 14:56 home they're you know they're learning 14:57 how to you know so and stuff and it's 15:00 just interesting you know the what you 15:02 know spend more time and doors leads you 15:04 to do has there been a particular like 15:08 quarantine project what are you working 15:10 on right now right now I'm just slowly 15:13 chipping away at redoing my garage it's 15:18 been a really really long project so 15:20 when we moved it and it was from the 15:23 sixties it had like dark paneling and 15:25 old cabinets that we're falling off and 15:28 stuff like that so 15:29 we completely ripped everything out and 15:31 we did it so it's almost kind of done we 15:35 have to replace the lighting and the 15:37 ceiling and then we have to do some more 15:41 organizational projects so smaller 15:42 projects and then the fun you know 15:44 decorative projects and stuff like that 15:46 so my my parents have been meeting to 15:50 redo their brush and renovate it because 15:52 every time I go there I see this paint 15:54 job that me and my sister did 15 years 15:56 ago and it's horrible so maybe when you 15:59 finish your project we'll follow your 16:01 tips because I think we're gonna 16:02 probably need it and maybe I won't do 16:05 the painting this time to a pro I'm sure 16:08 you've gotten better I don't know yeah 16:09 oh wise your videos and I'll yeah I'll 16:12 learn I'll figure it out this time all 16:14 right great 16:15 on a good do you anything else you'd 16:16 like to share no I mean if anyone's 16:20 looking to get into DIY just start doing 16:22 it just pick up something pick up a 16:23 small projects to start doing it exactly 16:26 right on okay cool and we'll share all 16:29 your socials and everything down below 16:30 yeah thank you so much Hanukkah this was 16:32 great thank you so much for having me on 16:35 yep all right take care thank you Annika 16:37 thank you bye

On this episode of The Everyday Enthusiast, theTUNDRA sits down with DIY Enthusiast Anika Gandhi of the successful YouTube channel and blog Anika’s DIY Life, helping beginner DIYers and woodworkers by empowering them with ideas and skills. Anika discusses how she attained a large following of dedicated followers on her blog, which includes beginner woodworking projects, tool tutorials, easy DIY home improvement ideas and simple home decor crafts.

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