Simple Home Decorating Tips: Redesign Without Breaking Your Budget

You want a home that inspires and comforts you. A space that provides refuge, is functional, and presents a perspective of who you are. But people change and so should home décor. Before you start planning your budget, know that good home design isn’t always about expensive additions; some of the most transformative modifications can come from embracing your inner DYI-er.

redesigned kitchen

Would you like a new kitchen? It just takes some DIY. Photo credit: The DIY Nuts 

Redesign and Repurpose

"A designer knows when he has reached perfection not when there is nothing left to add but when there is nothing left to take away," said aviator and writer Antione de Sainte-Exupery. The statement offers a good place to start when redesigning your home. “One of the biggest changes of all you can make is free … and that is decluttering,” said Lindsey Machado, owner of Designed With Grace & Joy. “Doing so creates a more clean, open and spacious feel.” 

Think about what you are throwing away before doing so. Many items can find another purpose. Look at things with your DIY eye—can that glass jar or plastic box become something? You can find some treasures, but be judicious. The point of decluttering is to remove items from your space—not start a pile in your crafting room of projects you’ll never work on.

Take the Next Step

The first step to your redecorating is removing what furniture doesn’t work anymore—and replacing it doesn’t need to be pricey. For example, updating your bedroom shouldn't make a huge dent on your wallet. “Most people walk into an overpriced furniture store, point at an entire bedroom set and say, ‘I’ll take it!’” said Machado. “But the truth is, that can create a very basic, cookie-cutter result and be very expensive. Instead, try to mix and match the pieces to look more designed and curated.”

So, if you're reworking your bedroom, for instance, try an upholstered headboard, unique nightstands, and a functional dresser or chest in a different finish. This way you can get furniture you like from a variety of places, such as Facebook marketplace to second-hand stores—and then refinish or paint it yourself for a quick and easy facelift. 

Replace and Move Around Room Elements for a New Look

Sometimes simply making a small tinker is all you need. Find some sophisticated light fixtures and charming lamp pulls for your house and replace the old ones, for example. “In the living space, it is always advisable to have ample lighting,” advised Srilakshmi Mahidhara, editor and senior writer of Yogic Experience. “Try having different color hues to use when necessary. While most of the partying or gathering happen in the living room, it gives an opportunity to create the mood.”

Be open to moving furniture around, and upgrading accessories with a similar design aesthetic to draw a room together better. A great way to upgrade a cabinet or a dresser is to simply change the hardware. “The brass fittings in the kitchen are my personal favorite and are trending, too,” suggested Mahidhara. “They give a rich look.”

before and after kitchen design

The before and after on a backsplash project that just required some painting. Photo credit: The DIY Nuts 

A Bit of Paint Changes Everything

Putting a new color on the wall can revitalize a room. Erin Nutter, owner and content creator of the blog, The DIY Nuts, learned this when she decided to paint her backsplash [see how she did it]. 

Replacing tile is messy and she didn’t relish the disruption of losing her kitchen for a few days. So she and her partner opted to paint. “I am shocked at the end result—I absolutely love how clean our kitchen looks with just the simple white backsplash,” said Nutter. “The biggest challenge with this project was getting over the fear of doing it. After I was done, I was kicking myself for not painting these tiles sooner."

You Can Paint So Many Things

Paint is an amazing tool in redecorating—it’s easy to use and you can alter almost anything. For instance, you can repaint the fire mantels and surrounds with heat-resistant paint. “Even if you have a brick fireplace, it's totally fine to paint over that as well,” advised Daniel Morris, an online marketer from Fire and Saw. “You would need to use a quality pigmented sealer first, and then cover with a heat-resistant paint in your preferred color, white or black always look great.”

Painting a brick fireplace is a job even a beginner DIYer can do. “It can take a bit of time because you really need the brush to fill in all the small air pockets and gaps, but it's not more difficult than painting anything else,” said Morris. Using a larger brush that is good quality helps a lot—cheap paint brushes make all painting difficult.” He recommends spending at least $15 per brush—it’s worth the investment since it will perform well and last for a long time.

stenciling

You can make your own stencils. Photo credit: Pexels

Add Personal Touches With Stenciling

Stencils have added spark to home spaces for more than 37 thousand years—even the Neanderthals liked some art in their caves. While the first stencils captured hand prints, nowadays you can find almost any design you desire—and if what you envision doesn’t exist, you can create a homemade mold. “Once you are happy with the design you can apply the paints,” said Mahidhara, who also mentioned that green and blues hues are trending—and that you can pair those colors with earthy tones or pastel. “I would also recommend going for what fits your taste. Trends keep changing, but you should ultimately like the space you live in and connect with it.”

flowers and box

Preserved roses last longer than the real ones and brighten up a room. Photo credit: Eternal Roses

Add a Little Something

Flowers, plants, accent pillows go a long way in revitalizing a room’s look. “Bright blooms are a great way to brighten up any room and give a room an amazing scent,” said Interiors specialist Richard Petrie from Thomas Sanderson, a luxury window design company in the UK. “You could also incorporate nature by adding an indoor plant such as a Bromeliad or Orchids to your windowsill. Plants and flowers are known to also naturally filter the air and improve your mood.”

If you are allergic to certain scents, you can also try other types of flowers. Eternal Roses, for instance, preserves fresh flowers by using a glycerin-based mixture that re-hydrates the rose and allows it to last several years, according to owner Monica Horn. 

The little details matter in a home. For instance, adding a ceiling light can update a space, streamline a room’s design and offer more lighting, which automatically makes a space feel bigger, according to Machado. “But, if you have a ceiling light, it’s important to incorporate either table or floor lamps to balance the lighting and create those secondary light sources.  Otherwise the room could end up feeling a little dreary and dated.”

Redecorating your home can feel daunting, but just take it one room at a time, focusing on a project until it’s completed. Soon enough your space will feel bright and re-invented.

white kitchen backsplash with glass container of apples

A few glass bowls and its bright contents can add a burst of color to your counter. Photo credit: The DIY Nuts Blog

Looking for more content on DIY? Watch Fabric & Home's video on refurbishing furniture or our blog post on using accent pillows.

flower duo

Photo credit: Eternal Roses. Featured photo credit: Pexels

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