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This Singaporean DIYed All The Arches In Her Home For Less Than $150

13 April 2023 | BY

Two sisters took matters into their own hands and DIYed arches in their resale flat on a budget.

How to DIY arches in your HDB for under $150

We’ve waxed lyrical about the allure of arches in Singaporean homes in the past and how they can soften the hard edges of any living space. This design element was something that a pair of sisters wanted to incorporate into their new resale flat. Only, they decided to do it themselves.

Having DIYed smaller projects before, Jolene and Jaime decided to embark on this project to spruce up the design of their house on a budget. What’s most impressive about it is that the cost of the materials all added up to less than $150. Here, the sisters gave us the lowdown on what they bought, how they did it, and whether or not it was worth the effort.

Wanted to “soften the lines of the space”

The resale flat that Jolene bought was a blank slate with no major work done to its design even by its original owners. This meant that the original square-ish layout with sharp corners and straight lines was still present, and that was something that she wanted to change.

diyarches-sharpcornersThe living room (left) and corridor entry (right) had harsh, sharp corners.
Image credit: Jolene

“I wanted to soften the lines of the space, to create a focal point in the living room and make it more visually interesting,” Jolene told us about her initial plans. So she and her sister, Jaime, planned to add some curvatures to the corridor and the living room to “create a sense of flow and continuity” between the different parts of the home.

What sets their endeavour apart from the other arch installations we’ve featured is that the sisters wanted to tackle it by themselves.

After Jaime watched a video about DIY arches, she fell down the rabbit hole and was determined that the two of them could soften the lines of her sister’s home with their own hands. “We went through all the video tutorials that we could find online,” Jolene said. And after that, all they had to do was to find an arch.

Spending less than $150 to DIY arches

It didn’t surprise us in the slightest when Jolene revealed that the arch was purchased from Taobao. “We decided to go with them as it seemed the simplest and most economical,” she explained about their decision to outsource the arch from overseas. In total, she only paid $68.50 for 2 arches – one in the living room and one in the corridor – and its shipping to Singapore.

diyarches-taobaoAll the different sizes you can order from the store. You can also customise the dimensions by contacting the seller.
Image credit: Taobao

But you can’t just slap it on and call it a day. The sisters first had to stick it onto the wall with polyurethane foam before strengthening the connection with self-adhesive fibreglass tape.

diyarches-fillingImage credit: Jolene

Then, they patched it up with some joint compound before filing it down with sandpaper till they were happy with the results. Only then could they paint it the same shade of white as the rest of their walls.

The living room arch in various stages of progress.
Image credit: Jolene

All in all, everything, from the foam to the tape cost Jolene and Jaime only $114.10. Here’s a breakdown for those who might want to embark on a similar project at home:

Despite this being their biggest DIY project to date, Jolene and Jaime both felt that installing these arches by themselves was a walk in the park. The only thing they didn’t anticipate was that they underestimated the time it would take to apply the joint compound as it had to dry before they could continue.


Replying to @ahbigerr Hope this helps!#sgrenovation #sghomedecor #tiktoksg #sghometour #sghome #diyarch #hdb #hdbreno

♬ Oogum Boogum Song – Brenton Wood

For homeowners who want to DIY their own arches at home, the sisters recommend patience, especially since the joint compound requires multiple layers of application. It then has to dry and be sanded down repeatedly just to get the best result. For this project, the sisters repeated this step at least 3-4 times in total.

DIYing arches at home with Taobao

diyarches-finallookImage credit: Jolene

The sense of accomplishment that Jolene and Jaime had when they saw their finished product was, in their words, “incredible.” While they admit that it’s far from perfect, they were in it for the DIY aspect and “embracing all the quirks and idiosyncrasies that come with it.”


Our first diy project for the house completed! #hdbreno #hdb #diyarch #homerenovation #sghome #sghometour #tiktoksg #sghomedecor #sgrenovation

♬ Universal Fanfare – The Minions

You can follow the sisters and their home renovation journey at their TikTok, @jmeeandjo.

Check out more things you can get from Taobao

Cover image credit: Jolene

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