Everyone wants a home they’re proud to invite their friends over to, but if you’re on a tight budget, decorating your space can quickly get frustrating. We look at some free and low-cost ways to get great results and maximum impact without breaking the bank.
New furniture is shockingly expensive – and don’t be fooled by those ‘just X dollars a month’ deals – you’ll end up paying way more than the item is worth in the long run. It’s also a shame to buy new when there are so many places both online and in the ‘real’ world where people are selling great quality, unique and characterful secondhand furniture. You’ll save a fortune in the process, and with a little TLC, many items can be transformed into something exquisitely beautiful that matches your theme and stands the test of time. After all, they really don’t make them like they used to!
Repair before you replace
The same principle applies to your electronics and appliances – and aside from generally being cheaper to repair than to replace, you can also take satisfaction in knowing you’re doing your bit for the planet too, avoiding consumption of all the resources required to manufacture a new item (not to mention all the carbon emissions associated with shipping and transporting it to the store). Get in touch with a company like Fixitt Appliance Repairs before you part with more money than you need to, and then get creative to spruce your items up even more.
Shuffle and play with your furniture
Sometimes simply rearranging your furniture can give your entire home a facelift without the need to spend a dime. Play around, try different layouts and arrangements, move items between rooms, and try to come up with a new flow that works better for each space you tackle. Consider and take advantage of natural lighting, use large pieces of furniture to create zones or nooks within a larger room, and experiment to your heart’s content. Try to make focal points out of your favorite pieces so they stand out as soon as you walk into the room, and you’ll instantly feel more at home.
Learn to DIY
There’s nothing quite as satisfying as making something beautiful and useful with your own hands. See if there are any courses available in your area, or take advantage of the massive amount of resources available online to get you started. Whether it’s learning to make your own curtains or cushions, reupholster or restore furniture or paint like a pro, acquiring just a few basic skills gives you the tools you need to create expensive-looking designs for next to nothing.
Beat clutter with clever storage
No matter how beautiful your individual items may be, you’re not going to be able to appreciate them fully when they’re drowning in clutter. Having a good spring clean, donating old items to charity, recycling them or selling them for a few bucks rather than having them lying around gathering dust can have huge impact on your space. Reconsider where and how you store items, so the things you need on hand, but which might not be the most… attractive features in a room, are out of sight yet still easily accessible. Tackle the areas where ‘stuff’ tends to accumulate and address the underlying issue – usually it’s simply that something doesn’t have a designated space where it belongs. Check out some of these ultra-clever storage hacks for inspiration.
Go for high impact when you do spend money
If you’ve got some money set aside for home improvement, don’t waste it on things you’re barely going to notice. Repainting an entire room in virtually the same shade it was before doesn’t really make sense – especially when you could have created an exciting accent wall or even painted the ceiling for a far more dramatic effect. A change is, after all, as good as a holiday – so splash out on things you’re really going to love. It might be some really lush-looking curtains, an eye-catching artwork that can become the focal point of the room, or a big, impactful lighting feature that will lift the whole space.
Make it your own
Most importantly of all, your space should serve your needs – so never spend money on a décor trend you don’t love. Include personal touches like photos or printouts of your favorite digital pictures and create an atmosphere that invokes a sense of peace and relaxation. You really don’t need to break the bank to turn your home into your own little sanctuary.