Hi everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! Its been a busy one for me! Lots of fun stuff to share with you in the upcoming weeks, but I thought I would pull a post from the archives today. This is a favorite of mine, but it doesn’t get much traffic so I thought I’d give it another try…
Thank you so much for your kind comments regarding my budget entryway reveal earlier this week! I promised I would be back to share some helpful tips with you…
So without further ado, here are my top tips for decorating a small space on a budget:
1) Start with a plan. Having a planned design direction for your space will save you money. Make an inspiration board, create a Pinterest board, or clip pictures and ideas from magazines. Make sure to include pictures of paint colors, fabrics, and materials you would like to use (wicker, wood, and metal, to name a few). Then, once you have your board created, take a picture of it with your cell phone. Yep, that’s right; so next time you’re out shopping and wonder if that fabric you found on sale will be a good match for your room, you’ll have a photo to reference. It’s also a good idea to write down the measurements of your space and keep them on you somewhere; your wallet, purse, or store them in your phone, like I do. Having a plan will keep you from making unnecessary purchases – that item may be on sale, but is it the right size or color? Does it fit your design plan? If not, don’t buy it! Save your money for something you really want that works with your plan.
2) Set a budget. It’s important to have a concrete budget, and to do your best to stick to it. If you decide to splurge on a couple of key items, balance it out by spending less on other items. You’ll surprise yourself with how creative you can get on a budget.
3) Shop your house. Maybe that old mirror in the attic didn’t look so great on top of your dresser but would work perfectly propped on top of an entryway table.
4) Think of ways to re-purpose things you already have. Chop it down, build it up, paint it; like I did with my sofa table, and the art I made from my neighbors fence.
5) Spread the word! Let friends and family know you are looking for certain furniture pieces – you never know – they may be looking to get rid of those exact same pieces, or know someone else who is. You may even be able to swap furniture with someone; they want your table, you want their hall tree – it’s a win, win!
6) Paint it! Paint is one of the least expensive ways to get a new look for little money. Walls, furniture and accessories can all be given new life with a fresh coat of paint.
7) Sell your old stuff to get money to buy new stuff. Sites like Craigslist, Ebay classifieds (Kijiji, in Canada) and Facebook Classifieds make it so easy to do this!
8) Shop Craigslist, Ebay, garage sales, and second-hand stores – even curb-side, if you’re so inclined! You never know what treasures you may find! When shopping retail, check the “clearance”, “markdown”, “bump and dent”, and “returned” sections (Ikea has a great “returned” section, and Target is known for its “clearance” end-caps). You may find something for a killer deal because it needs a fresh coat of paint or a small, fixable repair. A word of caution though; know your limits! You might think that curb-side find is a diamond in the rough, but spending days cleaning, re-gluing, sanding, painting, and waxing may not fit into your busy schedule, or your skill set. Sometimes it’s better to shell out a little extra cash to save a lot of time (don’t ask me how I know this.)
9) Look for furniture and decorative items that can do double-duty. Ottomans, and storage cubes are great for hiding clutter, but can also serve as extra seating. Crates and baskets can be used to corral mail, keys, shoes and other items at the front door.
10) Use coupons! Also, shop during holiday weekends when retailers have big sales. Most retailers will send coupons and discount notices directly to your inbox; just go to their website and sign up.
11) Shop end-of-season, especially for holiday decor items that you may want to display only certain times of the year. Some items, like my antlers, can even work well year-round.
12) Use natural items in your decor. Things like seashells, driftwood, pine-cones, stones, greenery, and even fresh or dried berries and fruits can often be found for free and look great as stand-alone items, grouped together, or as filler for vases.
13) Be creative with your artwork. Use quilts, dishes, or silver platters as artwork, like I did in my dining room. This is a great opportunity to display your children’s masterpieces, too. Inexpensive, handmade art can also be found on sites like Etsy.
14) DIY it. If you can’t seem to find that piece within your price range, maybe you can make it. If you can’t do it yourself, put that handy hubby, or helpful sister to work on a new bench, console table or shelf. You can find lots of free blueprints for furniture online these days.
15) Most importantly, take your time and try to enjoy the process. Decorating a space on a budget can be a challenge; it’s going to take time, patience, and resourcefulness but in the end, you’ll have a space that reflects your personality and functions the way you need it to.
I hope you found these tips helpful for decorating your small space on a budget. Thanks so much for taking the time to stop by! Have a wonderful week, and don’t forget to stop back in tomorrow and link up your latest posts at the Talented Tuesday Link Party!
Until next time,
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