Decor on a Dime: 5 Expert Tips to Get the Most from Your Design Budget

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We all like to save money when we can. This is particularly true for people who are passionate about interior design. There’s no getting around the fact that most home makeover projects can be very expensive. That’s why it’s so important that you save money wherever possible.

To help you get the most bang for your buck, below are five tips to help you save money and still create the beautiful home you’ve dreamed of having.


1. Think About Where the Money’s Going

One common mistake that home decorators make when they make a budget is not prioritizing how they’ll spend their money. If you’re going for a full makeover of an entire room, you have to decide what’s most important to you. That way, if you end up running short of money later, you’ve already purchased the most important elements.


Cover Your Biggest Expenses First

It’s no secret that furniture will always cost more than any picture frame, vase, or piece of wall art you want to buy. When you make your budget, start by listing the items you want in order by cost. Your biggest expenses should be at the top, with your cheapest options at the bottom. This will help you see what has the most potential to drain your funds the fastest.


Consider Where Quality is Key

In decor, it’s not always the case that you get what you pay for, but it does hold true most of the time. It’s a good idea to channel most of your money into pieces that will last for a long time. For example, investing in a high-quality area rug that will last you for years to come will save you money in the long run. If you opt for a cheap substitute, you’ll find yourself replacing it very quickly.


2. Refurbish Where you Can

Before you decide to replace your decor item, you should see if you can make it work with your new design. If the only reason you can’t is that it’s a little worn out, your next step should be to see if you can refurbish it.


An example might be a leather recliner that you’ve had for a few years. It’s probably started to dry out and maybe crack in certain places. Applying just a little bit of oil can go a long way towards restoring your leather back to its original glory. Even if it can’t be saved, see if it would be cheaper to replace the leather upholstery, rather than the entire chair.


3. Repurpose Old Decor

So long as you don’t mind stretching your creative muscles a little bit, you can save a good chunk of money by repurposing some old decor items. Finding new uses for old items is one of the oldest tricks in the home decoration playbook. DIY repurposing can be quick, fun, and cheap to do.


A few ideas you might consider include:


  • Using old mason jars as light fixtures
  • A DIY wooden picture frame from an old bookshelf
  • Turning an old suitcase into a coffee table
  • Using patches of fabric from old furniture as wall art


4. Look for Cheap Knockoffs

In items that won’t see a lot of abuse, like wall art, end tables, and the like, you stand to save a lot of money by getting a knockoff version. Unlike your furniture pieces that see a lot of use, most accent pieces aren’t being sat on, stepped on, shuffled around, or used. That means that even if the quality isn’t top notch, they’ll still last for a long time.


Most accent pieces are there to add to your design in a visual sense. They don’t have to be exceptionally functional. Why would you waste extra money getting a name-brand picture frame when a cheaper option at the thrift store works just as well?


5. Repaint Your Room

In many cases, your room doesn’t need to be totally redecorated. All it may need is, literally, a new coat of paint. Painting is a cheap, easy method to bring a new lease on life to any room in your home. Painting a room also gives you a great opportunity to diversify your design without swapping out every piece of decor.


For example, if your old color scheme was completely blue, try adding in some green or orange paint to spruce up your design. You may find that your room looks better than it ever has with the same decor you’ve always had.

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