This blog post is different from so many others out there. Why? Because I am not telling you about the latest & greatest things you need to go buy in order to have a better, more stylish home. I’m not including long lists of links to products that you need to purchase to create the perfect room. In fact, the whole point of this post is how you can create a space in your home that feels completely fresh and new WITHOUT spending a penny. That’s right. It IS possible.
In fact, I did this just last week, and when I shared it on instagram, there was such an overwhelming response that I knew you guys wanted to hear more about how you can do this in on own home. So if you have a space in your home that you don’t love or are just plain tired of, here are some tips you can use to create a refreshed space that feels new, without spending a dime!
Empty out the entire space. Move out every piece of furniture, remove everything from the walls, empty it out entirely. Start with a blank canvas. This will allow you to see possibilities and creative ideas that might not have come to you when the space was still visually cluttered with the previous set up. Want to create a space that truly feels fresh? Then empty it out and start with a blank slate! (Side note: you are not necessarily getting rid of these things entirely. You are simply moving them out of the room for now into one big pile.)
Select a single item that you know you love and that you definitely want in the space.
Start with that. It may be an item that you pull from another room, or from the back of a storage closet, but wherever it comes from, find that one special piece you know you want in the space. Put that item into the space, and then work from there. This will provide you with a central item that you can come back to as you shop your home for other items to use in the room so that you can ensure a cohesive feel. For me, it was this rug (from an amazing shop, Swoon Rugs). I knew I wanted this vintage rug here, so I put that in place first, and then let that be the guiding force for the style of the rest of my office nook.
Relocate small furniture pieces.
I understand that sometimes in a room you may be a bit limited with where a sofa or entertainment center may go due to windows, vents, etc. But there are also lots of smaller furniture pieces that are more flexible and easy to move, and relocating them can do wonders for making a space feel fresh! So move your end table from your living room to a bedroom instead. Move that cabinet that is storing extra dishes in your dining room to your playroom to use for toys. Relocate the bench in your breakfast nook to your entryway. Swapping smaller pieces of furniture to a new spot is one of THE best ways to really make a space feel new and fresh, without actually buying anything new. I do this ALL. THE. TIME. in my home, and I highly recommend it to anyone on a budget. FYI: This shelf here was previously in my living room and I moved it to the office nook and so many people assumed it was something new I bought, but nope. It simply got relocated. (And for the many of you who asked, it is from Home Goods).
Gather similar items from your home, and place them together to make one statement grouping.
There is something aesthetically pleasing about the visual impact that a group of similar items has when they are placed together. The eye loves that repetition. And chances are that you most likely already have some things spread throughout your home that you can gather and group together. It may be hanging plants, white pitchers, macrame pieces, woven baskets, terra cotta pots, or just about anything! Go gather it together and make a statement grouping that doesn’t cost you a dime! You can see I did that in this space by grouping hanging baskets and hats as well.
Use existing frames and swap in new creative forms of artwork. The artwork may simply be a scrap of mudcloth fabric, a really cool card you got in the mail, a black and white image printed from your computer, an image clipped out of a magazine…whatever it may be, I bet you can find something cool lying around that will look great in a frame you already own. Voila, brand new “art” without spending a penny.
Dig around in cabinets, closets, or drawers to see if you might uncover some great stuff that has been forgotten about.
You might just be surprised at some of the things you already own that have slipped from your mind because they’ve been tucked away out of sight. I did this recently and was surprised to find a wall sconce I’d neglected to hang months ago. I hung it up in my kitchen and was thrilled with how it made this corner feel more “custom” without spending any money.
Paint is your friend.
Never underestimate the transforming power of paint to make anything from a chair to a cabinet to a mantle look like a totally new thing in your home! We often have half-used cans of paint from previous projects, and I will use them to give a facelift to items when I’m craving a fresh space but don’t want to fork out any money. My kitchen island and door are a great example of this. I had Shermin William’s Iron Ore left from a previous project so I simply used that paint when I wanted a change in my kitchen. Major impact at no extra cost!
Shop the other rooms in your home, looking for items that will coordinate with the defining piece that you selected in Tip #2. Take those items and use them in your new space. Some people feel like this will leave them with “empty spaces” in their home. But this is not necessarily true. Shopping your home is an exercise in shuffling decor to new places to use in fresh ways. So as you shuffle items around, you will have other unused items to put back into these “empty spaces”. Also, remember that sometimes less really is more, and you may find that you like having a bit less in some spots in your home. I know I certainly do.
I hope these ideas help inspire and empower you to know that you can use what you already own to create a fresh new space you love! If you end up redecorating a room after reading these tips, I’d love to hear from you! Comment below or DM me on Instagram. I’d love to share your before and afters in my stories!