OK, this is another edition of me begging and pleading with you fellow DIYers to get into the jig saw game. I know, I know, it has a motor and it makes a relatively loud noise, so you’re convinced that it’s too terrifying or assume it’s too expensive to go near.
Well, I’m here to swear to you that you are wrong. First of all, you can get a jig saw for under $30. That coffee phrase sweatshirt you just bought from Etsy cost almost double that, didn’t it?
Of course they range up to higher prices (like this one) for added speed, etc., but I’ve been using that inexpensive one for the last two years, and it’s gotten all the jobs done.
Second, I’ll agree with you for a moment and concur that it IS a little scary the first time you use one, but it literally took two cuts to realize that it’s pretty much just noisy and that’s really the scariest part about it. Trust me on that one.
Why on earth am I so adamant about you guys overcoming a jig saw fear you ask? Well, it’s simply because I have been thrilled with how much wider my DIY options have become since I learned to use one, and I want the same for you!
They are small and inexpensive compared to a larger power saw (and way less scary), can do curves and shapes instead of just straight lines, and there are so many things you can do with it.
To prove my point, I’ll show you 15 projects that you can make with the help of a handy dandy jig saw, and I think the projects will do the convincing for me.
First is this adorable mid-century plant stand that Mandi made. She’s been using a jig saw for longer than I have and was definitely part of the reason I wanted to learn to use one—I was totally jealous of all the things she was making with it!
This leather magazine rack is actually the first project that I learned to use the jig saw on. Our profesh builder, Josh, was on our team at the time, and he convinced me to give it a try. So we made this project together, and I’m so glad he talked me into it!
Now, Elsie’s dining room table DIY wasn’t made with a jig saw, but it could have been pretty easily. The whole thing is just a series of small straight cuts—perfect for a jig saw!
Not every project has to be on a large scale. I made these hanging planter boxes out of small wooden jewelry boxes, but I needed an easy way to cut the boxes in half. Jig saw to the rescue!
This wooden cutting board DIY is another great small project for a jig saw. And since a jig saw can do curves, you can do whatever shape you want!
This DIY metal edge marquee would have been completely impossible without a jig saw. But with one, I could make whatever phrase or font I wanted!
How cute is this mini horse bookshelf?? Whether you are making it for a kiddo’s room (or just one for yourself!), you’ll need a jigsaw to get the job done. And, I just realized that all you have to do is cut out a horn for the forehead and you’ve got yourself a unicorn shelf instead!
This jewelry storage mirror is another project that only needs a few small straight cuts to complete. I still absolutely LOVE this in my bedroom. So helpful for organizing everything!
This adorable house-shaped shelf can also be done with a jig saw and would look cute in any kitchen. You could also make it to store nail polish or makeup in a bathroom instead. Love it!
Using a jig saw to add trim to closet doors takes the custom look factor to a completely different planet. These doors are totally one of my favorite things in our house!
Using the jig saw’s ability to cut curves came in handy when I made this plant chandelier for our backyard a few summers ago. The plants grew to hang beautifully by the end of summer, and it was one of my favorite outdoor features for sure.
Give your speakers a clean look with these speaker covers (you can make them whatever size you need). It’s the perfect solution to blend unsightly electronics into your space.
OK, this is probably my favorite use for a jig saw at the moment—a Palm Springs kitty scratch house! For me, this alone is worth the jig saw investment.
Making your own custom shape is what a jig saw is all about, so this starburst ceiling medallion DIY is easily done with the right tool (spoiler alert: the right tool is a jig saw). Love it!
And just to remind you that a jig saw isn’t just useful for wood-related projects, I’ve included this hanging flower heart decoration.
Jig saws are also useful for cutting other types of material like dense foam or styrofoam (it can even cut sheet metal!). It took me only seconds to cut out this giant heart with the saw. I would have been hacking away at it forever with a hand saw or bread knife.
It is true that you can ask some home improvement places to make cuts for you (which will work in a pinch), but to be honest, since I have a jig saw, I usually do it myself so I can be in control of the cuts and make sure they are right (it really sucks to get home and find out they aren’t…).
A few other tips—sawhorses are really helpful to set your wood on when using a jig saw. (You can get foldable sawhorses that take up way less space.) I use them for lots of outdoor projects, so they are just generally handy to have.
Clamps also keep the wood secured to the sawhorse while you cut so it doesn’t wiggle around (again, you’ll find lots of other uses for those too). Make sure to use eye protection and the right blade for whatever you are cutting (buy a variety pack).
If you want a more general beginner’s guide to using a jig saw, watch this video to get started! Like I said, the DIY options really open up once you can use a saw that does straight and curved cuts easily—don’t be afraid!
So, what do you think? Did I convince you to give it a try? xo. Laura