Decor facelifts are a ton of fun but also cost a ton of funds. Still these are tough economic times for many. But the downturn of this cycle doesn’t mean we can afford to be less stylish, especially in our dwelling space. I’ve recently had the wanderlust for some new furniture and accessories, but didn’t really feel like dipping into my rainy day savings account. There are simpler ways to make bigger impacts.
1. Signature Splurge
Choose to spend a bit extra on one or two items in a room. Find a chair with great fabric or exotic wood or a beautiful piece of art. These items are what people will notice as they first enter the room. They’ll pop and everything else can be worked around them and decorated for less.
2. Fancy Lights
Home Stagers and Designers almost always do this when they’re refreshing a home to put on the market. It makes a world of difference. In your own home, in order to save money, you can purchase exterior lanterns and hang them over your kitchen island in a group of three. I bought some Egyptian lanterns in a market that cost under $100 CDN. They cost less than one fancy interior light and I get compliments on them every time someone comes over.
3. Organize! Organize! Organize!
The most inexpensive thing to do to spruce up your home is purge, organize and find functional and fashionable storage. It’s simple and can be completed over a weekend. Many people are so busy that they think a makeover will solve the problem [of too much stuff], but really they just need to get rid of the clutter. Shop at IKEA for simple storage solutions and then donate unwanted clothes to the Salvation Army, old home fixtures to Habitat for Humanity or have a garage sale.
4. Accent on the Accents
Potted orchids in a fabulous pot always set a dramatic but simple tone. Also, large glass containers holding lemons, limes or apples can add a splash of colour, look current and keep you healthy. Large beautiful candles add glamour and create a wonderful ambiance during evening relaxing time.
5. Ready. Set. Shop!
Fabricland has pillows that range in price from $15 to $20 each. They also carry a variety of window treatments in different styles and colours that are in the $50 per panel range. The prices are modest and as a consumer you’re supporting fair trade. They also carry decorative boxes, tapestries and treasures from around the world. Lastly, an old standby for me is HomeSense. The revolving merchandise door at this place keeps you addicted. I can accessorize an entire house in one store.
7. Designer Time
An interior designer will take the uncertainty out of making decisions and keep you from making a design mistake, which is always costly. A designer is available for the big decisions and the smaller ones, to help you to decide what colour to paint your walls, for complete makeover decisions and is available to furniture or accessory shop with you. A designer can give you a new perspective. Always start with rearranging your existing pieces, to give a room an instant new look.
8. Furniture Facelift
Look at pieces you love and consider giving them a fresh look. Is there is an old chest of drawers or wood coffee table you love the shape of, but maybe not the leg detail or hardware? Why not change the hardware and repaint the piece using a beautiful gloss paint? The piece will look and feel like brand new. Many paint suppliers now offer wonderful environmentally friendly options which are safer for your home. And consider changing an old wood leg to a sleek metal option.
9. Swap meet
Invite your neighbours, friends and family to bring all the home decor items that they no long want and swap them for something they do want or need. Not only is this an opportunity to bring home new decor for your space without spending a penny, it’s a chance to socialize and exchange decorating ideas. At the end of the day, gather the remaining items and donate them to your local non-profit thrift store or Habitat for Humanity.
10. Bring Home the Bargains
My favourite place to bargain shop and find unique items is on eBay. It is a fast, efficient way to find even the most obscure items. Consignment stores are also a great place to find fabulous items at great prices. You can take advantage of other people’s cast-offs that are still in great shape. Often these shops carry designer errors that are brand new, and though they may not have been right for the intended client, they might just be exactly what you’re looking for. Scan Craigslist for home staging items used in showings that are no longer needed. Brand new but half the price – and never used.