Sometimes when I visit someone else’s home I experience the distinct emotion of jealousy. In fact, I recently spent some time with a friend and loved how clean yet homey her space was, and when I returned home I couldn’t help but be…disappointed with my own arrangement. So, like just about anyone who even remotely enjoys decorating and who spends 90% of their time in their house, I got to thinking how I could redo things within a modest budget—because I’m of a modest income. I’m sure you can relate. Even if you don’t, the following methods I researched and employed could prove helpful for your own DIY redecorating on a budget.
If you’ve read my other posts, then you know I’m kind of obsessed with minimalism at the moment. Now, I don’t necessarily mean true minimalism, but what I do like is leaving some space empty and keeping a clean home void of unnecessary items. So my first piece of advice that I benefited a lot from was to simply donate the things I no longer needed or wanted to declutter each room, which if you refer to my previous blog post, you’ll see that you can even make money off of this process to help fund your redecoration.
Rather than getting rid of items, you can also move them or repurpose them to give a room a new look. This article here gave me some good ideas towards my living room in particular. I’m only going to highlight the ones I used in this post, but you can definitely take a look at the link above to explore other options.
Using What You’ve Got
To start with, just use what you already have. Do you have any furniture or décor in storage that you can swap out with what you have now? Or how about simply rearranging your home to give it a fresh look? If you’ve gotten rid of the extraneous junk that was only taking up space, now you have room to shift things around. It’s amazing what a simple swap can do to the look of a room, especially if you add in transitions.
Transitions are pieces that differentiate one space from another. For example, I rearranged my couch and TV so that they sat on a rug I got on sale from Homegoods (a stellar place to find good deals on, you guessed it, home goods). My sectional couch sort of framed the rug and created a specific “living room” area from the shared space it has with the dining area. If you arrange your spaces in a way that creates a “contained area” look, you can have a lot of fun decorating each “zone”.
Creative Storage Space
You don’t have to buy fancy organizers in order to organize a space beautifully. I think one of the most helpful items in organizing that creates a aesthetically-pleasing design are hanging shelves and clear plastic bins. You could have your whole pantry on display and it would still look nice. Hanging shelves aren’t particularly expensive, and you can even make some yourself out of wood plants and a drill. This also goes for any decor you want on your walls.
Making sure everything has it’s place is essential to making your home look tidy when it comes to storage, so that’s why I like plastic containers and mason jars/recycled jars. If someone can look into your cabinet and know exactly what everything is, they’re going to be impressed. Also, hoarding mugs and silverware just makes a mess, so make sure to declutter the kitchen as well. That’s just the bare-bones though, because there are tons of other simple items you can use to organize your home.
List of Storage Ideas
I scoured the internet for some cheap, but aesthetically pleasing ideas and the following is what I found I liked best; however, I definitely recommend taking a look at this Pinterest board in particular—she’s got loads of stuff! Pinterest is a great blogging site for gathering ideas and making your own portfolio. Anyway, as I was saying, some of my favorites:
- Store tank tops on shower rings on hangers
- Maximize drawer space with dividers
- Install tension rods in the back of your closet or other space for a shoe rack
- Also using tension rods to hang spray bottles under the sink
- Using a turn table in the fridge to organize condiments and other foodstuffs
- Store matching sheets inside pillow cases
- Use hanging shoe organizer as organizer for cleaning supplies
- Hanging a ladder from the ceiling horizontally to use as a pot rack
- Repurpose jam jars, pickle jars, etc. as bathroom organization or kitchen organization
- Wash and reuse Ziploc bags
- Store cords inside toilet paper tubes
- Use a spice rack to display your perfume (plus, this can be used as décor!)
These are just a handful of random ideas I found that I plan on using, there are literally hundreds or ways to repurpose stuff into organizers. All it takes is a little creativity and elbow grease, and you can cheaply make your home more attractive.
I really like plants and nature, so a lot of my home is filled with items to reflect that. Drying bouquets of flowers I’ve received and hanging them on the wall, especially in the dining room, is a beautiful way of showcasing my taste in a very easy way. I also will press flowers until they have dried, and then frame them in simple, small frames for bathroom or hallway décor. Speaking of decorating bathrooms, I also found this blog here that has some great ideas on how not to overcomplicate such small spaces.
Honestly, just putting a few plants in your home will lighten the place up while simultaneously cleaning the air. You can even buy some cheap terracotta pots and paint them to make them pop! If you don’t like the idea of painting them, you can also glue seashells or beach glass on the outside to create a unique look—you can also do this with round glass vases for a make-shift candle-holder.
I also reuse wine bottles for myself and as gifts. Once I’ve finished a particularly attractive bottle, I’ll clean it out, maybe add a little extra decoration on the outside somewhere, and then insert these little lights attached to a faux cork with an on/off switch—you can find this on Amazon, or at craft stores like Joanne’s or Marshals. They make for nice mood-lighting and look pretty. You can do a lot with bottles and jars in general–like I said, you can use them for organization whether it’s desktop stuff or foodstuffs, you can make candle decor, lighting, plant holders, and more. You might think that reusing items will appear cheap, but I promise you, if you take the time and effort to create something cute, you’ll create decor that people really admire. Plus, you have the added bonus of being able to say you made it!
A Fresh Coat of Paint!
One of the most obvious changes you can make is the color of the room, but you can do more than just simply paint it. There are many different paint finishes you can use in order to personalize each room, such as sponging, stripes using tape, and stenciling. If you don’t want to commit to so much work, you can still paint an accent wall to create a focal feature in a room. It doesn’t just stop with walls either, there’s specific paints you can use to repaint kitchen appliances, counters, etc. to make old things look new. If you have a dining table, you can stain and refinish the wood to bring some life to an old feature, and if you have wood chairs you can either do the same to them, or make/buy cushions in order to bring color into the room.