Today we have a guest post.
Mike Freiberg is a staff writer for HomeDaddys, a resource for stay-at-home dads, work-at-home dads, and everything in between. He’s a handyman, an amateur astronomer, and a tech junkie, who loves being home with his two kids. He lives in Austin.
If you’re on a tight budget, tweaking your décor can be a great way to make your home feel new without an expensive shopping spree. Here are a few simple changes that will make your home look great on a shoestring.
1. A fresh coat of paint
If you’ve got the time to do it yourself, there’s no cheaper way to freshen up your home than new colors. To make sure everything in a given room “hangs together”, pick the color of your largest piece of furniture, and then paint the room in a color that complements it. If you want to create a soothing vibe, use light, cool colors—mellow shades of blue, green, and violet. A two-tone paint job can be tough to pull off for an amateur painter, so stick with a single color unless you’re sure you can make it look clean.
2. Different lighting
Lighting can really transform a room, and the change can be as simple as switching light bulbs. You might have to experiment with a few before you find one you like—but you’ll be surprised at the payoff when you find a bulb you like.
If your windows are hidden behind heavy drapes or blinds, consider switching to sheer curtains to let some more light in. For interior rooms without access to natural light, try adding light sources on different ends of the room. Light coming from three or more directions will make things look softer and warmer; and of course, abundant natural light is the ideal way to make that happen.
The difference between clutter and conversation pieces is organization. Attractive, minimalist organizers can be a great addition to your décor, as well as helping you keep things tidy. Pick a few colors that complement your paint and furniture, and then grab a few shelves and racks to display your stuff. You can also repurpose closet organizers to change up your home’s look.
4. Room dividers
You can completely change the feel of a room by the way you divide up the space. The change can be a simple as moving your existing furniture around, or you can pick up room divider screens to physically cordon off space for a study area, a home office, or a reading nook. Turning your bookcases perpendicular to the wall can also create a separate space. This works best in larger rooms where the end result won’t feel too cramped.
5. Potted plants
They take a little maintenance, but a few potted plants can really liven up a room—and compared to most decorative accessories, they’re extremely cheap. Almost any leafy green plant will look great in your living room, so choose on the basis of convenience. Realistically, the most appealing houseplant is the one you can keep healthy, so pick one that can handle a wide range of sunlight and watering.
When you’ve picked a plant you like, determine how big a pot you’ll need, and then find one that matches your furniture and walls. Plants don’t ship well, so you’ll want to buy them locally—but you can find pots in a much wider range of styles and prices online.
Living from one paycheck to another can be very trying. You may feel you’re…19 September 2013