Decorating on a Budget: 5 Tips

Decorating on a budget: 5 tipsCall it decorating drain. Maybe it’s too much time spent on Pinterest or Houzz. Or, maybe it’s my magazine subscriptions to everything from Elle Décor, to Coastal Living, to English Home. Of course, it could be my well-documented HGTV addiction. Whichever is the culprit, suffice it to say that I am a little weary from all of the must-haves trotted out by trend-setting interior designers each season, which are clearly not decorating on a budget.

Just when my eye was getting used to toile, toile is outré. And, heaven forbid I purchase lattice patterned textiles. Suddenly, the simple geometrics are as old-fashioned as 1970’s shag carpet. And, don’t even get me started on here-today-gone-tomorrow gallery walls, shiplap, or subway tile!

Still, I want my home to look it’s best. So, how am I supposed to freshen my home’s look without spending the kids’ entire college fund? In a word: camouflage.

No, I don’t mean the Duck Dynasty kind!

Instead, I am just covering up what I don’t like, without ditching the entire kit and caboodle. Furniture, artwork, and lighting are all far too expensive to replace whenever a new style becomes popular.

After all, we aren’t talking about a new pair of capris or a cute handbag. Furniture is pricey! But, a refresh is simple, inexpensive, and makes the whole house feel (almost) like new.

Here are some of my favorite tricks:

Cover it! My couch and loveseat are done an overall paisley pattern in beiges, brown, and burgundy. The fabric is virtually indestructible, which means I have held onto them longer than I wanted to. A great solution is a white Cotton Duck Sofa Slipcover from Wayfair ($74.99) and a few Lovinghome pillow covers from Amazon Prime (only $6.99 each). Voila! Soft furnishings with that Fixer Upper style.

Paint: It’s not just for walls, anymore. When in doubt, a coat of paint can work wonders. Freshen up heavy, dark wood furniture with a coat of white chalk paint for the chippy, worn-in look that is currently dominating home magazines. Paint or whitewash also completely change the look of everything from baskets, to accessories like candlesticks, and even decorative dishes!

Turn it around. Have you noticed the trend to turn books so that spines face inward? Every HGTV stylist I have seen does this. Since 99% of my books are for decorative purposes only, this instantly updates the look and I didn’t spend a cent. (Naturally, if you actually need to read your books, this will not work… LOL.)

With curtains and drapes, less is more. Swags, jabots, and multiple layers of drapery instantly date your home (circa 1987). Pare it down to just the essentials for a fresh, clean look. If you have no near neighbors, leave gorgeous windows completely bare to take advantage of great views and natural light.

Mixed metals. If you still have an abundance of 1990’s brass accessories, don’t feel that you need to replace them all. Simply add other metals to the mix for a look that is more contemporary. I especially love decorating with groupings that also include copper and rose gold for a warm, inviting look.

Ditch it. Overblown, dusty faux flower arrangements, silk ivy, and Tuscan-inspired clusters of grapes all need to go immediately.

To see all of my decorating faves, visit Susan’s Home on Pinterest.

Do you love home and garden decor, jewelry, handbags, beauty essentials and fashion? IT’S TIME TO WIN THEM!  Please take some time to enter our current style giveawaysAnd, if you liked this Decorating on a Budget post, please visit Fabulous Interiors for even more inspiration.

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DISCLAIMER: No financial compensation or decorating samples were received in exchange for this post. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I believe will be good for my readers

PHOTO CREDIT: Used with permission by Polyvore.

Named one of the Top 50 Beauty Blogs in the World by, Susan Said… WHAT?! is your guide to a life filled with style. From must-have fashion and accessories, to gorgeous gardens, stunning interiors, plus the latest products and ideas for chic parties, you’ll find it here. Editor Susan Conforte McNeill is an author, entrepreneur, and co-founder of the literacy organization Success Won’t Wait

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