How To Decorate On a Budget

by - February 27, 2018


I am skipping Wishlist Wednesday this week to talk a little about home decor.  I live for home decor as much as I live for fashion, travel and doggies.  I honestly wish I had more space in my home not because I need it or because we a bursting at the seems over here,  no just so that I can decorate more home space (and have more room for shoes).  Over the last couple of years I have learned some great lessons when it comes to decorating on a budget.  You know champagne dreams on a beer budget.  For me budgeting is not only about saving money but about switching things up and incorporating a new look either seasonally or after a couple years.  Seasonally I like to switch out things like vases, my dining table decor and other small accents.  I like these pieces to be affordable so that I can have more of them.  I also like to change things out after a couple years, for example; having a mid-century modern look in the living room and then switching some things out so that it is a more eclectic modern look, just for a change and to grow with my style.

My first tip is, take your time.  When you buy a home or inhabit a new space and try to fill it all at once you are not working with your gradual inspiration.  Utilize resources like blogs, Instagram and Pinterest to hone in on your style and what you want.  Rome was not built in a day and your style will change and mature with time.  Time will also allow you to understand and grow into your space.  That way when you find the right pieces for the space they will be as close to perfect as it gets.  It took K and I a year or more decorate our bedroom.  It took us a while to decide what the space really needed since it a big room, but long and narrow.  Picking a bed was hard and we ended up going with just a headboard instead of a bed, which I love and am so glad we did.

My second tip is, Target, HomeGoods, Marshalls, T.J.Maxx, Wayfair, Rugs USA, Lamps Plus, World Market and Ikea.  Yes, Ikea.  All of these stores have incredible return policies and their customer service has never let me down.  Target is amazing for accessories like vases, frames etc.  But also for small accent chairs and table and dining room chairs.  I have four of these dining room chairs from Target and love them.  HomeGoods, T.J.Maxx and Marshalls are all really great for home accessories and rugs and sometimes larger pieces of furniture but you have to be on the hunt all the time.  Hunting gets tiring for me so I buy my seasonal pieces at these stores.  Wayfair has really come through for K and I.  Our headboard, which is absolutely beautiful is from Wayfair.  I do have to warn you though, with Wayfair... read the reviews!  If there is no review you are taking a chance.  K and I ordered a pair of bedside tables for our guest room that were cheap, we ruined one of them putting it together and could not return it.  If you don't know about Rugs USA you are not living (jk).  They have a wide selection of beautiful rugs for every budget.  Rugs can get expensive and Rugs USA makes them affordable without laking in the style.  For example this popular, pricey diamond shag rug from West Elm compared to this one from Rugs USA and here is a whole page of diamond shag rugs because selection is their game.  Lamps Plus also has a bunch of great dupes when it comes to lamps which can be pricey especially when you are looking for larger lamps and floor lamps.  World Market has a great rewards program and in many states you can even buy wine at their stores.  They have weekly sales and insider sales for those in their rewards program.  I got this cactus wall art on sale $60 or $70, it currently cost $130.  And lastly Ikea.  I buy candles from Ikea in bulk every time we go.  They also have great accessories but I would stay away from bed sheets.  I have seen this metal bookshelf in so many homes I've lost count.  People spray paint it gold, put it in an office or living room and make it look like a million bucks.  I had the coffee table version, spray painted it gold and loved it for about a year.  I feel out of love with it because the coffee table is glass topped which needs to be cleaned ALL the time (unlike the bookshelf version) because of drinks and dust and the paint chipped also because of drinks and other use.  Ikea also has a great selection of simple rugs, like this one.

My third tip is know when to shop the sales and save up for them.  Black Friday sales can be REALLY good at stores like West ElmPottery Barn (did you know they are related?) CB2Crate & Barrel (did you know they are related?) and Nordstrom.  My favorite sale is the Buy More, Save More Event at West Elm which happens over holiday weekends such as Fourth of July, Labor Day and Black Friday.  It is a great time to buy large, expensive furniture at a discount ranging from 20% to 50% or more.  

My fourth tip is collect home decor pieces as you travel.  When we go away we always think about buying something, even something small for our home.  I have to applaud myself and brag a little about the fact that K and I came home from Mexico one year with a handmade Mexican blanket in our carry-on luggage (I'm obsessed with being a pro at packing).  And even if you don't travel abroad it is nice to pick things up along your local travels, such a candle from a homemade candle shop, a birch branch from a hike, a postcard from a gas station or shells from the beach.  I am not a huge DIY girl but I know a lot of women who DIY fun art with shells, bottle caps, newspaper clippings and wine corks.  

My fifth tip is search for art in magazines or books and make your own art.  My favorite magazines to get art work from are W and Vogue, I doubt I need to explain why.  I no longer subscribe to either of these magazines but always pick up the September issue for fashion and art inspiration.  And if I read online that they are doing an interesting feature I will pick up a magazine.  I also have art in my home from museum visits, so I guess that falls into this category.  I saw the Alexander McQueen exhibit at the Met years ago after he passed and have a print of a dress sketch of his in my office... in a cheap Ikea frame!  You would be surprised and amazed at yourself if you went to a craft store and bought a canvas, a brush and maybe one or two paint colors (arcylic). Just start waving that brush all over the canvas see what happens... it will be abstract and good, a real talking piece.

I have more tips and hope to share them with you all another day.  I hope you enjoyed today's post!

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