Thursday, April 15, 2010

Cheap Treats: 4/15

When it comes decorating, the problem most people have isn't that they need to buy more items: it's that they have too many items. The solution here is simple:

I:    Pick one room in your home and remove every single item {furniture, accessories, etc.}

II:   Paint the walls a fresh new color {as I mentioned in another post, you can find paint as low as $3 ~ just ask the people at Home Depot or Lowes where they keep the mis-tints. You can even buy a solution that allows you to paint OVER wallpaper...though this is not recommended for amateurs DIYers}.


III: While the paint is drying, go through the items you removed and separate them into 3 piles:
      A) MOVE: Items that somehow wound up in that room but should be kept elsewhere {ie. shoes found in the Dining Room should be relocated to the entry or closet}
            * If there are items in the room that make it seem smaller and do not need to be there {ie. an extra chair, side table, etc.} relocate them to another room. Otherwise, they go in category "C"
      B) KEEP: Main furniture or other items that need to stay in the room {ie. Dining room table and chairs obviously stay in the Dining Room, but a desk does not need to be there if you have space for it in another room}
      C) TOSS: Throw away stained or damaged items; Give away items that you no longer use/need

VI: Return only the main furniture to the room {ie. If you're dealing with the Dining Room, return ONLY the items you absolutely need - no accessories}

V: Here's the fun part: "Shop" through your home to find items that could be moved to the new and improved space. A lamp that has been in the Guest Room for years might look better on your Dining Room Buffet. Or maybe a painting that has always hung in the Living Room would look great with the new wall color in your Dining Room.

Joi, from Nuestra Vida Dulce, does a fantastic job taking items from other rooms in her home and repurposing them.

VI: Be Patient: Sometimes, you can't find items in your home to relocate to the new space, which means you'll have to purchase them. However, don't just run out and buy the first thing you see. Scour places like Home Goods, Walmart, thrift stores, and yard sales for unique and inexpensive pieces. It will make you feel so much better when you see it in your new space, knowing how little you paid for it!


This is basically what the husband and I did before our recent move to West Chester. We removed everything from our old home, discarded what was stained or damaged, and gave away what we no longer used {that was definitely the hardest part for me ~ I am such a pack-rat!}.

When we moved into our new apartment, we put just the main furniture in each room {we opted out of painting since we're not sure how long we will be here because we are saving our $$$ to buy a house!}. Then, I went through ALL of our accessories and thought about how different items would work in different rooms. This was a challenge because I was used to having certain items in particular rooms and it was difficult to envision them elsewhere. However, it really paid off because I came up with some pretty neat alternatives {pics to come}!

Now, each of our rooms are tailored to our specific needs, are not cluttered, and are places where we can feel comfortable and refreshed.

I dare you to try this!


What are some other tips on clearing the clutter and reinventing your home on a dime?


On a completely unrelated note: Happy 23rd Birthday to my little sister, Rachel!! I love you and hope your birthday is as fabulous as you are! :)

8 comments:

Sara @ Russet Street Reno said...

This is a great post! I particularily love Joi's living room, it's stunning! However, I would beg anyone thinking about painting over wallpaper not to do it! Not only will you probably see the seams, but removing it after it's been painted is the worst. I'm sort of an expert after removing 7 rooms of painted-over wallpaper! UGH

carissa @ lowercase letters said...

this is an amazing idea. i'm all about decorating my space for less! thank you for this... you've motivated me to change thing up a bit! i love the rooms you showed... hmmm... i want my house to have rooms like that. can't wait to see your house pics!

Miss Anne said...

what a fun/smart idea.

i love to paint/change up the decor, even if it's just repurposing or moving it from another room.

:) xo

Karen@StrictlySimpleStyle said...

Painting is the bane of my existence, but I love rearranging my accessories. Lately I've been trying to change the entire style of my first floor so many of my accessories have met up with my BFF, spray paint. A coat of spray paint can totally change the look of a piece in minutes.

simplyMae said...

Great ideas. I do love finding unique items it is more satisfying...but sometimes i admit it is so easy to just buy the frist thing you see, i need to practice patience :)

LW @ Aisle to Aloha said...

Great tips! My house is filled with Ikea "temporary furniture" that has become semi-permanent, so I've definitely been scouring those thrift shops and craigs list for some beauties. Haven't found anything worthy yet, but I'll keep searching!

Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment! You asked where I bought my herbs. I just got them for about 1.50 each at Home Depot actually. I went with buying the plants instead of seeds. I think a little herb garden in those white pots would be so cute! Definitely post on it when you do it! :)

Mademoiselle Frou-Frou said...

i completely agree with your method. it really is a good idea to clear out the clutter and start over with a fresh coat of paint. i did something similar a year ago and in love with the results!
xox alison

Acanthus and Acorn said...

You make some really good points here....especially about the waiting!!! Always a wise move to really save or be patient for the piece that you dream of or just feels right.

Loved your comment about my bed...I will try and do that!

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