This post may contain affiliate links. If you choose to purchase through a link on my site I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.
Ladies, we all want beautiful homes but before I teach you how to decorate on a budget. I want you to stop and think about something first.
You’re on Instagram and you start to get caught up in the feed and you see all these beautiful images by people who seem to have an endless resource to add to their home’s style. You start to have this little twinge in your heart wishing you could make your home just as beautiful as theirs.
I want you to stop and think why… why do you want your home to be like there’s. Is it your style? Do you love it? Does it reflect the life you want to live? Or are you being discontented by the scroll?
One thing you might be forgetting is that it is their job to make their feed to look as beautiful as possible. Often times they are interior decorators, design bloggers. home decor bloggers and that is their job to make their home look amazing in magazine ready. That is how they make their income.
I don’t say all of that to make you distrust those Instagramers. I just want you to have perspective and not feel less than because you are not in a position to redo your whole house. Also, understand that some people have been at it longer than you. It takes time to build your design style and find the pieces that you love.
Get A Good Feel For Your Style
First, get an idea of your style. Look at other people’s designs but don’t let yourself get sucked into making your home looks exactly like there’s today, that will come with time.
Go on Pinterest, go on Instagram save images that you like but while you are doing that I want you to picture yourself in that room. Does it feel comfortable to you? Does it seem like the style that you would see yourself living in?
Someone I love on Instagram is Natalie at vintage porch. One because of her style, but two because she reminds you that it’s ok to do things yourself and no one started with all the decor pieces they wanted in the beginning. You do what you can with what you have. View this post on Instagram
A post shared by Natalie Kolter/ Vintage Porch (@vintageporch) I love the look of the Victorian style furniture in homes but I couldn’t live in it. It’s too fancy, that’s not me personally so you have to really decide what makes you comfortable and what you could live in.
So look at your style that you like but make sure you that you picture yourself and your family in it. If you have a bunch of kids and you are a fun-loving family than maybe a whole bunch of potentially breakable decor it’s not wise.
I personally am more of the cottage farmhouse style. That is what’s comfortable to me.
Decide On A Budget
Next, I want you to decide on a budget. How much are you willing to spend and where are you going to get the money? Do you haven’t already set aside or are you going to need to sell some things that you already have to make the money to do the redesign?
You can spend as little as possible or you can start with what you have and then slowly build up as you get a few extra dollars here and there. You can even ask for decor as gifts for birthday and Christmas.
Before you spend anything. I want you to write down the dollar amount that you want to stick to. Don’t go over this amount. Anything that you do in life I never want you to go into debt or spend money you don’t have to make something a reality. Whether you’re trying to build an income from home or you are trying to design your home the way you want it to look.
So get together the amount of money that you are able to spend and stick to it.
Clean House Before You Bring In More
Before you go buy anything else you need to go through what you have. Get rid of the junk the stuff that just doesn’t fit. The things that someone gave you that you’ve kept out of obligation. The things that are just not you and get rid of them.
You can’t redo a home or a room and make it feel the way that you want if there is junk everywhere. Go through it and decide either what needs to go, what’s going to stay and organize the rest.
Now when it comes to choosing the wall decor, furniture, or pieces to keep remember this. I want you to get rid of everything that does fit your new style. If it is a keepsake or holds sentimental value put it in a tub or a box in the closet.
Could these pots above work in this room to the left? Yes, they would not look horrible. BUT they are not the same style and feel. This living room is more French/vintage and the pots are Spanish/Mexican style. In the room to the left, I would also take out the modern style coffee table.
I don’t care if you have almost nothing on your walls. Anything that doesn’t fit will detract from the things that do.
I have a farmhouse-style set up in my home but I have three modern pieces in that same room those modern style pieces are detracting from the farmhouse style pieces. When you have only the pieces that fit the style you’re going for, they will speak louder when they are not competing.
Think Before You Buy
Never, never, never…. like never! Buy anything that you cannot picture in your home or you don’t have a place in mind for it!
The same goes with DIY projects or pieces that you “might someday” turn into a home decor piece. If you are constantly buying things to redo you will have so much stuff in your home and you’ll never get around to doing it.
Also, know your personality if you are the type to skip over a project that needs doing or just never got around to it then do not give yourself any leeway with this.
BUT and I say this with a big BUT if you are the type that will get a project done. Then and ONlY then can you buy something if it is an amazing deal and you already have projects to get done. But if you don’t think you can get it done or you know it will be a long time down the road before you do then don’t buy it. It is not worth filling up your home with junk and never getting it done.
Not All Pieces Are Your Style
Just because you found something that you thought was pretty doesn’t mean you should buy it and bring it home.
I see things that I think are pretty all the time but they don’t fit my style. You can think there are different things that are pretty but they’re just not how you design your home so for example maybe you see this gorgeous chandelier but it’s not going to fit in your country style home. See what I mean?
So just be careful with buying items that you think “oh, that’s pretty” but it doesn’t fit.
Don’t Be Afraid To DIY
Okay, so obviously I don’t know the style you’re going for or I could be a little bit more helpful and help you know where to choose your pieces for your new style. But I can still give you a few quick tips to help you out with this one.
Don’t be afraid to DIY the item. No matter what your style is don’t be afraid to look second hand and maybe reupholster that item. If you are into the farmhouse style or the antique look you can rough something up and make it look the way you want. Or maybe paint something you don’t like the color. To make the piece fit into your style it can be something as simple as changing the fabric or color and that will give it a completely different look.
Just get creative and think outside the box. It might take some time to train yourself to think that way.
One thing that I will caution you with those is to make sure you will actually do it. I can paint something I love at hobby lobby but I am in a season of life where it will take more time then I am willing to give.
Where To Start
I know it can be hard to decide what you want to buy or where you want to spend your money. If you know off-hand that you don’t have enough to do everything I want you to really think about the pieces that will help you get the biggest impact on the room. So really think about the layout of the room and the parts of the room that is in your line of sight.
So, for example, I have an L shaped living room. And my kitchen is on the bac side of that L. There is a center supporting wall that I hardly see. When I go in the main path of the house I don’t see anything on that wall so I’m not going to invest money on the wall that I barely see.
I want to really think about where you should invest your money and what will give you the most bang for your buck. Maybe you absolutely hate the wall color. Something that I feel really makes a big impact on a room is the curtains so before I was able to get curtains that I wanted in our current home I had some ugly light blue very old and worn out curtains in the living room for probably close to three years before I was able to 1 find the style that I wanted. And once I was able to replace those that was one of the first things I wish I would have taken the time to really try and change. The curtains have a huge impact on the style of the room so definitely think about replacing those first if you can.
Furniture is something is a big factor in the impact of the room but that’s a big-ticket item that probably is not replaceable for most people right off the bat. So like I mentioned before finding things that you are able to DIY is a good thing to remember when re-doing a room. If a couch or chair is not what you would prefer but you can at least reupholster it or put a slipcover over it to give it a fresh look or actually make it something that you want.
Another thing is pillow covers, you may have throw pillows that are good pillows but they are not the pattern or the color that you want. You can easily make the covers or there are a lot of affordable styles on Amazon like the ones shown below.
These are all sets of 4 and under $20 and each seller has different designs so click the image to go check them out.
Quick Decorating Tips On A Budget
Hobby Lobby almost always rotates their home decore sales every few weeks. So make sure to wait until something is on sale before you buy.
You will find some awesome furniture on Craigslist or eBay. Sometimes for free.
Cover up an ugly or outdated couch with a slipcover
This is a great way to make a sofa look better OR help you not despise the one you have. Or if you are looking for a deal you could shop at a yard sales or estate sales and just go into it with the mind to add a slipcover.
PureFit 3 Pieces Super Stretch Chair Couch Cover for 2 Cushion – See On Amazon
Give Things A Fresh Coat Of Paint
One of the easiest ways to make something old look new again is to paint it. We have some end tables that were looking yellow and just flat-out dirty. But after I repainted them they were perfect. No need to replace them.
You can do that with picture frames, a light fixture, or any kind of solid furniture you may have liked the look of but the color just wasn’t quite right.
Swap Out A Lamp Shade
This is a great way to give a lamp an update without buying a whole new lamp.
Add a Plant
Whether real or fake plants can add to a room like I never thought possible.
To add a little style to a plant you can find some beautiful pots on Etsy. Handmade Tiny Planters – Clay – See On Etsy
You can also find some beautiful indoor garden plants on Etsy as well.
Pearls and Jade POTHOS CUTTINGS – See On Etsy
Hide or Cover Up The Cords
This can be done even if you are on a tight budget. Covering the cords just makes everything look neater and put together. This can be don’t by simply being strategic with your placement or by getting cord concealers.
Go Thrift Shops /Garage Sales
Buying used (pre-loved) pieces of furniture and décor is a great way to save on things that may otherwise cost you a pretty penny. You never know what hidden gems you’ll stumble upon at a thrift store or flea market.
Set Up Sales Alerts
If you’re dead-set on something that’s out of your price range, try to buy it on sale. You can use ShopStyle to set a sale alert for products from literally hundreds of major brands; just enter your search filters or terms and press the pink “Add Sale Alert” button and you’ll be emailed when the item goes on sale. Retailers like Overstock, Amazon, and Macy’s will also alert you when something goes on sale or returns after being out of stock.
Customize an End Table
With a bit of paint and a little imagination, you can make a tired end table feel brand new. Consider painting the edge of a simple black piece in gold, for instance.
Rearrange the Furniture
This is a no coast way to completely change the look of a room and give it an instant update. Make sure to take time to see what direction you want to room to face and how the room naturally flows.
Add A Throw Blanket
Whether it’s a couch or chair drape a soft knit blanket will make any space feel cozy.
Infuse Your Bookcase with Personality
Wallpaper isn’t for the walls. Use a small amount of wallpaper (you can find chic, removable wallpaper from brands like Chasing Paper ) to decorate the interior of a bookcase.
Add a Table Runner To It
Whether it’s your coffee table or dining room table. Adding a splash of color will make any table feel dressed up. Just remember to keep your table cloth solid or very minimal print of your table runner is more patterned.
Buy Fresh Flowers
Fresh flowers instantly bring a home to life with their vibrant colors, fragrant scent, and sophisticated look. Invest in a nice vase and replenish your bunch with a few extra bucks at the market each week.
Is your backyard farm costing way more than you thought?
If you are tired of your backyard farm literally eating away at all your extra cash, check out the Productive and Profitable Backyard Farmer’s Club.
Learn how to turn your money-sucking hobby into a profitable business with my monthly lessons that ONLY take you 45 minutes a month to listen to and implement.